Bird’s eye view of Luang Prabang – Laos
Luang Prabang, is a city located in north central Laos, on the Mekong
River about 425 km north of Vientiane, and the capital of
Louangphrabang Province. The current population of the city is about
103,000 (in 2008).
The city was formerly the capital of a kingdom of the same name. Until the communist takeover in 1975, it was the royal capital and seat of government of the Kingdom of Laos. The city is also notable as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Luang Prabang has both natural and historical sites. Among the natural
tourism sites, there are the Kuang Si Falls and Pak Ou Caves
. Tourists may also ride elephants. At the end of the main street of Luang Prabang is a night market where stalls sell shirts, bracelets, tea - suitable souvenirs. The Haw Kham Royal Palace Museum and the Wat Xieng Thong temple are among the most well known historical sites. Along with the magnificent wats a significant part of the old town's appeal are the many French provincial style houses.
As China has recently allowed its citizens to travel more freely to Laos, the number of tourists in the area is expected to increase rapidly, creating pressure to modernize the tourist infrastructure, particularly catering to package tourism.