This area may be small, but there are some magical things to do in Luang Prabang. From the most famous Kuang Si Falls to awesome night markets, there is something here for everyone. In this blog we’ll give you our top 5 things to do in Luang Prabang.
How to get to Luang Prabang
To get to Luang Prabang, we used 12Go to book an overnight border crossing from Chiang Mai. 12Go is a super cheap and reliable way to get around many popular Southeast Asian countries. Overnight buses from Chiang Mai are limited so be sure to book in advance.
↠ Book: Latest 12Go prices and availability.
Where to stay
Most accommodation in Luang Prabang is located close to Mount Phousi. This area has plenty of restaurants and even a nightly market with food stalls. A central guesthouse with nice rooms is Thatsaphone Hotel while one of the more luxury hotels in the area is AVANI.
↠ Check availability: Luang Prabang accommodation.
Things to do in Luang Prabang
1. Kuang Si Falls
Kuang Si Falls is very famous and popular among tourists. Unfortunately when we visited in wet season, the falls looked nothing like their usual bright blue. What makes this waterfall so special is the insane colour of the water. Kuang Si Falls has the clearest turquoise water while having multiple different levels and limestone rock pools. This place is so large that you will almost certainly find a relaxing spot to yourself. Be sure not to visit when its been raining otherwise you’ll come across heavy flowing brown water.
2. Mount Phousi
Mount Phousi is located right in the centre of town and is the most popular place to watch a magical sunset. To view the sunset, you’ll have to climb up to 300 steps although you’re sure to be rewarded at the top. The observation area gives you amazing views of the Mekong River, the large mountains in the distance as well as Luang Prabang town. The only downside to this viewpoint is that it is incredibly busy. Luang Prabang is a small town so every night dozens of tourists flock to the viewpoint to catch a glimpse of the sunset.
3. Utopia Bar
Utopia Bar was definitely one of our favourite things to do in Luang Prabang. This incredibly relaxing bar is located in front of the river and allows you to have an undisturbed view of the evening sky. They also have long cushions for you to lay on while you have a drink or a bite to eat in front of the river. Food and drinks are a decent price with a large beer costing 15,000 Kip ($2.40Aud). Everyone who visits Utopia Bar is after some peace and quiet so you wont find many loud party animals. We definitely recommend everyone to go and have a relaxing afternoon!
4. Night Market
The night market happens daily and is another great way to spend an evening in Luang Prabang. The whole of Sisavangvong road is closed off and allows tourists to wander through the tents. You’ll find everything from souvenirs to jewellery and even postcards. We visited the market every night so we could grab a cheap meal. The night market has plenty of food options from cheap baguettes to fruit shakes. At the end of the street towards Chaofa Ngum road you’ll find a small alleyway where the majority of the food is found. There is a popular veggie buffet stand that costs 15,000 Kip ($2.20Aud) per plate. You’ll also find plenty of barbeque foods and meats.
5. Alms Giving Ceremony
The alms giving ceremony happens every morning on Sisavangvong road at 5:30am in summer and 6:30am in winter. What happens during this ceremony is that hundreds of monks walk in a single line down the road while locals and occasionally tourists give rice to the monks which is believed to create good karma. This ceremony is incredibly spiritual and important to the people of Laos so if you decide to watch or join the ceremony you must be very respectful. You must dress appropriately, take photos from a distance, you cannot talk and you cannot touch the monks. There have been some issues with tourists being loud and taking photos with flash which is very inappropriate.