Why visit Luang Prabang?
Luang Prabang is a small province of Laos. This beautiful and romantic place is located in the northern part of the country. In 1995, the province was listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This great achievement has brought this place to become a charming destination for thousands of visitors.
Tourists would spend their priceless holiday for outdoor activities including camping, climbing, caving, cycling, kayaking, and trekking.
The town center comprises of four primary highways on the peninsula at the confluence of the Nam Khan River and the Mekong River.
The countless Buddhist temples, monasteries, as well as the construction building that remain from French colonial, are the most important reason that you shouldn’t miss to visit the town.
Table of Contents
Luang Prabang’s Night Market is fantastic
A friendlies night market among Asian countries should be provided to Luang Prabang Night Markets.
People are so affectionate.
Sellers are pleased to have you browse into their stalls for sales. If you think the price is high, then try to bargain with the vendor is not a rude attitude.
After buying some stuff, you can taste street food. Not in a good looking manner, but delicious.
Worth to try ever! The food is cheap and there are many options for you to choose your favorite one.
Best Luang Prabang Waterfalls
Kuang Si Falls
It consists of three leveled waterfall. It is a beautiful natural site where you can discern visually with water flows through a limestone step and empties out into three gently cascading pools.
This fall is located approximately 29 kilometers south of Luang Prabang.
This place is the target destination for tourists to visit when they head to Luang Prabang. People said December is the best month to visit this place.
Well Preparation for Kuang Si Falls
Most of the local tourists aim to visit and swim in this place. Then if you wish to have a good time for swimming like them, you should be well-prepared.
Go on a hot day, and in the morning there are fewer people. Don’t wait until noontime, the bus load of tourists would be around at the park in the afternoon.
Bring your own towel, toilet paper, and hand sanitizer as the toilets are a filthy mess.
However, the water condition is absolutely clean and beautiful.
Plus, if you feel tired and hungry, foods are available from the street stall vendors around the parking lot.
Tad Thong Waterfall
Leaving the beaten track is the best way to explore Laos.
I am going to tell you more about Luang Prabang’s secret Waterfall Tour. Another waterfall to be presented is named Tad Thong Waterfall.
There are five significant waterfalls in Luang Prabang that can be reached in a very short time, 5 minutes on a drive from town.
But people really say Tad Thong is a paradise on earth. It is literally the smallest and nearest from town, but it stands in an outstanding row of the tourist site.
Kuang Si waterfall in Luang Prabang is considered as the most visited site in the whole of Laos.
Leave your hotel in an early afternoon, and head to Tad Thong Waterfall while the sunshine goes off really fast due to the shadow of the mountain.
Make the time by walking up at least 30 minutes to discover this waterfall. There are a couple of routes to explore.
Tat Sae Waterfalls
Tat Sae waterfall is situated around 20 km far from Luang Prabang heading south to Vientiane.
A good time to visit should be during the rainy season, or just a few weeks after that period, as it has a very unequal flow, sometimes even non-existent, for the rest of the year.
How to get to Tad Sae Waterfall?
To go there, you probably use tuk-tuk, motorbike, or van as your transportation.
I suggest the motorbike which is the easiest and the most efficient option.
However, you have to be really careful about the traffic while very few people follow the traffic law.
After traveling along the road, you will have to take a boat over to the gate of the waterfalls.
The boat will take you to the entrance where you will have to walk to get to the spectacular views of the visitors.
What to bring along with you to Tad Sae Waterfall?
Make sure that you bring a shoe that no worry about getting it dirty. The road to the second waterfall is thick with dense mud.
If you are allergic to sunlight then sunscreen and sunglasses are the right items to stay with you.
You would never forget a bottle of water while it is always important to fight with the hot temperature.
Even Though there are some restaurants for you to order you’re a meal, bringing your own picnic is what you are recommended.
It would cost you less and you can eat in the right place next to the water pool.
If you’re a souvenir lover, please look around your area and you will see postcard tables that sell wooden elephant sculptures and other classic Southeast Asian bauble.
Nahm Dong Park
I believe this is the place that combines every activity in Luang Prabang.
If you are a person who addicted to nature and wants to spend your life in a quality place, Nahm Dong Park is the right place for you.
There’s always provide something for your needs, whether you’re looking for something educated or adventurous.
It is actually not only about swimming, but you can spend your valuable day to do lounging, trekking and enjoying the natural preserve.
Actually, the park is only just 10 km far away from the center of Luang Prabang.
People know its beauty through beautiful plants, lush greenery, exquisite flora and fauna and rushing waters that exist in the area.
There are cozy picnic spots in the region, some under straw huts, and some in flower gardens.
You can experience some wonderful traditional Lao cuisine at Luang Prabang
Laos’s food is cogitated as one of Southeast Asia’s best-kept secrets. Luang Prabang, considered the culinary capital of the country, provides a wonderful gateway into Laos’s cuisine with street food and restaurants that are commonly accessible.
Luang Prabang’s food combines Laos’s food staples such as sticky rice and Jaew with specialties from the local ingredients.
You will discover distinctive food from Luang Prabang such as Or Lam, Luang Prabang Salad and Seaweed from the Mekong River.
The special menu you should try as listed below:
Jaew: the dipping sauces for every Laos dish
- Jaew Bong (Luang Prabang Chili Sauce): it is a combination of slices of buffalo fat mixed into a red chili sauce.
- Jaew Mak Khua: same but different from Jaew Bong. Jaew Mak Khua is made of pounding in a mortar and pestle mild grilled eggplant, green chili, red chilies, tomatoes and some herbs such as coriander. This menu is very tasty, with smooth textures and fragrant smells.
It is the main staple of Laos food. People would be served the sticky rice which can be called Khao Chi for every mealtime. It is used to dip into a variety of kinds of Jaews.
Laos Khao Soi (Luang Prabang’s Noodle Dish)
A rich and spicy coconut milk-based curry served with chicken and two types of noodles.
Laos Larb (Laap or Lahp)
Laos larb is essentially a salad made with thinly sliced meat or seafood mixed with lime juice, fish sauce, fresh chilies, coriander and a variety of other herbs.
It is mixed together to form a delicious spicy salad.
Mekong Seaweed from Luang Prabang (Khai Pan)
This kind of seaweed is a local specialty that is harvested from the river where the water is shallow rocky and oxygen-rich.
It is then pounded, flattened and coated with tamarind juice, sesame seeds, garlic, and tomatoes.
After it has dried, it is cut up into squares and fried for just a few seconds in hot oil.
it is a kind of sausage that is prominent for Laos’s cuisine. It is a grilled pork sausage packed with herbs and spices.
For some of the primary ingredients in Sai Oua sausage, lemongrass, galangal, red chilies, dill, and cilantro are combined. Sai Oua is normally served with sticky rice.
Mok Pla (Mok Pa)
it is a fish steamed in banana leaf. You may find this kind of menu in Thailand or Cambodia, typically people in these two countries call Amok, but I bet you would get a different taste for steamed fish in Luang Prabang.
Lao people consider Mok Pa as one of the best local foods to serve their guesses.
Laos Spicy Green Papaya Salad
You can’t miss this menu when you travel to Luang Prabang.
Actually, you can find papaya salad in Cambodia which is called Bok Lahong, and Somtum in Thai words.
Even is a papaya salad, the similarity is at an end. Laos papaya salad is absolutely unique. It has a depth of flavors that you would never forget after you taste once.
Seek for nightlife experience in Luang Prabang?
It may be an obstacle for those who really love to go out late in the morning of the next day. However, you possibly enjoy it if you know the right place to go.
While the city lacks loud and packed nightclubs that would often remain open until 3 am. In Luang Prabang, most places will be closed by midnight.
If you want to relax after a long day, several restaurants are suggested that you can enjoy the river view of the Mekong River.
- 1861 Bar: It is a French colonial café and bar. If you like reading, then take a book from the small library which is positioned at the corner of the restaurant to kill your evening time.
- Luang Prabang Bowling Alley: It is one of the few locations that remain open until late, situated 3 km northwest of the city center. The venue serves Beerlao and whiskey at an early hour of the morning, mostly serving a backpacker crowd. It usually gets crowded after 10 pm.
- Lao Lao Beergarden: has been a favorite of backpackers for many years. This open-air beer garden has a cozy set up bonfire, candles, fairy lights, lots of open areas and trees. It is popular with Beerlao lounging, cocktails and imported wines.
- Icon Klub: It is obviously a place of congregation of local expats. Fantastic cocktails, accompanied by the friendly and chatty proprietor. Great atmosphere ever!
- Utopia Bar & Restaurant: it is a very beautiful place to chill out on the river’s couches. The atmosphere is amazing, but you need to go as early as possible or book your seat in advance otherwise you will lose a chance to sit at the cool seats by the water.
What to do outside Luang Prabang?
After exploring the tourist site in Luang Prabang, Laos, take a journey south to Vang Vieng’s lower town.
It’s a famous stop for backpackers and has a relaxed feeling about its bars and restaurants making it a pleasant place to relax for a couple of days before starting a new departure.
As I stated earlier, if you are addicted to the beauty of nature, Vang Vieng is another golden destination to be explored. You are probably adored with dusty streets and the river tubing in Vang Vieng.
How to get to Vang Vieng from Luang Prabang?
It is not hard to find a way out from Luang Prabang, but there are a few alternatives choices you should consider.
Transportation is more an adventure in Laos than it is in Thailand. It is probably in the same condition as in Cambodia.
To reach Vang Vieng from Luang Prabang, you may drive your own vehicle, taking a bus or minivan.
BUT, what is the best choice for you to take for your transportation?
You have to drive along the road trip in more than 180 kilometers that come along the picturesque mountains between these two cities.
Even you have choices to decide on your transportation, to take a bus or minivan is what most tourists are recommended to choose.
To risk driving by yourself in Laos will probably not the best commitment.
There are several reasons for not doing so: you might feel disturbance due to road conditions.
Most importantly, you will lose the chance to please your eyes with beautiful scenery out of the window along the road from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng if you drive on your own.