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Traversing Luang Prabang: Five Must-Do Things In The Northern Laos City

Travelers Today       By    Sheobi Anne Ramos

Updated: Jan 03, 2017 05:21 AM EST

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luang prabang, Laos, things to do in luang prabang
Laos Celebrates Songkran Water Festival
LUANG PRABANG, LAOS - APRIL 15: Laos women, in acient dress 'Nang Sangkarn', pose for photo next to the Funerary Carriage House of Wat Xient Thong, during the Songkran festival on April 15, 2008, in Luang Prabang, Laos.
(Photo: Photo by Chumsak Kanoknan/Getty Images)

Luang Prabang, a city in the north-central Lao, is a must-travel destination this year that you should put on your travel bucket list. It's a city made up of 58 adjacent villages, and 33 of those belong to the UNESCO Town Of Luang Prabang World Heritage Site.

A uniquely beautiful city, travelers will experience culture like you've never seen before. Here are the top things to do in Luang Prabang:

Visit The Wat Xieng Thong Temple. Considered the finest of all temples in Luang Prabang, Wat Xieng Thong is revered among the locals who inhabit the city. From Mekong, you will see a grand staircase to take you up to the tip of the peninsula, where the temple is elegantly located. It's as if the whole history and culture of Laos is represented in this historic temple, so make sure you observe proper etiquette when visiting.

Visit The Kwang Si Waterfall & Bear Rescue Centre. Experience the natural waters of Laos by visiting Kwang Si Waterfalls. This is a popular tourist destination, so local tourist agencies can take you there without fuss. There are only designated spots for swimming, also, modest swimming outfits are enforced. After you've done wading in their turquoise pools, pay a visit to the Bear Rescue Center halfway between the park entrance and the waterfalls, home to the local bears and other animals rescued from illegal animal traffickers.

Visit The Pak Ou Caves. Do you want to see caves full of Buddha idols? A long time ago, pilgrims who complete the difficult journey to Pak Ou Caves pay their respects by leaving a Buddha idol, and now, thousands of them fill up the caves. There are two caves, the upper one is called "Tham Theung", and the lower one is "Tham Ting." Plan your visit here however, because during the high season you cannot appreciate the serenity of the caves as much due to overcrowded tourists.

Visit the Ban Phanom Village. Textiles and silk are the main attractions in this village. You can get to see local women actually weaving beautiful patterns of scarves and other silk textiles which you can take home to your family. Prices are a bit steep though, so you need good bargaining skills to avail their products. The place is tourist-friendly, and you can get here by riding a bicycle or renting a tuk-tuk, their local public vehicle.

Shop at Luang Prabang's Night Market. Assorted little trinkets and other local handicrafts are found in Luang Prabang's Night Market. If you want to buy your souvenirs then this is the place to be. Considered as one of the best night markets in Southeast Asia, you can buy stuff here you wouldn't get anywhere else in the world. One of the sought-after products here is the custom-made elephant slippers, a pretty and comfortable piece of footwear that'll make you remember Laos.

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