Besides the World Heritage Sites, there are other spectacular views that better to see before you die. It is the Kom Roi Festival, which is held once a year in Chiang Mai, the ancient capital of northern Thailand. You can see wonderful scenery that you want to express without the word beautiful.
There was a lantern scene in the Disney movie “Tangled”, but that is actually Chiang Mai, Thailand.
I think that it will be useful information for those who can not easily go, expensive to go from Japan, and those who are worried that reservations will be filled soon in the first place. If you go from Japan, it will be via Bangkok, Thailand, so it may be a little inconvenient, but please be assured that Thailand does not have difficulties for your first overseas trip.
On 2022 Khom Loi event will perform on 8th Nov (Tuesday) & 9th Nov (Wednesday)
What is Loy Krathong・Khom Loy festival
What is Loy Krathong festival
In Thailand this festival is held every year on the night of the full moon in December of the lunar calendar (currently October or November). By throwing a lantern with gratitude to the river, you can wash away your own impurities. This lantern is beautifully decorated with candles, incense sticks and flowers, which is called a Kraton. This festival is called Loy Krathong Festival in Thailand, but it is called “Epen Festival” in Chiang Mai.
This picture is the actual picture when I join the event and release the Krathong to the river.
When you join the event you can get 1 Krathong (1 per person). The event is held at several place and when I release Krathong still not so many was released but the beautiful light can be expose to the river.
What is Khom Loy festival
This Khom Loy Festival is an event to be held when holding the Epen Festival in the northern part of Thailand including Chiang Mai, it is a festival to pray for happiness. When all Khom Loy (lanterns) are launched into the sky, it is believed that the hardships will disappear together, so it seems that it also means to erase and purify your sins and calamities as a punishment.
The fantastic sight that can be imagined from the scene of the Disney movie “Tangled” is very popular and has become well known in recent years, and the number of participants is increasing year by year. There is also a Khom Loy festival for tourists, which is held separately from the events that local people have been doing for a long time, but the scale is getting bigger year by year too, so I’m sure you will be impressed.
At the end of the event with thousands of participants, we will fly Khom Loy all at once. You can view the fantastic sight of enormous numbers of Khom Loy in the sky. Certainly, it was a magnificent view that couldn’t be expressed in words.
Since this festival is strongly related to religion, tourists can no longer participate in the traditional festival held by local for several years, so event called Epen Runner International is the Khom Loy Festival which you can join.
How to book Khom Loy festival
The tour from Japan will be sold out so fast because of vacancy is very small.
But at the site tour vacancy is many so still you can reserve the tour. I used Ranvel tour which is managed by Japanese staff.
The event price is depending on the class where you sit but I just choose the standard seat. When I see the place I couldn’t figure out the difference between VIP and standard seat. Maybe VIP is more close to the stage. So standard should be enough.
Standard price was 3,900 barts (120USD).
Normally the date will be decided 4 month before. When I apply this tour it was 2 month before but still had vacant so I believe it’s better to book at Thai site agent. Its more easy to book at your country travel agent.
There are several place which is helding Epen Runner. This Ranveltour was Epen Runner Melim.
Khom Loy festival location
Around 6 thousand people can be inside the site and over 10,000pcs of lantern will fly into thw sky which is very fantastic view. It should be one of the biggest event. Food shop is prepared a lot so you don’t have to worry about the dinner。
②Chiangmai Sky’s Lanterns
It’s also becoming one of the biggest place for the festival. Dinner is served by buffet style and the taste was familar to Japanese. The good point is you can join the Loy Krathong event at here. This is the event I joined.
This is the oldest place which was held the festival. You can wear Hmong cloths and experience the meditation. Dinner need to buy ticket.
It’s the only place which you can join free in the Chiang Mai city. Very small volume but still you have chance at here to join the festival.
Many Japanese used to join. Panel display at the site and the announcement is used Japanese.
Where I joined was Chiang Mai’s sky lantern via Ranbel tour. It’s including the trasnporttaion from Chiang Mai to the site. And free. After the event is finish also free bus can take to return.
If you cannot decide where to choose just book via ranbel tour.
How to move to Chiang Mai city
By air flight to Chiang main airport
From most of the country you need to transit at Bangkok. If you purchase by the tour at your country the price will be high so I prefer to purchase the flight ticket by yourself.
If you don’t have luggage to check in you should better to take the low cost carrier aircraft such as airasia. But sometime it’s better to use the major aircraft company such as Japan Airline or Singapore airline. If you are considering to use flight for your trip please check below article. You can get the cheapest flight ticket.
If you are planning to use low cost carrier (LCC) you might waste your money. And at the end you might spend more money then using major aircraft company. To avoid such kind of thing please read below article. I summarize the point to be careful when you purchase the LCC ticket.
From Malaysia you can use Airasia for direct flight to Chiang Mai.
The price was around 150USD including return. This price was 2 month before the departure so if you purchase late it might be more higher and if you purchase during the promotion it can be more cheap.
Transportation from Chiang Mai airport to city
There are 3 option.
- Airport taxi
At the exit of the airport you can easily find the counter to purchase the ticket to use airport taxi. It’s the most fastest was to go to the city. The price is depends on your destination but around the main spot hotel is 200 barts （7 USD）.
You will receive the reception number at the counter once your registration is done. And the driver will call you. You need to pay when you drop off the taxi.
Arrival time is depends on the time there but normally it took 20 – 30minutes to the city but if in the evening it’s jam so might take more than 1 hour.
If this is your first trip to Chiang Mai I prefer you to use airport taxi since it’s very easy. My first visit also used this airport taxi. You can also use the taxi at the airport which the color is red or yellow so called meter taxi. But the price is meter + airport usage fee so the price will be more higher.
- City bus
This is the most cheapest way but take time. Price is 20barts （50 cent） and I used the city bus for my second trip. If you are not in hurry city bus is also good.
There are 2 line R3 (red) & R3 (yellow). The difference is whether you clockwise the old town or anti-clockwise the old town.
R3 (red)：If want to go to Nimmanhaemin area which is west side of old city
R3 (yellow)：If want to go to night bazar/Tha Phae gate area which is east side of old city
- Tuk tuk・Sontei・Grab
It’s difficult to find but when you need to go to Chiang Mai airport it’s good use especially for early morning flight.
Transportation to the venue
You don’t have to arrange the transportation to go to Kho Loy venue. Just go to the hotel which is selected by the Ranbel tour company and from the hotel you just take there bus.
Mercure hotel was the assemble area for my time so just take tuk tuk or taxi to go to the hotel. In the evening it will be jam so better move faster than you expecting. And don’t forget to bring your ticket. You need to show your ticket at the site.
Start of Khom Loy festival
There are still time to start the Khom Loy to fly.
You can enjoy the environment there and eat the dinner first. Keep in mind that the restroom is not so many especially for female side. So arrange your time to go to the restroom before the main event because around that time it’s going to be very big jam there.
The seat to fly the Khom Loy is reserved please check your ticket for your seat. 2 Khom Loy is provided per person.
Before the Khom Loy event don’t forget to get Loy Krathong. Below picture is provided from the tour company so if you have it advance please keep the screenshot to check where to get the Loy Krathong.
Around 7pm you can hear the announce about the Khom Loy event will be started. Listen carefully for the announcement. The time is depends on event but my event was starting around 7pm.
8pm was the time to fly with all the participants. You can hear the count down announcement so fly the Khom Loy together with the announcement. Each person has 2 Khom Loy but to avoid the mistake I will inform few points.
- Firstly unfold the folded lantern and make sure there are no wrinkles
- Ignite the fire to the candle and hold the stell parts of lantern until the lantern inflate
- Once the lantern is inflated release your and a moment and check can fly or not
- If OK fly it into the sky, if NO hold a more while and continue 3
photos when frying, and the scenery after that, but it was full of highlights.
At Youtube you can see the scene of Khom Loy please check it below.
Point to be careful at Khom Loy festival
①You may not be able to enter with exposed clothes
Khom Loy festival is traditional event for Budda. As you know when you enter to Thailand temple you cannot wear exposed cloths this event is also same. Short pants and short sleeve shirt is not allow to use.
②Use the restroom before the event start
The quantity of restroom is very less compare with the participants. Better use it advance to avoid to be late to event.
③Tripod for camera and phone
The big tripod may not be able to use but the small one for phones are allow. It’s very difficult if you use 1 hand to inflate the lantern. If you can prepare it will really helps you.
I am glad that I was able to participate in the Khom Roi Festival, which expresses my gratitude and the festival where I can understand the beauty of traditional culture.
It is very grateful that tourists can participate in these traditional events, so I hope that we can continue to share these traditional cultures with good manners.