5 Interesting Facts About Traditions of Laos

Devoid of beaches or outstanding historical attractions, Laos’ main draw is its laid-back country. This Buddhism land has exotic charm in language, art and culture, creating a unique ethnic Lao. It is impossible to understand Lao culture without having at least a basic understanding of the Laos traditions. “5 Interesting Facts About Traditions of Laos” will be your roller coaster of a cultural ride in exploring this enigmatic travel destination. Indochina travel Laos

Laos Belief

Every culture has its own values and belief. Being an Asian country, Laos shares some common values and beliefs with other neighbours. However, Laos has some unique ones of its own. Much of Laos perspective comes from the Buddhist beliefs. Around 60% of Laotian population practices Theravada Buddhism- the closest religion to the original meaning of early Buddhism. You can know a part of their belief in Buddhism by admiring Pha That Luang– a gold-covered large Buddhist stupa as well as the most important national monument. Despite modernization, much of Lao culture is profoundly reflected by Buddhist thoughts, attitudes and behaviours.

Pha-That-Luang-a-great-Buddhist-symbol-in-Vientiane-Laos
Pha-That-Luang-a-great-Buddhist-symbol-in-Vientiane-Laos

Laos Costume

Like every country in the world, Laos costumes depend on gender and age but regarding the culture. Laos women dress properly. Laos custom dictates that women must wear the ceremonial phaa sin – a long, patterned textile skirt. Laos women often wear scarves and coiled hair styles when they attend a significant event. Laos men wear salong- big large pants to attend the important events. These day men dress in Western style and only wear the phaa biang on ceremonial occasions. Their hair is coiled down to the back and earrings. Both men and women in Laos do not have any decoration jewelries. It is important to dress and behave in a way that is respectful.

A local girl is weaving to make a phaa sin
A local girl is weaving to make a phaa sin- source: seecome.com

Laos Cuisine

          Food shares a lot in common with Thai food, and selections verge on the hot and spicy (sour). For Laos cuisine, rice is the staple- either glutinous sticky rice, served in small lidded baskets and eaten with the hand, or plain white rice, eaten with a spoon. 90% of the Laos people consume sticky rice. The basket which keeps the rice after steaming is called Tikao or kongkao and can be taken to everywhere. Sticky rice is often rolled into a ball and dipped into various dishes. Tours in Laos

Laos dishes are often cooked with fresh ingredients such as vegetable, freshwater fish, duck, beef, pork, and chicken. Spicing is tangy, using lemongrass, chili, ginger, tamarind, coriander, lemon juice, and aromatic herbs, etc. A common Laos dish is larb, made of minced meat, chicken, fish, or vegetable tossed with garlic, chili, green onions, and lime juice.

Larb in Laos
Larb in Laos- source: internet

Laos Traditional Arts

Laos traditional arts divides into classical and folk forms. Classical arts are strongly associated with Hindu mythology, Buddhism, and former Laos royalty, while folk arts are connected with animist Laos hill tribes. The stronger and more vibrant form is the folk arts. Folk songs and dances are closely related to festivals. Laos folk dances telling the joys of life and work have existed for many centuries. The national dance is the lam vong, a slow revolving circle dance with men on the outside and women on the inside cheering graceful together with hand movements and simple footsteps. Music for the lam vong is provided by the khen, a handheld bamboo reed instrument.

Local people in classical Lam Vong dance
Local people in classical Lam Vong dance- alamy.com

Laos is home to more than 132 ethic groups with a history steeped in war, imperialism and mysticism. Imagine a country where your pulse relaxes, smiles are genuine and locals are curious about you. “5 Interesting Facts About Traditions of Laos” is a small piece in this mysterious picture. From hedonist to gourmand, every type of traveller seems to find what they are looking for.

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