|Turtle Festival (Phuket Town) 22 Aug
- 3 Sep 2006
The Por Tor Festival comes every year and is intended
to make merit for the dead and for spirits.
During the seventh Chinese month which is the same
as the ninth lunar month of the Thais (in July or August)
according to ancient Chinese tradition, the gates of
Hades burst open, unleashing the spirits of the restless
dead, or the Hungry Ghosts. The day that spirituals
are released for visit their home and relatives. Phuket,
with its large ethnic Chinese population, celebrates
with the Por Tor Festival, an event similar to the
Hungry Ghost Festivals of China.
It centers around the making of large cakes
in the shape of turtles, following the Chinese belief
that the turtle is the symbol of longevity. At the
end of today’s prayer sessions, the turtle cakes
will be sliced up and given away to anyone who wants
to live longer to eat. This is done because turtles
live to great age and it is believed that by making
such offering worshippers may extend the length of
their lives. It is an important merit-making festival.