Latest Situation in Thailand after the death of King Bhumibol

It was with great sadness that I heard the news about the death of King Bhumibol. I was with a group of Thai friends at the time and it was very emotional. We all knew this time was coming, but it hit everyone hard. Thais and foreigners alike. Everyone had tears in their eyes for a great man that had done so many great things for the country. The initial mourning period will last for 30 days, but funeral rites will last for 100 days. Government officials will be wearing black for one year. This will then be followed by the royal cremation.

Please scroll down for latest updates >>>>

Ever since the announcement of His Majesty’s death, I have been tweeting live updates on @RichardBarrow to inform people of the situation. At times like this, it is difficult to get accurate information, and that is when Twitter becomes invaluable. Even more so in a foreign country where you don’t speak the local language. The majority of my tweets are translated from the Thai media to help foreigners better understand the latest situation. I decided to start this page after I saw a lot of misinformation being put out on social media and in the international press. I was also getting a lot of questions about what it is like in Thailand at this moment and what, if anything is open. So, this is a guide to my observations so far. Please come back as I will constantly update this page. Also, I suggest you follow me on Twitter @RichardBarrow for any breaking news and updates.

UPDATE: Please read my exclusive interview with the Thai Tourism Minister on what to expect in Thailand over the coming months.

Tourists are NOT expected to wear black for the next 30 days (up to 13 November 2016). However, if you are able, I am sure the Thais would appreciate it if you wore muted colours. If not, it is possible to buy a black ribbon to pin on your shirt. Please be respectful at all times when around Thais. They are in deep mourning. But, life goes on. For Thais too. The King himself said that he didn’t want people to weep at his passing. Everything is open as normal though some events have been adjusted to be more appropriate.

LATEST UPDATE (4th November 2016):

  • Temple Fair in Nakhon Pathom “งานมนัสการองค์พระปฐมเจดีย์” is taking place as scheduled from 11-19 November 2016
  • Loy Krathong festival is not cancelled this year. It takes place on full moon on 14 November
  • The Giant Christmas Hope Fair on 29 November is going ahead as planned at the Rembrandt Hotel
  • The popular Ploenchit Fair at Bangkok Patana School is going ahead as planned on 26 November 2016
  • It’s official! Football supporters at the upcoming match between Thailand and Australia can cheer as normal
  • Entertainment activities can resume Nov 14
  • Culture Collective Studio presents “12 Angry Men” from 18-27 November in Bangkok.
  • Festival in Pattaya has been rescheduled from December to 16-19 February 2017
  • TMB Parkrun 2016, originally scheduled for November, has been postponed until 5 March 2017
  • Thailand Harmony World Puppet Festival, originally scheduled for November, will now take place from 20-26 February 2017
  • Parties for Halloween, Xmas & New Year can go ahead as normal with loud music behind doors. But if outside, must be adjusted appropriately.
  • The annual Monkey Party in Lopburi is going ahead as planned on Sunday 27 November 2016. Everyone is welcome
  • Loy Krathong Festival in Sukhothai is confirmed to be going ahead from 10-14 November 2016
  • Public access to Dusit Maha Prasart Throne Hall to pay respect to the royal urn postponed to Saturday
  • The Full Moon Party scheduled for 14th November will now take place on 15th November 2016
  • My friend was at the Ratchada Train Market in Bangkok the other night, and she said it was packed, with music blasting out as normal
  • There are no plans to cancel the Ayutthaya Marathon. It is going ahead as scheduled on 11 December 2016
  • At the World Cup qualifier next month in #Bangkok between Thailand & Australia, you must wear black, grey or white & you can’t sing or cheer
  • UPDATE: The Laguna Phuket Triathlon, scheduled for 20 November, is NOT cancelled any more. Please tell your friends
  • It looks like all concerts & major entertainment will be cancelled or postponed during the 100 day period. This is up to about 21 January. So, this would include new years celebrations. Certainly no fireworks or Countdown events.
  • Department of Fine Arts has announced that ALL national museums & historical parks in Thailand will be FREE for EVERYONE from 20 Oct-31 Jan
  • Grand Palace and Temple of Emerald Buddha remain closed to tourists until October 31
  • Facebook has announced that delivery of ads in Thailand will resume on 21 October at 00:01 hrs
  • New Royal Anthem performance to be filmed on Saturday 22 October at Sanam Luang from 1pm. You can take part in it. Please wear black.
  • Three or four public holidays next year could change according to the Bangkok Post. This includes Coronation Day and Kings Birthday. Possibly also Queens Birthday. Speculation is that 13 October will now become a public holiday. It is not known yet what will happen to Fathers Day. Hopefully it will stay on 5th December.
  • Photos posted on social media show that the nightlife is starting to get back to normal one week later. This includes lights and music. But, this will vary around the country. No clear picture yet.
  • Reports sent to me from around Thailand show that not as many people outside of Bangkok are wearing black. So, don’t worry about standing out. In tourist areas, life goes on. Just be respectful if around mourners.
  • Mourners will be allowed to pay their respects to the royal urn from Friday 28 October (The body of King Bhumibol is in a coffin nearby). A cremation pyre will be built on Sanam Luang. However, the cremation is not expected to take place until at least after one year
  • Outside of the metropolitan areas not all Thais are wearing black. The ones that are, said they will only wear for 30 days. Some for 1 year. Like I said before, tourists are not expected to wear black or white. Muted colors appreciated but not compulsory. Same with black ribbon.
  • Chiang Mai Yi Peng Lantern Festival at Tha Phae Gate on 13-15 November is NOT cancelled now, though there will be no music or entertainment
  • People can organise weddings, ordinations and sporting events, but no music or entertainment
  • Nightclubs are allowed to open and sell beer, but they mustn’t organize any special activities or play loud music. Basically, they are allowed to continue as long as they keep it behind close doors and are respectful.
  • People are allowed to organize weddings, ordinations and sporting events, but no music and entertainment.
  • Shows aimed at tourists are all open as normal, this includes Siam Niramit, Alcazar Cabaret, Tiffany’s Show, Calypso, Muay Thai Live etc.
  • Loy Krathong is allowed to take place on 14th November, but music and entertainment is not allowed. Basically people will go to the local canal and river to float their krathongs.
  • Cinemas, ice rinks, zoos, tourist attractions are all open as normal. Night markets in Bangkok opened as normal at the weekend
  • Places like Dream World and Safari World are open as normal, though the parade at Dream World is cancelled for 30 days
  • In Chiang Mai, the famous Night Bazaar and Walking Street opened as well.
  • Shopping malls are all open as normal. Local markets in Chinatown, Pratunam, and Bo Bae were all packed over the weekend. Chatuchak Weekend Market was open as well, but as shops are individually owned, some chose not to open as they wanted to go to the Grand Palace. We expect them to be fully open next weekend.
  • The Temple of the Emerald Buddha and The Grand Palace is closed to tourists. However, you are allowed to go and pay respects to his portrait (if you are wearing black) at the Sa­hathai Sa­makhom Hall in the Grand Palace be­tween 8.30am & 4pm. Starting from 28 October, the public can pay respects to King Bhumibol’s urn in the Dusit Maha Prasat Throne Hall from 9am-4pm
  • Every other temple around the country is open as normal. This includes the historical parks in Ayutthaya and Sukhothai.
  • Dinner Cruises on Chaophraya River are continuing though they won’t play any music and will dim the lights

WHAT IS CANCELLED?

  • CentralWorld cancels New Year Countdown Party & Beer Garden
  • The Scorpions 50th Anniversary World Tour, scheduled for 26 October, has been cancelled
  • Wonderfruit Festival, originally scheduled for December, has been postponed until 16-19 February 2017
  • The Big Mountain Music Festival, scheduled for 10-11 December, is cancelled
  • The annual temple fair at Wat Saket and the Golden Mount, scheduled for 7-16 November, is cancelled
  • BDMS Bangkok Marathon 2016, scheduled for 20th November, has been postponed until 12th February 2017
  • The annual Patong Carnival has been cancelled this year
  • Luang Pho Pan Festival parade by boat & truck in Khlong Dan, Samut Prakan, has been cancelled.
  • “Bryan Adams The Get Up Tour Live in Bangkok” and “Blue Man Group” have been postponed. No new dates announced
  • The annual Elephant Roundup in Surin, scheduled to be held from 19-20 November 2016, has been cancelled
  • Asia’s First Ever All-Girl Battle of the Bands Competition, scheduled for 21-23 October, has been postponed
  • Full Moon Party cancelled on 17th October. The next one is going ahead
  • Hellfire Pass Memorial and Walking Trail will be closed from 14-16 October
  • The Sound of Heritage concert scheduled for 21 October is cancelled
  • Lumpinee Boxing Stadium and other Muay Thai rings in Bangkok are closed for one month. Lumpinee will re-open on 15th November
  • Bangkok Street Show, scheduled for 10-12 December has been postponed
  • Pattaya International Fireworks Festival, scheduled for 25-26 November, has been cancelled
  • The Illuminated Boat Procession, scheduled for 9-17 October, has been cancelled
  • Naga Fireball World Festival in Nong Khai, scheduled for 15-24 October, has been cancelled
  • Bangkok International Festival of Dance and Music is cancelled
  • Morrissey Live in Bangkok scheduled for 18 October is cancelled
  • Scorpions 50th Anniversary Tour, scheduled for 26 October, is cancelled
  • New Year celebrations in Pattaya are cancelled

It is expected more will be added and possibly some cancellations rescinded. Come back as I will update the above list daily to make changes. New additions will be added to the top of the list.

THE SITUATION DURING THE FIRST THREE DAYS:

  • King Bhumibol died at 3:52 p.m. on Thursday 13th October 2016. The announcement was made to the nation shortly before 7 p.m.
  • Flags to be flown at half staff for 30 days. Most Thais expected to wear black, grey or white for 30 days. Government officials to wear black for one year.
  • Over the first few days, people were in shock. Entertainment venues were asked to close or at least turn off the lights and music, and shut the doors. Many places also stopped selling alcohol over the weekend.
  • Quite a few events scheduled over the first three days were cancelled or were toned down. Some cinemas shut their doors on the day after the death of His Majesty. Local Immigration offices shut for one day.
  • There were no advertisements on the electronic billboards and on the skytrain. Mannequins in the shops were all dressed in black.
  • On Saturday, the annual Buffalo Racing in Chonburi was cancelled, though the Buddhist boat parade in Bang Phli went ahead. It was confusing to know what would be acceptable.
  • On Sunday, the malls were packed. Cinemas open as normal. People eating in the restaurants. Life goes on.
  • All airports continued to operate as normal. All transportation networks, buses, trains and boats, continued as normal.

Please follow me on Twitter @RichardBarrow for all the latest breaking news and updates.

160 thoughts on “Latest Situation in Thailand after the death of King Bhumibol

  • October 26, 2016 at 12:07 pm
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    I am up in Chiang Rai. Been here since Oct 1st. I can report that all street walking markets are open sidewalk bars all open. Some live music is not being performed. But notably for tourists. The clock tower light snow and taped music is not being performed at evening hours. Clock is noting the hour but no light show and the accompanying music is not available.

    Reply
  • October 26, 2016 at 9:49 am
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    Hi

    How’s the weathet at doi inthanon? Will a windbreaker will suffice?

    Reply
  • October 26, 2016 at 12:04 am
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    I am travelling out to Thailand on 2nd January for 3 weeks, do you believe the subdued nightlife will have picked up by then? Also, will all Jungle/ Waterfall/ Full Moon parties etc be going ahead they still seem to be scheduled on the website? I saw you mentioned all big events may be cancelled, would these fall within this category? Thanks for the Info.

    Best Regards,

    Dan

    Reply
    • October 26, 2016 at 7:29 am
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      The situation is changing. There was an initial shock when the King died and many events were cancelled. Some of these are now going ahead. For example, the Full Moon Party in November is going ahead. Nightlife is also returning to normal.

      Reply
  • October 25, 2016 at 1:13 am
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    Hi,

    So i am flying out in december to Bangkok, and I was hoping to celebrate new years eve in Bangkok. However you mentioned that it’s cancelled, including fireworks etc. Has this been made official? I am otherwise planning on flying to Kuala Lumpur for new years. You also mention that there is a 100 day period, but throughout the rest of the internet i can only find that it states a 30 day period.

    Reply
    • October 25, 2016 at 6:00 am
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      Two things, I didn’t say new year in Bangkok is cancelled. I said the fireworks in Pattaya was cancelled. There has been no news about Bangkok yet. Secondly, there is a public 30 day mourning, but in Thailand funeral rites usually continue for 100 days. Which is why all big events and concerts are being cancelled up to Mid-January. There is no script for this and I cannot second guess what the Thais will feel in the future. I doubt there will be any government run countdown parties, but you might find local venues will organize them. But no-one wants to talk about it at the moment as they are mourning. Sorry I cannot be clearer.

      Reply
  • October 25, 2016 at 12:34 am
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    Richard-Nov 24th to Nov27 Pattaya and Bangkok will be normal? Pls. let me know.

    Reply
    • October 25, 2016 at 5:54 am
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      Can I just say there is no script for this and I cannot say for sure. But the nightclubs are open and beer is being served. Things are slowly getting back to normal. Just no big entertainment for now as the country mourn.

      Reply
  • October 24, 2016 at 8:35 pm
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    What do you say would be the possible amount of entertainment in Khao Lak, or near around Khao Lak?

    Reply
  • October 24, 2016 at 8:31 pm
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    Hi Richard, we are going to Khao Lak on the 4th of November for two weeks. What is the situation on the South side of Thailand? Thank you.

    Reply
    • October 25, 2016 at 3:03 pm
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      Thanks Richard, it is nice to know that.

      Reply
  • October 24, 2016 at 5:52 pm
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    Thanks a lot for all your information. It’s really usefull for us.

    Reply
  • October 24, 2016 at 4:08 pm
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    Hi, Richard.
    I’ll be visiting Bangkok from November 14 through until November 19. What do you say would be the possible amount of entertainment permissible at Khao San road and parts around when I do come? Also, will the red-light districts in Pattaya be open to operate at night then?

    Reply
    • October 24, 2016 at 5:49 pm
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      The problem with Khao San is that it is the nearest place to the Grand Palace. I wouldn’t advise going there. Not only because there are thousands of people in mourning there wearing black, but also because there is a horrendous traffic jam. Best to stay elsewhere in the city. Nightlife is already starting to return to normal but every place is open late. No problem with buying alcohol.

      Reply
      • October 24, 2016 at 8:16 pm
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        If not around Khao San, what do you think would be the best place to stay in Bangkok for someone like me looking for Nightlife during my stay in Thailand .i.e., November 14 through until November 19? And, as much as I’ve read, wasn’t the ban on entertainment to come off after November 13, 2016?

        Reply
        • October 24, 2016 at 8:18 pm
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          There’s no longer a ban on nightclubs. But some are closing early. I would suggest either Silom or Nana or anywhere along the Skytrain route.

          Reply
  • October 24, 2016 at 2:32 pm
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    Hi Richard,
    I am leaving for Phuket on Friday (Patong beach)
    Is bangala open ? Will shows there still be on there ?
    My partner wants to cancel so any info would be great, the internet is too big and I don’t know what to believe !

    Reply
    • October 24, 2016 at 2:38 pm
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      Shows never stopped. Walking Street in Patong was open last week. Entertainment was just a bit subdued. Though I am getting more reports of volumes going back up at more places around Thailand. No problem buying alcohol though.

      Reply
      • October 26, 2016 at 9:22 am
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        I’m in Patong.
        Bangla Road is open. The only noticeable difference is music is quieter and no girls are dancing on the bar in visible open bars. Behind closed doors, all the go go’s are operating prett much as per normal, except most seem to be now that they are now only going topless.
        Ping pong shows act are still occurring. Discos are open too. And the street and the bars are full of girls, with all the girls hustling for drinks and bar fines for LT / ST just like normal.

        Reply
  • October 24, 2016 at 2:54 am
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    Hi Richard! Just about to set up Thailand for 2 weeks from 6th of Nov. Not looking for big parties, but would like to hear some music in local pub or at my bungalow in beach. Are there any restrictions for alcohol sales? Although Thailand calls should I book Indonesia instead? What you think?
    Thanks for your post.

    Reply
    • October 24, 2016 at 5:37 am
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      I cannot say for sure as it’s not the same everywhere. Yes, in some places they have turned back on the music behind closed doors. But seemingly not everywhere. I would say the more touristy place you go or isolated beach then the better your chance for a normal holiday. There are no restrictions on sale of alcohol. That was only for the first few days.

      Reply
  • October 22, 2016 at 9:10 pm
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    Hi,
    Richard Thank you for information about Thailand . and I’m very sorry about the King of Thailand and Participate in mourning of People of Thailand.

    I have a question about nightlife in Bangkok, Pattaya and Phuket, ya I know this is not a good question in this time but we already planed our trip (28 November to 4 December) and is not possible for me to postpone our vacation.
    so just wanted to know how about the nightlife and beaches those days, would be the same as expected as we are wondering bars and nightlife opened back up or functioning normally.

    Reply
    • October 22, 2016 at 9:18 pm
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      As it’s outside the initial 30 day mourning should be more back to normal by them. Though no big entertainment events until at least mid January.

      Reply
  • October 22, 2016 at 2:11 pm
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    Hi Richard thanks for all the usefull information.
    I wanted to ask you a question, we will be in Chiang Mai for the Yee Peng festival.
    I was looking that there is the private Yee Peng Lanna event for the massive lantern lunch which is expensive and difficult to get a ticket, now I saw another website offering a private event for 500 persons which costs around 45$ and the lantern lunch in the city which is free.
    Which one would you recommend would be the best to attend? If it would be in the city, should we try to get around the Thapae Gate? Thanks for your response in advance.

    Reply
    • October 22, 2016 at 9:17 pm
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      I’ve only been to the one in the city. They said it’s going ahead but no entertainment. Which means no music or parades. The private one looks good but they haven’t made an announcement yet. The guy at thaizer.com has a comparison.

      Reply
      • October 25, 2016 at 1:12 am
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        Thanks for the info Richard!

        Reply
  • October 22, 2016 at 6:15 am
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    I am coming to Bangkok for Christmas this year. I have seen many photos of the beautiful decorations around Bangkok at Christmas time. Is it likely that there will be no decorations this year? or less extravagant than previous years?

    Reply
    • October 22, 2016 at 7:22 am
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      As it’s within the 100 day period, it’s unlikely there will be many decorations.

      Reply
      • October 22, 2016 at 7:46 am
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        I have been a tourist in Chang Rai since October 1st and experienced first hand the tragic news of HM King passing. Within the last 10 days I have witnesses a few restrictions of alcohol selling, some restaurants closed at night. Some local events cancelled but for the most part tourist sites all open. It appears 80-90% of thai citizens are wearing black,black/ white coordinates or just all white. Many tourists are voluntarily participating. I am wearing black shirts every day when out in the city center. The citizens are in mourning but certainly life must go on for the health of the nation. I would hope the King would have wanted the same thing

        Reply
        • October 22, 2016 at 7:48 am
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          Thanks for your firsthand report. Hopefully more people can share theirs. The situation around the country will vary.

          Reply
  • October 22, 2016 at 5:04 am
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    How is life like in Krabi Town? Or Chiang Mai?

    Are tourist still require to wear black after the 30 day period? Are restaurants or bars shut down?

    Reply
    • October 22, 2016 at 7:21 am
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      Like I said many times, tourists are not expected to wear black unless you are attending a funeral ceremony. Life is slowly getting back to normal but the country is in mourning. So no loud music or fireworks.

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 7:04 pm
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    hi
    Richard Thank you for information about Thailand . and I’m very sorry about the King of Thailand and Participate in mourning of People of Thailand.
    I have a question about nightlife in Bangkok Nana plaza, Patapong, and Soi Cowboy and Pattaya city I go to vacation On time 30 days in mourning People of Thailand
    my vacation (29october -11november) and is not possible for me to postpone my vacation.
     I realized bars and go go bars and clubs are open. starting now return lights and quiet music. but realized that girls are working in the bars, large part of the girls are returned home to are village up to 30 days Mourning ends.
    which means bars almost empty.
    has information Is that correct?
    thanks

    Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 1:14 pm
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    hi
    Thanx for your guides
    would you please explain about yesterday night life(clubs,bars,discos) on walking street?
    can I dance with thi girls in disco like before?
    Thanx for your explain

    Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 7:27 am
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    I assume black/white/grey base shirt with minimal colour prints like red in it is fine?

    Does the colour code apply to shoes as well? I only have a pair of striking pink running shoes which i will wear for trekking at doi inthanon.

    Regards

    Reply
    • October 21, 2016 at 7:29 am
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      As a tourist you don’t need to worry so much. Just by making an effort you have earned their gratitude. If worried, try and get a black ribbon.

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 3:59 am
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    Hi Richard
    I will come to pattaya on 27Oct to 4Nov,can i enjoy from night club,alcaza show,bar and massage?
    I mean that, are they works as usual?
    Thanks for your answear

    Reply
    • October 21, 2016 at 6:42 am
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      The shows and massage are open as normal. I would think the nightlife there would be back to normal by that time.

      Reply
  • October 20, 2016 at 11:36 pm
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    Do you know if the Wonderfruit festival in mid December will go ahead?

    Reply
  • October 20, 2016 at 10:42 pm
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    Hi Richard,
    Nice to see you are helping us out with the latest information regarding the current situation.

    I will be checking back up until my travel date which will be from the 12-30th November will be spending most of my time in Chiang Mai but probably a week in bkk also… on the tail end,

    I was wondering if the Loy Krathong festival in Chiang Mai will still be taking place as normal or has this cancelled? i noticed someone wrote the Chiang Rai Loy Krathong Festival had been cancelled.

    Also are there any areas you would suggest avoiding?

    I will be packing less colourful stuff, Will pay my respect

    Thanks in advance for your info, appreciated

    Reply
    • October 20, 2016 at 10:45 pm
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      Chiang Mai said they will go ahead with Loy Krathong but there will be no parade or entertainment.

      Reply
  • October 20, 2016 at 8:35 am
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    I have bookmark your blog…you can reply so i can view

    Reply
  • October 20, 2016 at 8:34 am
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    Richard,
    Thanks for your great effort to update us latest news of Amazing Thailand. I just visited Bangkok in Sept 2016. I thought want to upload all the photos of Madame Tussauds Bangkok but afraid cos Thailand is mourning now….not sure whether to upload or wait till later. Please advise. Thank you in advance.
    Jenny

    Reply
    • October 20, 2016 at 8:37 am
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      Very good question. I haven’t posted any travel photos all week but might start after the first seven days have passed. The King loved traveling around Thailand and I’m sure he would want any beautiful photos of his country shared.

      Reply
      • October 20, 2016 at 8:41 am
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        There are thousands of photos of the King with a camera around his neck. HM seemed to be such a fan of nature and the great people of Thailand.

        Reply
  • October 20, 2016 at 12:35 am
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    Hi Richard,
    I know that the Full moon party @ Koh Phangan has been cancelled for October. What about the one which is scheduled for Monday 14 November 2016 ? Will it be cancelled too..??

    Also, how is the atmosphere at Nana Plaza..?

    Reply
    • October 20, 2016 at 7:23 am
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      I saw photos and videos posted on Instagram which showed that the party actually went on. Though more subdued. So chances are there will be a party of sorts in November.

      Nightlife is starting to get back to normal. Latest photos from Walking Street in Patong show the music and crowds are back.

      Reply
  • October 19, 2016 at 11:47 pm
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    If I am traveling in late November last the 30 days window can I wear normal colors instead of muted and black and white.. Planning to be in Bangkok and Phuket.

    Reply
      • October 20, 2016 at 12:22 am
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        Hi Richard,

        Thanks for the prompt response. I am also debating on traveling to other parts of the island area away from the city.. most of the items I plan to pack would be colorful. If I choose to wear pinks or yellow or green would that be disrespectful? after the 30 day period? My only fear is that the local people might yell at me for not wearing muted colors as I have seen other articles online. I won’t be partying or or drinking as that is not something I enjoy but I do wear colorful clothing.

        Reply
        • October 20, 2016 at 7:21 am
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          If you’re worried, just wear a black ribbon. But to be clear, reports I’m getting show that not so many people wearing black in tourist areas and rural areas. Don’t stress it. Just be respectful around mourners and you will be fine.

          Reply
  • October 19, 2016 at 8:58 pm
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    Thanks Richard. I arrive at the tail-end of Oct and will stay for 5 days. What exactly is muted colours? I have some black t-shirts, and some dark blue / navy blue t-shirts. and I intend to wear black pants or bermudas. Is pale blue acceptable?

    Re the black ribbon, is it a simply ribbon shaped as you have in the picture above? Or is it tied as a butterfly ribbon? What is the standard? How big? How thick? I intend to make one for myself to wear when I am in Bangkok.

    Finally, are the massage places open for business? The manicures and pedicures? Are they considered entertainment also and thus disallowed?

    You said the public can pay respects to HM from 28 Oct at the royal urn. That includes tourists like me? Or can I simply kneel before a huge portraits of HM and kowtow 9 times as respect? Is there a central place, as the queues at the Grand Palace I assume will be extremely long?

    Thank you again. I am sure all the gods will watch over you and your loved ones, and the soul of HM now in heaven is definitely one of them.

    Reply
    • October 19, 2016 at 9:03 pm
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      Basically try and avoid any bright colours. I wore dark blue today. No problem. It’s not compulsory for tourists but they will like that you made an effort. Same with the ribbon. Some places are handing these out for free. As for the Grand Palace, there will be a MASSIVE queue for sure. If you go, you will have to be in proper mourning clothes. About the portrait, many malls have them with a table set up to sign a book of condolences. Yes, massage shops are open as normal.

      Reply
      • October 28, 2016 at 10:03 pm
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        I know short might not be a nice things to wear now. How about Bermuda short is it ok to be wear? Is beige consider as bright color too?

        Reply
        • October 28, 2016 at 11:04 pm
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          As a tourist there is no problem. But you cannot go near the Grand Palace like that.

          Reply
  • October 19, 2016 at 6:33 pm
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    Just received word here in Chiang Rai the Loy Krathong Festival for mid November has Ben cancelled

    Reply
  • October 19, 2016 at 5:14 pm
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    What about the Ploenchitfair?

    Reply
  • October 19, 2016 at 4:39 pm
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    Hi Richard,
    I’ve been following your updates for 2 days now, and they have been VERY helpful. I’m relieved that despite the king’s sad demise, Thailand is still recovering well. After the sad news, we’re planning to carry decent clothes with muted colours and don’t intend to disrespect the situation.

    I have some confusion which I was hoping you can help with:
    We’re planning to visit Pattaya, Phuket and Krabi during the second week of November (5th-14th) and are aware that it falls within the 30 day period. Though it’s not the primary intent of our visit, but we were wondering if Pattaya Walking Street, Go-Go bars and other places with recreational adult events have opened back up or functioning normally.

    Again, thanks so much for the help! I’m already following your updates on Twitter, and looking forward to our trip!

    Reply
    • October 19, 2016 at 4:42 pm
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      Yes they are open but most places are either very quiet or the music is turned down. However, I have had some reports that some places are operating as normal. I guess if they can do so in a discreet manner then they will.

      Reply
  • October 19, 2016 at 8:51 am
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    Hi Richard. Thank you for all this information. Do you know if the BKK marathon in November will go ahead or will it be cancelled. I would understand completely if it was cancelled but would just like to know.
    Thank you
    Juliet

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  • October 19, 2016 at 12:35 am
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    What about Elephant Festival in Surin this year?

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  • October 18, 2016 at 5:36 pm
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    Hi. Thank you so much Richard for all valuable information regarding latest scenario in Bangkok. Im travelling with my family in last week of October. It will be indeed useful. Regards.

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  • October 18, 2016 at 4:55 pm
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    We are coming to Thailand for our wedding in early november. We are having it on a semi private beach in Koh Chang. The hotel has said we can have the wedding, including the reception but i dont think they understand what a western reception is usually like. If entertainment venues can have music behind closed doors, is it ok for us to have entertainment in a private function room? what are the chances of restrictions being loosned on tourist islands as the month goes on?
    Thanks

    Reply
    • October 18, 2016 at 6:19 pm
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      Early November is still within the initial 30 day mourning period. The problem is, each venue is interpreting the rule in different ways. Slow music behind closed doors seems to be acceptable.

      Reply
      • October 18, 2016 at 7:24 pm
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        @Katie
        I have dozens of Thai friends who usually love nothing more than partying, however they are all mourning and don’t even play dance music in their homes.

        By all means have your wedding, the setting will be fantastic and the customer service you will receive will be excellent as always, but I think that out of respect to Thai people who are extremely sad and mourning their beloved King, you should perhaps opt for a quitter style wedding.

        I realize this will be very disappointing to you as you have probably been planning your special day for years, but once you’re in Thailand, you will realize just how sad people are….

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        • October 18, 2016 at 7:26 pm
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          Sorry my measure was intended for @Tim.

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  • October 18, 2016 at 2:50 pm
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    Hi Richard. We are traveling around Asia with open plans. We were going to move through laos quickly to make to loy krathong in Chiang mai. Do you think it will still be nice without music or entertainment or should we just take our time and skip it? Thx

    Reply
    • October 18, 2016 at 6:17 pm
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      Difficult to tell at this stage as it’s not exactly clear what they mean. But I would think it would be dull compared to previous years.

      Reply
  • October 18, 2016 at 5:39 am
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    BKK Siam Niramit is open with daily shows.

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  • October 18, 2016 at 1:17 am
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    do you know what the Thai’s mean by “the king’s urn,” since his body has not yet been cremated. Is that just another word for casket?

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    • October 18, 2016 at 6:10 am
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      It’s the large golden urn that the Crown Prince is paying respect to every day. It will be open to public viewing soon. I’ll tweet a picture of it this morning for you.

      Reply
  • October 18, 2016 at 12:06 am
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    Hi Richard
    This is really useful information and very much appreciated.

    I have even shared some of this information with some Thai friends who were unaware of some of the closures.

    Thanks again. / John

    Reply
  • October 17, 2016 at 10:04 pm
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    Thanks for latest updates, now shared with my friends!

    Reply
  • October 17, 2016 at 8:23 pm
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    Hi Richard
    We are travelling to Patons and Phi Phi from Dec 26 and returning 10 Jan and everybody is advising that we cancel our trip as it will not be festive due to the sad passing of the King.
    Please advise if it is advisable to ask for a refund or what you think the situation will be like in December for tourists bearing in mind that our visiting is their bread and butter? This will not be my first visit in Dec so I am aware of how festive it has been in the past.
    I thank you and respect the very sad loss that the Thai people are having to deal with.

    Kind regards
    Sharon Long

    Reply
    • October 17, 2016 at 8:24 pm
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      Apologies Patong not Patons

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    • October 17, 2016 at 8:25 pm
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      I cannot tell you for sure what will happen in December. But I can tell you two things on your side: it’s outside of the initial 30 day mourning period and the government just said today that the nightclubs can resume service. (Though with quieter music.)

      Reply
  • October 17, 2016 at 8:12 pm
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    Thank you for this valuable information, Richard.

    Reply
  • October 17, 2016 at 8:01 pm
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    Thank you SO much Richard. I read and write Thai, but no where near well enough to glean much useful info from the news broadcasts on the State TV stations. And my Thai studies learning did not prepare me at all for this situation in terms of knowing what would happen or what to say or do. I wish to mourn alongside all those who loved H. M.

    Reply
  • October 17, 2016 at 7:24 pm
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    Thanks for your very helpful updates Richard; I recently started following you on Facebook. I’m travelling through Thailand once again in 3 weeks and your advice and information will be very useful. I was very sad to hear of King Bhumibol’s death, it’s been such a blow for the Thai people x

    Reply
  • October 17, 2016 at 3:21 pm
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    Richard please tell me about the songkran festival which will be in april next year.

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  • October 17, 2016 at 2:00 pm
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    Thank you for your invaluable updates. Our son lives in Bangkok and we visit when we can. The information we get from your site helps us understand so much about Thailand-

    Reply
  • October 17, 2016 at 12:38 pm
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    Thanks Richard. We’re arriving in BKK on Friday for 6 weeks. This is really useful. We will, of course be completely respectful, I was sad to hear the news and sad for Thailand.

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  • October 17, 2016 at 12:14 pm
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    Your updates have been very helpful for ha foreigners in Thailand. Been here 10 years and it’s still not sinking in that he’s gone. How much more for the Thais.

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  • October 17, 2016 at 11:32 am
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    You said that Grand Palace & Emeral Buddha is closed to tourists but can people go there and repay their respects? If so, what times?

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    • October 17, 2016 at 11:45 am
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      You are allowed to go and pay respects to his portrait (if you are wearing black) at the Sa­hathai Sa­makhom Hall in the Grand Palace be­tween 8.30am & 4pm. Then, starting from 28 October, the public can pay respects to King Bhumibol’s urn in the Dusit Maha Prasat Throne Hall from 9am-4pm

      Reply
  • October 17, 2016 at 10:59 am
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    For your info

    Message from Shrewsbury int school :

    Dear Proms Guests,

    In sadness on the passing of H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej, and in accordance with the guidance issued by the Office of the Private Education Commission, Shrewsbury International School has taken the decision to cancel the Last Night of the Proms event. Further information regarding the refunding of ticket sales will be issued in due course. We would be grateful if you could pass on this information to any other guests for whom you may have purchased a ticket. Our thanks for your support and understanding in this matter.

    Kind regards
    Jane

    Reply

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