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Thais celebrate their New Year's Day with quite a splash. While Chinese New Year centers around food, Songkran is all about throwing water on friends, family, neighbors, or unsuspecting passers-by. Watery street battles with hoses, water guns, buckets, and paper cups take place during the hottest part of the year, which makes the ice-water ammunition all the more painful. We've put together a short video of the Songkran celebrations in Khao Lak to give you an idea of the one-day spectacle. Keep in mind when visiting Thailand that Songkran can last up to a week in the northern provinces. That's a lot of ice water down your shirt! For culture buffs, there's a much deeper meaning behind Songkran. Traditionally, water used to clean Buddha statues on New Year's Day was gently poured over family members to show them respect and wish them good fortune. This tradition has obviously morphed into what Songkran is today: a wild water battle.

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