Some refer to Luang Prabang as the most ‘romantic town’ of Southeast Asia… but it truly is far more than that. At the confluence of the Mekong and Khan River, this former French colony is an elegant fusion of East and West: Latte machiattos and iced cappuccinos with homemade pain du chocolat served under a hand-crafted parasol made by a local, hll-tribe Hmong woman… neo-classical, teak-beamed French mansions converted into chic boutique hotels for Lao-silk wearing tourists opposite ancient Lanna temples housing hundreds of pairs of earth-trodding bare feet, orange and saffron robes, and large alms bowls of the devout Buddhist monks…. And finally – for dinner – plentiful glasses of cool, French vin blanc to wash down the traditional Lao chicken ‘Laab’ infused with mint and coriander as an aperitif… and a steak de boeuf with a fine portion of potatoes au gratin for the main course.
Lao’s first UNESCO-heritage site, Luang Prabang’s charming calm is preserved by the absence of large vehicles and the imposed 11:30pm curfew….. what a wonderful town for celebrating Valentine’s Day! 🙂