IN LAOS TEMPLE
Arts & culture |
religion | Temples'
When visiting temples (call "Wat") you must be dressed
decently and remove your shoes before you enter the
religious buildings. Avoid wearing short and sleeveless
shirts. Be deferential in front of objects in the
When entering a Wat or a private home, it is customary
to remove one’s shoes. In Lao homes raised off the
ground, the shoes are left at the stairs. In traditional
homes, one sits on low seats or cushions on the floor.
Men usually sit with their legs crossed or folded to one
side, women prefer solely the latter. Upon entering,
guests may be served fruit or tea. These gestures of
hospitality should not be refused.
Since the head is considered the most sacred part of the
body and the soles of feet the least, one should not
touch a person’s head nor use one’s foot to point at a
person or any object. Moreover, men and women rarely
show affection in public. It is also forbidden for a
woman to touch a Buddhist monk.
Laotian food is based on fish, buffalo meat, pork,
poultry and especially herbs. It is always being freshly
prepared and not being preserved. Other than sticky
rice, which can be eaten either sweet or sour, or
fermented and is eaten with fingers, Laotian food is
very rich in vegetables and is often browned in coconut
Rice is the staple of Laotian food. Lap is a traditional
dish. It consists of minced meat accompanied by
citronella, onions, and spices and mixed with a fish
sauce and roasted rice. Lap means "happiness and luck".
The sticky rice is always served with the hot sauce or a
spicy fish or shrimp based sauce.
Laotian cooking not only uses cultivated vegetables, but
often wild fruit or vegetables picked from the forests
are used as well. Laotian food has a unique flavor and
some dishes can be spicy to the un accustomed foreigner.
Clothing During the hot season, January to April, bring
light clothes in cotton and linen, sunglasses and a hat
all year long. Sunscreen and bug repellant is also
recommended. From November to December, the cold season,
it is a good idea to bring warm clothing such as
sweaters and jackets for the morning and evening, and
even more so if you are visiting the mountainous regions
of the North. From May to October, during the rainy
season, it is best to have waterproof clothing. It is
best to wear easily removable shoes or sandals when
visiting the temples.
Source: Lao National Tourism Administration