BANGKOK — Revelers across the country gathered at various sites to ring in the new year with fireworks and music.
Ten of thousands of merrymakers crowded major countdown events at CentralWorld and Iconsiam, where they waited for the clock to strike midnight with tunes from local artists. More than 20,000 fireworks burst from barges on the Chao Phraya River, while fireworks display at CentralWorld went on for five minutes.
Fireworks also drew a large crowd of tourists to dance away the year on beaches like Pattaya and Koh Phangan in Surat Thani province.
In Buriram, Chang Arena was crammed with football fans and families who celebrated the night with concerts and celebrity appearances from Buriram United footballers.
ปีนี้นักฟุตบอลบุรีรัมย์ หล่อๆเยอะมากกกก ทั้งนักเตะใหม่ทั้งอคาเดมี่ กริ๊ดเสียงแหบ แต่อิเกซโซ่คือที่สุด กริ๊ดดดดดดดด ⚡️💖 pic.twitter.com/EiKz0Ombeb
— มัคฮ่าา คาเมนไรเดอร์มัคฮ่าาาา (@machhaaaaa) December 31, 2019
However, New Year’s celebrations were not all about countdown raves. People also gathered at temples across the country to chant prayers on New Year’s Eve, which they believe will bring in good fortune for the year ahead.
At Bangkok’s Wat Saket, more than a thousand Buddhists put on holy threads over their heads as they prayed for hours ahead before midnight. Sanam Luang was also a popular spot among Buddhists, where devotees made merit to Buddha relics.
Authorities deployed 30,000 police officers in Bangkok to safeguard the celebrations, which were generally peaceful, national police chief Chakthip Chaijinda said.