Monks collecting alms – Luang Prabang

If you are an early bird or are willing to sacrifice an hour or so in bed for a cultural experience, then you can watch the monks collecting their alms at first light in the old town of Luang Prabang.

At about 6am monks walk single file and barefoot through the streets to collect offerings of food from devotees.

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There are some 35 temples around Luang Prabang, so there are plenty of spots all around town where you can watch the ceremony.

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There are some parts of town where it is predominately made up of tourists on package tours, so if you want to watch something a bit more authentic from a distance, find a side street to sit and watch from a bit further away from the centre of town.

Something that did really annoy me was watching tourists participate in the ceremony in really inappropriate clothing and taking selfies and in general not adhering to the traditions! I don’t believe you should take part in ceremonies like this unless it actually means something to you, not just a photo opportunity so you can put “#woke” on your instagram caption.

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The tradition of giving alms to the monks if a very important part of the Buddhist culture and you should be respectful when observing.

Do you agree? Have you observed an alms ceremony?

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Freelance writer who loves reading, cooking & travelling. Rarely spotted without red lipstick. Penchant for whiskey on the rocks.

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