Vangvieng offers natural charm

Riding a bicycle 2km from the centre of Vangvieng district to the Lom cave recently, reminded me of a time I was there 10 years ago when I walked beside the Nam Xong river breathing the clean, fresh air and enjoying the sights and sounds of nature, in contrast to my visit last year which was dominated by loud music and backpacker parties in the area. As of today, restaurants, bars, and tourist activities along the Nam Xong have been closed down as a result of a growth in unacceptable

Laos: Sacred tree rescued from Mekong

The committee responsible for the task of removing the tree from where it lay on a rocky outcrop deployed two helicopters and four volunteer soldiers to carry out the task. The team worked from about 9am to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday, in line with their prepared plan. “Everything went well in lifting the tree and placing it on the riverbank. It was a difficult task but we haven't had any problems so far,” Khong district Governor Mr Soubin Chanthamith told theVientiane Times in a telephone

Ceremony honours King Fa Ngum

On Saturday, the hundreds of devotees stood patiently in the sun in King Fa Ngum Park at an almsgiving ceremony to mark the 10th anniversary of the erection of the king's statue. The crowd of well wishers stepped forward one by one to give their offerings to the monks on hand, hoping their merit would reach the former king, who was a key figure in unifying the Lane Xang Kingdom. The statue of King Fa Ngum was erected in January 2003, in the park in Sikhottabong district named in his honour,

Huaphan province to develop Viengxay as historical tourist site

The Huaphan has given the green light for a local construction company to create a design that would transform the former revolutionary stronghold in Viengxay district into an important historical tourist attraction. The provincial Planning and Investment Department Deputy Director, Mr Khonthong Manivone, said yesterday the provincial authorities and PVP Construction Company had signed an agreement last month authorising the company to develop a plan that would turn Viengxay town into a tourist

Prime Minister inspects That Luang marsh drainage system

Mr.Thongsing Thammavong (Prime Minister) yesterday visited a drainage channel under construction in Hadxaifong district, Vientiane, to inspect the progress made since work began last year. This is a large scale project being undertaken by the government on the outskirts of the capital to protect Vientiane from flooding and at the same time supply water for dry season agriculture further downstream. The Vientiane Department of Agriculture and Forestry reported on the project on Wednesday,

The karst of Khammuan – Motorbike diaries

Two dusty Che Guevaras are staring us in the face as we’re slowly dodging potholes in the brown-reddish jungle road. The Cuban war hero seems to be popular with truck drivers. His iconic picture is painted on windshields, doors and in this case the two mud flaps of the Chinese truck driving in front of us. You’re instantly reminded of Che Guevara’s famous motorcycle trip that he undertook 62 years ago, when he set off in 1951 for a nine month journey around South America on his Norton 500cc. The

Ancient temples in Vientiane

Vientiane’s temples were known throughout South East Asia as places of culture and Buddhist learning during the golden era of the Lane Xang Kingdom, 450 years ago. During this golden era (1560-1893), there were more beautiful temples in Vientiane than in other countries in the region. Today, at least 200 of these still stand. The temples stood in formation during the Lane Xang era when Vientiane was prosperous. There were four long rows of temples along the Mekong running from the southeast

Si Phan Don: a natural paradise

The local lifestyle, hospitality and the generosity of local people combine with natural beauty and historical and cultural attractions to form a lasting impression of peace and harmony. A few hours on a bus from the provincial capital Pakxe to Khong district in the far south rewards the traveller with scenic views and an intimate look at daily life in villages along the route. After arriving at Nakasang village, a long-tailed boat ride takes you to the island of Don Det where you truly

Explore the splendours of Phou Khao Khouay National Protected Area

Explore the splendours of Phou Khao Khouay National Protected Area

Phou Khao Khouay National Protected Area in Borikhamxay province. This site starts with a seven tier drop of about 30 metres where water flows as if going down a massive flight of steps. Tad Xay waterfall in Phou Khao Khouay, Vientiane province. This waterfall is called Tad Xay and flows from the crystal clear waters of the Houay Xay stream. From there the water curves to the left through a picturesque small valley just before running 800 metres downstream over a 50 metre

That Phone: the spiritual home of Savannakhet province

That Phone: the spiritual home of Savannakhet province

That Phone stupa is one of the most popular attractions in the area, and with good reason. The sacred stupa's construction spanned the years 557 to 700, but the fact that hundreds visit it daily is testament to the grandeur of the finished product, suggesting it was time well spent. That Phone is popular with locals and foreigners alike. It may seem bizarre, however, that according to legend and the beliefs of elders, this place served as Buddha's toilet for seven days and

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