After the traffic of Bangkok and weekend night markets of Chiang Mai, we relaxed in Luang Prabang, a small town and World Heritage Site with wats, monks, and French colonial influence. As seen above, you can cross the main street of Luang Prabang at a leisurely pace without risking life and limb.
Luang Prabang is in a beautiful spot, surrounded by hills at the junction of the Mekong and the Nam Khan Rivers. The sun sets over the Mekong River, making for pretty sunsets. On our first evening in Luang Prabang, we battled crowds at a hilltop wat to catch this sunset over the Mekong and layers of hills receding in the distance.
On our last evening in Luang Prabang, we walked along the Mekong at sunset, seen below. That’s a papaya tree in the lower right corner. I prefer the photo and experience at the riverside.
Stopping for this riverside photo we found ourselve next to an American couple with whom we had shared a table at a noodle joint two days before. They live in Luang Prabang and were enjoying the sunset and walking their dog, an Asian mutt they inherited from another expatriate. The next morning we ran into the woman at a museum.
We also ran into a Swiss couple twice. We shared a Mekong boat ride with them and saw them the next morning. In Luang Prabang we had time to talk to strangers, and the town was small enough so that we happened upon the same people again and had time to talk and say hello. We found this warm and comfortable and a far cry from Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and even our home town.
As the sun set, this rooster stood on the riverside wall, looking like he owned the wall and unafraid of any rooster-nappers.
Our hotel was across the street from the Nam Khan River near this bamboo bridge. Gazing at river and hills in the distance is calming and peaceful.
Each morning we ate at a French bakery around the corner from our hotel. This mother and daughter drove up on a motor scooter to buy breakfast. The girl peered into the bag and was delighted with her mother’s purchase. Many parents on motor scooters dropped off their children at the school down the street.