A Visit to Luang Prabang in Laos

Photo by: kuba
Photo by: kuba

In the central section of Laos, visitors will find the charming and dreamy former Laotian capital city of Laos. It is a UNESCO World Heritage City, filled with many lovely attractions. Colonial architecture and fabulous temples sit side by side. There is a wonderful blend of French and Laotian, which creates a truly unique atmosphere. There are natural sights close to hand, with waterfalls and caves only a short drive from the heart of the city. A visit to Luang Prabang in Laos is one of South East Asia’s highlights.

Getting to Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang has an international airport that operates flights to and from several other South East Asian countries. There are also several domestic routes. The slow boat to Luang Prabang is a popular and scenic way to enter the city. It is also possible to get to Luang Prabang by road, with buses linking the city to other major destinations. With the roads in Laos often being quite poor, road journeys can take longer than anticipated, and there are often delays.

When to Visit Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang, Laos

In common with the rest of the country, Luang Prabang has a typical monsoon climate. Throughout the year temperatures are warm to hot. Most visitors go to Luang Prabang during the drier months. November to March is usually dry, with pleasant temperatures. April is also dry, but with the temperature starting to soar it is often too hot for many people.

Accommodation in Luang Prabang

2009-08-30 09-03 Luang Prabang 143 Mekong

The city has the most varied selection of accommodation options in the whole of the country. Loved equally by the rich and famous and the backpacker crowd, Luang Prabang caters to all requirements and budgets when it comes to somewhere to stay. There are luxury hotels, smaller boutiques, guest houses, and places offering basic facilities, often with shared bathrooms.

Eating in Luang Prabang

Photo by: Slippy Slappy
Photo by: Slippy Slappy

There are many restaurants, cafes, markets, and bakeries scattered across Luang Prabang, and the rich variety creates a real foodie heaven. International favourites are available, along with traditional Laotian fare, delicious baguettes and pastries from the days of French rule, and a delightful and sumptuous fusion of both Laotian and French. There are places to eat to suit all budgets.

Attractions in and Around Luang Prabang

Line of monks moring alms Luang Prabang Laos

Beautiful and ornate temples are littered around Luang Prabang, and a great way to see the best of the city centre is to simply wander and soak up all the sights. Boat trips along the river give a different perspective to the city. Mount Phousi dominates the skyline, and a walk up the hill will lead past several smaller and glittering temples, interesting statues, and a variety of plants and flowers.

There are great views from the summit. With a rich culinary scene, numerous places offer cookery courses. A little out of town, the Kuang Si Falls are spectacular. Water cascades down several levels, forming clear blue pools. Swimming is possible in some pools. A bear rescue centre is close by. The Pak Ou Caves house hundreds of Buddha images.

A visit to Luang Prabang is a true delight, and one that is sure to captivate, thrill, and charm, and turn even the hardest heart into a romantic.

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