Festivals in Laos are generally linked to agricultural seasons or historical Buddhist holidays. The Lunar New Year begins in mid-April and the entire country comes to a halt and celebrates. Houses are cleaned, offerings are made in wats and everyone gets dowsed by water. Bun Bang Fai (Rocket Festival) takes place in May. It's an irreverent pre-Buddhist celebration with plenty of processions, music and dancing, accompanied by the firing of bamboo rockets to prompt the heavens to send rain. The week-long That Luang Festival in Vientiane in November has the whole repertoire of fireworks, candlelit processions and music.
Copyright 2010 Lonely Planet Publications , all rights reserved, used with permission