Along the flow of mother Mekong, Vientiane city lies right on the riverbank, where borders Thailand on the south northern of Laos. The city has also a destination to reach of tourists aboard.
Even in modern day, this lovely capital still remains the antique beauty of old temples and monuments, which scattered everywhere throughout the city.
When visiting here, you can enjoy many activities and tourist attraction that it provides. Sure, your time in Vientiane would be unforgettable.
2. BEST TIME TO VISIT VIENTIANE
Season and weather are which I said define your trip, they can make your trip a regretful one because of wrong time visiting or enhance it to wonderful rate.
From November to March, you can find weather really pleasure and cool, temperature is about 250C. In the hottest month of March, April and May, the weather is turning hot but can still manageable. Due to the reason, this period of time is considered to be the best time to visit Vientiane.
From May to October, it starts to rain, the rain peaks in July, August and September. Visiting Vientiane this time, you can catch all day long raining, which could affect lots to your dream journey. That’s why the season has the least tourist arriving of all.
3. THINGS TO DO IN VIENTIANE
Contemplate Masterpieces at Buddha Park
25 km to the southeast of Vientiane, a splendid Buddha sculptured Park is situated by the Mekong river side. What special to mention? The Park (Xieng Khuan) is home for over 200 sculptured statues of Buddha, Hindu gods, Demons and mythological creatures from various size. Make sure you have at least two hours before its closure time of 4:30 pm to observe all the masterpiece. Ticket for entering costs 5000 Kips (about 60 cent).
Pay a Visit to COPE Center
Laos had suffered severe consequences from Vietnam War and Western invasions. To relieve the pain of those suffering victims, people had donated to establish the COPE Center, short for the Cooperative Orthotic & Prosthetic Enterprise, which provides custom prosthetics, rehabilitative services and special education for those victims and rural people that affected in the war.
When you entering the center, you can see many of those fake arms and legs that hung in the chamber. They don’t ask for entering ticket but appreciate for donation.
Rolling into Outstanding Temples
Vientiane is home of many antique and modern temples, let’s check these out:
Pha That Luang: one of the best temples in the city. This stupa has a magnificent size and constructed with one big pierce that straight to the sky, surrounding the main stupa are many smaller one. It is believed to had been built in 1500s.
Wat Si Saket: this one is definitely deserved to have a space in top temples of Vientiane list. It was built about 200 hundred years ago and designed in Siamese style.
Wat Dane Soung Jungle Temple: which is said to had existed since first millenia. Stone shrines and enormous Buddha statues had expressed the beauty of ancient Laos.
Admire the Patuxai Victory Monument
The monument has always been Laos symbol. It was built to memorize heroes that passed away when they fought against France and invaders to protect the country. This typical style of Laos monument is located at the end of Thanon Lane Xang in the government, which directly lead to Presidential Palace.
On the 4 arches of the monument, there are many gift shops available. Taking photos of the place, people will recognize you are in “the country of elephant” - Laos.
Visiting Laos Museums
There are many museums worth to visit when you travel to the city. In particular, if you want to observe Laos ethnics costume and their unique texture of fabric, you must visit the Lao Textile Museum. They display the fabric carefully in glass cupboards, hence, those pieces of fabric still in good condition to watch.
They also have a studio to show the silk making progress, which will satisfy your curiosity. If you are keen on historical objects and simulations figures of old time, Lao National Museum would suitable for you. They have the artifacts of dinosaur bones, war weapons, graphic and posters of battle field, ancient pottery pieces of Khmer and many more. Learning history has never become so interesting.
Shopping at Night Market in Vientiane
People said that market is the highway of merchandises from all kinds and all ranges. Due to the reason, you should once pay a visit to Laos markets, they provide many products and diverse in many ways, such as fresh meat, fruit, ready meal, clothes, handicrafts, food, drinks and so on, which are made in Laos.
You can pay a visit to these markets: Vientiane Night Market, Carol Cassidy Lao Textile, Talat Sao morning market, Vangtong Evening market and so on.
Visiting Phou Khao Khouay National Park
The Park is located in northeast, which only 40 km away from Vientiane. This 2000 km2 Park is resident of diverse kind of flower, plants, animals, waterfalls and astounding site. You can emerge in the cool water of Tad Leuk and Tad Xay waterfall in one day trip. Other than that, how about taking boat riding on the river and enjoying the seductive view from the resting station on the river bank.
4. THINGS TO BUY IN VIENTIANE
The capital extracts all the country best domestics, which gives tourist best condition to spend on such amazing items, you can purchase these thing:
- Waving silk (textile): Which is made by hand from home or workshop, it has high quality of material and adorned with colorful attractive patterns.
- Sinh and Salong: Sinh is costume of Laotian women, consists of 3 parts, the houa sinh (waistband), pheun sinh (body, main part) and the tdin sinh (hem). Salong is for Laotian men, includes big dyed pants and T-shirt.
- Carvings: they carve buddhas, animal shapes and special textures onto a wooden bar, looks pretty cool.
- Ceramic: which had professionally developed through the history, people made the products by hands and add in graceful textures throughout the goods body.
- Jewelry: often made of silver and gold, typical of Laos design and excellent pattern carved.
- Coffee: which has tasty flavor that distinguished from the other countries’s coffee.
5. THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND
Just mind a bit to what you behave and follow these basic rules of Laos:
- Dress neatly, wear pants that can cover your knees.
- Keep silence and show your respect when entering religious places.
- Put your palm together and place them lower than your chin, than bow and say “SA-BAI-DEE” , which means hello.
- Take off your shoes when entering in Laotian home.
- Don’t make too much attention and do body contact in public.
- Don’t give money or gifts to kids.
- Don’t point directly or shout at Laotian, it is rather rude.
Hope this article can help you work something out in your trip. Enjoy your time out there.