- Location: extreme north of Laos
Population: 199,900 people (2004)
Area: 16,270 square kilometers
Strong influence of China in culture
Highlight: four season in a single day
Attraction: Distinguish Wat Ou-Tai temple
Phongsali is located in the northern most of the country and shares the border with Yunnan province (China) and Dien Bien province (Vietnam). Thanks to the favorable position, Phongsali is an important economic hub in the country in particular and Indochina in general.
Phongsali has the total area of 16,270 square kilometers and the population of over 174,000 people. This province is famous for diverse nature, diverse ethnics and diverse culture.
Located at the height of 450 – 1800 meters above sea-level, Phongsali is endowed with “four seasons in a single day”, cold mornings and evenings, humidity during the day, and rains in the afternoon. Forests make up 77% percents of total area which make the whole province is covered by the immense green of forest and mountain. Standing on the top of Phou Fa Mountain at the height of 1,625 meters, tourists will be overwhelmed by the spectacular beauty of Phongsali with undulating mountains and untouched green to the horizon.
Coming to this province, tourists will have chance to visit many attractive destinations. Wat Ou-Tai Temple is one of not-to-be-missed places. Located in remote Ban Ou-Tai village and constructed over 500 years, Wat Ou-Tai temple preserves its featured ancient architecture. . Each wooden column of the monastery stands on stones, with beautiful drawings and decorated with daggers, swords, flowers and flags entirely crafted from wood. Besides the monastery, there is a shrine, constructed from brick. WatLuang Ou-Neua Templeis also an old and highly revered temple built about 500 years ago in Ban Ou Neua village. The temple has a double overlapping roof in the Lue architecture style and is very impressive. The temple is adorned with traditional fine art techniques and houses. A large Buddha image and small Buddha statues are deified inside this temple.
Besides visiting ancient temples, when coming to Phongsali, tourists will enjoy exploring the lives of ethnic minorities in the mountain, experience sleeping in the tree and tasting the delicious food made from forest products. Phongsali is also an ideal place for hiking, mountain climbing, trekking through mountains. Discovering the diverse culture of more than 13 ethnic minorities will be unforgettable memories for tourists.