Laos owns good custom that has been formed throughout the history and kept until now. Some practices become the local norms that people consciously follow, and this is the beautiful trait to attract travelers to this laid-back and charming country. Before you go on Laos Tours, it’s good to read about the outstanding custom in Laos, and then you are there to check and experience.
#1: Laos Food
The major food in Laos is rice. Their daily meal often includes the grilled fish or meat and vegetable salads. Their favorites are fish, snail, frog, prawn, beef and wild buffalo’s meat. Know that chili is the indispensable item. One tip for the tourists is to taste every dish on the table, at least a bite per dish to delight the hosts and hostess. Also, remember to leave outa little of rice or sticky rice to reflect the fullness and overabundance of rice.
#2: Homestay in Laos Villages
The villages in Laos often include some different families who are connected to each other by tradition, emotion, and economy. The Laotians love their family members, respect the equality between male and female, and follow the monogamy. The locals have the custom to welcome guests. Their hospitality urges them to pray for good luck for the guests, plus the respectful and friendly greetings.
Nonetheless, you have to be sensitive enough to follow their rules to avoid displeasing the hosts. In particular, do not touch the Laotians’ heads or rub the children’s heads! When walking, avoid touching or stepping on the others’ feet. What’s more, when you pass by the elders, it’s highly appreciated if you can say “sorry” and bend a little. Then, when greeting each other, fold one’s hands in front of the forehead and make a bow.
Furthermore, when you sleep in the natives’ houses, try not to lay the head toward the main entrance. You should not cut the hair or have a shave at night there. As a custom, the Laotians do not cut the hairs on Wednesday or shampoo on Thursday. Importantly, watch out to avoid getting under the strings with the female clothes hung on it. These tips ensure you to enjoy a perfect homestay with no worry.
#3: Baci – The Ritual of Tying a String around the Wrist
Baci (meaning “calling of the soul) is the notable ceremony in Laos as well as their national custom of blessing. For welcoming you and wish you the best luck, the Laotian hosts might type strings around your wrist, hoping to preserve good luck. This ritual can be performed on any day throughout the year. In fact, Baci is held in any event related to the human souls like the marriage, child birth, recovery from sickness, annual festival, etc. For the travelers, typing the strings around the wrist is to honor you.
At the end of the ceremony, you are offered food with bowls of rice wine and then followed by Laos dance and music. Know that the symbolic thread of silk or cotton is white that symbolizes purity, peace, and goodness. The thread is tied on the right-hand wrist of yours to bless you. So, when you experience the Baci in Laos, appreciate what the locals do for you and take the pictures to record the moments if wanted. As usual, this ritual is performed by the respectable elders in the village. Interestingly, you can fully experience Baci in Sofitel Luang Prabang! In this address, the ceremony is taken place on the first night at the long house with the capacity of up to 70 people.
Travel to Laosdelivers lots of interesting cultural experiences as you come to check and enjoy. Keeping some information of Laos Custom in mind, your trip becomes truly enjoyable and exciting. The local hospitality will cheer you up first with the Baci.
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