This sleepy little picturesque town lies along the convergence of two wonderful rivers, which basically surround the town. As this beautiful town isn’t yet overrun by tourists, it’s a perfect retreat to get away from the hustle and bustle of most of Southeast Asia.
Luang Prabang is a popular destination for celebrities and it’s easy to see why. There are a number of luxury boutique hotels located here and we found it very difficult finding anywhere to stay that we considered ‘cheap’. After a few hours of walking around, we had no choice but to settle for $20 a night for a 3-bed room. The majority of buildings combine traditional Laotian architectural style, whilst retaining much of the old French colonial charm.
By hiring a bicycle, we were able to see so much of this small, unique town. There are a number of other things to see and do here, including seeing a number of waterfalls, the Pak Ou Caves, the night market, the palace museum and various temples. the Kuang Si Falls can be accessed by boat and features a number of bathing pools where you can relax in paradise.
If you are a lover of sunsets as I am, then an evening stroll along the river gives you an incredible show as it sets behind the backdrop of the river, the trees and the mountains. Restaurants along the river also make for a wonderful evening, though don’t forget your mosquito repellent! If you can face the early morning, then the sunrise is an equally wonderful experience, and you may even catch sight of the monks walking together through the streets.
If you’re looking for some evening activities, then the Night Market is a lively, energetic area selling every kind of souvenir item you can think of, from jewellery and accessories, to shoes and clothes, to art work and sculptures. Around this area there are a number of quaint bars and restaurants. There isn’t a big drinking culture here and most places close at 11pm. We made the mistake of accepting a tuktuk driver’s offer to take us to a nightclub, and were a little dazed and confused when we arrived at what I can only describe as a school disco, with the majority of ‘punters’ being no older than 15, and the only alcohol sold was beer. We hastily left and returned to a bar along the river where we were able to get a cocktail before it closed at 11.00PM.