Vientiane, Laos

Laos, PDR.

Backpackers and businessmen say that it stands for Please Don’t Rush, but no one seems to get the newsletter here in Vientiane. Sure, for a capital it’s not altogether that big, but it’s not a sleepy little berg, either.

Most people use Vientiane as the gateway to another destination – Luang Prabang, Bangkok or beyond – yet there are a few reasons to stop in and stay a while. The waterfront is a quaint place to watch the sun go down over the Mekong. There is no better place in the country to explore the food scene. There’s a Wat on every corner. The vertical runway is worth a look – you’ll see what I mean when you get here – and, of course, the people are friendly.

Laid back? Relaxed? No, not really. But certainly a city worth exploring.

*One of the main reasons we came to Vientiane was to shoot the Beer Laos factory as part of an assignment I’m working on. Sadly, the plant is undergoing renovations and is currently closed to the public – from what the marketing people told me, it could stay this way for up to two years! Best to call ahead before making the trip out to the factory as tuk-tuk touts charge a silly amount for the trip (haggle hard!).

 

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