26 February 2013

Vientiane, Laos

Probably the least busy capital city I have visited, Vientiane was a stopping point for me coming from Luang Prabang, before heading to the south of Laos. It was easy to find the sights with a map and abit of walking around.
The national monument and symbol of Laos is Phat That Luang.  It was worth seeing the golden statue which names means 'world precious sacred stupa'.
Lots of other temples are dotted around the old downtown area, where restaurants run along the road that is parallel to the big Mekong River, with Thailand on the other side of it.  Here is some colourful temple art, depicting stories about buddha.
Then I found a rather overgrown aged looking stupa in the middle of a roundabout.  Called That Dam, apparently it was once covered in gold paint, different to the look it has now.
Finally here is the outside of Haw Pha Kaeo temple, it once held the famous emerald buddha, now it has odd bits of religious art and artefacts inside.  Quite an old temple it sharply contrasted to the shiny new looking presidential palace next door, but I wasn't allowed to go looking inside there for some reason.

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