Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Date set for this year’s Water Festival holiday



Date set for this year’s Water Festival holiday

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Thousands of people crowd Phnom Penh’s riverside to watch traditional boat races during Water Festival celebrations in 2014. Photo supplied

Date set for this year’s Water Festival holiday

The Committee for Organising National and International Festivals (CRNIF) said the Kingdom will mark this year’s Water Festival on November 21-23.

CRNIF permanent deputy director Chhin Ketana told The Post on Tuesday that the committee had informed the relevant institutions, especially at provincial levels, to get boat rowers of all types ready, both physically and technically, for the three-day festivities, which normally draw large crowds from throughout the Kingdom.

“Rowers have to be physically fit, in good health and able to swim. All boats joining the race also have to be decorated in Khmer style. The boats should be fast and have a clear background,” he said.

Despite less than three weeks away, Ketana said CRNIF had neither held a meeting to discuss budget plans for the event nor announced specific dates to submit applications.

The festival has had a rocky history over the past years. On the event’s last day in 2010, which saw nearly a million visitors pack into the capital, thick crowds resulted in a bottleneck on a bridge leading to Koh Pich.

The resulting panic saw 353 people killed in a stampede as the crowd surged forward.

In 2011 and 2013, the government cancelled the festival, citing mass flooding, whereas the death of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk weeks before the festival was given as the reason for its cancellation in 2012.

The event was also cancelled at the last minute in 2015, despite assurances from Prime Minister Hun Sen that the celebrations would go on.

While the government blamed low water levels due to an ongoing drought, many concluded fear of an influx of visitors at a time when political tensions were high as the real reason.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Kingdom one of safest to visit in Covid-19 era’

    The Ministry of Tourism on January 12 proclaimed Cambodia as one of the safest countries to visit in light of the Kingdom having been ranked number one in the world by the Senegalese Economic Prospective Bureau for its success in handling the Covid-19 pandemic. In rankings

  • Ministry mulls ASEAN+3 travel bubble

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to launch a travel bubble allowing transit between Cambodia and 12 other regional countries in a bid to resuscitate the tourism sector amid crushing impact of the ongoing spread of Covid-19, Ministry of Tourism spokesman Top Sopheak told The Post on

  • Courts’ decisions now published as reference source

    The Ministry of Justice has published 44 verdicts from civil litigation cases which can be used as models for court precedents and for study by the public and those who work in pertinent fields. Publication of the verdicts on December 31 came as the result of joint

  • Reeling in Cambodia’s real estate sector

    A new norm sets the scene but risks continue to play out in the background A cold wind sweeps through the streets of Boeung Trabek on an early January morning as buyers and traders engage in commerce under bright blue skies. From a distance, the

  • Quarantine site in north Phnom Penh inaugurated

    A four-building quarantine centre in Phnom Penh’s Prek Pnov district was formally inaugurated on January 6. The centre can house up to 500 people, according to Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng. At the inauguration ceremony, Sreng said the municipal hall had cooperated with the Ministry

  • China firm to develop Mondulkiri airport

    Tourism to the Kingdom’s northeast corridor could experience a remarkable metamorphosis after the government decided in principle of a Chinese company to study and develop a proposal to build a regional-level airport in Mondulkiri province, according to industry insiders. The Council of Ministers said