Exploring Luang Prabang
Amazing ancient capital
This beautiful city was once called Chiang Thong, which was the capital of the kingdom of Luang Prabang. This city is highly important and significant in the history of the country, and was once even the royal capital of the Kingdom of Laos, where the nation’s seat of power was located in until 1975. Sisavang Vong, the monarch of Laos when the French colonizers granted the country independence, was a notable figure in the history of Luang Prabang.
At present, the city of Luang Prabang is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Wonders of nature
Luang Prabang is one of the most popular destinations within Laos, not only because of its interestingly colorful history, but also because of it majestic natural features. The Tat Kuang Si Falls in the southern part of the city is the most popular natural destination, with the three-tier waterfall with gem-blue pools being incredibly picturesque. Tourists can swim in the pools or stroll around the area through hanging bridges and walkways.
Along the tributary of the Nam Khan is the Tat Sae Waterfalls, located in the southeastern art of the country. This is another picturesque location, with the falls flowing over foliage-shaded limestone formations. At the mouth of the Ou River are two beautiful caves with miniatures sculptures of the Buddha, called the Tham Theung (the higher cave) and the Tham Ting (the lower cave). These caves overlook the scenic Mekong River.
Luang Prabang is temple central in Laos—and it can be quite frustrating trying to find a temple that is not jam-packed with tourists. The city is known for its impressive “collection” of fine religious architecture, with Wat Xieng Thong being the most popular among the Buddhist temples in the area. Because it is very popular, you can expect that there are a lot of people who visit this site every day. It is best to visit Wat Xieng Thong during the early morning to avoid the crowds.
In the southern part of the city near the Phou Si Mountain are two more important temples, the Wat Aham and the Wat Wisunalat. These temples are often less crowded compared to Wat Xieng Thong, but also a bit on the shabby side. But if you are up for an experience that is not exactly postcard-perfect, but still very memorable. Wat Aham is perfect for those who want to spend a few hours on the peaceful temple grounds, watching the monks go about their errands of the day.
Wat Mai, located in central Luang Prabang, is the largest temple complex. However, do visit this destination in the early morning – it can get crowded with tourists.
TNK Travel Team