Luang Prabang Tourist Information

Luang Prabang Travel Guide

Few cities in the world can compare to charming and unique Luang Prabang, considered the seat of Lao culture. As the old capital city of the Lan Xang Kingdom, this UNESCO World Heritage site is filled with Buddhist temples, gorgeous natural scenery, traditional Lao houses and quaint French architecture. It is a stunning location for tourists and many take a tour of Luang Prabang to make sure they see all of the fantastic tourist attractions in Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang's history dates back to the 8th century, when it was called Muang Swa after King Khun Zua. It was later known as Xieng Dong and Xieng Thong, before being renamed Luang Prabang between 1354 and 1372 in the name of the gold Buddha image, the Phrabang.

Perhaps the best way to explore the sights of Luang Prabang is by renting one of the many bicycles available at guesthouses and travel agents throughout the city. The city is very compact, making it easy to peddle your way around to check out the temples, hills and riverside scenery. Take a break at one of the many French caf├ęs that can be found throughout the city.

Luang Prabang Tourist Attractions

Some of the most popular sites to explore include: Haw Kham, the former royal palace; Phou Si, a mountain that offers great views of the surrounding countryside; Vat Xieng Toung, a beautiful old temple; and the night market, which is open every evening and offers a wide variety of traditional Lao handicrafts and souvenirs.

There are a variety of tourist attractions worth exploring outside the city as well. Head 18 miles south of Luang Prabang to Kuang Si falls, a multi-stage waterfall that is safe to swim in. Or, hire a boat to take you along the river to the Pak Ou caves, filled with Buddha statues and monuments. On the way, stop by the 'whiskey village' where local rice whisky is made. If you're tired of sightseeing, take a cooking class and learn how to make some of the country's delicious cuisine.

Transport Around Luang Prabang

Getting to Luang Prabang is simple, thanks to the city's international airport that services flights to nearby Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam as well as to the Lao capital, Vientiane. Visitors can also take a one-day boat ride along the Mekong river from Huay Xai at the Thai border, or travel by bus from Vientiane.

If you plan to drive or participate in any water sports while in Laos, we strongly recommend you take out travel insurance. Although Luang Prabang is a safe holiday destination, accidents can happen and hospital bills can be expensive.