About 70 - 100 km downstream from Vientiane, capital of Laos, the Mekong River does something really strange. At night, the river produces red fireballs that rise up into the air and disappear without making any noise. The balls are usually small, but some have been observed to be the size of basketballs. While it might seem mysterious and remote to most of us, the area along the river is heavily populated with homes and roads, and people have gotten used to it.
People from the area confirm to witnessing the fireballs their whole life and that their parents and grandparents did too. So far there is no scientific explanation for the phenomenon. There are, however, myths about the fireballs have been formed over the years. The most famous is of a naga, dragon or snake, which crawled through the mountains where the Mekong is now. The naga continues to pass through the area, but now underwater, and like a good dragon it spits fireballs into the air from the river bottom.
At the end of every October, a festival is held in celebration of the mysterious fireballs. Tens of thousands show up every year, but the balls are random and some years aren’t even witnessed during the festival.