Full Moon Party (Photo credit: YoTuT)
It All Started When...
Once upon a
time, a group of tourists discovered the magic of the full moon on the
beaches of Koh Phangan, Thailand. They decided to celebrate their
birthday under the stars, and it has now grown into an international
tradition that attracts people from all over the world. In fact, when
the movie, The Beach came out in 2000, it was partially inspired by the growing popularity of the full moon party.
Party Until the Sun Comes Up
Most say it is the best party atmosphere they have ever seen, and is a truly once in a lifetime experience. Beginning at dusk, 20,000-30,000 people gather each month as the yellow moon begins to rise. Several booths are set up selling glow sticks and face paint and fire dancers light up the beach. All types of music--reggae, dance, techno, drums and bass break out along the beach causing an outburst of dancing among the crowd. After awhile, partygoers enjoy a dip in the warm waters of the Gulf of Thailand.
Set Stereotypes Aside
Don't let the image of thousands of obnoxious young people wreaking havoc deter you from being part of the fun. Most people who go are just out to have a good time, and it is rare to have conflict during the full moon party.
Because the full moon party is a worldwide known event, it is important to plan in advance where to stay. It is advised that you arrive four days prior to find accommodations for a decent price. If you want to be in the middle of the action, stay in Haad Rin. For a regular room, it is about 500-800 baht per night (approx. $17-30). The closer you get to the full moon party, the higher the prices are.
The point of the Full Moon Party is to let loose and have a good time, but make sure you party smart. Wear solid shoes because it would ruin your trip if you stepped on a broken bottle. Also, drink lots of water throughout the night since the climate is hot and humid and you don't want to get dehydrated. Stay out of the ocean because the waves are strong. Finally, make sure to bring as little as possible because theft is quite common. But don't let the bad stuff deter you, if you come to have a good time and plan well, the night will be a success!
by Molly Nelson, Contributing Author