Chonburi Buffalo Races

Chonburi Buffalo Racing Festival

Anyone who spends any amount of time in Thailand outside of the cities will quickly see how large a role the buffalo plays in the daily life for many of the population. With an economy traditionally and to a large extent still based heavily on agriculture, the buffalo has helped Thai farmers for generations to plow their fields and do other work around the farm . It should come as no surprise then that occasionally these hard working animals get to have a bit of fun too, and has Pattaya events named in its honor! One time of year that buffalo get to be the star of the show is at the Chonburi Buffalo Races, held in October and one of the region’s most fun events.

The race date coincides with the end of Buddhist lent, a time during which the pious will give up something important to them, such as meat, alcohol or even something like gossip. Whatever one decided to do without, as lent comes to an end they are free to pick up right where they left off. The end of lent is therefore a time of much merriment.

Festivals in Chonburi

In addition to the running buffalo, visitors to this fun event will be treated to a variety of other sights and events taking place simultaneously. One that is particularly fun to watch involves scores of local youths attempting to climb a pole that has been covered with grease. A 500 baht note sits at the top, up for grabs by whoever can get there first.

Despite the overall light-hearted mood at the Chonburi Buffalo Races, the races themselves are taken quite seriously, and occasionally will have some serious prize money at stake for the winners. The dates of the races change from year to year so would-be visitors will need to do some research to make sure they don’t miss out  on one of the most popular festivals in Chonburi.

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