Alms Giving to the Monks

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We flew from Bangkok to Luang Prabang, a 2 hour flight on a prop plane of Lao Airlines
Approaching Luang Prabang we could see the Mekong River winding through the area.
And beautiful green mountains - a nice change from the flat terrain of previous stops.
Luang Prabang Airport
Tuk-tuks are the main transportation as buses are not allowed in the downtown area.
Sada Hotel
The rooms were spacious with very large beds with beautiful teak headboards and teak floors and ceilings.
Nice bath area
The Royal Temple Wat Xieng Thong. Originally built of wood in 1560, it was reconstructed in brick and stucco following a fire in the late 19th century.
The walls have pictures done in glass imported from Japan
They tell the story of the lives of the Lao people and their king and queen.
The House of the Funeral Carriage contains a huge golden carriage with golden urns that hold the ashes of the last king and queen.



While we were visiting the temple, young monk novices came to play their instruments as a call to prayer.

Phousi Hill in the center of old town. Climbing 328 steps to the top provides a view of Luang Prabang.
View of the night market from the steps.
Every night, vendors set up their stalls down the main street in the old town to sell local handicrafts.
Fresh smoothies for sale.

Pop up greeting cards

Visit to local village to learn about their paper and textile making traditions.
Silk production.
Silk worms eating mulberry leaves
Rhoda and Shery try their hand at mashing mulberry bark.
The mashed mulberry bark is mixed with water to make a thick paste and put in a frame. Flower petals and leaves are placed in the frame and dried to make paper.
The finished product after drying
Paper products for sale.
Weavers use the silk threads to produce beautiful scarves.
We took a cruise on the Mekong River, one of the longest rivers in the world.
The Mekong is home to many species of giant fish, including 600 pound catfish.
We stopped along the river to a rural village known for producing a local rice whiskey.
We tasted the 100 proof variety and the 15 and 30 proof. The latter tasted like sweet wine.
The whiskey with giant scorpions marinating in it is supposed to have medicinal qualities.
Whiskey with snakes also has medicinal qualities.
Weavers in the village make beautiful fabrics.
Babies sleep while mothers work.
Cheers leads us back to the boat.
Fixing his fishing net
A stop at Pak Ou Cave
The cave contains over 5000 Buddha statues.
Every year from the 16th century until 1975, the king and people from Luang Prabang made a pilgrimage to the caves as part of the new year relligious observance.
The king commissioned artisans to creat images of Buddha to place in the cave.
View of the Mekong from the Cave
We were served lunch on board the boat while cruising back down the river to our starting point.
Cheers gave us a lesson in the Lao alphabet and language.

To learn more about our trip around Luang Prabang, go to the Luang Prabang Newsletter. To view the next photo gallery, go to Luang Prabang Photo Gallery II.

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