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Wat Xieng Thong

Wat Xieng Thong

 Area:                 329,314 sqkm

 Population:     94.5 million

 Capital:  Luang Phrabang

 Language:       Lao

 Currency:         Kip

Luang Phrabang,

Wat Xieng Thong Overview
Wat Xieng Thong site is located on the peninsula of Luang Prabang, is a Buddhist temple or monastery regarded as one of the most important religious sites in Laos. It has historical and artistic significance as well. On a site including flowers, trees and shrubs there are 20 structures including shrines and residences. It dates back to the 16th Century and remained a royal temple until 1975 and Lao kings were all crowned there.
 
There has been some restoration work and with Laos and its rich history and culture now in the spotlight that seems certain to continue. Our Laos travel guide certainly hopes so you have expert experience in Laos tour
Wat Xieng Thong History
The Wat Xieng Thong, "monastery of the golden city", is the religious emblem of Luang Prabang and one of the highest symbols of Buddhism in Laos which was the reason why it was spared from the plunder of 1887.
 
It was considered as the architectural reference of Luang Prabang with a very pointed vihan which comes down very low . Beginning until 1975, when the monarchy was terminated, Xieng Thong was under royal patronage. The king, his family, and others, built, embellished and maintained its many structures. It is impossible to know its original form, since doubtless there were numerous changes to the original buildings through the centuries. 

Fortunately it was spared destruction during the Chinese Black Flag maurader invasion of the city in 1887, when part of the city and many of its monasteries were damaged or destroyed. The leader of the invaders, Deo Van Tri (Kham Oun in Laotian), was in his youth a novice monk at the wat and used it as his headquarters.

Wat Xieng Thong is one of the most important of Lao monasteries and remains a significant monument to the spirit of religion, royalty and traditional style of a fascinating city. There are over twenty structures on the grounds including shrines, pavilions and residences, in addition to its gardens of various flowers, ornamental shrubs and trees. Many of the structures are notable, in addition to the magnificent sim, several deserve special attention.
Wat Xieng Thong climate and best time to visit
Laos holiday packages are most popular during the months after the monsoon rains finish at the end of October. They do not return until May. There are visitors during the wet season though some of the roads are difficult after heavy rain.
Wat Xieng Thong Transportation
The temple Wat Xieng Thong Nam Khan is located at the end of the historic city of Luang Prabang, Laos, in the Khem Khong Street, opposite the Mekong River and very close to the river.
 
In this area of the city of Luang Prabang , there are no buses, therefore to visit Temple Wat Xieng Thong alternatives are walking from the Royal Palace, or use a tuk-tuk, where the race to the Wat Xieng Thong Temple will cost about 20,000 kip (approx. €2).

There is an airport that has flights from most of Laos’ neighbours. Some people on Indochina tour packages may in fact use buses and the border crossings to get to Luang Prabang. River transport is another alternative depending on the holiday in Laositinerary.
 

Things to do and see in Wat Xieng Thong
The best example of the beauty of the Buddhist architecture of Luang Prabang is the Wat Xieng Thong Temple. This Wat Xieng Thong Temple, built in the year 1560 and whose literal translation means Temple of the Golden City, is a masterpiece decorated with mosaics and carvings in wood that Nam Khan rises next to the Mekong River and the River in the historic centre of the city of Luang Prabang (Laos).
 
The city of Luang Prabang Wat Xieng Thong Temple is also known by the names of Wat Xieng Thong Ratsavoravihanh, Golden City Temple, the Golden tree Temple and Volavihan Temple.
 
Wat Xieng Thong is a small temple built in the year 1560 by mandate of King Setthathirath along the banks of the Mekong River and the Nam Khan River passing through the city of Luang Prabang, the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Laos. Wat Xieng Thong set is composed of more than 20 structures which include chapels, churches, ordination halls and stupas.
 
Wat Xieng Thong was used from its origins as a Royal Temple where are they crowned the Kings of Laos and also as monastery. The temple is known as the gate of the city as the official Royal departed and arrived at this place. After the fall of the monarchy in Laos at the hands of the party communist Pathet Lao in 1975, Temple Wat Xieng Thong was used as a Royal Temple.
 
The temple has been destroyed and rebuilt on several occasions, then it should be noted that Wat Xieng Thong was little that sobrevio to the Chinese looters of the black flag in 1887.
Wat Xieng Thong major remodeling took place in the year 1960, trying to preserve its original essence, the roofs were repaired, painted carvings were restored, was awarded a golden color bath and mosaics were added.
 
Decorated with mosaics of incalculable value, ornamented with carvings in wood only in Buddhism and rare treasures as a funeral carriage of 12 meters, the temple Wat Xieng Thong is one of the stars of the city of Luang Prabang.
 
 
The Tree of Life
 
The most valuable and well known legacy of the temple Wat Xieng Thong is a mosaic in a tree called the tree of life, representing the legend of construction of the temple Wat Xieng Thong.
The tree of life mosaic is made of glass of Red, work of a master craftsman Lao in the year 1960, posted on the back of the main temple wall of Wat Xieng Thong.
 
Legend of how the tree of life mosaic has built the temple Wat Xieng Thong, whose legend has it that 2 hermits decided to create the temple next to a tree of fire on the banks of the river.
 
The funeral carriage
 
One of unique relics that keeps the temple Wat Xieng Thong is a funeral carriage, the carriage is located in a building decorated with teak wood carvings painted in golden color of exquisite detail, these wood carvings depicting scenes from the book Holy Ramayana.
 
The funeral carriage once toured the streets of the city of Luang Prabang, carrying the mortal remains of the last Kings of Laos. It impresses the detail of the float with the 7-headed serpent.
 
This carriage, whose name is Royal cremation chariot, carries an urn containing the remains of the last Kings of Laos.
 
The chariot of cremation occupies the entire space, leaving only a small hole next to the walls occupied by statues of Buddha. The walls are decorated with mosaics representing everyday scenes of life in Laos.
 
The ordination hall of Wat Xieng Thong
 
The most important building of all who make up Wat Xieng Thong is the ordination Hall, main building decorated in wood and whose rear façade is the tree of life.
 
The most impressive of the ordination Hall are roofs on three levels that descend almost to touch the ground, with the rising of the Sun, Golden wood carvings show all its brilliance and splendor, a very nice contrast dark wood with carved gilded counterpart of the mosaics in blue base glass.
 
Wat Xieng Thong Travel Tips
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