One of the most important customs of Laotian culture is unquestionably the revered Baci ceremony. This ritual is held to celebrate all types of special occasions during one’s lifetime, from starting a new job, housewarming, marriage, giving birth, a wedding, the Lao new year, and more. Conversely, the Baci ceremony is also invoked during sad times such as mourning or ill-health to recall any of the body’s 32 spirits which have gone astray.

The Baci Ceremony, a time-honoured tradition in Laos

Centerpiece of the Baci Ceremony, the Pha Khuan

Dating back centuries, this ritual first involves an elderly woman preparing a handmade centerpiece out of marigold flowers, known as the Pha Khuan. An elderly man (the Mor Phon) then makes an offering of Lao whisky and money to the spirits. After tying a white cotton string around the wrist of the honored guest(s), he chants prayers in the religious Pali language while the other attendees observe in silence. Upon conclusion of the ceremony, the guests shower each other with milled rice for good fortune and partake in a feast of food and drink.

The Baci Ceremony, a time-honoured tradition in Laos

A village elder ties a cotton string around an attendee’s wrist for good fortune

Join us as the time honoured Baci ceremony is held on each of Heritage Line Anouvong’s journeys to welcome passengers on their voyage along the upper Mekong and/or bid them farewell (depending on length and direction of cruise).

The majestic Heritage Line Anouvong begins sailing captivating landscapes and remote native communities of the Laotian Mekong on 29 September 2020. Book now and save 20% in our Anouvong Inaugural Promotion!

 

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