Straddling the country in between its two bigger neighbors Thailand and Vietnam, Savannakhet is a bustling trade hub boasting the largest population out of any Laotian Province, with a whole 15% of the country residing here. The majority of population are Lowland Lao, but also contains Tai Dam and Mon Khmer minorities, as well as Vietnamese and Chinese descent.
Like the rest of Central Laos, the towns don’t have a lot in the form of attractions, but it’s the surrounding natural splendor that pulls travelers to this part of Laos. Three National Park Areas grace the province, in addition to the famous Ho Chi Minh trail, the primary supply route used by the Northern Vietnamese and Vietcong during the Indochina Wars.
With its historic of early 1900’s architecture, Savannakhet town feels like a mix of Laos’ past and present. While the myriad of French villas are sadly dilapidated and begging for a renovation, they still provide a fascinating atmosphere as you explore the streets of the town. Much of the appeal in Savannakhet is exactly this, a lazy day wandering the quiet streets.