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Vientiane is the capital of Laos and has been there since around 1,000 AD. Although the largest city in Laos, it remains with the feel of a sleepy, peaceful town. It's a place to wander around the temples, before kicking back with a nice Beer Lao to watch the sunset over the Mekong river. Don't expect the fast paced life of most capital cities, this is a place to get away from it all.

Arriving at Wattay Airport leaves you a short ride to the West of the city, or if you cross the Friendship bridge over the river Mekong, you'll have about 16km to travel by bus, tuktuk or taxi to the capital.

Map of Vientiane

Hotels in Vientiane

Dispite its size, Vientiane has a wide choice of accommodation. Book your hotel before you travel here.

What to do in Vientiane?

Situated in the town is a good selection of impressive temples to pass your time wandering around. Wat Si Saket is the oldest temple in Vientiane, housing hundreds of Buddha images. Haw Pha Kaew is another temple of note, although with a slightly less impressive history, it was built as the home of the Emerald Buddha that is now housed in Bangkok. After being destroyed in 1828, the latest reconstruction is dated from 1942. The Black Stupa is a more authentic ancient construction.

Beyond the temples, Vientiane offers the Patuxai or victory gate, which has to rival the arc de triomphe in Paris. Also a short distance from the city is Xieng Khuan, or Buddha Park. Buddha park was created in 1958 and houses an eclectic selection of Buddha images. Check out our what to do guide here.

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