by Meli C

A Vietnamese wedding


I traveled to Asia for the first time last year in November, and I absolutely LOVED it.

The trip came about because of a wedding invitation, and our friends who were tying the knot put together a week-long package for their guests, including guided city tours in several cities in Vietnam and nearby Cambodia. Because our friends are not Vietnamese, the idea at first seemed crazy, yet the trip ended up being a great success!

The wedding was held at the Pilgrimage Village in Hue, Vietnam, and we had no idea what to expect in terms of the ceremony.  We knew it was to be a traditional Vietnamese style wedding, with our friends dressed in Vietnamese costume and that the ceremony would be in Vietnamese!

To begin the ceremony, the bride’s family and friends enter first and arrive at the ceremony location to wait for the groom’s party.  The groom’s family and friends arrive in a procession-like manner, together with a band, playing traditional Vietnamese musical instruments.

Once near, the groom’s best friend must ask for permission from the bride’s mother before the group can enter.  Once permission is granted, the groom’s party enters and each group sits at either side of the altar.

The ceremony lasts about an hour.  Many gifts were offered to the new husband and wife from the local people, mainly in the form of fruits and other foods, which is their way of wishing the new couple a happy and prosperous life together.

The ceremony was followed by a cocktail featuring watermelon juice and hors d’oeuvres, consisting of small breads with spreads and vegetables.  An hour later we gathered for dinner, to enjoy a special ten course meal of Vietnamese specialties prepared specifically for the bride and groom. It was interesting to try so many different flavors and also to experience the typical song and dance performed by a small group of entertainers.

2 comments

1 Laura { 03.05.10 at 3:44 pm }

Que experiencia tan maravillosa, una idea muy osada de tus amigos. Los rituales de la ceremonia vietnamita me han impresionado mucho, el hecho de que la gran marcha nupcial la lleve el “novio” es muy diferente a nuestras costumbres occidentales donde la “novia” es realmente el foco de atención en todo el proceso. Igual es hermoso el colorido de los vestuarios, las ofrendas y que hayan expresado su amor con sus seres queridos en un lugar sin lugar a dudas “encantado”

2 Remembering Angkor Wat — byMeliC { 11.05.10 at 10:18 am }

[…] Doesn’t it seem that every year goes by faster than the previous one? Even though one year has passed, it feels like it was only a few months ago that we came back from our friends’ Vietnamese wedding. […]

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