Water Festival, or ‘Thingyan’ as it is called in Myanmar, marks the Burmese New Year and falls around mid-April, at the end of the dry season. Lasting five days, this Buddhist festival leads to the New Year, which is the most important holiday in Myanmar. Most businesses shut down to allow employees to take time off and enjoy the festivities.
The main activity during Thingyan is big water fights, and stations (called pandles) are set up, often sponsored by companies, and water is sprayed on everyone from all directions. While this water dousing is done all in good fun, it does have symbolic meaning. To the Myanmar people, the water has the power to cleanse the wrongdoings of the past year and to help everyone start this new year off fresh and anew.