Raucous Rite of Passage
Chiang Mai | 26-30 Mar 2020

Poy Sang Long, or “Ordaining Beloved Sons” in the Shan language, is a lively festival in which boys aged seven to 14 join the monkhood as novices. The rite of passage cum celebration starts with monks shaving the boys’ heads and eyebrows and then cleansing them with holy water. The boys then undergo another transformation as they don glittering princely garb and are paraded around local temples on the shoulders of their male relatives. The novices then enter monasteries to spend days, weeks or months learning the monastic way of life. Visit any Shan temple, be it day or night, during this period and you are bound to get lost in a whirlwind of non-stop celebrations.

Wat Pa Pao, Amphoe Muang, Chiang Mai, Thailand