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Miss Belgium contestants enjoy Loy Kratong 2009 on Phuket

Phuket Loy Kratong Floats Many Boats

Thursday, November 18, 2010
PHUKET people talk about what will float your boat, and there's nothing more apt to the popular phrase than the Loy Kratong Festival.

Romance is not just in the air, it's on the water as well, and shining brightly. Anyone with a heart cannot fail to fall for the magic of this special day.

Come November 21, and Phuket will demonstrate its power to make Loy Kratong memorable.

Many people make their own boats from a banana leaf, topping them with a lighted candle for hope and a few coins for good luck.

Other loy kratongs can be bought from vendors near some of the favored sites around Phuket, and most of those spots are near flat inland stretches of water.

Some lovers will buy birds to release, as a symbol of free affection.

There are those who say the birds often return to their vendor owners, to be released again and again. And it's certainly true that young boys use the Loy Kratong Festival on Phuket to make some extra cash, usually diving in and fetching the coins from the boats before they sail too far.

True romantics, though, always overlook the commercial aspects and let Loy Kratong work its charm.

Whatever you do, avoid polystyrene loy kratongs. They really don't help the environment the morning after.

Most of the big resorts on Phuket have Loy Kratong ceremonies but the public parks are probably the best places for a full appreciation of the annual festival.

Try the Saphan Hin public park or other public parks with water in Phuket City, the lagoon at Karon, or stretches of still water in other places. The Phuket Tin Mine will reopen in central Kathu on Loy Kratong Day, so the lagoon there should be special.

And if you really enjoy Loy Kratong, the full romance of sail can be had with the slightly larger boats of the Phuket King's Cup Regatta, on Phuket waters in just a couple of weeks.

*The 2010 Miss Belgium contestants are staying at the Ramada Khao Lak from November 22-29. The 2009 contestants were on Phuket for Loy Kratong last year.

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