Two long-founded festivals in a far-off Mekong province

Sóc Trăng, an extremely lesser-known city in the outlander visitors’ eyes which is located near the end of Mekong Delta, is definitely somewhere you may have never heard of before. The thing is, Sóc Trăng has been something every single Southern Vietnamese get to know right from their early ages, especially thanks to the city’s delicacy of Pía Cake. However, Pía Cake is not the only thing the makes Sóc Trăng a special destination. With over 10 traditional Vietnamese festivals originated from different varieties of ethnic communities, this province attracts a huge number of visitors each year. The two below are chosen from the two most recognized groups of citizens who have taken root hundreds of years by far in this land.

Khmer people

Khmer people

Lantern Auction Festival

Lantern Festival is a common phrase widely used for a special event in the East Asian countries where the Lunar calendar is still playing a big part, the January’s Full moon day. The festival is annually held by the Chinese community in a Chinese temple. The event does not aim at auctioning off the best-looked lanterns yet giving out the meaning behind for those who pursue the business career with prosperity as long as happiness, wealth and the best of health. Hence, the value of each lantern can vary up to millions of Dong. Every lantern given out is written with well-wished lines such as “May your wealth be plentiful”, May you earn huge profits every day” or “May you be blessed and happy”. As you may beware, Chinese are those who extremely dignify and value the field of business and trading, which means Chinese businessmen everywhere highly appreciate relevant wishes like those.

Chinese in Southern Vietnam

Chinese in Southern Vietnam

Operating the Lantern Auction event, the Temple’s Board of Management initially target at creating an interesting union for their own community itself, while in return, participants are able to donate a sum of money for social benefits. Paying a visit to this one-of-a-kind festival, you can not only have a deep insight into other cultures around you but admire a unique architecture at the Chinese temple where the event takes place. The building was wholly constructed in precious wood and stones delicately carved. The elegant pieces and pictures carved upon rooftops, pillars, entrance door as well as horizontal paintings still remain strong and sharp details made by the old artisans. The temple can now be found at Nguyễn Văn Trỗi Street, Ward 1, Sóc Trăng City. Down for a memorable trip rather than just a sightseeing tour? Let the best travel agency in Vietnam sort it out for you!

The temple where Lantern Auction Festival is held

The temple where Lantern Auction Festival is held

Ok Om Bok

Officially recognized as an iconic festival of the Khmer dwellers in Mekong Delta, Ok Om Bok is one of the three most important festivals of the Khmer community and bears a strong meaning in spiritual life. Therefore, many tourists choose it as the must-go destination for their best travel agency in Vietnam when they come here at the festival time.

Ok Om Bok falls on the Full Moon day of Lunar October and can be seen as a form of worshipping the Moon. According to Khmer’s perception, the date is the ending in one Moon’s circle around the Earth as well as the end of harvest season. As a result, Ok Om Bok is held with a view to expressing gratitude towards the Moon for its protection of an abundant crop.

Boat racing – A part of Ok Om Bok

Boat racing – A part of Ok Om Bok

On the Full Moon day when night falls, Khmer people start setting up a table containing essential offerings such as sticky rice, yam, coconuts, bananas, sweeties and many more. Amin the table, a pot of hot tea is always displayed. After each turn of pouring tea into a small glass, Khmer people are supposed to bow their head once to show their appreciation towards the Moon. Afterward, a gaudy and sparkling lantern ceremony will take place at Bà Om Lake. Apart from being released into the surface of the lake, these colorful lanterns are also floated to the high night sky. Imagine standing under a dark sky lit up by hundreds of lanterns amid the sound of joy and celebration of Khmer people in an off-the-beaten-track It is believed that these lanterns are expected to bring in good luck and chase away evil spirits.

Night lanterns

Night lanterns

Because of such meaning, Ok Om Bok regularly appeals to local visitors who aspire a mind-blowing journey every year. You may not have thought of this special festival when mapping out the best tours in Vietnam coming up, yet this in-depth reveal is going to be a worthwhile expectation that any Vietnam travel agency is excited to offer you.