When speaking of Laos, draw your attention from the tourist hub Luang Prabang and look at Vientiane instead, for the capital is a paradise by any standard at any rate.
1. Vientiane has a surreal and quirky Buddha Park where around 200 Buddhist and menacing religious images were built in place back in 1958.
2. Of course, there are normal ones to look at, like That Luang, an enormous pyramid whose top is covered with gold leaf weighing approximately 1,000 pounds.
3. And Lao people ingeniously construct beautiful houses on stilts.
4. You will be amazed by how gifted they are in choosing colors.
5. And their generosity in covering temples in gold makes you jealous.
6. Vientiane is an animal-friendly city.
7. And its people are very fond of the elephant. (Tips: Vientiane is rendered as "city of sandalwood")
8. Vientiane is more than temple-hopping. This once-undeveloped city is getting a vibe of fashion.
9. People here are friendly and passionate.
10. And they know how to move their bodies.
11. You can be romantic to your love with the help of an exotic flower.
12. Or hunt for souvenir items at the coastal market, where the vendors would not treat you like a walking-ATM. (Useful shopping tips)
13. Exercise never dies in Vientiane.
14. Nor does the spirit of football.
15. You can find the long lost cousin of the Paris Arc de Triomphe decorated in Laotian style. The monument was built to commemorate those who fought in the struggle for independence from France.
16. Even a typical children's playground is a lovely site to visit.
17. Not to mention the fabulous sunset view over roofs from the terrace of your hotel.
18. When the night arrives, foods are ready.
19. Don't forget the local brewer Beer Lao before you regret didn't try it.
20. Then hop in a herbal spa shop to calm your wanderlust soul.
21. You mistakenly think you're in Singapore when walking in the clean streets.
22. If you got caught by the monsoon, just stay a while at a small cozy restaurant. (Check out more about the climate.)
23. When the rain is done, the blacktop is outrageously even more shining than before.
24. Vientiane gives you the chance to practice the English proverb: Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.
All in all, Vientiane is where you can find quiet, peace and joie de vivre. Do NOT miss it. Take a 10-day in-depth Laos Tour to discover other beautiful facades of Vientiane that I haven't covered in this post.