WITH Covid control measures having been relaxed, the 34th Lopburi Monkey festival took place today (Nov. 27) with thousands of macaques in this city treated to a Chinese banquet while both local and foreign tourists looked on, TV Channel 7 said.
The concept this time is “Monkeys treat Monkeys” with there being 30 statues of monkeys dressed in Thai costume holding trays laden with delicious food at the event site, the front yard of Phra Prang Sam Yot temple.
Served were a variety of dishes including Hanuman hors d’oeuvres, fried rice and a variety of fresh vegetables and fruits that monkeys love including durian costing 700 baht a kg and blueberries.
As soon as the first dishes were served thousands of monkeys rushed in and chaotically scrambled for the food while tourists and the media took photos.
However there were some monkeys who could not get close to the food and tourists bought crackers for them to eat.
Mr. Yongyut Kitwattananuson, or Sia Yi, head of Lopburi’s Chinese Monkey Banquet association, said this year over 100,000 baht had been spent on purchasing two tons of fresh fruits and vegetables for the monkeys including their favourites, such as durian, cherries and blueberries.
Those who want to feed Lopburi monkeys were advised to purchase more costly food as they like expensive treats.
That monkey statues were made to serve food to the macaques this year is to prevent people from getting too close to them as part of Public Health Ministry’s Covid prevention measures.
The Lopburi Monkey Festival is held every year in the last week of November with there being four banquet rounds, 10 a.m., noon, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.
The lively Lopburi Monkey Festival that took place today. Photos: TV Channel 7