At the height of 150 metres, Phousi Hill, which means “sacred hill”, a distinctive cut on the Luang Prabang skyline, is the host to many temples and also the best place to watch sunrise or sunset in the city.
Mount Phou Si, also named Phu Si, is a remarkable 100-meter hill that dominates the Luang Prabang skyline. The mountain’s name is directly translated to ‘sacred mountain’ which becomes both spiritual and geographical soul of the charming city. From the top of this World Heritage City, you will be rewarded with the 360° panoramic speculator views of the densely lush mountains prevailing over the restful rivers.
The top temple at the Mount Phousi
The first inevitable activity while getting to the Mount is climbing to the top hill. This might not suit those who have health issues with mobility and endurance. There are two stairways on either side of the hill. The first path is opposite Royal Palace Museum on Sisavongvang Road near the night markets. This route up contains 328 steps and nothing much to contemplate. That’s the reason why visitors popularly choose the second way despite its higher route up.
The 328-step pathway to the Mount Phousi
Starting next to the Khan River on Thanon Phousi, the 355-step staircase is worth taking your time to soak in numerous significant cultural sites including a reclining Buddha, a multi-headed serpent, a few seated Buddha images calling for rain, meditating or holding alms bowls and a footprint of Buddha.
The preferred stairs up to the Mount
When setting foot on the summit, you should spend time visiting a small cave temple called Wat Chom Si and a 24-meter golden Buddha stupa constructed in 1804 by King Anourat. People often bring or buy blessings like flowers and incense to pay respect to the Buddha.
From the epic views of Mount Phou Si, both the sunrise and sunset are treasured moments to capture. During daylight, if you desire a great snapshot, it’s highly recommended to get there before dawn around 4:30 am to avoid the bustling. There is a famous rocky outcrop on Instagram to check-in and a special ceremony when the monks receive their daily alms in the streets to watch. Nevertheless, a truly mesmerizing experience is the marvellous sunset at dusk when the fading sunlight gradually changes into golden hues over the alley.
The panoramic view from Mount Phousi
Located on a peninsula surrounded by the Nam Khan and Mekong Rivers, it’s convenient to get Phou Si by foot or tuk-tuk from the central city. This site opens daily from 7am to 6pm but actually, you can behold the majestic panorama from dawn till dusk. You will pay 20,000 kip entrance fee halfway up.