In this latest series, I will be going through all the countries I’ve travelled to on my mission to visit every single country in the world. In this article, we will be covering country #24: Laos. If you haven’t gotten a chance already, read this story first to find out why I’m trying to visit all 193 UN-recognized countries.
VIDEO – Country #24: Laos
Blog post on Laos
- My Complete Philippines, Laos, and Cambodia Spending Breakdown
- 6 Places to Visit and See When You Visit Vientiane Laos
Arriving in Laos
When I arrived in Laos, I had to buy a Visa on arrival. The immigration staff was quite rude as I tried to get my Visa processed. They didn’t seem to care what kind of passport photo I have as long as I gave them one. Also, Canadians seem to pay quite a bit and charged us $42 USD to enter the country.
While I was going through immigration, they asked me which accommodation I was staying at and I told them the Backpackers Garden Hostel. The immigration staff started laughing when I told them what my accommodation was and let me through. (The hostel is not much to look at)
After settling in the Garden Hostel, I arranged a tuk-tuk driver to show me around the city the next day. (It cost me 80,000 Kip which is about $13.33 CAD)
Laos city tour
My friendly tuk-tuk driver came to pick me up the next day. He spoke no English but he was friendly enough.
The first stop is to see the Patuxai monument where he drove around it as I took pictures of it.
I also saw a chicken fast-food chain that looks exactly like Church’s Chicken in Canada except it’s called Texas Chicken. After looking it up online, Texas Chicken is owned by Church’s Chicken! Maybe the name “churches” doesn’t go well in non-Christian countries.
The That Luang Stupa was my next stop except they wouldn’t let me in! Apparently, the president of Singapore was inside and all tourists were forbidden to visit during this state visit.
On the way to the Lao Museum, we quickly drove by That Dam which is another popular landmark in Vientiane.
Lao National Museum
The most popular touristy spot in Vientiane is probably the Lao National Museum. When you first enter, it seems like the museum was made by high school kids putting together a science fair.
But, as you progress through the museum, it quickly becomes an anti-American propaganda museum. This actually made the museum neat as they try to paint westerners as evildoers.
After finishing up with the museum, my tuk-tuk driver drove me back to my hostel.
Biking around Vientiane
However, I felt like I missed some spots in Vientiane and so I proceeded to rent a bicycle from the hostel I was staying at. The hostel was pretty crappy and it definitely hurts my back riding it. But, I can’t complain, I was staying in a budget hostel after all.
The first spot I biked towards is the presidential palace.
I don’t think I could enter so I went to the next spot which is Wat Si Saket. This Wat is fairly neat and I went around the grounds before wrapping up my city tour of Vientiane.
To be honest, Laos is probably one of the most boring countries I have visited during my 1 year trip around the world. And this is totally my fault. Looking in hindsight, I think I should have visited the Plain of Jars. But back then, I was trying to save my money because I needed it to last one year.
Thankfully, I have a second passport now that lets me in Laos Visa-free so I will definitely return one day and visit the infamous Plain of Jars.