I’m In; I'm Out!

Vientiane Travel Blog

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The Presidential Palace

My roommates, Terry & Anne, and I woke up early to catch the Morning Market.  We got there too early as the shops were still closed.

1,2,3....300...301...
  :)

 

After a cup of coffee, we went back and still most shops were closed.  :( So much for the morning market. We still wandered and browsed those shops that were open.  Their handicrafts and souvenir items were great and unique but expensive!  I ended up with the usual souvenir tees.  Next to the market is the 3-storey Talat Sao Shopping Mall, their biggest mall.  I decided to leave Terry & Anne in there and do VTE sightseeing.

 

From Talat Sao, I walked along the main street of Lane Xang to see the Presidential Palace.  In front of it is the oldest standing temple of the city, Wat Si Saket.  Siamese style-Buddhist architecture, the main reason it was spared during the Thai invasion of Vientiane, this wat is interesting and worth visiting with its more than 300 Buddha images.

 

Next stop, the Black Stupa or That Dam, located in the town center.  I visited this site because I got curious since most Asian stupas are usually gold-plated while this one’s black!  When I got there, it was disappointing.

view from top of Patuxai
  The stupa is now overgrown with grass and weeds.  My LP wasn’t very informative about this structure.  Later I learned that this stupa is indeed mysterious as no one seems to know why it was built and the reason of its poor condition is that when someone tries to fix or clean it, he/she dies soon after the work has been done.  Scaary.  What caught my attention the most were the French colonial villas behind it.

 

I went back to the unfinished Patuxai or Victory Monument, commemorating the Laotians who died in the war.  Getting up close with the structure, I see some interesting details.  It would have been a more appealing if it was completed.  This time, I was able to climb the top of the monument, which allowed me 360-degree view of Vientiane.  I’m glad I went back to this eyesore with a view.

 

There’s still one sight that I must visit, Pha That Luang, which is considered as Laos’ most important national monument.  From afar, it looked like a big bling bling, shinny shimmering splendid!  It was noon time when I got there so it was really shining and shimmering!  I needed to wear sunglasses to protect my precious eyes.

The King & I.
  :)

 

It was past noon when I got out of that stupa.  I should be at the Thai embassy to meet my Pinoy group by 1 pm.  I grabbed a quick lunch at a nearby restaurant and headed to Thai embassy.

 

When I got to the Thai embassy, they’re in line to get their passports back.  We were to leave Vientiane later in the afternoon and catch the bus back to Bangkok from Nong Khai.

 

Before leaving Vientiane, Anne & I stopped by at the Vientiane Duty Free Shop because, according to her, there are lots of great bargains there.  I was really expecting to find great stuffs.  But when we got there, all I see were forfeited items.  In fairness, their iPhone Made in China was cheaper than in Greenhills.  :)

 

Then it was time to cross the border.

 

The queues were long.

 

When it was my turn to face the immigration officer, he immediately stamped my passport.

 

And so my short-lived life in VTE ended.
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The Presidential Palace
The Presidential Palace
1,2,3....300...301...
1,2,3....300...301...
view from top of Patuxai
view from top of Patuxai
The King & I.
The King & I.
traditional colonial house
traditional colonial house
Ice @ Wat Si Saket
Ice @ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
@ Wat Si Saket
Ice @ The Black Stupa
Ice @ The Black Stupa
The Black Stupa
The Black Stupa
Ice @ The Patuxai
Ice @ The Patuxai
Patuxai
Patuxai
colorful ceiling of Patuxai
colorful ceiling of Patuxai
Patuxai churva ek.
Patuxai churva ek.
inside Patuxai
inside Patuxai
inside Patuxai
inside Patuxai
view from top of Patuxai
view from top of Patuxai
on top of Patuxai
on top of Patuxai
A peep of VTE.
A peep of VTE.
finding Buddha
finding Buddha
Patuxai Park
Patuxai Park
The Pha That Luang
The Pha That Luang
golden Pha That Luang
golden Pha That Luang
The Great Sacred Stupa
The Great Sacred Stupa
@ The Great Sacred Stupa
@ The Great Sacred Stupa
@ The Great Sacred Stupa
@ The Great Sacred Stupa
Ice @ The Great Sacred Stupa
Ice @ The Great Sacred Stupa
Vientiane
photo by: skydiver