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Ban Ja Bo

Location

Ja Bo is a Lahu village sitting on a mountain ridge, accessed by a small mountain road, approximately 4 km's off the main highway to Mae Hong Son. Behind the village, a limestone cliff soars into the sky, containing mysterious, prehisotric coffins, which are considered by local people to be the home of "Pee Man" or powerful village spirits.

Highlights

Stay in traditional Lahu village, explore the nature trail and sacred cave with local guides, get to know the friendly local people, taste traditional Lahu food.

Special

The Lahu people of Ja Bo are colourful, flamboyant and welcoming. Village life is invested with a special energy which visitors will not fail to notice. Guests who are lucky enough to visit during the Lahu New Year, or other important festival times will have the chance to learn traditional dances from community members, in the sacred dancing circle.

Ja Bo community is known for traditional medicine. The village doctor does not require any payment for his services. He provides free treatment to every patient whether they are rich or poor. After the illness has been cured, the patient may give something in return in the form of cash, barter or labor.

Ja Bo is also good place to try traditional Lahu food, made from wild vegetables such as mushrooms, bamboo shoots, young leaves which guests can help their hosts to collect from the forest, or cultivated vegetables such as cucumber, pumpkin and string bean from the villager's garden.

During festival, guests maybe able to try "Hhao Puk" a soft sticky sweet rice cake. Several hours and the energy of several people will be used to knead and pound this snack, before the villagers dicide that it is ready to eat.

Activities

Cultural insight: In 2 or 3 hours, guests can explore the village's important cultural sites. Local guides can escort you to sacred "Ran Ja Kueh" dancing ground. You will have the chance to meet local crafts people, usually making clothes and bamboo instruments. Guests may meet the village spirit doctor.

Weaving workshop: Local women are proud of their sewing and weaving skills. They are happy to show guests how they sew and decorate traditional dress, and explain the meaning of the many different colours of their clothes. Guests can sit for half an hour, or half a day enjoying the lively company of the weavers, sharing stories about life at home and in the village.

Visit Pee Man Cave: Home of the ghosts of the village. Trek through the village and up the mountain to the mouth of the cave, which is reached by a wooden stairway, built securely on the cliff. Inside Pee Man Cave, there are numerous pre-historic coffins, some lying on the ground, and some on the top of tall poles. There are also beautiful glittering stalactites and stalagmites.