Luang Prabang was the only city I visited that I thought, I could live here. I loved the atmosphere, the culture, the Buddhism, the food and so much more about this city. I wish I could have spent even more time here, but I truly cannot wait to bring Matt here and explore this city even more!
While on a walk one day, I loved seeing these monks and their brightly colored robes against the white wall they were painting. It’s such a beautiful culture!
This was the beautiful alter inside of our Guest House. I loved seeing these beautiful murals on the wall every time I walked up to my room.
How can you not love this stunning view of the river and the mountains? Stacey and I got to pass by here multiple times each day. It was so stunning!
One of the many, many Buddhist temples in Luang Prabang silhouetted by a Laos sunset. Evening-time strolls were one of my very favorite things to do in this city. It’s so walkable and there is beauty on every corner.
On our first night in Luang Prabang we discovered the little food market that popped up at night and we got loads and loads of food for very, very cheap! I got 5 spring rolls for about 50 cents (above).
This beautiful display was one of my favorite parts of eating at the night food market! They gave me a bowl and I filled it up with as much as I could, for less than two dollars! It was so incredible and such a great option for our budget!
Wat Siphoutthabath: This temple complex was never open when we went by, but we still greatly enjoyed the grounds, I talked to a small monk and I loved taking in this stunning Eastern architecture.
The Royal Palace’s Temple of the Emerald Buddha: Photos aren’t allowed inside the temple of the Emerald Buddha, but I loved the green and gold facade.
Inside the Royal Palace: I thought that the Royal Palace wasn’t anything to get especially excited about because this room is the only one in the palace that was truly beautiful. Plus, there isn’t a ton of information about the history of the palace itself, just clothing and decorations from past residents. If I had limited time in Luang Prabang, I would pick other things over this.
Mount Phou Si: Mount Phou Si was a Luang Prabang highlight for me, which is saying something because I absolutely loved Luang Prabang! There are steps leading up to the top of the mountain. There are portions where it levels off with statues of the Buddha and fountains. Not to mention, views of the Mekong River. Then you follow the steps up to the top where you see this massive gold stupa, a spectacular view of Luang Prabang & the mountains, and you can go inside the tiny temple Wat Chom Si.
Seriously… This view is one that sticks with you.
The Stupa of Wat Chom Si
Wat Chom Si: This teeny temple at the top of Mount Phou Si was such a beautiful, spiritual temple. There was something about being up on top of there and being so moved by the view that this temple felt incredibly spiritual to me. This temple had such a presence and was a perfect place to take a few moments and be grateful to be exactly where I was.
Laos Garden: Stacey and I had dinner here and it was one of the coziest outdoor spaces I have ever seen. I loved the way these vines draped down over the trees and the lights shined through them. Plus, they gave us each a free shot of Laos whiskey with our dinner, not that we were especially in the mood for it! Ha
Luang Prabang has some of the prettiest neighborhoods with quaint cafes, with beautiful homes, bright pink flowers all down the streets and palm trees. It was so fun to walk around taking photos and ducking into temples along the way. It was truly beautiful!
Wat Sop Sickharam: I loved this small neighborhood temple. It was very quiet and peaceful and there weren’t any tourists here. In fact, the only other person there was a young monk sitting at a table outside. Inside, the red walls were painted with figures of the Buddha and the alter had multiple statues and mats on the floor for meditation and worship.
Plus, the outside of this temple is simply stunning with all the brightly colored and gold paint. The turquoise and gold stupa is gorgeous as well. It is just tucked right into this neighborhood and surrounded by all kinds of trees and plants.
Wat Sensoukharam: The last neighborhood temple that we popped into had its own charms. Again, there were no tourists, but there was a handful of devotees bowing and praying inside the temple and bowing at the figures outside of the actual temple.
Some of the offerings left by devotees
The doors and walls of the temple were unreal. The intricate details of this place were absolutely stunning and one of my favorite temples on this whole trip. The purples, oranges, reds, greens and golds just really caught my attention. Outside of the main temple there was a smaller temple area and it housed this 10-foot-ish figure of the Buddha and of course the building was just as detailed and striking.
Utopia: This is the epitome of bohemian coziness. I made this place my office-of-the-day twice because I loved it so much. Their drinks (other than beer) were high, but they had appetizers that were entree-sized, delicious and totally affordable. Be sure to check their yoga schedule for river-front yoga sessions.
Saffron Caffe: This is one of the greatest cafes I’ve ever been to. My friend Blake moved to Laos to work for this cafe and Stacey and I loved it so much that we ate here twice! It’s not the most backpacker-budget-friendly place, but it is some of the greatest food I’ve ever had. For lunch, the first time we visited, we had the veggie sandwich and it. was. delicious. For our last breakfast we went back and ordered their Saffron Breakfast which included a bacon / egg / cheese bagel, a fit salad, and a cinnamon roll. Oh my goodness. Greatest breakfast EVER! Plus, I ordered the delicious caramel frappuccino pictured above. I wish I had been able to bring home loads of coffee because I loved it so very much! If I lived in Luang Prabang I would eat here all the time.
Stacey was always up for trying local delicacies… That is, if they were sweets! Stacey LOVES her sweets so her dessert-love allowed me to try new things. These were little cakes made of sticky rice and coconut milk. They were chewy, airy and just the right amount of sweet!
NIGHT MARKET: Stacey and I did some damage on this little night market. I love seeing all of the artwork, the beautiful brightly colored bohemian prints, the purses & pillows and the pants & dresses. Plus, everything is really affordable so I bought a little handful of things here to take home… What to do? Ha
There are so many amazing things to see in Luang Prabang, and this only scratches the surface. Plus, check back next week for two half-day trips Stacey and I took from Luang Prabang: Pac Ou Caves and Kuang Si Falls.
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