Popular Festivals in Mai Chau, Hoa Binh
Mai Chau is a small commune in Hoa Bình province and it is a popular destination in the itineraries of Vietnam Motorbike Tours
. Through tangible and intangible cultural value preservation, conservation and promotion, together with tourism resources which towards to community development, the minorities here want to introduce more about their life, culture and traditions to visitors. Many festivals are restored such as:
1. Xên Bản, Xên Mường festival (Thai people)
Time: 8th lunar month
Place: This festival is held at a shrine of Muong village.
This festival is held to worship tutelary god of Muong village and the founders of Thai village when they moved from Mường Hước Khà.
The festival is started with many exciting activities. The first day is mostly for the ritual, singing, dancing and playing gong. The second day is shooting and cross-bow contest. For shooting contest, one person will throw a grapefruit to a roof of house. When the grapefruit rolls down, all competitors will try to shoot it down from a far distant. Besides, there are many games of the Thai people such as: Keng Loong, gong playing, “con” throwing, spinning top, singing contest…
2. Praying for rain Festival
Time: 4th Lunar month
Place: Mai Chau commune, Hoa Binh province
In 3rd or 4th lunar month, when it is droughty, the Thai people in Mai Chau will hold Praying for rain Festival.
This festival will be organized in a red halo around moon night. Local people will go to all houses in the village and sing to pray for rain and they also bring the torch and go around the village.
In this occasion, nearly all activities of Thai people are aimed to praying for rain. Boys and girls stop singing love songs but sing for rain.
3. Gong festival (Muong people)
Time: In new year, Tet holidays and in festivals
This is a big festival and it is also called “Xec Bua” festival of Muong people in Hoa Binh. “Xec Bua” means people who can play Gong and sing well bring Gong to sing. They will go to visit many families on Tet holiday. They go in order and read impromptu poetry, praise the house owners, give the best wishes to the owners. The owners also bring gifts accompany with repartee singing.
4. Long Tong festival or Going to the field (Tay people)
Time: From 5 to 15 of the first Lunar year.
Place: At the village, at the fields and near streams.
The festival is held to worship the tutelary god, mountain god and stream god.
This festival is also to pray for good weather, productive crops, peaceful life, good health, etc. The popular activities in this festival are lion dancing, Con throwing, Xoe dancing, tug of war…It is also a special occasion, boys and girls will have singing contest until mid-night.