As a member of the ASEAN community, one of 3 countries of the Indochina. Laos features with many festivals in the year.
1. Luang Festival
This is a country where Buddhism is considered the National religion, every year in Laos, almost every month there is a festival. In particular, the festival of That Luong is a traditional festival characterized Lao culture. The Luang Festival takes place in the first 12 days of the Buddhist lunar month, which lasts one week and ends on the full moon day of the month.
One of the main features of the ceremony is Luang – a unique traditional festival of Laos when people join the procession of Pha Sat Luang (procession of the tower) from Me Xi Khuong pagoda to Luang. Phạ Sạt Phơng is a temple architecture model made of spongy material, surrounded by flowers made of brilliant yellow beeswax. At the tip of nine petals of white lotus flowers, around the tower, there are fringes of flowers or money meaning the same as the practice of burning paper houses, money … for the deceased like the Vietnamese.
When arriving in Luang Prabang, the procession will carry the three phases of the Paschpuri round before going to the back of the altar hall and receiving the gifts in a formal, serious, respectful manner.
According to the custom, each family, village or group of people … can share together a Pha Sat Phong.
2. Bun Bangfai Rain Festival
Bun Bangfai Rain Festival is held in May. The festival is held on different days in different villages across the country and scattered throughout the month.
The rainy cannonball festival in Naxone village, Pakngum district, Vientiane (Laos) is considered a biggest festival compared to other villages in Naxone village near Vientiane capital so that it attracts a large number of people in Vientiane and neighboring areas participating.
3. Bunpimay Water Festival
Traditional festival of waterfall called Laos Bunpimay festival usually takes place from 13 to 15/4 yearly Buddhist calendar.
Festival brings the meaning of cool, prosperous for all things, warm and happy, purify the life of man. On festival, people often fall in water to pray for the whole year.
Bunpimay Festival usually takes place in three days. The first day is also the last day of the old year, people clean up houses, streets, alley, prepare the fragrant water and flowers. In the afternoon, people in the village gather in the temple to worship Buddha, pray, listen to the monks preacher. People go to pagodas to pray for health and happiness for the whole year. After that, the Buddha was taken to a private room for three days and opened the door so that everyone could enter and pray. The water spraying on the Buddha statue will be brought back home to spraying on the body for blessing.
4. Okphansa Vegetarian Festival
Okphansa Festival – Lao Vegan Festival, one of the largest festivals of Laos held annually on the occasion of the lunar November. Phan Xa is the largest festival of the year, taking place in three months called the vegetarian season. The festival starts on the full moon day of August called Khau Phan Xa means beginning of vegetarian and ends with the Okphansa festival which means the end of vegetarian.
During the three months of fasting, Buddhist monks work meditation, study Buddhism or teach, and ordinary people often absent from home, not marry, and can temporarily leave alcohol, quit smoking. Although there are months of taboo, the other activities of Lao society are still working. Everyone, from the countryside to the city, celebrated this ceremony and made offerings to the temple.
The purpose of this festival is to pray for health, the country is peaceful with fresh crops.
5. Boat racing festival
According to the Laotian people, after three months of vegetarianism, people have dispelled their worries, to begin with the new days of life, this is the time of the boat festival – a traditional special festival of the Laotians.
The main activities of the festival are ceremonial (including candle-lighting and candle procession around the pagoda), releasing boats, but the most important and exciting part is the boat race. Before the holidays, people go to the temples in the city to do the “Tac Bat” ceremony. On the last day of the boat race, they gathered in the Mekong River to drop lights and boats down the river to pray for happiness and good things.
Traditional Lao boat races are considered as a landmark for the rest of the year entertainment, marriage, building … of the Lao people.
If you concern about Festivals, please cotnact us for more ifnromation. Share this aarticle if it is helpful for you!