by David Unkovich
What do you do when it’s hot, dry and you want it to rain? Shoot rockets into the clouds … at least that’s what the men of Muang Nan do every year in the month of May. This year Muang Nan Rocket Festival will be held on 27-29 May
The Boun Bang Fai (the Rocket Festival) is an annual Buddhist celebration that happens in various locations across Laos. One of the best places to witness this thrilling event is Muang Nan in Luang Prabang Province. The festival takes place in a different village in the district each year, with locals spending the weeks leading up to the event making their rockets.
The festival runs for three days, and includes the opening market fun fair, morning alms giving ceremony, candle lit procession, long drum competition, Baci ceremony, music and dance performances, floats being paraded through the town, and an evening fireworks display. On the third day, over 100 home-made rockets are launched into the sky…a true spectacle.
Muang Nan is on R4 75 kms south-west of Luang Prabang.
Getting there: Sawng Taews depart Luang Prabang District five times a day: 08:00, 10:00, 12:00, 14:00, and 16:00. The bus to Sayaboury, which departs daily at 09:00 and 14:00 stps at Muang Nan.