Laos, a Land of A Million Elephants, is different from elsewhere due to the extremely peaceful and natural charm. The backpackers worldwide are welcomed to travel to Laos, and if you are about to pack and go to Vientiane, spend time reading the following pieces of information. It is not a waste of time at all.
Inexpensive accommodation in Vientiane
Vientiane has many hotels and guesthouses at the average rates (only from USD$8 to USD$12/night). Some of the most recommended places to lay the heads in this city are Long Dao, Riverside Hotel Ban Mixay, Saysouly Guesthouse, Kounxavan Guesthouse, Vongpanya Guesthouse, Suan Phao Guesthouse, etc., according to the experienced backpackers. For the best deals, it’s smart to do research on the websites of Agoda or Booking to figure out many other choices and get promotions. Just a few minutes of surfing on the authentic websites, you are likely to come up with the most reasonable deals of accommodation in Vientiane, perfectly for the tight-budget backpackers.
Best Food to eat in Vientiane
The city offers dozens of appetizing dishes to please the guests, and you will come across many attractive food carts during the walking routes in the capital city. But to narrow down your list of the best food to eat in Vientiane, and ensure that you don’t miss the elites, get to know the delicious names.
First, Laos’s sticky rice is consumed every day in this country. It is made from the glutinous rice grown in the fertile farmland, resulting in its soft and sticky taste as well as the white grains. Often, the sticky rice is served with the grilled chicken, boiled vegetables, and “Cheo boong” – the special sauce which is fragrant and yummy. It’s great that you can enjoy the dish in almost every restaurant and eatery throughout the capital city on your Laos Tours, making sure that you know how delectable the Laos’s sticky rice is. The price of this delicacy is just 15.000 kips/set.
Second, Laap is a must to have in Laos as this is the culinary symbol of the country, just like “Pho” of Vietnam. The experience might turn to be incomplete if you miss a chance to taste Laap. In general, the ingredient of this specialty can be chicken, beef, or pork. The meat is then minced and spiced with lemon juice, chili, etc., and steamed for a period. After being mixed well, Laap is served with the fresh vegetables that bring the unique taste to bewitch the foodies. The backpackers should always relish Laap. Not only does it have the fantastic flavor, but it is also not expensive at all. Just pay around 30.000 kips to experience the very nice culinary joy.
Third, the grilled Savannakhet Garden Chicken has a dominant role in the whole picture of Laos Cuisine. The menus of the restaurants and food carts in the capital city predominantly have it. The chicken is raised in the rural and spacious garden areas where they can freely run. This makes the chicken meat tough, aromatic, and succulent. Once the chicken is made clean, it is put into the bamboo stick and laid on the charcoal stoves to be grilled until it is well cooked. This attractive food will take around 50.000 kip away your backpack.
Fourth, Khausoy is the favorite of many backpackers alike who look for the great thing to fulfill their stomachs in Laos. A bowl of khausoy includes the minced pork, garlic, tomato, and a variety of spices, giving it the taste similar to “Vietnamese Pho” but there is something different. So, put your backpack alongside and enjoy a bowl of khausoy to refill your energy before going on. Backpacking in Laos has never done by anybody with the empty stomach.
Fifth, greaves packed in vegetable leaves is the exceptional food in this destination. The crunchy greaves are available for sales in most of the grocery stores in the market. This is the ideal kind of snacks for the backpackers as the price for a pack is only 10.000 kips. The wrapped greaves should be dipped into “cheo boong” sauce.
Sixth, Tam Maak Hung refers to a kind of papaya salad which functions as the indispensable item in the Laos’s family meals. The papaya is made into the small slices and pounded lightly. Then, the slices are mixed with lemon juice, shrimp paste, pepper, chili, and eggplant. This yummy kind of papaya salad is the best food to have when you are drinking the Laos beers or eating the Laos sticky rice. The price for a plate of Tam Maak Hung is around 30.000 kips.
Top Sites for Backpackers to See in Vientiane
Pha That Luang (or the Great Stupa) is the most impressive gilded Buddha Stupa in the capital city. Around 4km from Vientiane, the Stupa is 45m high and look highly outstanding to become the official symbol of Laos. Legendarily, this religious center is said to enshrine the Buddha relics and images. Vientiane Backpacking list should always have a line for this landmark.
Wat Si Muang is the not-to-miss attraction to witness the religious mixture of animist and Theravada Buddhism. The inside of the temple is lavish and graceful with the gold-carved pillars and attractively painted scenes telling the Buddha’s stories. Wat Si Muang is the preferred worshipping venue of both locals and visitors who believe that the intangible power can make wishes true.
Laos National Museum offers the fantastic setting for the backpackers to gain some pieces of knowledge about the nation’s history from the prehistoric period to the modern time. The museum was erected in 1925, with the former name was Laos Revolutionary Museum. Backpacking in Vientiane is informative when you see lots of artifacts and pictures of the destinations throughout history milestones (Siamese invasion, French colonial era, American War, etc.)
Talat Sao Market is the ideal place to buy various objects in the capital city. There are many lovely shops, food carts, restaurants, etc., which suit the backpackers’ various needs.
The backpacker guide to Vientiane above can facilitate your exploration to this sleepy yet beautiful destination. Note down the names of accommodation, food, and attractions to check them out soon.
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