Luang Prabang, or Louangphrabang, located north central of 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 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.
City of 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. If visitors travel two hours up the Mekong river, they can stay at the K amu Eco lodge. Traditional Laotian activities (fishing, rice planting/harvesting, archery and gold-panning) can be tried there, as well as a visit to a model village of the Kamu people, who are originally from Cambodia. 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.
Luang Prabang is served by Luang Prabang International Airport with non-stop flights to
Laos: Phongsaly, Vientiane, Xieng Khuang (Phonsavan)
Thailand: Bangkok, Chiang Mai,
Cambodia: Siem Reap
Vietnam: Ha Noi
Luang Prabang is linked by Route 13 with Vang Vieng and Vientiane, and by Route 1 with Muang Xay The road from Huay Xai (the Laos town across the river from Chiang Khong) to Luang Prabang is poorly maintained, remote, unlit, unmarked and extremely dangerous for the unfamiliar traveler, particularly in the wet season. Regular buses nonetheless do run, taking 14-16 hours Route 13 from Vientiane, passing Vang Vieng, to Luang Prabang is paved, though the pavement is in poor condition at places. It is also relatively narrow, with sharp curves. There are no markings or lighting on the road. Several daily buses run from Vientiane to Luang Prabang, taking 8-10 hours. The Mekong River itself is also an important transportation link. Travelers from Chiang Khong can hire a barge to cross the river. Huay Xai, upriver near the Thai border, can be reached by slow boat in two days, typically with a stop at Pakbeng.