Songkran is the Thai New Year's festival. The Thai New Year's Day is 13 April every year, but the holiday period extends to 14–15 April as well. The word "Songkran" literally means "astrological passage", transformation or change.
The Songkran celebration is rich with symbolic traditions. Mornings begin with visits to local temples and offering food to the Buddhist monks is commonly practiced. On this specific occasion, performing water pouring on Buddha statues and the young and elderly is considered an iconic ritual for this holiday. It represents purification and the washing away of one's sins and bad luck. As a festival of unity, people who have moved away usually return home to their loved ones and elders. Paying reverence to ancestors is also an important part of Songkran tradition.
The holiday is known for its water festival which is mostly celebrated by young people. Major streets are closed to traffic, and are used as arenas for water fights. Celebrants, young and old, participate in this tradition by splashing water on each other.