12th.February, Luang Prabang 3 – National Museum & Pak Ou Caves
Today we started at a food market which contained some appetising and some less so appetising sights followed by a visit to the national museum. This was the former palace of the last kings of Laos and was actually only completed when Luang Prabang became a world heritage site while the Vietnam war was still going on. Luang Prabang is a very attractive place and the development there is strictly controlled by UNESCO. I had hoped to see more of the monks in their bright orange robes but we only saw a few and no large groups.
The main activity for the next two days would be looking at limestone caves. A luxurious covered wooden long boat with space for least 20 people took the 3 of us with guide to the Pak Ou caves, which of course contained many Buddha statues but did not go very deep into the cliff. This was followed by a short visit to a nearby village and lunch by the river, where I spotted some water buffalo coming down for a drink. Like some of the local cows they are allowed to roam freely.
We were back at the hotel earlier today. Yesterday we had been out all day.