Luang Prabang, the City of Stars
Luang Prabang is a quaint, colorful city set on a large stretch of the Mekong river. Throughout the city, you will see colorful, star-shaped lanterns hanging from French colonial architecture. Thus, the city of stars. The charming city is filled with cafes and restaurants, and the scent of French baguettes, which have been incorporated into Laotian street food. The architecture and bread are two remnants of Laos’ French colonial past. Along with the restaurants, the city is home to many high-end boutiques and local artisan shops to promote local villages nearby. All of this makes Luang Prabang a quaint, slow-paced town filled with excellent art and food.
1. Local Village Artisan Boutiques
The downtown of the city is filled with scarves, aprons, handmade bags and many more local handicrafts. Some of these stores are also nonprofits that work with local villages to help support the women. There is a lot of local art to observe even if you don’t want to buy. Here are some of the coolest art shops in town.
Passa Paa Boutique
Bold. Colorful. Graphic textiles. Passa Paa has beautiful clothes, bags, ties, scarves, and even decorative wall hangings! This was probably one of my favorite shops in the downtown area.
This store had a great selection of linens, blankets, scarves, throw pillows, clothes, and much more. It’s an organization with a website on the door offering their vision. They are for promoting cultural diversity and preserving their culture by buying the artifacts of village women and helping to support them.
La La Laos
This place is really special. It’s run by a local Laotian woman who was supported by two foreigners. They sent her to college and now she runs a clothing store and raises money through the store to support local children and education.
Ock Pop Tok
This shop is the largest in the downtown of Luang Prabang and has two locations that are across the street from one another. It seems to be one of the largest organizations called village weaver projects that work with local artisans in the community. They have an ornate showroom of full-size linen wall hangings and artisan pieces. They also have the largest selection of different linen products, scarves, throw pillows, and home decor.
Silk Road Cafe
The Silk Road cafe is a beautiful cafe strung with lanterns. It’s tucked away just off the main road a small jungle garden, making it an excellent to rest from your shopping. They have great food and drinks with a happy hour starting at 4 pm. It’s a great place to rest and located right next to the village weaver projects.
2. Night market Artists
The night market of Luang Prabang is hopping with tons of local artists and vendors. There are paintings and lots of linen goods and clothes. If you are looking to try some traditional Laotian food, the night market is a
3. Bamboo Bridge on the Mekong
There is a really picturesque bamboo bridge on the Mekong river used to cross over to another small island where most a lot of the locals live. The bridge costs 10,000
4. Oasis: the most epic bohemian riverside cafe
This outdoor bohemian cafe lived up to the hype! It is one of the best bars and restaurants of Luang Prabang, no don’t. The cafe has a beautiful bamboo platform overlooking the Mekong river with lots of floor cushions and tables to lounge on the outside. This space is huge and even with a large crowd holds so many nooks and spaces to relax. If the weather is bad, there is a bean bag chair and floor pillows section with small tables and an overhang. Overall the sitting is very diverse, there is everything from individuals tables for solo travelers, standard four-person seating arrangements, and even communal tables and spaces.
Another fun thing is that it is Oasis, a chill cafe by day, and Utopia, a fun, music-filled, bonfire raging, bar at night. The food was delicious. Both the chicken poppers and bruschetta didn’t