CNN: Bangkok among best places to ring in the New Year

American cable news network CNN named Bangkok as one of the 10 best places in the world to experience a New Year‘s Eve “you’ll never forget,” especially if big parties and fireworks are your preferred ways to celebrate.

“Bangkok often tops roundup lists of Asia’s best nightlife cities. So of course, it is a natural place to ring in the new year if you like crowds, bright lights, noise and revelry,” the article on CNN’s website pointed out.

The network recommended heading to the Chao Phraya River, also known as the River of Kings, for the spectacular fireworks displays launched up and down its banks by several five-star hotels and luxurious mega shopping malls.

Or, get a panoramic view of the pyrotechnics along the river, and at myriad other spots in every direction at one of the capital’s many “stunning” rooftop bars and restaurants, CNN added.

“If the merriment becomes too much, get some calming down time on January 1st  at a temple such as Wat Pho, with its reclining Buddha,” the article further recommended.

In fact, it is not uncommon for Thais to welcome the New Year by going to a Buddhist temple on New Year’s Eve and meditating or chanting and engaging in rituals of purification for the body and the mind.

Other cities that made the list were Sydney (Australia), Dubai (United Arab Emirates), Cape Town (South Africa), Rome (Italy), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and Las Vegas (United States).

The Western calendar New Year is just one of three celebrated in Thailand. The Kingdom also marks Chinese New Year because of its significant Sino-Thai population. And perhaps most popular of all is the Buddhist New Year known as “Songkran” celebrated in April, often the hottest month of the year, with water splashing, water-gun battles, and purification rites.

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