LAOS’ BACI CEREMONY
A Spiritual Tradition
Be enriched by the rituals and spiritual beliefs of Laos
Beyond wild nature, ancient architecture and delicious food, Asia is known for its spiritual side. It’s a favourite destination with Scenic guests to learn about and experience age-old customs and traditional festivities that can’t be found anywhere else. One example is a Baci ceremony.
A Baci ceremony is a ritual that has been central to life in Laos for hundreds of years. Also known as “Sou Khuan,” which means spirit enhancing or spirit calling. The ceremony is said to help balance your soul and bring you peace, good luck and good fortune.
Laos is a true gem of Southeast Asia. The riverside town of Luang Prabang is home to glittering temples and French colonial architecture, orange-robed monks at morning alms, and the Kuang Si waterfalls that cascade through thick green forest. Luang Prabang is the perfect location to experience the cultural heart of Laos.
What does a Baci ceremony involve?
Each ceremony is slightly different, but most involve a centrepiece of marigold flowers and banana leaves, which everyone is seated around. The leader of the ceremony, or the Mor Phon, chants sacred mantras, before passing around a white cotton string.
Each person will have a piece of white string tied around their wrist one by one, as individual prayers are said for each person. The string is said to tie together the 32 spirits Lao people believe are inside our bodies protecting us. They believe that sometimes these spirits can wander outside of the body, but the string symbolises tying them together and bringing them back to order.
If you want your prayers to come true, it’s said that you should keep the white string around your wrist for at least three days, before untying, not cutting, it. There may be traditional music, dancing, fresh flowers and fruit, and even Lao whisky.
“If you want your prayers to come true, it’s said that you should keep the white string around your wrist for at least three days, before untying,not cutting, it.”
When are Baci ceremonies performed?
Baci ceremonies are usually performed at special occasions like weddings, births, anniversaries or when someone has returned from a trip. They can also be performed when someone has had an accident, to help them heal, or when someone has passed away, to help the community grieve.
Where can Scenic guests experience a Baci ceremony?
Unwind and be immersed in the Mekong River on board the 5-star Scenic Spirit for seven nights before beginning your land journey, exploring the temples of Cambodia and then Laos’ peaceful town-like-city of Luang Prabang. Scenic Enrich events are exclusive experiences that bring you closer to the people and culture of the country you’re in, and guarantee to make your trip unforgettable. During Journey Along the Mekong Scenic guests will experience one of these special Baci ceremonies first-hand – the perfect complement to a luxury river cruise and journey of insight and discovery.
Why not experience this for yourself and take advantage of our exclusive offers:
- Save up to £1,200 per person
- 10% Super Earlybird Saving
- Free Private Door-to-Door Chauffeur Transfers
Book by 31 July 2021
18-Day Journey Along the Mekong
Ho Chi Minh City > Bangkok Departs: 6 August 2022
Was from £6,495 per person
Now from £5,295 per person
Maximum saving of £1,200 per person dependent on itinerary. ^Private door-to-door transfers are complimentary within 75-miles of an airport where flights are available from. For guests who live outside of 75 miles, an additional supplement of £2.00 per mile will be charged. ~Super Earlybird Offers savings offer is valid for new bookings on Sapphire deck and above, excluding category BS. Savings are applicable if full payment is received at least 12 months prior to departure. Book by 31 July 2022.