Bangkok’s Chinatown and the resort island of Phuket have seen an influx of tourists, predominantly Chinese, coming to celebrate Chinese New Year. The festivities, which began on February 9th, have drawn large crowds, boosting local tourism and hospitality sectors significantly.
In Phuket, hotel occupancy rates have reportedly surged to 81%, with daily arrivals from China reaching between 4,000 and 5,000, making Chinese tourists the largest group by nationality visiting the island during this period. According to Lertchai Wangtrakuldee, director of the Phuket branch office of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, the 9-day celebration is expected to generate approximately 6.8 billion baht in tourism-related revenue for Phuket.
The start of the Chinese New Year on February 9th saw an estimated 70,000 Thai and foreign tourists visiting Phuket, marking a vibrant beginning to the festivities. For many Chinese tourists, this year’s celebration marks their first visit to Thailand during the Chinese New Year. Attractions such as Wat Mangkon Kamalawat in Chinatown have been popular destinations for paying respects and experiencing the local culture.
Street food, especially dishes, such as hot and sour fish soup and stir-fried morning glory, along with the dessert mango and sticky rice, have been highlighted as favorite culinary experiences among the visitors.
As the celebrations continue, both Bangkok’s Chinatown and Phuket remain bustling hubs of activity, showcasing rich cultural connections and the impact of Chinese New Year on tourism in Thailand. (NNT)