Water Festival – unique culture in Na Luong

Update: 12/19/2016
Located next to the gentle Nam Mu river, 7km to the East of National Highway 4D, Na Luong Village (Na Tam Commune, Tam Duong District, Lai Chau Province) is the place that over 90 families with 400 members of Lao People are living. Thanks to the wild natural beauty and the long traditional culture, Na Luong is becoming a friendly destination to many tourists.

From Lai Chau Town, going along ighway 4D about 53km, tourists will see the 7km-long wavy road to Na Luong Village next to the tea hills and forests. The first impression of the village is the scenic image of stilt houses nestling under the canopy of green leaves, the smoke bobbing in the mountain wind as well as Lao females in traditional dresses assiduously weaving fabrics.

There are about 13000 Laos People living in Dien Bien, Son La, Lai Chau, Lao Cai Provinces. Their main jobs are rice planting, livestock breeding, weaving, etc. Similar to other Laos Villages in the Northwest, Na Luong is now still preserving the traditional culture activities, and one of them is Water Festival (Bun Voc Nam)

Since long ago, Laos people still grow rice as the main crop and highly appreciate water due to the fact that water is the source of all living things. The water festival represents significant fertility, agricultural practices of Laos and it is organized after the harvesting season to pray for good weather and bumper crops.

The festival consists of two parts: the ceremony and the festival. In the first part, there is a ceremony to pray for good weather and prosperous life. After that, village leaders and the young people play drums and pluck palm leaves to simulate the sounds of thunder and raindrop, and wear hat, raincoats to go to each house, bringing water to splash to each other.

The festival is started when all the locals go to stream to splash water. The wetter they are, the more good luck they receive. This activity not only attracts local people but also the tourists. They all want to immerse in water in hope to have much good luck. The festival ends with folk games such as tug-of-war, rod pushing, ball throwing, etc.


Staying at Na Luong, besides the chances to explore the majestic mountain scenery or unique water festival, tourists can also enjoy local specialties such as Lam rice, color sticky rice, steamed fish in banana leaves, etc.

With a unique cultural identity, Na Luong has been chosen to be developed as the community tourism destination by the Netherlands Development Organization (SNV). The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism considered Na Luong to be among the list of tourist destinations on "Arc of Northwest". In the future, Na Luong will become one of the ideal destinations for tourists to move away from the noisy, bustling cities.

                                                                                    Thu Phuong

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