The Surin elephant round-up is one of the most recent creations of festivals that is celebrated in Thailand, the festival take place every year on the third weekend of the month of November.Beginning in the 1950s this is one event that pulls a heavy crowd of spectators from all over Thailand.
Surin is a relatively small province in the north-eastern part of Thailand, the region has had a closeness with elephants for many centuries. In the relatively older times the tribes were skilled enough in capturing these wild beasts and taming them for the use of construction of temples, where heavy materials were to be lifted and also for logging. Apart from all these jobs the elephants were also used in battle and due to all these characteristics the elephant handlers of the region were considered to be the best.
The main theme or idea behind the celebration of the Surin elephant round-up is to display skills of elephant handlers in front of the crowd and also to show the bond of friendship between man and the animal.The festival is filled with various events taking place over a period of 2-3 days.
On Friday morning i.e. just a day before the the main event an extravagant elephant breakfast takes place, where the elephants indulge themselves in a buffet of exotic fruits and vegetables from all over the country. The second day is one of the most awaited and electrifying events of the festival. Nearly 300 of these mighty animals march together, down the Prasat Road, from the city’s railway station towards Elephant roundabout.
Dancers, musical bands and school children all dressed up in traditional wear accompany the animals throughout the procession, singing and dancing. Mahouts dress up in traditional battle attire and also dress up there elephants in the same way.
On Sunday the most thrilling event of the entire function takes place, to witness which people from all over the nation gather in the Srinarong Stadium. An approximate crowd of 40,000-50,000 people gather to witness the one of a kind elephant games. Games like tug of war and football are carried out for the entertainment of the spectators, followed by the re-enactment of the historical battle from the pages of Thai history are carried out. But if by any chance you happen to miss the Sunday event fret not as it is repeated on the next Sunday as well because of its high popularity. So take a break from the usual kind of festivals that you have attended and give these mighty beasts of Surin a chance to make you fall in love with them.
Thailand Surin Elephant Round-up Festival