Vientiane, the capital of Laos is a sleepy borough located by the Mekong river. It is rather a messy collection of villages than a real city. For a captial Vientiane has a little over 133,000 inhabitants. There is not much movement in the city but will soon be very active in the near future.
Laos was colonized by France in the 1890s and was part of the French Indochine (Laos, Cambodia and vietnam). The French chose Vientiane as administrative capital. Vientiane means “Sandalwood city” and is pronounced as Wieng Chan, but the French gave its “romantic” orthography to the city.
Here you can follow Floortje (the show host) to Vientiane and Luang Prabang. The video clip is about nine minutes long and in Dutch but that shouldn’t let it stop you from seeing the beauty of Vientiane and Luang Prabang (World Heritage City).
Since the collapse the Soviet Union in 1991, Laos has changed many rules and has rolled out the red carpet for foreign investors.
Vientiane is in a tempo for change. Nowhere else in Laos has modernisation gone more rapidly than in the capital. Although much of the old French style houses in the old districts have been expired and replaced, there are still plently of temples and colonial buildings to explore.
Enjoy your stay in Laos, wherever you desinations might be. While you are there, make sure you sample plenty of Lao food and Beer Lao, the best beer in Asia.