Laos, officially Lao People's Democratic Republic, independent state in South East Asia, bounded on the north by China and Vietnam, on the east by Vietnam, on the south by Cambodia, on the west by Thailand, and on the north-west by Myanmar (Burma). Laos is South East Asia's only landlocked nation. The total area is 236,800 sq km (91,429 sq mi). The capital and largest city of Laos is Vientiane.
Lao People's Democratic Republic
Lao (official). English, French, local dialects
Buddhist, Animisy, others
Land Area: 230,800 sq km (89,112 sq miles)
Area: 236,800 sq.km.
Population: 5.41 million
Language: Lao (official), French and English
Tropical Monsoon, Rainy Season May-November. Dry Season December-April
Laotian kip = 100 cents. Notes of kip 5,000, 2,000, 1000, 500, 100 and 50.
Banks, licensed offices, and hotels. Credit cards/traveller's cheques not widely accepted. Cash US dollars and Thai baht universally accepted. Small denominations very useful.
Office hours: 0800-1200 and 1300-1600, Monday to Friday.
220V, 50 Hz
Tipping is not customary in Laos. However, small gratuities may be given in appreciation for efficient, friendly service.
Apart from cultural shows presented at some hotels, there is no established nightlife catering to tourists.
Basic supplies are available. Observe normal courtesy when photographing people, especially monks. Avoid taking photographs at airports and military locations.
National Touirsm Authority of Lao PDR, PO Box 3556, Lane Xang Avenue, Vientiane, Tel (856-21) 212248, 212251, Fax (856-21) 212769
The most reliable information can also be usually be obtained from large travel agency offices.