Tiger Trail - We are Laos

Events & Festivals in Laos

Laos has many festivals, or Boun scattered throughout the year to commemorate various aspects of traditional Lao lifestyle and culture. Most festivals are connected with religion and follow the rice farming seasonal cycle. The timing each festivals is calculated according to the Buddhist lunar calendar which changes every year. Please check the latest information before attending these events.


International Women's Day - 8 March 2023

International Women’s Day (IWD), originally called International Working Women’s Day, is marked on March 8 every year. In different regions the focus of the celebrations ranges from a general celebration of respect, appreciation, and love towards women to a celebration for women’s economic, political and social achievements. 

In Laos, this day is a holiday. All administration offices are closed. This is locally considered a very important day of the year.

Day of Lao People’s Revolutionary Party - 22 March 

This day is a holiday. No specific demonstration, but all the administration are closed.

Boun Khoun Khao or Khoun Lan (Rice Ceremony)

This is a harvest festival. A 'Baci' ceremony is performed in order to give thanks to the land.

Boun Phavet / Boun Mahachat / Vessantara 

The festival is usually celebrated in the preaching hall or sala of the local temple or wat, beginning early in the morning and lasting until midnight. The festival usually takes place yearly for three full days between February and April, during the fourth lunar month.

King Phavet reigned over his father’s kingdom as a benevolent monarch, giving away all his possessions except a single elephant. One of his villages, Gadinkha, was suffering from a drought that had dried up lakes and rivers. The starving citizens asked King Phavet for help, but all he had was his elephant, which he bestowed upon them. However, the gesture didn’t solve their crisis. The villagers became angry and complained to Phavet’s father. This upset the old king, who banished Phavet, his wife Madthii, and children to the forest.

While there, Phavet met a group passing by, and they asked Phavet to give them his wife Madthii. He agreed and handed her and their two children over. A few months later, rains started falling on Gadinkha, and the villagers began growing rice and vegetables again. They eventually realized Phavet’s elephant had brought them luck, so they brought the animal to the old king and told him the news. This heartened him, and he summoned Phavet to return and retake the throne. After his death, Phavet was reincarnated, married, and had a son, but he divorced his wife and became a monk, and attained enlightenment.

During the Boun Pha Vet in Laos, for 3 days and 3 nights, the monks take turns to read about the life of King Phavet. A long painted scroll held aloft by young and old and accompanied by drums and dancers, is taken in procession from the forest through the village lanes to the pagoda, bringing Prince Vessentara back to his city. In carrying the scroll, and performing the narrative, villagers create a visual and material universe conveying meanings beyond the written text

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