Boun Ok Pansa, Boat Racing Festival


14-15 October--nn--This is the festival held after the end of the monks' three month fast and retreat during the rainy season (Boun Khao Pansa). At dawn on the first day, donations and offerings are made at temples around the city. In the evening, candlelight processions are held at temples and hundreds of colorful floats decorated with flowers, incense and candles are set adrift down the Mekong River to pay respect to the river spirit. The following day in Vientiane, Savannakhet and Champasack Province, a popular and exciting boat racing competition is held to celebrate along the Mekong River and its tributaries. “Naga Rockets”, the fireballs, coming out from the water's surface, can be seen once a year on the last night of the Lao Buddhist Lent. The Naga rockets can be spotted where the Nam Ngum and the Mekong river meet in Thaprabath district, Bolikhamxai province, as well as in Pak Ngum district, 60 km east of Vientiane.

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