Bangkok Chonburi Songkhla, The 33rd SEA Games are scheduled for December 9-20, 2025

Most of the events to be held in Bangkok, while watersports events in Chonburi and football and sepak takraw in Songkhla.

Nakhon Ratchasima, meanwhile, was chosen to host the Asean Para Games slated for January 20-26, 2026.

The four hosting cities were the first on to host the SEA Games history chosen through a bidding process.

The event will bring together participants from the 10 ASEAN members of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, The Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam. Plus Timor-Leste.

No new infrastructure or new sports village will be built for the Games as they opt to renovate the current venues, including the main venue, the Rajamangala Stadium. According to the Sports Authority of Thailand governor Gongsak Yodmani.

“Everything will be doing with the limited budget, but must be in high standard”.

“We are confident we can have the best preparation for every country to come and enjoy not only the competition but also the hospitality and harmonicity from us” – NationThailand

Host Country Selection

As per SEA Games traditions, hosting duty country rotates among the Southeast Asian Games Federation (SEAGF) member countries. Each country is assigned to host the following edition event in advance, but the country can choose to withdraw or not host that edition event.

Open Ceremony

The governor of the Sports Authority of Thailand said that the proposed opening ceremony of the Bangkok-Chonburi-Songkhla Games that is to be split into three venues: which is

  • Rajamangala Stadium in Bangkok
  • Eastern National Sports Stadium in Chonburi
  • Tinsulanon Stadium in Songkhla

Programme to be standardised from 2025 to 2029

To help regional athletes better prepare for the Olympics and Asian Games, the next three SEA Games held in Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore respectively will feature a standard sports programme for the 2025, 2027 and 2029

According to the previous charter, each Games must have both Category 1 sports, which are aquatics and athletics. They must also include a minimum of 14 Category 2 sports from the Olympics and Asian Games, and can include up to eight other Category 3 sports, which include regional or traditional events.

SEA Games hosts have been known to use this to their advantage by maximising the number of Category 3 sports to inflate their medal tally. For instance, Cambodia introduced local chess game ouk chaktrang and martial arts kun khmer and kun bokator at these Games.

Chan shared that the change for the next three editions means that the compulsory Category 1 will now include two groups – 1A, which comprises aquatics and athletics; and 1B, which is a minimum of 10 Olympic sports from Tokyo 2020.

Hosts will also need to include a minimum of 10 other sports from the Tokyo 2020, Asian Games and Asian Indoor & Martial Arts Games programmes under Category 2. Winter Olympic sports may also be included. Category 3 will remain for regional or traditional sports, of which there can be a maximum of four.

Siam Sport reported in January that the SEA Games 2025 sub-committee had shortlisted 43 sports. At the latest, these will be confirmed a year before the Games.

Singapore Sport Institute chief Su Chun Wei said: “This is a very positive development to the next three editions. It certainly gives us the ability to plan for multiple cycles of the SEA Games.

“This gives athletes, coaches and the sport the certainty that there is a journey that will map them for the foreseeable few cycles. And I hope that this inspires them and spurs them to take the decision to go and do their best for a longer period of time.

“It is very good for high performance ecosystems when there is a more consistent SEA Games portfolio, and we can certainly work to map out those plans and support the athletes in their journey in the next five or six years.”

17-May-2023 TheStraitTimes