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“It has become too commercialized”

Alms Giving Ceremony
Reviewed 11 February 2017

Tourists have turned the traditional alms-giving ceremony into a gauntlet that the monks must run before going to temple. I felt sorry for them and for what we have done to them. People are up in their faces with cameras trying to get "that one really authentic shot" and it is not respectful. If you are curious to see it, stay at a distance and have a look.

1  Thank Claudia R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 10 February 2017 via mobile

This was something we were keen to do despite the early start at 6am. It is humbling to see the monks walk down the streets collecting alms to enable them to exist and eat. The local people provide food and money to help the monks and to make a sacrifice which is part of the Buddhist culture. Any extra that the monks collect but don't need is given out and shared with the poor of the town. We were privileged to take part and give them rice and cookies. Definitely a unique experience

Thank Christine A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 February 2017 via mobile

Better to observe a way off to the side. It is not for tourists to participate. I saw some tourists jump out of a car, run up to the monks, and started taking pictures right up close. Just shameful. Maybe it is better for tourists to respect this local tradition by not being present?

Thank Sophie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 February 2017

I think this is one of those things that is definitely worth seeing on a trip to Laos. There are very few events like this in the world, and even though it may seem a tourist attraction, it is a proper ceremony for the monks.

Try and avoid the main streets and go to the side and bottom ones. There you'll see the actual locals with their humble offerings, rather than the tourist offering packed cookies and other nonsense.

Above all, please respect the custom and don't be a paparacci.

Thank Miguel A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 February 2017

We left our hotel around 6am - no need to go earlier than that as monks leave their temples as the sunrises.
Our guide took us to view this ceremony by the main Golden City Temple, so not on the main street. Consequently, I think we had a better experience of this peaceful but important religious ceremony.
Local people wait on the pavement and give out "alms" mostly portions of sticky rice to the Buddhist monks as they file past.
There are literally hundreds of monks from the many temples - so you will have many photo opportunities. It is important to not be intrusive and respect the local people who are doing this because of their beliefs not for tourists.
Our guide then took us through the local market which added to our Laotian experience.
A unique experience only to be experienced in this beautiful town.

1  Thank Ian W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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