Introducing our newest life-of-the-party network – Thirsty Swagman! Do you like to drink up as much culture as you possibly can while in a foreign place? If so, please join this network and read the following post by Tash, the Party Starter herself. Cheers!
The start of a new year is a highly celebrated occasion across the globe, with the most renowned of these celebrations being among Western and Asian countries. However, unless you are a seasoned traveler (or a google-search fanatic), you probably haven’t heard of one particularly interesting New Year festival: Songkran in Thailand (celebrated April 13-15).
Surprisingly, there is only one tour company taking keen travelers from around the world to celebrate Songkran. Thirsty Swagman is an Australian tour-operating company that specialises in authentic, international pub tours. Thirsty Swagman offers a unique tour through South-East Asia, offering an exclusive insight into Thailand’s colourful culture as well as their most authentic pubs and bars, and ultimately giving adventure-seeking travelers the unique opportunity to experience the world through the bottom of their glass.
After two beer-swilling nights of rediscovering your youth at Singapore’s Sentosa Island, and indulging in some of Singapore’s most diverse nightlife such as the renowned Clarke Quay, the tour then takes off to Phuket, Thailand. Thailand is arguably one of the most culturally rich countries to which travelers can venture to enjoy the finer things in life, whether it’s watching the native martial arts Muay Thai, or enjoying the traditional cuisine which explodes on your tongue with distinct sweet, spicy, sour, bitter and salty flavours.
Arriving in Thailand for Songkran is often one of the hidden highlights on this tour, with tour participants only realising the sheer size and grandeur of the whole event when it begins. Travelers who know of this amazing tradition will grab their water-guns, pack their bags and travel across the world to celebrate Songkran with a splash – an event where the entire nation stops everything to engage in an immense, 3-day long, countrywide water fight. Some cities in Thailand, such as Chiang Mai, have been known to host water fights that run up to 6 days long.
Another highlight of this pub tour experience that mustn’t be left out is the speedboat adventure to two private pubs on the beautiful Naka Island. This island is fit for a king. Literally. The prince of Dubai recently stayed there. You’ll land on a stretch of beach with nothing but white sand, crystal clear water, and two tiny beach shack pubs that serve every beer ice cold.
After 5 nights of experiencing only Singapore and Thailand’s most unique and authentic pubs, islands and traditions, you’ll be more cultured than a tub of yogurt, and very ready for a long massage and a tasty cocktail back at the hotel before your late check-out.
Odds and Ends
A countrywide water fight may appear as an odd celebratory tradition to foreigners, however this seemingly strange tradition of throwing water, originated as a way to respect elders. During this time, locals would pour water mixed with Thai fragrance over Buddha images in households and monasteries to cleanse them.
The locals would then capture the “blessed” water and gently pour it over loved ones and neighbouring friends. By the mid 20th century, the tradition has spread from being held in Northern Thailand, to become a countrywide, full-fledged water fight, where everyone involved is believed to be blessed with a year of good luck and prosperity. And as the time of year comes during Thailand’s hottest and most humid months, who wouldn’t want to get in on a piece of the action? (Followed by a cold one.)
For more info on Asia Annihilator Pub Tour: http://www.ThirstySwagnman.com