Don’t miss out on these 5 things in Laos (part 1)

Laos is often overlooked in favor of its neighbors. But this charming country with its dense forests, limestone caves and endless waterfalls is a dream destination for travelers. Are you going to Laos this year? Don’t miss out on these 5 things.

Luang Prabang

The ancient town of Luang Prabang, situated in the north of Laos, was designated an UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995 for a reason. This tiny town is encircled by mountains and is 700 meters above the sea level. It used to be the ancient royal capital of the Lang Xang Kingdom until King Phothisarat moved the administrative seat to Vientiane – the capital – in 1545.

Beyond the history and heritage are waterfalls, top trekking opportunities, mountain-bike trails, kayaking trips, all encircled by hazy green mountains.

That Luang

That Luang, situated in Vientiane, is a national symbol of Laos of is the most sacred monument in the country. The building is surrounded by high walls and it features two temples with the main supta, the top of which is covered with gold leaf. The building was damaged multiple times during times of war, but was renovated in 1930 with help of the French.

Vang Vieng

Vang Vieng is a heaven on earth for backpackers. It’s surrounded by mountains, rivers, limestone cliffs and rife fields. The “party backpacker” will love the jungle parties, the “adventure seeker” will enjoy kayaking rapids or exploring the local area. And everybody will enjoy the infamous “river tubing”: floating down the river surrounded by beautiful mountains. And there are enough bars alongside the river that’ll be happy to throw you a rope if you are in need of a refreshment.

Wat Si Saket

Wat Sisaket, located in Vientiane, is famous for its wall housing thousands of tiny Buddha images. It’s the oldest temple of Vientiane that is still in its original form. The Buddhas come in all sizes and are made from wood, stone and bronze. There are more than 6,800 Buddhas in total.

Xieng Khuan

Also known as Buddha Park, this famous park contains more than 200 religious statues including a 40-meter high reclining Buddha image. It was built in 1958 by a monk who studied both Buddhism and Hinduism. This is why the park not only consists of Buddha images, but also of Hindu Gods and demons.