The Funeral Of King Bhumibol in October 2017: Everything You Need To Know
His Royal Majesty the Late King Bhumibol passed away nearly a year ago on 13th October 2016. As Thailand’s most revered King in living memory and, to many Thais, the only King they have known, it is understandable that the nation’s sorrow during the last year has been overwhelming as millions have weathered rain, heat and sun to pay their last respects.
October 2017 is destined to be an unusual and sorrow-filled month in Thailand as the day of the cremation of King Bhumibol fast approaches. Many foreign tourists and expats are asking how the funeral will affect their stay in Thailand so we have collated as much current information as we can for you.
What You Need To Know - Quick Links:
Full details about the Royal Cremation can be found here
Richard Barrow‘s comprehensive, constantly updated ‘need to know‘ about the Funeral of King Bhumibol is here.
The most recent news release from The Tourism Authority of Thailand:
TAT News, Bangkok, 21 September 2017 – The Royal Thai Government has announced that the Royal Cremation for the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej is scheduled for 25-29 October, 2017. Thursday, 26 October, will be the royal cremation day, and it has been declared a public holiday by the Cabinet to allow the people to take part in paying a final tribute to the late King.
During the process of the Royal Cremation which will last five days, tourist attractions across Thailand will be open as usual. This is with the exception of Bangkok’s Grand Palace and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, which will be closed from 1-29 October, 2017, as they will be the venue of the Royal Cremation. All transport, banks, shopping areas, hospitals and other public services will be operating as usual. Updated on 28 September, 2017: to facilitate the travel of people who wish to attend the Royal Cremation, many public transport operators will be offering free or more services on 25 to 27 October.
However, the Tourism Authority of Thailand would like to recommend that any visitors with travel or tourism plans reconfirm with agents and check local media regularly as well as follow the advice of the local authorities for announcements and updates. They should also be aware that in some areas transportation could be affected. We also ask tourists and visitors for their understanding and patience should they experience delays or some routes may be closed to traffic.
In this time of great sadness and mourning, we would like to ask that everyone uses their judgment regarding how or should they make arrangements for events planned in Thailand. Also, we would like to ask visitors for their understanding that this is a sensitive time for Thailand, and they should respect the feelings and sensitivities of the Thai people.
Many Thai people will be wearing black clothes as a sign of mourning. This is not required of visitors but if possible, they should wear respectful clothing when in public. We also would like to request that the solemnity of the Royal Cremation is observed, and visitors should refrain from conducting any inappropriate or disrespectful behaviour.
The world is welcome to Thailand during this historic period. Visitors to the kingdom at this time will get to see the great love and reverence that the Thai people have for their beloved King in the way they mourn and pay their respects. And during this time, Thailand is thankful for our friends coming to share their sadness and pass on their condolences. This gesture of empathy and friendship will be remembered by the people of Thailand for decades to come.
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