Luang Prabang Night Market – A Fascinating Site for Shopping Fans
12/01/2018 503 Views 0 Comments Brian Vu
When night falls down Luang Prabang’s central streets, numerous kinds of transportation all give away the road space for more than 300 hundred of varying stalls making up the well-known night market of this UNESCO World Heritage site. Normally, in the evening, this highly appealing market stretches approximately a kilometer along the Sisavangvong Road, which makes it deservedly one of Luang Prabang’s biggest tourist magnetisms.
Luang Prabang Night Market’s history
Being established in December, 2002 coinciding with the occasion of the Christmas, Luang Prabang Night market is initially created in order to make up a colorful market where the local craftsmen can purchase their products and foreign tourists are able to get traditional gifts in this city center. At that time, in a generally poor condition of facility with no electricity in the bazar, all of stalls had to receive the light from candles. As a result, everyone shared a similar view regarding it as the Candle Market or the Sails of Luang Prabang Market. According to the original idea, the Night Market was only taken place a couple of weeks until the end of the Christmas holiday. Nevertheless, due to its incredible success, the Night Market had a chance to go on trade activities and become more and more popular from then.
Things to See and Buy
Visiting this bustling market has listed as one of the most interesting things to see and do comparing with other ones in Laos, even in Southeast Asia. When the sunset gets started is also the moment of the Sisavangvong Road has no vehicles anymore to be turned into a lively walking and shopping street. At that period of time, the majority of sellers (some of them come from nearby Hmong Market) begin setting up their stalls.
Interestingly, all of products consisting of the textiles, quilts, shoes, silver, bags, decorative elements, and bamboo lamps in multiple shades, sizes and color are sold with fixed price, previously marked, and clearly visible. Specifically, crafts from the surrounding area's ethnic groups are also on show here, ranging from quilting, art, jewelry, ceramics, Hmong appliqué blankets, and leather to embroidered silk. Moreover, the market is full of T-shirts with Luang Prabang’s icons, prints and paintings of the town’s features, which you should consider buying souvenirs.
Undoubtedly, this is an especial occasion to admire the wealth of creativity on display for those who have ventured to Luang Prabang, where myriads of handmade items tell a story about the place and the people. Unlike any other market in Southeast Asia, the retailers here have a tendency for not harassing tourists to buy their products. In keeping with the peaceful atmosphere of the town as well as the market, the haggling about prices is quite rare, which clearly shows the remarkable Laotians’ living standard.
Things to Eat and Drink
When feeling hungry, walk down one of the side streets to look for food stalls set up like buffets, and then you can find the Night Food Market at the end of the bazar immediately. Here, a wide range of tasty street cuisine like BBQ chicken, sticky rice and a well-stocked vegetarian buffet will quickly satisfy all sightseers with no difficulty. In addition to yummy food, this market does not let its dear customers feel disappointed by serving drinks like Beer Lao, coffee and tea, especially in Sidewalk cafés.
Opening hours: 17:00 – 23:00 (depending on the weather condition)
Location: From Sisavang Vong Roand to Settathilat Road, beside Mekong River, Luang Prabang Downtown.
In a nutshell, if you are in Laos, make sure to visit this UNESCO World Heritage city and check out the Luang Prabang Night Market for all your shopping and eating delicious cuisines!