Visak Bochea Day is the most holiest day in Buddhism celebrations. God Buddha was born, attained enlightenment, and passed away in the same full moon day of the 6th month of Lunar calendar (normally in May). So Visak Bochea is celebrated to mark these three events of Buddha.
In Cambodia, Visak Bochea Day is a national holiday, all public sectors are closed, though some private sectors might be working. Since Buddhism is the State religion, Visak Bochea is always presided by high ranking of officials in the royal government and hundred of Buddhists participated. Hundred of monks from pagodas over the country would be invited to the food-offering ceremony. Since it’s believed that food-offering is the way to gain merit for the present life and also next life of the person. And it’s also to praise the spirit of death relatives.
Since 2002, the celebration takes place in Oudong mountain (40km from Phnom Penh), where the stupa containing Buddha’s relic is located. As before, the event has always prepared in Phnom Penh city, in front of the Railway station. Because the Buddha’s relic was maintained in the stupa there.
On Visak Bochea Day, beside bringing foods to the monks in their village pagodas, Cambodian people would prepare some offering such as fruits, lotus flower or Jasmine for praying at home. People believe that, praying on Visak Bochea day with sincere mind, most praying would be answered.