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10 Things to Do in Bangkok in October

From its ornate shrines and vibrant attractions to its delicious Thai cuisine. Explore Thailand's capital when the rains are behind you.

Carla Yaquer

Carla Yaquer

9 min read

10 Things to Do in Bangkok in October

Vista panorámica de Bangkok |© Alejandro Cartagena 🇲🇽🏳‍🌈

The City of Angels is an exciting and diverse Asian capital that attracts millions of tourists each year with its cultural variety, vibrant street life and traditional festivals. Join me for things to see and do in Bangkok in October, when Buddhist Lent ends and the weather is kinder.

Whether it's the October Boat Festival, extreme hiking or the Vegetarian Festival, get close to the natural Thai landscapes for the best things to do in Bangkok, a destination with experiences for all visitors.

1. Participate in the Vegetarian Festival

vegetarian festival|©Roman Gieszczyk
vegetarian festival|©Roman Gieszczyk

If you travel to Bangkok in October, you can't miss the opportunity to participate in the Vegetarian Festival! This event is held annually throughout Thailand and in particular at the Lim Hu Tai Su Shrine, Sam Kong or Am Sam Kong where it is highly valued.

During this festival, Thais observe the 8 precepts of Mahayana Buddhism, the equivalent of the commandments of the Catholic tradition.

If you have the opportunity to travel to Phuket at this time of the year, go to Lim Hu Tai Su Shrine, Sam Kong. This is a sacred place where the image of Tai Buddha and other gods are worshipped. It is also a very special place for the people of Phuket.

During the Vegetarian Festival, the shrine will be full of people coming to make merit, ask for blessings, and pay homage to each other. It is a unique opportunity to experience Thai culture and tradition in an authentic and meaningful way.Where is the event? At 306 Yaowarat Road, Talat Yai sub-district, Mueang Phuket district.

Book a guided tour of Bangkok

2. Join the Bang Phli Yai Lotus Temple celebration

Bang Phli Yai|©doris.peterson
Bang Phli Yai|©doris.peterson

During the first two weeks of this month two very significant events take place in Samut Prakan, a province near Bangkok. The first is the tradition of receiving the blessing of the gods at the Bang Phli Yai Lotus Temple, an ancient custom of the Thai-Mon people. The second event is Yon Bua Day, which is celebrated on the 14th day of the crescent moon, the 11th month of each year, and is a royal convocation.

During the Bang Phli Yai Lotus Temple celebration, the replica of Reverend Father To is transported to the famous Wat Bang Phli Yai temple, near the Erawan Museum, one of the city's most popular museums.

The image is transported on a boat covered with vibrant flowers to travel along the Bang Phli canal. Along the way, tourists and devotees pay homage to Reverend Father To. It is believed that if you throw a lotus flower into the boat consecrated with Luang Pho To, your wish will come true.

In addition to this tradition, Yon Bua Day offers many other activities, such as the Devorohana competition of rowing boats for the royal cup, creative competitions around papaya, dances, the youth queen contest, singing contests; and thanks to its combination of culture, religion, modernity and tradition the passage through Erawan is perfect to concentrate the heart of the capital in one place.

If you want to experience Thai culture in a unique way, you definitely have to add Yon Bua Day to your travel itinerary in October.Where is the date? In Bang Phli Yai Subdistrict, Bang Phli district, Samut Prakan province.

Book a guided tour of Bangkok

3. Participate in the Tak Bat Dewo Festival

stone buddha|© Sabine Schulte
stone buddha|© Sabine Schulte

The Buddha image is enshrined in Wat Sakae Krang, on Mount Sakae Krang, around the river of the same name. And during the end of Buddhist Lent each year the Tak Bat Devo Festival, a holy day in Uthai Thani province, is organized here.

According to Buddhist tradition this day is called "Tak Bat Devo" because Lord Buddha descended from Tavatimsa heaven to preach for his mother, who was suffering in the hellish realm. When the villagers saw the Buddha return the following year, they rejoiced and offered him food and thereafter every year his spirit is believed to vibrate in that space.

To celebrate, during the first full moon day of October, more than 500 monks descend 449 steps from Mt. Sakae Krang to the lower courtyard of Wat Sangkat Rattanakiri, following the Buddha's path. If you want to see the ceremony and the multicolored spectacle, your appointment is in Soi Wat Sangkat, sub-district of Uthai Mai District of Mueang Uthai Thani, it is worth it.

4. Participate in the Hundred Thousand Lanterns Festival

Red lanterns|©Jack Lu
Red lanterns|©Jack Lu

The Khom San Duang Festival, translated as the Hundred Thousand Lantern Festival or Lamphun Lantern Festival is a colorful and entertaining celebration, ideal to note among things to do in Bangkok with children because entire families get involved in the activity.

This tradition has been going on for a long time, and is well known to Thai and foreign tourists. The festival is distinguished by decorating houses by lighting a multicolored lantern or decorating a lamp that will then rise to the sky illuminated. According to Buddhist tradition, this is to worship Lord Buddha, who from the heavens blesses the illuminated homes to attract prosperity and family togetherness for the next 12 months.

The festival is held at Wat Phra That Hariphunchai Woramahawihan in Lamphun district throughout the month of October. Queen Chamthewi Mueang, the first royal to join the cult, is also honored on this date.

5. Celebrate the Buddhist Lent Festival

Boun Khao Phansa|©bindubaba
Boun Khao Phansa|©bindubaba

During the full moon of October, the Buddhist Lent ends, better known by its original name: "Khao Phansa", a deep-rooted celebration in this capital, and events such as the lotus flower shower are the order of the day. This is a celebration you won't want to miss.

It is a great opportunity that invites Buddhist communities from all regions to come together to honor the traditional practices of the religion such as offering alms to Devorohana, giving new robes to monks, participating in the Daowadung Mahachat Sermon or the Vessantara Jataka Sermon with the city dressed in costume.

With your ticket to Bangkok Grand Palace you can enjoy the decorations, activities, dances and shows as the city will be dressed up and you can be part of the celebration.

6. Enjoy the Kan Fire Balls

Naga Fireball Festival|©SierraSunrise
Naga Fireball Festival|©SierraSunrise

The Nong Khai Fireballs can be seen along the Mekong River in Phon Phisai District, Rattan Awapi District, you also find viewing points in Nong Khai Province and of course in Mueang Bueng Kan District, Bueng Kan Province. Each time the festival surprises visitors with its unique style.

A fireball is a supernatural phenomenon believed to be caused by a dragon or mythological snake, and in this case it is known as Naga. Legend has it that they began to appear from sunset until around midnight, at the end of Buddhist Lent.

From myth it became a great event where rockets with snake or dragon designs are seen flying to accompany the great parade of fire boats, small boats that are decorated by the locals to compete for the royal cup along the Mekong River. Thousands of tourists gather and wait to watch the parade pass by while the locals hope to take the cup back to their village.

Head to the various Skyballs Naga viewing points and don't miss this popular festival, one of the best things to do in Bangkok at night in October.

Book a dinner cruise in Bangkok

7. Go trekking in Phu Kradueng

Phu Kradueng|©f4nn1
Phu Kradueng|©f4nn1

The Phu Kradueng National Park hiking trail takes you around this 60 km2 plateau that rises 1316 meters above sea level, and while that number is not impressive, wait until you learn that it starts rising from an altitude of 285 meters, so the cumulative elevation gain is about 1000 meters. Now isn't that a demanding circuit?

This national park, located in Loei province, offers one of the most popular outdoor experiences among Thais, and annually increases the number of tourists who join the adventure, especially in October, when the rains have subsided, visibility and terrain conditions improve.

The average time to climb Phu Kradueng is between 4 and 6 hours to the tourist service center. Along the way you will find camping sites with all the basic amenities available. In addition, there are must-see attractions such as the Lom Sak and Mak Dook cliffs, or the wonderful Wang Kwang waterfall and many other natural attractions. Who wants to invite a group of friends to travel?

Show the strength of body and mind, then remember to book 2 days in Bangkok in your city itinerary to enjoy this activity.

8. Enjoy the Fai Lai Festival, the cultural explosion of Nakhon Phanom

Night decorations|©Ricardo Lopes
Night decorations|©Ricardo Lopes

The Fai Lai Festival of Nakhon Phanom province is a tradition celebrated during the end of Buddhist Lent (early October), which is considered an important tradition of the people of Nakhon Phanom and nearby provinces.

Annually, during this festival, there is a parade of boats ready to make their way down the Mekong River, while the city takes on an incredible beauty, illuminated by wax candles melting on pagodas and crepe paper lanterns hanging from the roofs of temples and windows of local houses.

The atmosphere is very beautiful. In the event, there are many other interesting activities to visit, such as the Phra That Phanom worship ceremony, the Palaang Fair along the Mekong River with its cultural shows and folk music, food festivals with local food (one of the best food tours in Bangkok), the long boat race for Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn's Cup, etc.

If the Kan Fireballs amaze by their illumination, the walk to Nakhon Phanom is one of the day trips from Bangkok that surprises in October for its variety and cultural richness.

9. Conquer the highest peak of Kanchanaburi

Kanchanaburi, Thailand|©phudd23
Kanchanaburi, Thailand|©phudd23

Looking for an advanced level hiking route around Bangkok? The answer is Khao San Nok Wua. This is the highest mountain in Kanchanaburi, at 1767 meters above sea level. The western part of the national park is adjacent to the forested area of Thung Yai Naresuan Wildlife Sanctuary, where caves, forest and lush flora entice visitors. Visiting this destination is one of the best day trips from Bangkok.

The mountain is located north of Khao Laem National Park in Sangkhlaburi district, a 4-hour drive from central Bangkok.

The most challenging destination in the region opens its trails every year in October. Tourists can travel to this park to take in the beautiful 360° views of sunrise and sunset, as well as to enjoy nature in all its splendor.

Book a tour to Ayutthaya

10. Join the Ok Phansa festival

Ok Phansa festival|©arcibald
Ok Phansa festival|©arcibald

Fancy joining a big and exciting celebration? If so, attend the Ok Phansa Festival. This is an important Buddhist celebration that commemorates the end of the Buddhist monks' retreat during the rainy season. The date varies from year to year, as it is related to the lunar calendar, but always takes place in October.

Ok Phansa celebrations include the illuminated boat procession of Nakhon Phanom, the wax castle festival of Sakon Nakhon, the Ti Khli (croquet ball) competition of Chaiyaphum, the Tak Bat Devo ceremony of Uthai Thani and the Chong Phara procession of the Tai Yai ethnic group of Mae Hong Son.

Preparation for this event begins well in advance for everyone's enjoyment with fine-tuned details, so your only concern is to think about what you want to do first.

What is the weather like in Bangkok in October

traffic in Bangkok|©Nigeta Yuya
traffic in Bangkok|©Nigeta Yuya

During your visit to Bangkok in October you can expect great weather. It's hot, so pack a swimsuit in your suitcase and, although rainfall is light, it rains, so bring an umbrella.

The average daily temperature is around 28.5°C, with highs near 32°C and lows around 25°C. The sun sets around 06:00 and the sky is usually clear.

The Thai capital is one of the most exciting places on the planet to visit at this time of year, especially as the low influx of tourists allows you to enjoy the best deals, so book your flight to the city of angels.