SIGHTS
LUANG PRABANG, Laos

Area Code 071 US$1=10,8250k 1B=262k, July 30, 2005

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Luang Prabang, a charming small town, is the former capitol of the Lane Xang Sun Kingdom. The ancient religious and cultural center of Laos, it was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1995. Built around Phou Si hill, has many impressive temple complexes.

The town is surrounded by forested mountains, there are many natural sights such as waterfalls, hot springs and caves worth visiting in the vicinity.

2-3 days is enough to see all of the town's sights but many visitors stay longer.
Bicycle is the best way to get around.Chartering tuk-tuks to the nearby sights and boats to the caves along the river is common. Prices from 20-30,000/group.

SIGHTS in TOWN
 
On the Main Rd. Walk E from the post office.
S1 Wat Mai: Photisarath, next to the Royal Palace.
8:00-17:00
Entry fee 5,000kip, Built between 1718-1788, Considered to be one of the most beautiful temples in Laos. It used to house one of the most important Buddha Statues in Asia - 'Pha Bang Buddha', 50kg pure Gold Buddha, now it's supposedly stored in a Bank. Bas-reliefs on the walls are beautiful. Rec
S2 Royal Palace Complex: on the main Rd.
1) Royal Palace: National Museum & Royal Apartments.
Rec
M-F 8:00-11:30,13:30-16:00, Entry fee 20,000kip
Built in 1904 by King Sisavangvong, a mix of French/Lao design. It is said to have one of the best, most interesting collections in SE Asia. One of the highlights is the copy of 'Pha Bang Buddha'- the Golden Buddha. No Video, Camera allowed.
2) Wat That Luang The Royal Temple. Simple design.
S3 Mount Phousi: (Sacred Hill) Opposite the Royal Palace. Enter from the Main Rd. Backside gate is closed now. The hill has 328 steps. The best sunset views of the city from the top. Entry fee 10,000kip Inspectors are everywhere No possible to cheat.
Phousi Stupa Gold Stupa on top of Mount Phousi.
Built in 1804 by King Anourouth.
Wat Tham Phousi At the bottom of the E slope.
Contains a fat Buddha. The flower pots at temple entrance are recycled US bomb casings.
Wat Siphouttabath near Wat Tham Phousi. E side of the hill.
Contains a 3-meter Buddha footprint.
S4 Wat Xieng Thong: (Copper Tree Temple Complex) E end of town. 7:00-17:00 Entry fee 10,000kip, Built in 1559 by King Setthathirat. oldest temple in LP. Architecturally the finest example of Classical N Lao temple design. Its huge, multi-layered roofs that almost touch the ground, are ornately decorated and have many small pagodas on the top. This wat houses the king's funeral chariot. Rec

Others
S5 Wat Wisunalat: E end of Rama Hotel Rd. (Wisunalat Rd) behind Wat Anan Outamathani. 8-17:00 Entry fee 5,000kip Built in 1523. It houses a collection of Buddha statues and many other artifacts
Herbal Sauna and Traditional Massage: There are a few places in town, See city info. Highly Rec

OUT OF TOWN
 
The cost of the transports below are their offering prices. You need bargain from the figure.
S11 Wat Long Khoun: On right bank of river opp from Wat Xieng Thong. 7-16:00. Beautiful frescoed temple in a scenic setting. Entry fee 5000kip
You can cross the river by the small local boat behind the Royal Palace.
?kip or from the pier under the Wat Xieng Thong. by tourist boat 20,000kip/p, ripoff price
S12 Wat Tham: Cave temple near Wat Long Khoun, houses Buddha statues. Take a torch.Entry fee 5000kip
S13 Ban Phanom Village: More than 300 years-old Lu tribe village, famous for weaving. 3km E from the town. All the houses in the village have weaves. bicycle is a popular way to get there. There is a touristy market in the center of the village but you can find many smaller family run shops. Look around because quality and price varies.By tuk-tuk 5,000kip
S14 Ban Hat Hien Village: Village for knives
On the way to the airport. By tuk-tuk 2,000-5,000kip
S15 Ban Chan Village: Village for pottery (cross the river)
By boat 2km
50,000/p Entrance fee 5000kip
S16 Pak Ou Caves: 25km upstream from Luang Prabang, Entry fee: 10,000kip Beautiful riverside scenery en route.
There are 2 caves,
Tham Ting and Tam Phum, full of thousands of Buddha images. Take a torch. (If you come with a private slow boat from Pak Beng-Luang Prabang you may arrange to stop at the caves on route). by boat - RT.120,000(1-3p)/150,000(4-6p)/boat 2 hours to go & 1 hour to come back.
S17 Xang Hai village: Village on the way to the caves
S21 Kwang Xi Waterfalls: 30km S of Luang Prabang,
Entry fee 15,000kip Waterfalls and beautiful pools (swimming possible) in a forest setting. Pass through rice terraces, teak groves and local villages en route. tuk-tuk charter $10 or by boat and tuk-tuk $20-25 Highly Rec
S Xieng Man Village: 20,000k/p
S Muang Khai Village:
by slow boat 100,000(1-3p)/120,000(4-6p)

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