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Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

St. Louis
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Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

My husband and I are planning on being in Luang Prabang in mid-April. We just discovered that the 4 days that we are going to be there coincide with the lunar New Year celebration. We're wondering if that is a good time to be there or if we should adjust our plans to avoid being there during this time. We were looking forward to being able to relax in Luang Prabang and are wondering if the celebration will make this difficult. Any thoughts, experiences or suggestions are most appreciated.

sydney
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1. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

these threads might shed some light for you

tripadvisor.com.au/ShowTopic-g293950-i11502-…

tripadvisor.com.au/ShowTopic-g295415-i9321-k…

Vientiane
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2. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

Well you won't relax that much as the Pi Mai can get hectic. It is worth seeing, however, and Luang Prabang is quieter in the afternoons than most other places in Lao.

Vientiane, Laos
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3. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

It is the busiest time of year in LP, and during Pimai you won't be able to walk down the street during the day without getting drenched with water. It is an interesting time to see LP, but not a relaxing one.

If you are looking for relaxation during Pimai, stay away from all main centres as this is the biggest national holiday - maybe book into a quiet resort for a few days, and see LP after the holiday.

St. Louis
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4. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

Thanks for the reply. Are you saying that even early in the am we won't be able to walk down the main streets without getting drenched? We are booked into Le Bel Air which is not downtown but a little bit outside of town on the river. Do you think that will be more calm and quiet? We were hoping to explore the area by bicycle. Is that realistic? Thanks for your help

Vientiane
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5. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

Yes, that is what he is saying. The watr\er throwing stops about 2pm in Luang Prabang - not in other places though. You can ride a bike, but people will throw water over you.

Edited: 6:58 pm, February 20, 2012
London, United...
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6. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

I stayed at Le Bel Air. Lovely place, I was there Last year and went out on the hotel shuttle bus with other members of staff. It's a great time to visit but will not be relaxing if you hit the main parts of town. Even cycling out of the drive way a little girl was waiting to soak me every morning :-)

St. Louis
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7. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

Dizuk,

Thanks for sharing your experience at the Bel Air. What if we bike places outside of town? Will that be a way to get away from the crowds? We were also hoping to be able to go swimming in the falls outside of town. Will that still be possible or much more difficult do to all of the people there for the celebration? I suppose there are good things about being there during this time, it's just not something that we purposely planned. It just happened that way with our itinerary.

Vientiane, Laos
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8. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

You will still be able to go to the falls - there are 2 of them to visit, Tad Sae and Kwuang Si, and you will be able to relax and swim there, although it will be busier than usual. You can get tuktuk/songthaew transport easily from anywhere on the LP peninsula.

People throw water everywhere in laos over PiMai, not just in downtown areas. I've had Pimai in rural parts of savannakhet and saravan provinces on 2 occasions and there were even people in the forest miles from a sealed road waiting to soak you.

You will be able to do the various day trips from LP without too much hassle though - it shouldnt stop you going and enjoying it.

London, United...
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9. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

Donclim,

After visiting LP in 2010 we purposely came back to experience new year and we wanted to get involved. What I found is that after returning home at about 4pm and getting changed and going back into town just after sunset the soakings subsided.

As has been mentioned you could organise tours out of town but still run the risk of getting wet. I have a great photo of another tourist in a mac looking terribly out of place in the celebrations. The wetter you get the luckier you'll be apparently. It won be a shame to miss out.

I loved the bel air and mr somnuek and mrs noy run a tight ship.

I don't know if mr somnuek has opened his other hotel yet, just up the road.

If you want a supply of beerlao just over the bridge is a shop that sells them for 9000 kip. Also If you don't mind the walk across when coming home of an evening it's easier to get a tuk tuk to the other side of the old bridge and walk across rather than paying more to go out of the way. When walking it only takes 15-20 mins from hotel to night market.

Enjoy! One of my most favourite cities in the world, so far :-)

St. Louis
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10. Re: Luang Prabang in April during the lunar New Year?

Thanks for all of your helpful information. We are now committed to going to Luang Parbang during the festivities. i have an underwater camera that I think might come in handy for this visit to Luang Prabang.