In just a few years S2O has grown to be one the biggest music festivals in the world, with people travelling from all over the globe to experience this monumental music water festival. The magic of S2O lies in its unique concept teamed with unparalleled production, and the fact that it coincides with Songkran, Thailand’s New Year’s celebrations. Songkran is basically a national water fight, wherever you go you will fall victim to someone throwing water at you. For three days you will feel like the party never ends whether its within the compounds of S2O or on the streets of Bangkok. It’s safe to say that there is no festival out there like it and should be at the top of any festival fan’s bucket list! To help you plan your festival adventure here is The Nitty Gritty Guide to S2O Songkran Music Festival!
When did I attend? April 2017
When is the next S2O Songkran Music Festival? 13th-15th April, 2023
What do you hear at S2O Songkran Music Festival? EDM
Where? Live Park Rama 9 (it’s moved from Show DC Oasis Arena!), Bangkok, Thailand
What’s the local currency? Thai Baht
What’s the local language? Thai
- S2O is based in Bangkok, Thailand. It’s a three day music festival that coincides with Songkran, the Thai New Year’s Festival.
- Songkran is one of Thailand’s most important events and is marked by the throwing of water. Basically we’re talking about a nationwide water fight, expect to have everyone you come across try to throw water on you! You won’t be able to prevent getting wet, so brace yourself, it’s quite something!
- In 2017 S2O welcomed over 30,000 people, making it the biggest water music festival in the world
- S2O is the fastest selling music festival in Thailand, early bird tickets sell out in less than a minute!
- S2O is a 20+ event!
TICKET TYPESIf you’re an international festival goer get your tickets for S2O Songkran Music Festival 2020 on Festicket. Festival goers based in Thailand can use Event Pop, their local ticketing agent.
WHERE TO BUY TICKETSTickets for this mind-blowing party sell out very quickly. It stills holds the record for fastest selling festival in Thailand with the first round of tickets selling out in less than a minute (you barely have time to refresh the page and they’re gone). But luckily tickets are sold in a few rounds so you get a few chances to get one! This year’s official ticket provider is Event Pop. It’s recommended that you don’t purchase tickets from any other ticketing platform as you never know what sort of complications you may run into in trying to pick up your wristband and enter the event. Also beware of people selling them on the streets at inflated prices, last year prices were going for three times the price they were being sold for online (as much as 15,000THB)!
ARRIVING IN BANGKOK
If you’re an international festival goer arriving into Bangkok then check out this Guide to Travelling to Bangkok! There you will find several options to get you to your destination within the city before moving on to the festival.
GETTING AROUND BANKOK
TAKING THE BUS
There are two BTS lines that run through Bangkok: the Siam Line and the Sukhumvit Line. Both of these lines connect at Siam station which is one of the most central points of the city.
For a map, stations listings and hours of operation please go HERE.
USING THE MRT
Aside from the BTS, Bangkok also has two Metro (MRT) lines running through it: the Blue Line and the Purple line. The Blue Line runs from North to South in the city centre, from Tao Poon to Hua Lumphong. You are unlikely to need to use the purple line as it connects the outskirts of Bangkok to the centre.
You can change for the BTS at Sukhumvit MRT Station. Alight at Sukhumvit MRT Station and make your way up to street level, then follow signs to Asok BTS Station. From there you’ll be able to jump on the BTS Sukhumvit Line running between Kheha (East) and Kasetsart University (North West). Note that the MRT and BTS are run independently of each other so you’ll need to buy separate tickets to travel on them.
For more information on how to use the MRT and hours of operation please go HERE.
Using the BTS, the MRT and/or taxis you will be able to access all corners of the city. I’ve been living in Bangkok for a couple of years now and I’ve still not braved the bus route system. If you feel like going on an adventure then all the more power to you, you can let us know about your experience in the comments section! If it’s your first time in Bangkok then I recommend sticking to the easiest methods of travel so you avoid getting lost and possibly missing parts of the festival!
GETTING TO THE FESTIVAL
This event space is a little lost in the middle of nowhere in terms of public transport, the easiest way to get to SHOW DC is by taxi.
Don’t be surprised if your meter isn’t set to zero, all meters start 35THB, which will automatically be displayed on the meter when you start your journey.
Taxi drivers in Thailand have a tendency to try and trick passengers into paying hyper-inflated rates for their journeys. I say passengers because they even try it on the locals too! Always ask to have the meter on, if they say no then wave them goodbye and find another driver, you will find one who will take you on meter, don’t give up!
Also don’t be upset if you’re turned down by a few taxi drivers before you find one, there’s no logic to their method, for the most part they’re just lazy and will say no if you’re asking to be taken to a far away destination.
If this doesn’t sound like your kind of fun you can always download the Grab application (Asia’s answer to Uber – Uber no longer operate in Thailand) to your smartphone. You’ll have more control over the price you pay and sometimes even get discounts on your journeys. And you will definitely be sure to never get lost! Not to mention that the application also offers food delivery services so you’ll be able to both order food and get around the city!
USING THE MRT
S2O Songkran Music Festival is not located close to the city’s main transport lines however it is still possible to reach the event by public transport and then take a taxi or motorbike taxi.
The nearest station is Phetchaburi Station which is on the city’s MRT line. If you are staying by a BTS station make your way to Asok station on the Sukhumvit Line where you can alight and change for the MRT. Once you get off the BTS walk down to street level and follow signs for MRT Sukhumvit Station. Phetchaburi Station is one station north of Sukhumvit Station.
You can hop on the free shuttle provided by SHOW DC at Exit 1. The free shuttle bus service normally runs from 11am to 9:45pm, Monday to Friday. And operates from 10am to 9:45pm on Saturday and Sunday. They usually come around every 15-30 minutes but this will highly depend on the traffic. Note that these hours may be different during Songkran so your best option is to take a taxi or a motorbike taxi.
If you opt for arriving in a taxi or by motorcycle then ask them to drop you at SHOW DC. Drivers usually charge a little more than usual during Songkran but do not go anywhere without negotiating, set the price before you set off for your destination! You can either hail them down or try using Grab to get a ride.
There are literally thousands of accommodation options in Bangkok, ranging for hostels to five star hotels, there’s something to suit every budget. But here’s my recommendation: stay close to a BTS station! Sure there isn’t a BTS station near the venue but you’ll definitely be able to find a taxi to get there and in the meantime being close to BTS station means you’ll be able to go around the city and do your sightseeing without needing to worry about traffic.
However, if you’re seriously only there to party then by all means I would suggest staying in accommodation that is relatively close to the venue.
Expect giant water guns, water shoots, water sprays…but only in GA! Even if you’ve got a VIP ticket I strongly recommend you take a trip down to GA or you’ll be missing out on the most impressive part of the festival. It’s not quite the same just watching people get soaked, you’ll definitely be feeling like you’re missing out!
The venue is absolutely massive which means that you’ll never feel like the site is too packed, there’s enough space for everyone to party! Just make sure you choose a meeting point with your friends just in case some of you get lost during the rave. You won’t want to take out your phone in the middle of the crowd and risk it getting wet!
Every year S2O manages to bring together a pretty exclusive line of some of the world’s biggest Electronic Dance Music artists. I say exclusive because for the most part these DJs are making their debut in Thailand so you’ll be witnessing their first appearances at one of Bangkok’s wildest and most reputable festivals, what could be better than that?
This festival is unbelievable, it’s feels almost surreal to be part of the experience. You bear witness to some of the finest festival production to ever make take place in Thailand. With water being thrown and sprayed on festival goers at completely randoms moments during the festival you never know what to expect and are kept yearning for more lights, music and water throughout.
Because the festival is hosted during the Thai New Year the festival goers are particularly hyped up and enthusiastic. The Thais are real party goers and are renowned for being extremely friendly and welcoming so you will feel right at home at this festival. If you’re a foreigner attending a festival in Thailand you’ll no doubt be offered drinks, be asked to join in a few selfies during the festival and you will probably wake up with a bunch of new Facebook friends you don’t remember meeting!
Overall everyone is very relaxed at this festival and there just to have a really good time. I mean water is being thrown around and no one is complaining about it, everyone is absolutely revelling in it. People normally complain about rain but at this festival we were all screaming for more, it’s absolutely brilliant.
People also get exceptionally creative with their outfits for this festival, expect to see some really interesting waterproof outfits. S2O festival goers really go for it each year, you won’t be disappointed by the quality of the ambience at this insane water festival, it will be one of the best three days you have ever had.
This festival always manages to live up to even the fussiest of foodies’ expectations! In Thailand festival goers consider food and drink to be one of the most important parts of the festival. The Thais are real food enthusiasts so you’re basically guaranteed to have great food at most festivals and always at affordable prices. Not to mention that queuing and purchasing was a painless experience at this festival. There were more than enough bars to cater for the number of people at the festival, no doubt it will be the same again this year! And the RFID system (also operated by Event Pop) was absolutely seamless, making topping up and paying for purchases a completely painless experience for festival goers!
You just know it’s going to be good when previous years involved a food and drink lineup of this magnitude, feast your eyes on this:
Though if you’re on a budget then some of these low cost tips on how to travel to S2O Songkran Music Festival and to the festival will be useful to you.
- Book your flights and accommodation early! Dates are normally announced a few months in advance so if you’re absolutely sure you want to go regardless of the lineup then you should book both flights and accommodation as soon as the dates are released to avoid price increases.
- The same goes for your festival ticket, don’t wait to get your ticket as the longer you wait the more expensive it gets!
- Look out for group tickets. If you are coming with several friends then get a group ticket, it will work out cheaper for everyone!
- If you’re on a budget stay close to the event so you don’t up spending too much on transport to and from the event.
- Get a local SIM card so you don’t have to roam whilst you’re out here, that can get very expensive. You can get a SIM card at your nearest 7-11 or in a shopping mall by going to one of the local providers (you can choose from AIS, True, DTAC and more…). You’ll need your passport to purchase one.
- Eat street food and in food courts! one of the best things about Thailand is that you can eat cheap and still eat well, (you can also indulge as Bangkok is host to some of the world’s best restaurants). If you’re relying on street food stalls and food courts in malls then you’re sure to not spend too much money on your trip and still be able to make the most of Thai cuisine!
- Get a travel card if you opt for public transport to get around.
- Be smart about taking taxis, either use the Grab app to hail a taxi so you get a fixed rate or if you’ve opted to do your trip without data then get one on the street but don’t settle for a fixed rate, go with the meter. And share the fare with your friends!
- If you’re going to be drinking buy a bucket and split with your friends! Costs less than buying single drinks.
- Make sure everything is tighly sealed and safe from the water! The last thing you need is to be buying a new phone after the festival, that would be a very costly mistake.
Waterproof EVERYTHING: Unless you want to drown the memories you make during the festival I strongly recommend you buy a plastic pouch to keep your personal items in. And not just at the festival but during your entire stay in Thailand over Songkran. You should be able to locate these at most 7-11s during the Songkran period in Thailand and/or outside the venue. These pouches are great because you can still use your touchscreen phone through the plastic! Alternatively a conventional ziplock bag, but don’t think that a plastic bag will suffice! I’m not joking when I say you won’t be able to escape the wetness. Keep everything under wraps!
Ear Plugs: you’ll need to keep your ears protected! Long or repeated exposure to loud sounds can cause longterm damage to your ear drums, don’t risk ruining your hearing, think of all the festivals you have yet to explore!
Goggles: over recent years these have become extremely attractive to Songkran-goers. They’ll keep the water out of your eyes, this is important for those of you who have sensitive eyes!
Sim Card: there’s no wifi available at the venue so if you’re looking to stay connected during the event you should try to buy a Thai sim card before arriving at the venue. For convenience if you’re flying into Bangkok I would recommend buying one in the arrivals hall. Please note however that they’re more expensive at the airport (about three times more expensive). If you’d rather opt for the cheaper option then you’ll need to visit a local service provider in one of the big shopping malls or any 7-11. Make sure to have your passport on you to complete the registration process.
Printed Ticket and ID: you will need to arm yourself with both of these to be able to enter the arena, so make you sure you don’t forget either or you’ll be missing out!
Cash: just to be on the safe side bring cash to the event! You don’t want to left stranded at the festival with no money!
Don’t remove your wristband! if you’re doing more than one day at S2O please make sure you don’t remove your wristband and you don’t damage the RFID tag, you may be denied entry.
No Re-Entry! Re-entry is not permitted! So for example if you exit early on the first day you will not be allowed to return until the second day!
Portable Charger: this festival is going to be packed full of moments you’ll want to video or photograph so it’s best to come prepared! Don’t miss any of your favourite moments because your phone is out of juice!
Stay Hydrated! drink plenty of water! (Getting water thrown at you doesn’t count!) You’re going to be going hard for hours at a time and you won’t necessarily feel like leaving the crowd to get some more water so stock up before finding a good spot in the crowd.
Agree on a Meeting Spot: a lot of people will be attending this festival so set a meeting point before going to any stages so you can easily find each other at the end of the festival should anyone go missing from the group and they’re unreachable during the festival!
I mean if that didn’t convince you that you should be at S2O Songkran Music Festival then I don’t know what will! And if you’re already a fan of this incredible festival then make sure you check out S2O Japan Songkran Music Festival and later in the year think about going to TBC – The Bangkok Countdown. Make sure you check out S2O Festival’s official Facebook page @s2ofestival for more information and announcements!