Things to do
Like many cities in Laos, Luang Prabang is famous for its quaint night markets. For those looking to get their hands on a few souvenirs, local nibbles or affordable items of clothing, there really is no better place to visit. The Night Market on Sisavangvong Road is arguably the most popular venue for tourists and always has plenty to offer.
If you want to buy something meaningful and make a real difference within the community, a visit to CAMA Crafts is essential. This non-profit organisation collects and sells crafts from local artists, thus providing them with an income with which to support their families. Many of the artists are village women who specialise in cross-stitching, embroidery and applique.
As mentioned, the Kuang Si Falls is a breath-taking sight that everyone needs to experience at least once in their lifetime. If you wish to indulge in the natural beauty of the falls, you will need to pay a small entrance fee. But rest assured, it will be well worth it. Not only can you relish in the calm, serene feelings that the flowing water brings about, but you can also take advantage of the pools downstream - most of which are open for swimming. If you are visiting Luang Prabang with your family, this is a fun-filled activity that everyone will enjoy.
Walk a mile or two in a farmer's shoes when you visit The Living Land Company. Farmers will provide you with a tour of the fields, show you how they grow rice and introduce you to a variety of traditional farming tools which they still use today. You can really make the most of your visit by also opting to spend a night on the farm - just be sure to book your accommodation well in advance.
Home to plenty of upmarket hotels, The Old Quarter is likely to be your base, and is equally as impressive and exciting as the rest of the city. Take in the contrasting, yet complementary, architecture of French colonial buildings and ancient Buddhist wats, rent a bicycle and cycle around the grounds, and perhaps stop for an hour or two to sample some of the city's most delectable eats.
Despite the fact that this traditional city tends to be rather subdued and calm, there are still a few nightlife hotspots to explore once the sun goes down.
- Dao Fah: If you're looking for a party, Dao Fah dance club is one of the places you'll find it. It is often packed to the brim with young locals and is always a great place to let off some steam.
- 1861 Bar: This establishment is extremely classy and is best known for its fine wines and French colonial theme. It is a good choice for a bit of well-earned relaxation after a long day of exploring.
- Bowling: This is also one of the few places that stays open past midnight. Why not enjoy a game along with a drink or two at the bar to wind down for the evening?