Valentine's marriages by boat, balloon and on elephants in Thailand

Valentine's marriages by boat, balloon and on elephants in Thailand
PHOTO: The Nation/ANN

SEVERAL provinces arranged special marriage ceremonies yesterday according to their own special views of Valentine's Day.

Many couples yesterday launched their married life at the ceremonies, which were set up with local themes to promote tourism in the provinces and make the start of a long life together more memorable.

Napaporn Sawatdimongkol, director of the administration and registration office of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration, said 3,486 couples had registered their marriages in the capital this year.

Bang Rak district was still the most popular area for couples to register their marriage, as the district welcomed 1,045 couples yesterday.

In the northern province of Chiang Rai, 20 couples registered their marriage in Singha Park before riding hot-air balloons to celebrate the start of their honeymoon in the sky.

Pro golfer Kiradech Aphibarnrat was among the 20 couples joining the ceremony in Chiang Rai.

In Rayong, 30 couples chosen from 15 tambons in Klaeng district registered their marriage on a luxury yacht at Cape Mae Pim to promote local tourism.

The couples were given framed marriage certificates that they had signed, a voucher for a one-night hotel stay and a pair of lottery tickets as gifts on the joyous occasion.

In Ang Thong, one of the grooms who attended the marriage registration ceremony at Khun Inthapramool Temple, an important historical site in the province, wore traditional warrior garb, catching the attention of many tourists.

Ang Thong is famous for the local resistance army that fought Burmese invaders during war in the Ayutthaya era.

Another of the distinctive registration ceremonies was held at the Nong Nooch Garden in Chon Buri, where marriages on elephant-back were arranged.

There were 99 couples attending the ceremony there.

It was also the marriage registration for the elephant couples at the event.BothThere was also a marriage registration for the elephant couple. Each one drew red hearts on the certificate to represent their signatures.

In Ubon Ratchatani, traditional Isan (Northeast) weddings and marriage registrations were held at the confluence of the Mekong and Mun rivers.

Even in the deep South, a caravan of 700 bicycles and 10 off-road vehicles transported 83 lucky couples from Narathiwat to the Hala-Bala Wildlife Sanctuary to register their marriages on a raft in the jungle.

A hornbill was chosen as the mascot of the event to signify true love.

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