- Country: The Lao People's Democratic Republic
- Area: 236,800 km²
- Population: 7,061,507
- Capital: VIENTIANE
- Main Religion: Theravada Buddhism
Vientiane City View
History of Laos
In 1353, King Fa Ngum established the kingdom of Lancang (1353-1707), and the capital of Luang Prabang. As a result, Laos became the first unified multi-ethnic country in history. In 1560, the King of Lancang, Settatirat, moved the capital to Vientiane. From 1707 to 1713, the kingdom of Lancang was divided into three kingdoms: Luang Prabang in the north, Vientiane in the middle, and Champasak in the south. From 1778 to 1893, The Three Kingdoms became vassal states of Siam (now Thailand). Among them, the northern kingdom of Luang Prabang is still known as the "south hand" by the Qing dynasty, and it once paid tribute to the Qing court and became its vassal state.
Climate of Laos
Laos has a tropical and subtropical monsoon climate, the rainy season lasts from May to October, and the dry season lasts from November to April. The annual average temperature is about 26℃. There is abundant rainfall throughout Laos, with the minimum yearly precipitation of 1250 mm, the maximum annual precipitation of 3750 mm, and the average annual precipitation of about 2000 mm.
The best season to travel in Laos is from November to March of the following year. The climate is the coolest, which is suitable for traveling. Laos has a tropical monsoon climate with high temperatures; the whole year is divided into the dry season and the rainy season.
Since Laos has fresh air and little pollution, there's a wide range of views in the city and the countryside. Before the rain, lightning comes at the same time between heaven and earth, and a beautiful rainbow occurs after the rain.
Royal Palace Museum in Luang Prabang
Religion of Laos
♦ Buddhism: Buddhism is respected as the state religion. By 2013, 65 percent of Laotians were Buddhists, and the 1961 Lao constitution made Buddhism the state religion.
♦ Primitive Fetishism: There are 15% of the older people, the two major ethnic groups, and many Thai people believe in Primitive Fetishism.
♦ Catholicism and Protestantism: The majority of Catholics in Laos are Thai and Vietnamese. By the time the United States left Laos in 1975, there were only 6 Christian churches in Laos with 132 missionaries and 29,972 Christians.
Language of Laos
Lao is the official language of Laos, and Thai can be used in some areas. Meanwhile, English can be used in some tourist areas. Service staff at attractions, hotels and restaurants can help in English. Preferably use a translation software when travel to Laos.
Tourism of Laos
The Wat Phu in Luang Prabang has been listed as a world cultural heritage. There're other scenic spots, like The Golden Temple of Pha That Luang, Jade Buddha Temple, Khon Phapheng Waterfall in Champasak, Kuang Si Waterfall in Luang Prabang, and so on. Since the reform and opening up, tourism has become a new industry in Laos' economic development. In recent years, Laos has signed cooperation agreements with more than 500 foreign tourism companies and opened 15 international tourist ports. At the same time, measures such as increasing investment in tourism infrastructure, reducing visa fees, and relaxing border travel procedures have been taken to ensure the sustained development of tourism. In 2017, Laos received 4,239,000 tourists; from January to September 2018, it received more than 2.9 million people. In May 2013, Laos was named the "World's Best Tourist Destination" by the European council.
Currency & Exchange Rate
The currency of Laos is the KIP, with denominations of 500kip, 1000kip, 2000kip, 5000kip, 10000kip, and 20000kip. Transactions in Laos are basically priced in kips, US dollars and Thai baht can be used in some places, but the use of foreign currency is not appropriate at the exchange rate:
- 1 CNY≈1255 KIP
- 1 US$≈8893 KIP
Main Holidays in Laos
♦ Independence Day：12th October
♦ National Day: 2nd December
♦ The Water-Sprinkling Festival (Songkran): 13th-15th April
♦ The Loi Krathong Festival: October
Transportation in Laos
Laos is the only landlocked country in Southeast Asia. Main transportation in Laos is road, water and air. There is only a 3km railway linking the capital Vientiane to the border with Laos. The construction of the China-Laos railway was laid in December 2015, and construction began in December 2016. It is scheduled to be completed in 2021. The Mekong River can be navigable in sections with loads ranging from 20 to 200 tons. The total length of roads in Laos is about 47,000 kilometers, carrying 80% of the passenger and cargo traffic.
- International Airports
- Wattay International Airport
- Luang Prabang Airport
- Savannakhet Airport
- Pakse Airport
Useful Calls in Laos
The Code for Laos: 856
The Code for Luang Prabang: 71
- Emergency: 195
- Fire Alarm: 190
- Bandit Alarm: 191
- Tourist Police: 192