Taking part in the parade this morning were Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, joined by a host of VIPs, marking the seventh day of the nine-day festival.
The procession featured more than 2,000 Mah Song spirit mediums and devotees, hailing from Jui Tui shrine, one of the oldest and most prestigious Chinese shrines on the island, dating back to 1904.
As the largest of more than 30 shrines around Phuket Town, Jui Tui Shrine strives to maintain its traditions, with nearly all its Mah Song today observing face piercings with traditional objects only, such as blessed, sword, knives and skewers.
The procession followed its traditional path along the streets of the Phuket Old Town area then to the tip of Saphan Hin and back to the shrine, located at the western end of Ranong Rd.
On reaching Suriyadet Circle, the “water cannon circle” where Ranong Rd meets Yaowarat Rd, the Mah Song were met with a blaze of firecrackers in tribute of the gods being observed.
Other shrines observing street processions today include the Gim Su Ong Shrine (Baan Don), which started at 6:30am, and the Lee Sian Tong Shrine, which will start at 8pm.
Kathu Shrine, the spiritual home of the Phuket Vegetarian Festival, will hold its street procession tomorrow (Oct 3), starting at 6:45am.
Other shrines to hold their street processions tomorrow include:
- Yok Kae Keng Shrine (Soi Paniang - Samkong/Ratsada) - 6am
- Guan Yu Shrine (Baan Nabon) - 7am
- Hai Yian Geng Shrine (Baan Mai Khao) - 7am
- Jong Nghi Tong Shrine (near Tonsai Waterfall, Pa Khlok) - 8am
- Lee Ong Tong Shrine (Tha Chatchai) - 3pm
For a full list of the remaining street processions to be held, click here.
The Phuket Vegetarian Festival will conclude with a mass ceremony at Saphan Hin at midnight Tuesday night.