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Updated by Joanna James on Sep 24, 2019
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Joanna James Joanna James
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8 Temples to Visit in Luang Prabang – A Spiritual Journey the Complements

Not only is Laos famous for its magnificent Kuang Si Waterfall, but it is also renowned for hosting over a whopping 30 religious temples within this small city. To save you the pain of randomly selecting which to and not to visit, here is a list of 8 temples we recommend visiting when in Luang Prabang.

1

Wat Nong Sikhounmuang

The composure of this temple is far from the mess you would probably make trying to pronounce the name in one go! This is one of the top picks among travellers visiting Laos and is often appreciated for the impeccable detailing in its design and the twist of modernity in its art. The crown of this masterpiece of a destination is most certainly the eerily realistic five-headed dragon at its entrance. The intricate detailing and stories surrounding the architecture are simply fascinating. To make the best of your time when visiting this temple, keep your eyes peeled for amazing deals with luxury brands such as Avani + Luang Prabang.

2

Wat Sibounheuang

The charm of Wat Sibounheuang is just inexplicably pure in its essence and draws in travellers in sheer amusement. It is one of the most reminiscent monasteries in the town and sports a lopsided gilded stupa and a statue of reclining Buddha in a delightful green backdrop with scattered ruins of the 14th century spotting the location. The abundance of Luang Prabang hotels surrounding these stunning temples is such a relief to the curious travellers as it makes their lives much easier!

3

Wat Sop Sickharam

This is yet another stunningly designed establishment complete with its golden main entrance and a spectacular statue to the left of it. The green glazed stupa just inside the boundary wall is situated very close to Wat Sene, the first of three very proximal Wats. The entrance is stunningly well decorated with dozens of lanterns hanging overhead stretching all the way up to the main hall. The main garden is quite a green delight as well.

4

Wat Sensoukaram

With history running back up to 1718, with recent modifications to restore to its present glory, Wat Sensoukaram is believed to have been built using 100,000 stones fished out of the Mekong River. It is clearly one of Luang Prabang’s largest monasteries and has a few buildings that are worth exploring. If you happen to be here, watch out for the incredible Chapel of the Standing Buddha; you will be wooed.

5

Wat Xien Thong

Without a doubt, this has got to be Luang Prabang’s most popular temple among the locals and foreigners alike. Its rich decorations, more specifically it's two large white guarding lions near the top of the temple landing, are a much talked about highlight of this temple. Its regal buildings adorned with extensive decorations of intricate gold stencilling, carved and gilded floral motifs together with its immaculate drawings are just about some of the incredible sights you are bound to enjoy.

6

Wat Wisunalat

Also famously known as the Wat Visoun, this temple dates back to 1512 and is the oldest of Luang Prabang’s temples. It houses a priceless collection of ancient Buddha images as well as a large Sinhalese style Stupa. The temple is vastly respected by Buddhists given that it enshrined Laos’ most venerated Buddhist image, the Phra Bang Buddha twice, for prolonged periods of time.

7

Wat Mai Suwannaphumaham

located next to the Royal Palace, it used to be the temple used by Laos’ Royalty. It is one of the very few temples that actually survived the Chinese invaders in 1887, and became home to the Phra Bang Buddha for an extended period of time since until the mid-20th century when it was moved to the Royal Palace Museum.

8

Wat Aham

This is a rather small temple in comparison to the others but is intriguing given its popularity not only a site of Buddhist worship but also for spiritual worship. Although there may not exactly be a million things to see, the stories are truly fascinating to listen to.