Pattaya has, over recent years, gained the reputation of being one of the firework capitals of the world. Throughout the year to celebrate major festivals and events, the skies over the bay are lit up with stunning pyrotechnic displays. 


New Year, Songkran and Loy Krathong in Pattaya are always punctuated with the whizzes and bangs that shoot out over the ocean. However, the most impressive displays of all are those put on by competitors attending the annual International Fireworks Festival. This year is the fourth in succession that the city has hosted the festival, which will be held from the 30th November to 1st December. A definite date for the diary!

Teams from around the world come to compete in the festival, pitching themselves against each other to see who can put on the biggest, most spectacular display. This year, a number of international teams are expected to feature with firework specialists from Canada, China, Singapore and the United States already confirmed as participants.

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The displays are launched from floating platforms set out at sea directly opposite the Central Festival shopping mall. However, they will be visible from any vantage point around the bay. That is not surprising as some of the individual fireworks are said to have a blast radius that extends up to a kilometre in diameter. That is a mighty big bang! The platforms are anchored well out in the bay to ensure that spectators remain a safe distance while still enjoying all the thrills.

The Pattaya International Fireworks festival is a massive draw for tourists. For the 2011 event, over 100,000 domestic and international tourists packed into the city. This year is expected to draw even bigger crowds with many hotels in the city already reporting that they are fully booked.

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The event is jointly sponsored by Pattaya City and the Chonburi Provincial Administrative Organisation with technical and logistics support provided by the Ministry of Defence. The combined explosive power of the fireworks is so great that their transportation and storage requires military supervision. That just shows what a great treat fireworks fans have in store.

The Pattaya International Fireworks Festival takes place 30th November to 1st December in Pattaya Bay