Wat Xieng Thong is the largest and most splendid temple of Luang Prabang royal city. Built on the Mekong River bank in 1560 under the reign of King Setthathirat (1548 – 1571), the temple is best known for its impressive Tree of Life mural depicting the Buddhist story. You then embark on a cruise upstream the Mekong River, which gives a breathtaking view of the tranquil countryside and explore Pak Ou Caves. Locally called Tam Ting, the caves are filled with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues. The caves are noted for their miniature Buddha sculptures. Hundreds of wooden Buddhist figures take many different positions, including meditation, teaching, peace, rain, and reclining (nirvana). You will return to Luang Prabang by vehicle and visit Ban Xang Khong, a village well known for silk hand weaving and traditional Saa paper making en route.
Built in 1513, Wat Visoun or Wisunalat is the oldest and perhaps the most beautiful temple of Luang Prabang. The temple strikes visitors with its huge stupa, called That Makmo, which dominates the temple compound. Because of its odd shape, this stupa is commonly known as the watermelon (Makmo) stupa instead of its official name That Pathum (Lotus Stupa). The National Museum (closed on Tuesdays), housed in the former Royal Palace, showcases many treasures of Laos' royal past and features the Prabang, the sacred Buddha image for which Luang Prabang was named. Rising 150m in the centre of town, Mount Phousi cuts a distinctive figure on the Luang Prabang skyline. The hill is a popular as a place to watch the sun rise or set. From the summit you enjoy spectacular 360 degree views across the city and its many temples, and over the surrounding landscape to the mountains in the distance. The Night Market here is a great place for wandering, offering a lovely variety of handmade textiles crafted by local and hill-tribe people, along with street food, knick-knacks and friendly banter.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.