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Preparing to visit Luang Prabang

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Dec 10th, 2012, 01:30 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Jul 2006
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Preparing to visit Luang Prabang

I remember that there was a book that was recommended by Kathie I think, to read prior to visiting Luang Prabang. Could you tell me the title again please...also, does anyone have the name and contact information for local guides for this area? And last but not least, has anyone visited the Plain of Jars? We will be in LP for a week...is this enough time to try to include this site?
Much thanks!
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Dec 10th, 2012, 02:11 PM
  #2
 
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The book I so enjoyed before visiting LP is Stalking the Elephant Kings by Christopher Kremmer. It is long out of print, so check your library or used booksellers online.

No need for a guide in LP. Just bring your guidebook and soak up the atmosphere. You can get a tuk tuk or car and driver to take you to nearby waterfalls if that appeals, and you can take a boat to the Pak Ou caves, which we enjoyed as it is a traditional Buddhist pilgrimage site.

I haven't been to the Plain of Jars, though I would love to go. It's about a 14 hour bus trip (each way) from LP. Actually, that was true 10 years ago - who knows? they may have improved some of the roads. For us a week in LP was just perfect. I can't imagine trying to cram in the Plain of Jars in a 5 day visit.
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Dec 10th, 2012, 04:16 PM
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We will be visiting Luang Prabang in February, so I just went online to order this book. Would you believe it? The least expensive copy is from the Seattle Goodwill -- $89.68.

If you find a reasonably priced source, please let me know. Thank you Kathie for all of your great suggestions.
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Dec 10th, 2012, 04:19 PM
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Oh! I was wrong. You can get a paperback for $34. Totour -- would you like to split the cost? One of us could buy it, read it, and then sell it to the other for $14.50 -- that makes it reasonable.
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Dec 10th, 2012, 05:02 PM
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My last post on this subject: Stalking the Elephant Kings is available at our library so I'll opt for that. I also read that a more "recent" version of the book was published in 2005 and that it is more readable -- it is called "Bamboo Palace: Discovering the Lost Dynasties of Laos" but there was no public library near me that had it (and I live in a major city). Perhaps in a university library? There is also a book called "The Last Century of Lao Royalty: A Documentary History" that has a lot of photos in it which might be good.
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Dec 10th, 2012, 05:34 PM
  #6
 
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I did Phonsovan from Luang Prabang in about 8 hours by bus earlier this year. It takes most of a day to see the sites so you'd need to allow 2 nights and 3 days for the trip. I thought it was worth it and enjoyed the mountain scenery on the trip. However, its nearly half your week!
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Dec 10th, 2012, 06:48 PM
  #7
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Thanks for this valuable information....I have tried to use some restraint in planning this trip! Kathie, We took your advice and booked a Luang Say cruise to LP from the Thai side so thanks for that as well. So we will just visit CM and LP in 17 days. I have been SO tempted to squeeze in other destinations but it will be so great to settle in for a week in each place...so I will ask the library to search for this book and enjoy reading it for sure. Does anyone have a preference for a cooking school in CM? What would I do w/o this forum!!
Thanks again!
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