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Pattani ASEAN Tourism Festival and Limkoneaw Goddess Celebration 2014

February 1, 2014 Destination Thailand No Comments Email Email

The southern border province of Pattani will organize a week-long event “Pattani ASEAN Tourism Festival and Limkoneaw Goddess Celebration 2014.”

The event will be held between 11 and 17 February at the Culture Platform on Sai Buri Road and the Multi-purpose Platform on the Pattani riverside in Mueang district.

Pattani Governor Kwanchart Wongsuparanant told a press conference that this event aims to promote local cultural tourism and make Pattani better known among tourists. Pattani is famous for cultural diversity, with a harmonious mixture of Thai, Chinese, and Muslim cultures.

A light and sound presentation featuring the three cultures will be staged on the Pattani riverside from 12 to 14 February. The opening of the Limkoneaw Goddess Celebration will take place on 13 February at the Limkoneaw Goddess Shrine. The festival will include a lion dance contest, exhibitions, cultural performances, a bazaar of southern products, and a food fair, with a variety of delicious Thai, Chinese, and Muslim food.

The Limkoneaw Goddess Celebration is held each year as a major cultural event in this province. The goddess Limkoneaw is respected by local people, especially those with Chinese origin. A legend has it that Limkoneaw was born in the 15th century in China. An aristocrat made a false charge against her brother, who was a government official. Her brother decided to flee from China and boarded a ship to southern Thailand.

He arrived in Pattani and became a trader, and later, he was assigned by the Pattani governor to cast three big cannons. One of them is Nang Phraya Tani, the biggest cannon ever cast in Thailand. Because of his excellent work, the Pattani governor allowed Limkoneaw’s brother to marry his daughter.

Limkoneaw looked after her mother alone, while her brother lived far away. Feeling deep sympathy for her mother, she offered to travel to Thailand to persuade him to return home. Limkoneaw encouraged her brother to go back many rimes, but he refused, since at that time he was assigned to handle the important task of constructing the Krue Se (Kersih) Mosque. The construction began in 1578 but was never finished, yet the structure remains.

In order to show her sense of obligation to her mother despite her failure to persuade her brother to return home, Limkoneaw decided to commit suicide under a cashew nut tree. People who paid homage to her at her tomb were found to make considerable fortune. She was then called a goddess.

Pattani, which is predominantly Muslim, is being developed as a halal industrial center. The central mosque in Pattani is recognized as the most beautiful Islamic religious structure in southern Thailand.

Since the ASEAN Community will be in place in 2015, Pattani and other southern border provinces are expected to welcome more ASEAN visitors.

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