Interesting Things to do with family in Laos
Calling itself “The Jewel of the Mekong”, the country of Laos boasts plenty of wide open spaces, picturesquescenery and a laid-back populace. Laos has room for everyone as this country is the least densely populated one in Southeast Asia!
In addition to enjoying a good swim or going shopping in the local markets, there are also other interesting things that families can do on a visit to Laos:
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Visit the COPE Museum in Laos
The fact that Laos is one of the most heavily bombed countries in the history of warfare is less known among tourists. It is unfortunate geography left Laos stuck in the middle of the America-Vietnam War.
Until today, UXO or Unexploded Ordinance is still a big problem in Laos. People estimate that between 1964 and 1973, there were more than 260 million cluster bombs rained down on northern Laos. People also estimate that 78 million of them remain unexploded.
As being discovered lying dormant in the earth, usually by farmers ỏ children, UXO causes injuries and deaths every year. These accidents are especially devastating in a country where medical care is inadequate.
On a “pay what you can” basis, the Cooperative Orthotic and Prosthetic Enterprise, the COPE Center is a non-profit organization that provides mobility devices and prosthetics for those in need. Not only providing community training and education, COPE also offers support for national staff to provide the best services possible.
Being a thought provoking tour, the COPE Museum is suitable for travelers of all ages. In addition to seeing deactivated UXO on display in artful arrangements, visitors are also able to try out some tricycles and wheel chairs designed specifically for developing countries, go inside a replica of a typical Lao house as well as learning more about the programs at COPE. You can find COPE books, t-shirts and handicrafts at the gift shop. Before leaving, do not miss a chance to visit the ice cream stand!
Explore Patuxay Victory Monument
Patuxay Victory Monument, which was modeled after the Arch de Triumph in France and constructed in the 1960s, purportedly out of cement donated by America for the goals of building an airport, has earned its snarky nickname “the Vertical Runway.” With an admission price of less than fifty cents per person, you can climb to the top of the monument to get an incredible birds-eye view of down town Vientiane. When climbing, you can leisurely shop for amazing souvenirs such as handicraft and t-shirts, sold on three different levels of the structure.
Surrounded by a park, Patuxay attracts many locals to come to exercise in every evening.
Once being on the outskirts of Vientiane, being invited to a catch-and-release fish farm will be memorable experience. Although not expecting a cultural experience, you will turn up on the day of a tournament. A handful of bread crumbs, squished and compacted around a metal frame, with a hook in there somewhere is the bait of choice. Although may catch nothing, your children can have a way more fun than you anticipate. Tours in Vietnam
Trek to Buddha Park
Located on the outer edge of town, close to the Thai and Lao border crossing, Buddha Park, which was constructed in 1958 by a very imaginative monk called Bunleua Sulilat, includes big sculptures of both Buddhist and Hindu deities. Besides a lot of space for children to run around, there is also an outdoor restaurant where you can enjoy a snack break. It costs about 40 cents per person for the entrance to the park.
A large concrete dome which can be accessible from the bottom is the central attraction. Once getting inside and spiraling up to the top, you can view countless sculptures depicting aspects of creation, hell and heaven. Although far above the ground with no guard rails, the highest point is a bit harrowing, the view of the park is exceptional.
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