25 Best Things To Do In Luang Prabang, Laos - Updated 2024

things to do in luang prabhang laos
| 6 min read

Luang Prabang is such a perfect Laotian getaway for both nature and culture aficionados. Situated in the northern mountainous region, this gem offers a range of attractions from the fusion of Lao and French architecture to the mind-blowing natural beauty – not to mention the historical Buddhist temples and the abundance of delicious foods. Before journeying to the Lane Xang capital, read this informative list of the best things to do in Luang Prabang, Laos.

1. Visit the Pha Tad Ke Botanical Garden

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Pha Tad Ke Botanical Garden, as the name suggests, is a gorgeous botanical garden in the city, which features local flora and fauna. Some of the highlights of this garden are the beautiful orchids and wide varieties of bamboo. A hidden gem indeed, Pha Tad Ke Botanical Garden also has an onsite cafe that offers some picturesque views along with delicious food. To book a tour of this botanical garden or to plan your visit, check out their website.

Pha Tad Ke Botanical Garden

Address: Nam Pho, Luang Prabang, Laos

Website: Pha Tad Ke Botanical Garden

Opening hours:Thu - Tue: 8:30am - 5pm (closed on Wed)

Price: 25 USD

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2. Take a tour of the Royal Palace

Royal Palace
Source: Freepik

The Royal Palace of Luang Prabang was built in 1904 for King Sisavang Vong and his family during the colonial era. There is a museum on-site, which has various exhibits, artifacts, gifts from foreign states as well as paintings and artwork on display. Once you’ve walked around the museum, you can take a tour of the palace if you’re interested in seeing how the royals of the time lived in style and luxury. A beautiful palace indeed, you must visit the Royal Palace during your visit to Luang Prabang.

Royal Palace

Address: 27 Ounheun Rd, Luang Prabang, Laos

Opening hours: 8am - 11:30pm, 1:30pm - 4pm (daily)

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3. Spend a day around elephants at the Elephant Village Sanctuary & Resort

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

We love this photo :) This was taken a few months after we got our newest bay, Mae Khamphet or crumpets for short, and she has settled down nicely and happy to be in safe environment.

Posted by Elephant Village on Friday, January 22, 2016

Get up close and personal with elephants at the Elephant Village Sanctuary & Resort! From feeding these elephants to walking them, and even bathing them, you can take part in so many elephant-related activities here. At Elephant Village Sanctuary & Resort, the elephants are basically rescued from the logging industry and cared for. If you are an animal lover, then you will absolutely love the day that you spend with the elephants!

Elephant Village Sanctuary & Resort

Address: Sisavangvong Road, Luang Prabang, Laos

Website: Elephant Village Sanctuary & Resort

Opening hours: 8am - 9pm (daily)

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4. Check out the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

The Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre is a popular museum in the city. This museum displays clothes, tools, arts and crafts, religious objects as well as objects used during rituals of various ethnic groups. Basically, the museum is a great way for you to learn about the ethnic and local people of Laos. An engaging and culturally educating museum, you must take to some time to visit the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre during your trip! For information about the upcoming exhibits, visit the website.

Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre

Address: Luang Prabang, Laos

Website: Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre

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5. Try some fresh buffalo milk at Laos Buffalo Dairy

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

The LBD Story - From Singapore to Mozzarella - This week's blog is part 3 of our story. You can find the full blog at...

Posted by Laos Buffalo Dairy on Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Laos Buffalo Dairy is a dairy in the city, one of the best dairies, actually. Here, you can get close to buffalos, try some fresh buffalo milk, and best of all, you get to eat fresh and delicious buffalo cheese. An experience of a lifetime indeed, you must go spend a few hours at Laos Buffalo Dairy. There is also an ice-cream cafe on-site, which has some delicious and nutritious ice creams that are made from fresh buffalo milk, obviously! To play a visit to this amazing dairy, visit the website.

Laos Buffalo Dairy

Address: Ban Muang Khay, Luang Prabang, Laos

Website: Laos Buffalo Dairy

Opening hours: 9:30am - 5pm (daily)

Price: From 5 USD

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6. Sing some tunes at Fullmoon Karaoke

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Posted by Full Moon Karaoke on Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Fullmoon Karaoke is a rather popular karaoke bar in the heart of the city. A favorite among locals and tourists alike, Fullmoon Karaoke is always buzzing. Whether you’re in the mood to just relax and enjoy a few drinks or you’re in the mood to do some shots and sing your heart out all night long, Fullmoon Karaoke is the place for you! Open all day and all night, this place is perfect for every age group!

Fullmoon Karaoke

Address: 13, Luang Prabang, Laos

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

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7. Enjoy an authentic Lao cooking experience in Luang Prabang (from USD 55.0)

This one is for the foodies out there! Be a part of this authentic Lao cooking experience in Luang Prabang. What is the best way to really understand a new country and its culture? Eating the food, of course. Now, instead of just eating the food, take part in this one-of-a-kind Lao cooking experience. Go shopping for local ingredients at local markets, learn to cook authentic dishes, take a variety of recipes home with you and just make the most of this wonderful experience!

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Laos Cooking Class in Luang Prabang

Duration: 4 hours

3 reviews

8. Enjoy a meal at Manda de Laos

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Manda de Laos is one of the best fine-dining Laotian restaurants in the city. Located in a rather relaxed atmosphere with a serene ambiance, this chic and casual restaurant overlooks a gorgeous lily pond. Serving delicious food and big portions made from locally sourced ingredients, having a meal at Manda de Laos is always a good idea. While you’re here, make sure to try the buffalo steak, the Choux banana, the papaya salad, the tamarind duck as well as the spare ribs!

Manda de Laos

Address: 10 Norrassan Road, Unit 1 Luang Prabang, 06000, Laos

Website: Manda de Laos

Opening hours: 12pm - 3pm, 6pm - 10:30 (daily)

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9. Take a pottery workshop in the countryside (from USD 26.75)

things to do in luang prabhang laos | take a pottery workshop in the countryside

If you’ve got some free time during your visit, check out this three-hour pottery workshop in the countryside. Laos has a rich history of ceramics that dates back to the 15th century. When you attend this workshop, you get to learn a whole lot about the history of pottery in Laos, and you also get to learn some new and unique patterns and techniques to make pottery. An exciting experience for every age group, it is highly recommended that you try your hand at pottery when you’re in Laos.

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Luang Prabang: 3-Hour Pottery Workshop in the Countryside

Duration: 3 hour

1 review

10. Explore the Pak Ou Caves (from USD 54.0)

Spend an exciting day exploring the Pak Ou Caves. These caves are some of the most important sites in the history of Buddhism. In this five-hour tour, you get to cruise along the scenic Mekong River, after which, there is a small stop at the temple shrine of Wat Done Khoun Nelemith and finally, you get to explore the infamous Pak Ou Caves. Once you’re done, you get to enjoy a delicious authentic meal during your cruise back to the mainland.

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Pak Ou Caves Day Excursion

Duration: 5 hours

11. Escape to Kuang Xi Waterfall

Kuang Si Falls - Laos
Source: Photo by user Christian Bowman used under CC BY-SA 2.0

The super gorgeous Kuang Xi waterfall, a mere 45-minute drive from the city center, should be your first destination. You can enjoy the translucent water cascading down limestone formations into shallow pools, as well as swimming and jumping into the turquoise pool. Other points of interest include the Asiatic black bears near the entrance.

Kuang Xi Waterfall

Address: Luang Prabang, Laos

Admission Fee: 20,000 LAK (2.5 USD)

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12. Enjoy the sunrise and sunset from Mount Phousi

The stairs up Mount Phousi
Source: Photo by user William used under CC BY-ND 2.0

Are you a sunrise or sunset addict? Spend a couple of hours at the summit of Mount Phousi, the highest point of the city. To get there, you need to step up some stairs. You can also enjoy the scenic old city and the meandering Mekong river. For a spiritual experience, bring your offerings and pray at the temple nearby.

Mount Phousi

Address: Luang Prabang

Opening Hours: 7 am to 6 pm

Admission Fee: 20,000 LAK (2.5 USD)

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13. Engage in a morning alms-giving ritual

Wake up early in the morning, set yourself at the road with some food donations and feel the sensation of morning alms giving when the Buddhist monks are approaching you. A can’t miss attraction, visitors can see this daily ritual in the city’s main road. Before participating, be sure to know the local etiquette and be respectful by wearing the appropriate dress.

Morning Alms Giving

Address: Luang Prabang, Laos

Time to See: 5 am to 6 am

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14. Explore the morning market

things to do in luang prabhang laos | explore the morning market
Source: instagram

If you love hunting for fresh cooking ingredients or cheap knock-off backpacks, the morning market is the place for you. The fact is, it’s much more attractive than the night market. The vendors lining the street offer unusual items such as freshly caught giant catfishes and live frogs. While shopping, interact with the locals to feel the culture.

Luang Prabang Morning Market

Address: Luang Prabang, Laos

Opening Hours: 5 am to 10 am

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15. Visit the temples

Temple Wat Xieng Thong - Luang Prabang - Laos
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Basile Morin used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Known as one of the UNESCO world heritage sites, Luang Prabang is a place where a ton of historical temples with amazing ornaments stand gracefully. Visiting temples is absolutely a great way to discover the old city. If you find a magnificent temple with ornate carved walls and artistic Lane Xang-style architecture, Wat Xieng Tong is about to dazzle you.

Wat Xieng Tong

Address: Khem Khong, Luang Prabang, Laos

Opening Hours: 8 am to 5 pm

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16. Sample local street food

sample local street food

If you want to experience authentic Laos food, look and search out the traditional restaurants to find real Laotian dishes. You may have a harder time on your own though; so why not set aside two hours of your time of non-stop culinary treat? Know that there is more to the Laotian sticky rice. Six dishes are waiting for you along Luang Prabang’s intimate alleys! Chow down on orlam (meat stew), khao soi (rice noodle soup), and sai oua (pork sausage), and fried egg. Nibble on coconut cakes and seasonal fruits. Definitely a treat for your stomach. Just bring your own drinking water and you are all set.

Street Food Tour

Price: 16 USD

Duration: 2 hours

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17. Stroll through the Old Quarter

Taking a stroll and sightseeing in the old quarter in Luang Prabang is such a good way to spend your day leisurely. You will see Lao-French buildings, street vendors offering their cool items and friendly Lao people with simple lifestyles that you meet on the street. Don’t forget to say “sabaidee” and “khop cai” to the locals to feel the real flavor of Laos.

Luang Prabang Old Quarter

Address: Luang Prabang, Laos

Opening Hours: 24 hours

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18. Bite into a baguette

Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user heiteu used under CC0

A simple thing you can do to delight in the paradise is to try the French delicacy, the baguette. You can opt for different fillings from cheese to salad to bacon at the makeshift sandwich stands in the hub of the city. The fresh tropical fruit shakes and delicious crepes are also worth a try.

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19. Take a slow boat ride on the Mekong River

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

If you are about to explore the Mekong river and enjoy a laid-back life, there is nothing more recommended than taking a slow boat ride on it. You can start your trip from Luang Prabang and end it at the Thai-Laos border. Your two day journey is subject to a life perfection as you will see a lot of attractive things, ranging from the tropical jungle to unique caves to Laotian villages.

Mekong Smile Cruise

Price: 240,000 LAK (29.5 USD)

Website: mekong smile cruise

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20. Do voluntary teaching at Big Brother Mouse

Posted by Big Brother Mouse on Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Are you anti-mainstream travelers who love teaching children? Help the young locals and monks with your English conversational skill at Big Brother Mouse learning center, located in the north of city center. Being a volunteer in Laos really adds your values as a human who cares each other and gives you more opportunity to learn the local tradition. You can also make some donations by buying and giving books.

Big Brother Mouse

Opening Hours: 9 am to 5 pm

Website: Big Brother Mouse

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21. Weaving with village seamstress (33 USD)

weaving with village seamstress

Cotton and silk textile weaving in Laos is an age-old tradition that is still practised by women up to the present day. Sets of yarn are intertwined at a determined angle and woven together using hand-operated wooden looms to create intricate patterns and designs. Book this workshop for an intense yet thoroughly enjoyable course on weaving. Under the supervision of an expert weaver, weave your chosen pattern and come home with beautiful and high-quality gifts for your family and friends. The package comes with a standard 70 cm (27.5 inches) soft cotton scarf. You can upgrade to a 170 cm (66.9 inches) size or silk scarves at an additional cost. Arrive at your destination comfortably with round-trip transfer included. Don’t forget to bring you own drinking water and mosquito cream/repellent!

Weaving with village seamstress

Price: 33 USD

Duration: 4 hours

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22. Wood carving with Royal Palace artisan (24 USD)

wood carving with royal palace artisan

Laos is always associated with traditional crafts like metalsmithing, basket and mat weaving, and wood carving. With close to 50 ethnic groups, you’ll be amazed by the variety of craft styles and tastes unique to their native heritage. The Lao people are world-class carvers. Oftentimes, you will see beautiful wood-carved images in churches and temples. Join this fascinating half-day workshop and learn the tricks of wood-carving. Under the apprenticeship of our master wood carver, create your own wood treasures and carved memento. Be immersed and captivated by his stories about carving palaces for royal families. An epic experience not to be missed! Remember to bring your sunglasses and mosquito cream/repellent for protection.

Wood carving with Royal Palace artisan

Price: 24 USD

Duration: 4 hours

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23. Knife-making with master blacksmith

knife-making with master blacksmith

This is another great activity for making a memento of your visit. Book this one-of-a-kind workshop and immerse in the life of an expert blacksmith hand-crafting traditional weapons, knives and farming tools in various shapes and sizes. Get ready for a day of sketching, hammer forging, shaping and heat treating, sanding, and polishing. Your host has a depth of knowledge to help you create nearly any shaped knife. The standard package includes a knife with a bamboo handle. Upgrade options are available at an extra cost. Come prepared bringing your sunglasses for protection, wearing appropriate clothing & trekking shoes, and drinking water.

Knife-making with master blacksmith

Address: 34 USD

Duration: 4 hours

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24. Lao wine-making with Khmu farmers (21 USD)

lao wine-making with khmu farmers

Lao Hai is the traditional sweet alcoholic drink in Laos made from rice wine, fermented three to four days in earthen ware jars called ‘hai’. It is a popular choice during New Year and other major festivities and celebrations. Drinking lao hai is a very special ceremony. The wine is not poured into cups but drunk communally through long and curved bamboo straws directly from the jars as another person pours water into the jar to maintain an even balance between alcohol and water. Elders and special guests are first in the queue to sip, followed by younger guests. In this activity, learn the stages of making wine and preparing your own bamboo straw for the ultimate authentic drinking experience. Plus, you get a bottle of wine to bring home! The price includes transport from your hotel to the farm site. Don’t forget to bring your own bottled water.

Lao wine-making with Khmu farmers

Price: 21 USD

Duration: 2 hours

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25. Relax with some guided mediation (from USD 24.0)

When in Rome, do as the Romans do. When in Laos, do as the Buddhists do! Book this guided meditation experience at a local temple! Your guide will be a Buddhist monk, who will teach you all about the history of Buddhism as well as the importance of meditation and how to meditate properly. All in all, this meditation experience is very informative, calming, and educational. A rather relaxing and rejuvenating experience indeed, you must opt for this guided mediation tour.

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Guided Meditation Experience by Orange Robe Tours

Duration: 1 hour

Luang Prabang is where you enjoy the real Laos

Luang Prabang has a lot of fascinating things to offer. It’s a place where everything looks exquisite and perfect. In order to understand how Laos has magnetized global wanderers and made them fall in love with the country, you need to experience the outstanding old temples, the waterfalls, the delectable foods and the people’s warmth.

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Rofiq, hailing from East Java, Indonesia, is a passionate explorer who thrives on discovering new places, encountering diverse people, and immersing himself in various languages and cultures. His...Read more

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