The Muay Thai fight does not begin until its fighters dance.
The crowd is uproarious as the Piphat ensemble strums up strains of classical music. The fighter, decked out in satin shorts, prajioud and the traditional mongkol headdress, commences with energetic yet graceful movements that is the Wai Khru Ram Muay dance.
Back again for its twelfth year, the World Wai Kru Muay Thai Ceremony, in conjunction with the Miracle Muay Thai Festival, brings this sacred ritual into the limelight on the 17th – 22nd of March. Get up close and personal with the intricacies of this beautiful Thai martial art at the heart of the ancient Ayutthaya city.
From 17th to 18th March, the Ayutthaya Tourism Centre (ATC) will play host to the Wai Kru Ceremony which is open for the public to witness the gathering of Muay Thai fighters from over 40 countries across the globe. The annual ceremony is a spirited celebration of Muay Thai as an art of movement and a form of honor to respected masters of the sport.
Behold the most effective striking art in the world as exhilarating boxing matches between international and Thai fighters showcase the raw power yet remarkable grace of the combat sport. Beyond its physical superiority in the world of martial arts, Muay Thai and its signature Wai Khru ritual harbour cultural importance dating back to when it was simply a fight for independence on ancient battlefields.
Other elements of Thai culture will also be exhibited – expect eye-opening demonstrations of traditional Yantra art and calligraphy as well as the forging of Aranyik swords. Try your hand at the mesmerising Thai martial art during the interactive performances that will get guests out of their seats to attempt Muay Thai boxing drills.
There is added significance to this yearly affair, with 17th March being an eponymous day celebrating Nai Khanom Tom, a Thai hero hailed as the ‘Father of Muay Thai’. From 19th to 22nd March, live music, traditional Thai cuisine and Muay Thai memorabilia await guests at the hallowed Nai Khanom Tom Statue in the Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya Stadium.
Thai AirAsia and Thai Lion Air offer affordable non-stop flights from Singapore Changi Airport to Don Mueang International Airport in Bangkok. Thai Airways, Jetstar Asia, Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific fly direct to Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport while Scoot offers flights to both airports. The city of Ayutthaya is a mere 1-2 hour journey up from Bangkok, depending on your preferred mode of transport.