INTERESTING FESTIVALS IN LAOS

Festivals and events are always one of the best ways to discover the culture of any nation. In other words, the country is famous for unique and original festivals, showing its culture and religions strongly and of course, coming to this Buddha Nation, tourists cannot ignore these interesting and exciting festivals and events. The traditional Lao calendar is a solar-lunar mixed. In Laos, there are totally 15 Public Holidays. Lao people are fun and easy-going, and will commonly invite you to participate in these colorful festivals held throughout the year.

Bun Pha Wet: This commemoration is held in January every year. Bun Pha Wet is a festival of the Jataka associated to the life tale of Prince Vestsantara, the Buddha's penultimate life. This festival takes place in each temple across the country over three days and three nights. It is considered a particularly auspicious time for ordination as a monk.

That Luang Festivals: This event is one of the biggest festivals in Vientiane attracting thousands of Lao people from all over the country to the main temple. The That Luang Festival takes place at the golden That Luang stupa or Pha That Luang in Vientiane in November every year. The religious festival lasts three days in November during the full moon. The procession is very colorful and at the end of the festival, you can enjoy the beautiful fireworks, symbolizing an offer of flowers of lights to Buddha. Worshippers pay their respects by lighting colorful wax candles and walking around the stupa three times.

Wat Phu Festival: Wat Phu is an annual religious festival taking place on the full moon day of the third month in Buddhist Calendar. The festival is held at the pre-Angkorian Wat Phu site in Champassak province. Regarded the most famous Hindu temple complex built in Laos under the Khmer Empire, Wat Phu is one of Laos' world heritage sites. As a national festival, Wat Phu Festival attracts people from Cambodia and Thailand joining in. All traditional rituals, ceremonies, and games of the festival are well preserved and maintained since the early days.

Boun Bang Fai Festival (Rocket Festival): This is a call for rain and also a celebration of fertility. It marks the 6th month in lunar calendar and it seems to be one of the most amazing festivals in Laos as well as the cultural highlight of Laos. Celebrations typically take two to three days and include many interesting activities. Especially, on the third day, the most impressive and characterized activity of Rocket Festival-launching self-made firework rockets takes place.

Lao New Year (Bun Pi Mai): Lao New Year is the liveliest holiday of the year and one that everyone looks forward to, as it is a time when many people visit their families all over the country. The festival takes place from 13-15th April, which is known as the hottest time of the year. Lao New Year is celebrated with parades, dancing, singing and enthusiastic water throwing.  While Bun Pi Mai is celebrated throughout Laos, the religious aspects of the festival are most apparent in Luang Prabang. During these days, there are many games and traditional performances are held to help people relax after a hard-working year and look forward to the lucky new year.