Tour Palaces and Dress Up for Bangkok’s 236th Birthday

Temple of Dawn glows at sunset. Image: Mike Norton / Flickr

BANGKOK — Past kings will be honored, rare cultural gems trotted out and parades staged tomorrow when the capital turns 236.

To mark Bangkok’s birthday, the government is staging a dizzying array of activities for residents and visitors alike – and all for free.

They include Khon masked dances, a traditional puppet show and Chinese opera at the National Theatre, while a parade showcasing the history and culture of Bangkok will roll down historic Ratchadamnoen Avenue. The Paruskavan and Bang Khun Prom palaces will open for free tours.

To capitalize on the traditional costume fad inspired by period soap opera “Bupphesaniwat” (“Love Destiny”), government officials say those dressed in retro outfits will be able to join the parade on Ratchadamnoen Avenue. Costumes can be rented at the National Museum.

Bangkok was formally established as the capital city when Hindu priests erected the city pillar at the auspicious time of 6:54am on April 21, 1782.

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