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The Historical Royal City of Luang Prabang

LAOS | Wednesday, 26 December 2012 | Views [412]

Luang Prabang is by far my favorite place in Laos. It has one of the highest concentrations of well preserved Buddhist temples in all of Southeast Asia, earning its recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
 
I didn't come to Laos for the Tubing. I came to Laos to see the statue of King Sisavong Vong, which may sound crazy to you but for me it is a very special experience since in 1954 he celebrated his Golden Jubilee, becoming the longest reigning king in Asia until King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand, who surpasses his reign in 2001 and he is also a Great Grandfather to a very close friend of mine.  To come to the home town of her parents is such an amazing experience for me. I love the culture here.  For me Laos is so much more than Thailand because it is still so undeveloped... It still has the reason we travel... Natural beauty and culture.. Not a McDonald's, KFC or Subway in every town.
 
Here we stayed at Xaysana Guest House in Vat That Village for just 40,000 Kip each per night. We even got wifi in our room which had been a first for us in Asia... Bonus!!!
 
Seven of us caught a Tuk Tuk for 35,000 Kip each to see both waterfalls although myself, Jodie and Priya only opted to see the first one as we decided the second one would be nothing on the first and still had to pay for a boat to get to the waterfall and then also entry fee.
 
Entry to Kuang Si Waterfall was 20,000 Kip. This is the largest and most beautiful waterfall I have ever seen.  It had many different levels and the water was so blue.  There were a couple of swimming areas and now my fear is long gone, of course I had a dip :)
 
We paid 80,000 Kip each to go and see the caves and had a pick up at 8am.  I had set the alarm the night before and had Jodie wake me at 9am.  When I checked my phone, I had only gone and set it for 7pm... So we still had to pay for our seat on the boat and lost our money and never got to see the caves!
 
We obviously went to The Royal Palace to see the statue of King Sisavang Vong, which was the same statue as that in Vientiene.
 
We also took a very short boat ride across to the other side of the Mekong River and saw how many of the locals lived.  It was a great experience.  The trip had been sold to us as '3 Temples' but we were all very happy just to walk around and take in all the culture.  The boast only cost us 10,000 Kip each and that and visiting the Orphanage were probably 2 of my favorite things to do in Laos. ( I will write about the orphanage separately)
 
We climbed up to Phou Si on Christmas Day and paid 20,000 Kip for 2 birds each in a small cage which once we got to the top we set free and made a wish. Phou Si lights up at night time and looks amazing.
 
Luang Prabang has a Night Market every evening from 6-10pm selling a range of textiles, souvenirs and street food.
 
There is also a great chill out bar called Utopia overlooking the river.
 
Peace and Love
 
Zoe xxx

Tags: asia, birds, king sisavangvong, laos, night market, orphange, phou si, royal palace museum, travel

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