Monday, November 23, 2009

Caves and Wat Dane Soung

Located some 30 km northwest of Vientiane, Dane Soung is accessible by following the RN13 towards the direction of Luang Prabang.

After 22 km, turn left at the village of Bane Houa Khoua follow the path until you reach a small lake.

Another 3 km further down the road (just after a small bridge), after a corner, leaving the road and take the straight track, which is in fairly good condition.

The track deteriorates somewhat but remains accessible to ordinary vehicle in the dry season.

You will soon be rewarded for your efforts with some nice nature and great views once you reach the top of a large sandstone plateau.

Leave your vehicle near the temple where you can admire a magnificent footprint of Buddha carved into the stone.

Explore the surrounding by walking between and through great slabs of sandstone. Many of them host caves, which are home to some Buddha statues of various sizes and indefinite period.

Continuing your walk eastward, you soon will arrive at the eastern edge of the site that dominates the plain of Vientiane. Weather permitting, you may encounter one of them most superb views over Vientiane, the Mekong River valley and the Nam Ngum reservoir.

The small Wat is been taken care of by one single eremite living there whole year round. Enjoy a tea or some coffee with him.

You may also show him the pictures you took from the area - he might give you some hints what you missed...

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