Where to stay in Luang Prabang

Where to stay in Luang Prabang

Where to stay in Luang Prabang, the cradle of religion and spirituality

Even if you’ve never considered going on a spiritual journey, Luang Prabang may awaken your inner religious enthusiast. Although this picturesque little town is hidden in the north of Laos, it has been one of the most beloved destinations in Asia for decades. With so many temples and gorgeous villas, it looks like a place from a fairy tale. It’s known for its laid back lifestyle, so it’s an ideal place to leave all your worries behind. If you’re wondering where to stay in Luang Pang, don’t worry—we’ve got you covered. 

Photo credit: wherewemakememories

5 best neighborhoods to stay in Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang is an incredibly small place, and you can get anywhere you like on foot. Since you don’t have to worry about convenience, you can choose the neighborhood to stay in based on your own interests. To help you out, we have made a list of our top neighborhoods:

  1. Wat Mai
  2. Nam Khan Riverfront
  3. Wat Xiengthong
  4. Old Quarter
  5. Pakham

Where to stay in Luang Prabang

Best for the first time Wat Mai The central neighborhood in the Old Quarter where you will find all major landmarks
Best on a budget Nam Khan Riverfront An affordable area with lots of interesting places to visit
Best for bohemian souls Wat Xiengthong A gorgeous area near the estuary with interesting bars and sights
Best for nightlife Old Quarter The historical heart of the city with several great restaurants and bars
Best for expats Pakham A peaceful neighborhood close to the Old Quarter but away from the tourist crowds

Photo credit: elena_wuest

Where to stay in Luang Prabang for the first time: Wat Mai

Wat Mai is a small neighborhood in the heart of the Old Quarter, close to the Mekong waterfront. This area is Luang Prabang’s main tourist center and home to gorgeous sites. You will find temples, gardens, and monuments at every corner. It is also the most crowded part of the city and home to fantastic cafes and restaurants. As it is one of the most central areas, we recommend it to first-time visitors.

Best landmarks to visit in Wat Mai

The best thing about Wat Mai is that it is packed with all sorts of entertainment and sightseeing spots. You can visit many temples, go shopping, or even ride an elephant. Here are some of our favorite places to visit:

  • Wat Mai Monastery
  • The Royal Palace Museum
  • Haw Pha Bang
  • The Night Market
  • Elephant Village Sanctuary & Resort

The Royal Palace Museum

The Royal Palace was built under the French colonial rule for King Sisavang Vong. After the revolution that ended the monarchy, the palace was turned into a museum. It contains artifacts of immense value, as well as an impressive royal car collection. 

Photo credit: archanarjun

Where to stay in Luang Prabang on a budget: Nam Khan Riverfront

The mainland part of the Nam Kham Riverfront is an amazing place away from the tiring tourist crowds. As it is outside the Old Quarter, the prices are quite affordable. Still, it is close to the city center and you can get to the major sights on foot. 

What to see and do on Nam Kham Riverfront

Just because Nam Kham Riverfront is not the epicenter of the town’s attractions, it doesn’t mean that you will get bored in this neighborhood. This area has a lot to offer, especially in terms of sightseeing. Check out these places that we highly recommend:

  • Wat Misunarat
  • The Old French Bridge
  • Wat Mamorom
  • Traditional Arts and Ethnology Center

The Old French Bridge

The Old French Bridge is one of the most notable attractions in Luang Prabang. Although the bridge was poorly built, and only motorcycles and pedestrians can cross it, it has its charms. The view from the bridge is amazing, so you will be able to take some Instagram-worthy shots. 

Photo credit: unpetitboutdechemin

Where to stay in Luang Prabang for bohemian souls: Wat Xiengthong

The neighborhood surrounding the Wat Xiengthong temple is a place any bohemian at heart will appreciate. It is located at the very tip of the peninsula. Wat Xiengthong area is known for its many bars and restaurants, as well as several temples. It also includes a beautiful park where nature lovers can relax.

What to see and do in Wat Xiengthong area

In Wat Xiengthong, you can do all sorts of relaxing activities, from temple hopping to shopping and pampering yourself in a spa center. You will also see amazing restaurants where you can give local snacks a try. If you’re not sure where to go first, check out these amazing places:

  • Wat Xieng Thong temple
  • Burasari Heritage
  • Riverview Park
  • Le Banneton
  • Queen Design Lao

Wat Xieng Thong temple

Wat Xieng Thong is one of the most breathtaking temples in Luang Prabang. Known as the Temple of the Golden City, it was built back in the 16th century. It is a wonderful representative of Laos craftsmanship and religious devotion. 

Photo credit: pattdevdex

Where to stay in Luang Prabang for nightlife: Old Quarter

The Old Quarter is the town’s historic center and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The whole quarter is packed with wonderful sights and temples to explore. It is where the most lively neighborhoods are located, which is why we recommend it to nightlife lovers.

Where to go out in the evening in the Old Quarter

Luang Prabang isn’t a place where you can party all night long. Most places are quiet and the closing time is around 11 pm. Still, there are several great bars and restaurants where you can enjoy your evenings after a long day of sightseeing. Here are some places that have a good evening atmosphere:

  • Icon Klub
  • Chez Matt
  • Sa Sa Sunset Cruise Bar
  • Tangor Restaurant Bar & Lounge

Sa Sa Sunset Cruise and Bar

The only thing better than sipping a delicious drink is sipping it while watching the sunset from a boat. Sa Sa Sunset cruises are known for delicious food, interesting music, and an overall uplifting vibe. It’s a perfect ending to a beautiful day. 

Photo credit: krausedav