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Luang Prabang – pretty, hot and cool

May 3, 2010

Luang Prabang is really beautiful.  It is small, tidy and not as hot as Cambodia.  Just about perfect in fact.  No wonder Unesco have declared it a world heritage site.  The ambience is faded – but not jaded – french colonial.  The town seems to be pretty much dependent on tourism for its continued existence, which will need to be carefully managed  if the atmosphere in the town is not to be spoiled.   Most of the shops in the main street are selling tours, airline tickets or souvenirs.  The rest are cafes and restaurants.   It is well known as a backpacker destination.  I suspect this is probably due to it being a bit difficult to get to rather than because it is cheap and basic.  This pic of the main street in the old town kind of captures the feel of the place.

Many young men come from the countryside to study to be monks in the many monasteries in town.  The temples are open for visitors; I popped into one in passing and was amazed at how beautiful it was.  Mosaics on the exterior walls of the building had been carefully done in mirror glass to catch the sun and the effect was stunning.

While there I came across a saffron-robed temple cat which was displaying some pretty un-buddhist (but very cat-like) behaviour ….

Yes, that is a lizard it is tormenting and eating.  I spared you the close crop in case you were squeamish.  🙂


From → Laos

One Comment
  1. Jill Valentine permalink

    As always great to read…’ll be sad to come back to the UK I’m sure! Jx

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