New Year In Cambodia is A Joyful Time of Traditions and Festivities



Khmer New Year, also known as Chol Chnam Thmey, is one of the most important cultural and traditional celebrations in Cambodia. It marks the beginning of the Khmer calendar and is a time for Cambodians to come together with family and friends to welcome the New Year with joy, gratitude, and meaningful rituals. In this blog post, we will explore the significance, customs, and festivities of Khmer New Year, a vibrant and cherished celebration that reflects the rich culture and heritage of Cambodia.

Significance of Khmer New Year

Khmer New Year is a time for Cambodians to bid farewell to the old year and welcome the new one with fresh hopes and aspirations. It is a time for renewal, both spiritually and physically, as people cleanse their homes and minds of negative energy and make way for positive vibes. The festival is based on the Buddhist lunar calendar and usually falls on April 13th or 14th, lasting for three days.

Customs and Traditions

Khmer New Year is steeped in rich customs and traditions that have been passed down through generations. One of the most significant customs is the "Moha Sangkran" ceremony, where Cambodians cleanse and purify Buddha statues and offer food, fruits, and flowers at pagodas to seek blessings for the New Year. This is followed by the "Pithi Srang Preah" ritual, where people gather at pagodas to make sand mounds symbolizing the five peaks of Mount Meru, an important Buddhist symbol.

Another important tradition during Khmer New Year is the "Ben Thom" or "Hansik" ceremony, where families gather to pay respect to their ancestors by offering food, incense, and prayers at the family altar. This is a time for families to come together, express gratitude to their ancestors, and seek their blessings for a prosperous New Year.

Festivities and Celebrations

Khmer New Year is a time of vibrant festivities and joyous celebrations. One of the highlights of the festival is the traditional "Angkor Sankranta" or "Angkor Sangkran" event, held in Siem Reap, near the majestic Angkor Wat temple complex. The event features colorful parades, cultural performances, traditional games, and activities that showcase the rich heritage and traditions of Cambodia. It is a time for locals and tourists alike to immerse themselves in the festive spirit, enjoy traditional music and dance performances, and indulge in delicious Khmer cuisine.

Another popular tradition during Khmer New Year is the playful "Sramouch" or "Pithi Srang" water festival, where people splash water on each other as a symbol of cleansing and purifying the soul. It is a time of joyous water fights, laughter, and merriment, where people douse each other with water using buckets, hoses, and even elephants in some regions. The water festival is a fun and memorable part of Khmer New Year, bringing people together in a spirit of joy and celebration.


Khmer New Year is a time of deep significance, customs, and festivities that reflect the rich cultural heritage of Cambodia. It is a time for renewal, gratitude, and celebration as Cambodians come together with family and friends to mark the beginning of the New Year. The customs and traditions associated with Khmer New Year are a testament to the spiritual and cultural values of Cambodia, passed down through generations. The festive celebrations, including the "Angkor Sankranta" event and the playful "Sramouch" water festival, add joy and vibrancy to the festivities. Khmer New Year is a time to appreciate and celebrate the

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