Alms Giving Ceremony - Tak Bat
The tradition of Tak Bat dates back to the 14th century.
As the sun rises Buddhist monks throughout Laos depart from their various temples to gather their daily meal. Meanwhile the locals wake early to prepare the food and wait quietly beside the road to give their offerings to the monks. Most common offerings include rice, traditional snacks and fresh fruit.
The purpose of Tak Bat is for locals to give alms to the monks, and therefore receive merit. The monks will chant a mantra and give merit, and also collect food for their one meal of a day. Sometimes monks will share some of their alms to small children so that they can take food back to their family.
There is no need for you to leave our hotel to experience Tak Bat. Every morning at about 0615 there is a large procession of monks that walk past our hotel and collect alms from the locals. We can even arrange for you to take part in this ancient ceremony
Temples, Palace and Museum
We recommend to see the former Royal Palace, now the National Museum, where you will explore Lao’s history. You will further learn all about the different ethnic groups living in this beautiful country at the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre (TAEC).
In addition, you can discover these three famous temples: Wat Mai, a temple renowned for its golden bas-relief. Wat Visoun, first temple of Luang Prabang, and Wat Xieng Thong, the most revered one. Located at the end of the peninsula, close to the Mekong, this temple was built in 1560 by King Setthathirat and is decorated with ornate carvings and mosaics.
Rising 150 meters above the center of the old town, Mount Phousi cuts a distinctive figure on the Luang Prabang skyline. The hill is popular as a place to watch the sun rise or set over the Mekong River. From the Summit, you can enjoy a spectacular 360 degree outlook across the city and its many temples and out over the surrounding landscape to the mountains in the distance. Count on spending a couple of hours for the climb and descent with several stops to see the temples, rest under the shady trees and admire the magical views.
The market is open daily from 5 pm to about 9.30 pm. It is located along Sisavangvong Road in front of the Royal Palace Museum. Every evening a long stretch of road is closed to vehicle traffic and turned into a walking and shopping street while the market takes place. More than 300 handicraft vendors sell their hand-made products here every night. The market showcases an extensive variety of handicrafts made by local ethnic groups. On display are many types of textiles, exquisite ceramics, antiques, paintings, coffee and tea, quilts, shoes, silver, bags, bamboo lamps of different shades and sizes, and even rare spices.
The morning market in Luang Prabang, lining a couple of quiet streets near the Royal Palace, starts early and is over by mid-morning. It sets up along a couple of side-streets next to one of the city’s many Wats. But most of the vendors, selling anything from rice, to fresh vegetables, to steamed fish, frogs, and anything else that might be the day’s catch, just set up on the ground. It’s an elegant solution–cheap, simple, and effective.
Ock Pop Tok Living Craft Center: Discover Laos through textiles.
Set in lush tropical gardens and located on the banks of the Mekong, the Living Crafts Centre is the perfect place to learn about the fascinating world of Lao textiles and handicrafts.
Created as a way to allow visitors to observe the impressive skills that go into Lao textiles, the Centre brings the concept of “East meets West” alive.
There you will meet the Master Weavers and see silk weaving on your own.