A weekend in Luang Prabang

A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1995, Luang Prabang is one of Laos top tourist attractions. It’s surrounded by the Mekong and Khan Rivers.

Luang Prabang is the first province I visit outside of Vientiane. I went on a short weekend trip with my friend, Maria. Our weekend in Luang Prabang was a bit relaxing and fun at the same time.

As soon as we arrived and dropped off our stuff at the hotel, we went to bike around the town. It was very peaceful and breathtaking. There weren’t many cars on the road, so we felt completely safe biking around the Old City, the Old French Bridge, and along the rivers. For dinner, we decided to go to Manda de Laos. This restaurant has three lily ponds, which have been registered as a UNESCO World Heritage since 1995. The food and service were great! I will definitely go back again.

In case you didn’t know, Laos was known as “the land of a million elephants.” Now, Laos only has about 700 elephants left in the wild – and only 400 domesticated elephants. Therefore, one of the things I wanted to do in Luang Prabang was hang out with the elephants!!

On Sunday morning, we did a tour with MandaLao Elephant Conservation. It’s a sanctuary that provides an intimate non-riding experience with elephants. It was a very educational and enjoyable experience, which I highly recommend. I had the opportunity to feed and walk around with the elephants – Mae Kahm, 43yrs old and Mae Peng, 55yrs old. During our tour, we learned a lot of things about Asian elephants: they have smaller ears than African elephants; they have five fingers in the front feet and four in the back; they only have one finger at the tip of their trunk and African ones have two fingers; and their skin is less wrinkled than the African elephants.

On Sunday afternoon and evening, it was raining cats and dogs, so we had no choice but to stay inside. We ate ice cream, chatted, and took a nap as we hear the rainstorm sounds outside.

I definitely didn’t see everything I wanted, so I’ll be coming back to Luang Prabang again!

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