Vientiane is on the left bank of the Mekong River, across the river from Thailand. As the capital of Laos, this city has few tall buildings and bustling scenes we imagine in the capital. Instead, it has a lot of green and idyllic tranquility. Riding a bike around Vientiane is the most comfortable way to experience this ancient town. Let's read on to know more Vientiane facts.
History of Vientiane
Vientiane was established before the 4th century. Since the founding of the Lancang Kingdom in the 14th century, Vientiane was the capital and economic center of Laos in the 16th century (formerly Luang Prabang, which moved its capital to avoid Burma). When the Lancang Kingdom was destroyed in 1707, Vientiane became one of the small divided states in Laos. In 1779, Siam invaded Laos and Vientiane became a vassal of Siam. In the early 19th century, a rebellion in Vientiane was suppressed by Siam, Vientiane was razed to the ground, and all its cultural relics, including the Buddha, were looted. At the beginning of the 20th century, Vientiane was restored by the French and became the capital of the French colonial era. Until Laos became independent after World War II, Vientiane remained the capital of Laos.
Highlights of Vientiane
The capital of Laos, there’s a bunch of temples, and with idyllic scenery. It's the historic city and Buddhist shrines. Vientiane is not only a historic city, but also a Buddhist shrine. Temples, ancient towers, and historic sites can be seen everywhere in the city. Ancient pagodas and ancient sites are unique in style and form a community, where you can feel the charm of great religious art. The Patuxay Monument in the city center and the magnificent Jade Buddha Temple are the must-see attractions in Vientiane.
Even Vientiane lacks the ancient elegance like what Luang Prabang shows; it has glittering golden towers, the mysterious Plain of Jars in the north, ancient stone temples in the south, and the largest waterfall in Southeast Asia. Drink a bottle of Lao beer by the river at sunset, the unique character of this tiny city comes into full view.
Pha That Luang
Best time to Visit Vientiane
Vientiane has a tropical and subtropical monsoon climate with an average annual temperature of 26 degrees Celsius. It is divided into the rainy season (May-October) and dry season (November- next April).
There's less annual temperature difference in Vientiane. The seasons are divided into the rainy season and the dry season. Due to the monsoon, there is a lot of rainfall during the rainy season, and it may rain at any time. So we don't suggest traveling in Vientiane at this time.
On the contrary, the dry season is a good time to travel because the weather is cool and dry. However, the best time to visit Vientiane is between November and February during the semi-dry season, when the right temperature will give you a different tropical experience. If you would like to enjoy the Water-Sprinkling Festival here, April is a good month to visit, and the weather in Vientiane is perfect for this month.
Actually, half the year in Vientiane will be suitable for travel, so there are plenty of opportunities to feel the charm of Vientiane.
Travel Tips for Vientiane
First, when traveling in Vientiane, be sure not to inadvertently offend the customs and beliefs of the local people so as not to harm the national sentiment.
Second, like many Southeast Asian countries, Vientiane is a place with a lot of direct sunlight. Only when the sun protection work is particularly well done, one could enjoy an indulgent tour in Vientiane. Thus, highly effective sunscreen, sunglasses are essential.
Third, due to the unsatisfactory road conditions, prolonged rides and bumps make you prone to motion sickness, so it is recommended to bring medication with you. By the way, mosquitoes are more prevalent in tropical areas and also need to bring a stronger repellent.
The rest of the things are not a big deal when you travel in Vientiane; the most important thing is to always visit with a calm heart, because the enthusiasm and sincerity of the local people in Vientiane will certainly ease your worries and concerns as a tourist.