Day 11. Luang Prabang

Overnight – Rosewood Luang Prabang

An optional pre-sunrise start today gives you the opportunity to participate in one of Luang Prabang’s most iconic traditions: donating food to the local monks (Tak Bat). Your Tour Director Guide will assist you in procuring the groceries and instruct you on the process as the monks walk by silently and open their baskets for you to place your contribution in them. The monks have been collecting their day’s meals in this manner for centuries. Afterward enjoy a walk through the nearby fresh food market. The busy market is a hive of activity as locals purchase fresh fruits, vegetables, and fish caught from the Mekong River. Return to the hotel for breakfast and a bit of leisure time to freshen up.

Mid-Morning: Join your Tour Director Guide for a tour of the charming old town. Visit the quaint Royal Palace Museum, which provides an excellent overview of local history. We then continue to the beautiful Wat Xiengthong, one the most important Buddhist temples in the region. You have the opportunity to receive a blessing from one of the temple’s head monks, if you so desire.
A short walk from here brings you to the nearby Wat Khili. The charming traditional library building here houses a historic photo exhibition of Buddhist heritage, known as The Buddhist Archive of Photography – closed on Sundays. A unique collection of 35,000 historical photographs that were collected by several monk collectors and photographers over 120 years. Either the founder, Mr. Hans George Berger (you will be presented with a signed copy of one of his books) or Director Dr. Khamvone Boulyaphonh will give you private access to this invaluable collection and personally guide you through the chambers in which it is housed, giving you unique insights into the Buddhist civilization and heritage of Laos. From here you will proceed for a lunch break, if you are so inclined.

Proceed to the Traditional Arts & Ethnology Centreclosed on Mondays, where you will meet one of the two co-founders, Ms. Tara Gujadhur or Ms. Soutthivilay Thongkhoun and experience a Directors Tour that provides insights into the myriad Laos’ ethnic cultures and their traditions and customs. Next is Luang Prabang’s oldest temple, Wat Visoun, which, because of its design, is known as The Watermelon Stupa. The Stupa dates back to 1503 and is now home to a collection of religious artefacts. You will learn about the wat’s fascinating history and early Lao Buddhist architecture from your Tour Director Guide.

Late Afternoon: You have the option of a guided excursion to Phousi Mountain. This is a hill in the center of the old town that provides a breathtaking view of the town and the Mekong River at sunset. This excursion involves a fairly rigorous climb up 350 paved steps, but the view from the top is an amazing photographic opportunity, as it showcases the remarkable beauty of Luang Prabang.

Days

1 - 5

1 2 3 4 5

6 - 10

6 7 8 9 10

11 - 13

11 12 13