A Travellerspoint blog

Vientiane!

Deserves it's title of "most relaxed capital"...

semi-overcast 30 °C

Written on May 16...

Vientiane is a pretty quiet town for a Capital city. It sits on the Mekong river, across from Thailand. Everything closes around 10pm, and no later than 11:30 by law (except for a few very rare clubs).
We scored a great great guest house, with hot shower and air con, and most important: quietness!!! (Almost all the hotels we've stayed at for the past 3 weeks have been doing renos, and start around 7-8am no matter what, so quietness is not something we had experienced recently. As a result, we both slept in late on each day, it's good to rest once in a while (from this exhausting lifestyle!!! hehehe) Anyway, we are leaving tomorrow from Luang Prabang which is supposed to be the prettiest town in Laos... we'll see!

We didn't do much yesterday day, but went on our first adequate bender last night, after finding a place that sold 50,000kip pitchers and get a ref from a couple of local boys on where to go dance after. Ahhh, good times! The boys were so nice and cute, but it's actually illegal here to hook-up with a local; a falang needs a permit!!! Finding out about this crushed my life-long dream of hooking-up with a Laos guy, so I drank my sorrows away! hehehe... or not!

Today we visited a couple of "must see sites", the first one is called Paxtai, which apparently translates to Arch of Trimupm.
4-Patuxai.jpg
It's actually quite high (7 storeys high) and acts as a view point of the city.

The best part is the explanation board:
4-Patuxai_..tion_of.jpg
hehehe! big block of concrete! hehehe gotta love Laos honesty!

We then made it to the most important national monument in Laos (it's on the official seals and on the money): Pha That Luang

4-Pha_That_Luang.jpg

It's a symbol of both the Buddhist religion and Lao sovereignty and it's full Lao name translated to World-previous Sacred Stupa. A stupa is the Buddhist way to let the spirits rise (and I believe re-incarnate). When one dies his/her ashed are put in one. They range from a pile of dirt to elaborate structures (always pointy) with morrowr, gold and decorations. They are everywhere in Thailand, Cambodia and Laos and are always sacred.

Pha That Luan was quite nice to visit and very pretty. It was destroyed and re-built, and expanded a few times, so there isn't much left of the original...but I believe this was.
4-Pha_That..l_stupa.jpg

Well, let's conclude with a couple of pretty, random pics...
4-Pha_That.._dragon.jpg

3-Vang_Vie..ng_good.jpg

Cheers!
4-Vang_Vie..d_Aliya.jpg

Posted by Mistrale 04:29 Archived in Laos

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