Old Town’s Annual FestivalMarch 4 in Thailand ⋅ 🌬 29 °C
We left Pirate’s Beach for Old Town. It was hot, and after a thirty minute drive we had arrived and found parking right outside the main road of Old Town.
According to the inter webs, Old Town was originally a Chao Ley village but became Koh Lanta’s main port for Chinese and Arabic ships sailing the Phuket-Penang-Singapore trade route. As the Koh Lanta mariner’s industry grew, Chinese traders populated the village. Some of these buildings are more than a hundred years old and date back to when Old Town was still a Chinese trading gate.
Koh Lanta was originally inhabited some 500 years ago by the Chao Leh (people of the sea), a seafaring Indo-Malay tribe also known as the Sea Gypsies whose tribal culture boasts more than a thousand year history. Ko Lanta’s history also stems from traders who came by boat from China and from the Arab continent,
The Laanta Lanta Festival took place the weekend we spent in Koh Lanta. The timing was great since we’ve wanted to experience a local fair during our travels! The festival has been taking place yearly on Koh Lanta . The event is held in the centre of Lanta Old Town in conjunction with the full moon in March. It is a celebration of the island’s culture, food and environment. The mood was very festive, with traditional locals in costumes singing and dancing. We saw a fun folk like dance using a large mortar they use to cook and prepare sauces with!
We sat down for a sunset beverage, and nibbles near the large ship wreck and enjoyed the ocean breeze, and fun reggae music. After our drinks we walked around and previewed the different food stalls. We bought some fresh pomelo from a very friendly stall for later. We had eyed a roast duck and jade noodles stand, and made our first stop- Yum! There were so many wonderful smells of homemade curries, grilled seafood, stir fried noodles, and so many dessert options! We enjoyed some chicken satay, Pad Thai, and some coconut cake.
As we finishing our cakes, a woman from one of the Swedish organizations gave us caviar and crackers. Apparently, Swedes were recently acknowledged as the island’s fifth minority. There are also some Swedish organizations active on Koh Lanta such as Plogga, which is a growing environmental and fitness movement that combines jogging with picking up litter. I think it was the Plogga organization that was singing, and had trash and recycle station that gave us the caviar!
Down the street we spotted an artist that creates scenes and designs from leather that can be framed. He had various Singhas, Ganesh, elephants, etc. we chose a colorful deign of one of the monkey gods standing on a cloud from Hindu stories we have seen in performances and painted on palace walls in Cambodia and Laos.
After our purchase we headed to our motorbike to make it back to the resort. There still many people coming in to enjoy the festival. We very much enjoyed the many friendly locals and their stalls. We had a fantastic evening!Read more
This vendor was very friendly and we purchased pomelos for later.
Many of the grilled items on display
We were not sure if this was rice or some other grain she was tossing.