Ho Pra Keo (Haw Phra Kaew)

Attraction Haw Pha Kaeo Published on: 13-11-2015

1 hour
08:00 AM - 04:00 PM
09:00 AM
10:00 AM
First-time visit
Must see
Temple & Monument
1.00 USD

Ho Pra Keo (Haw Phra Kaew) is good for

Good for family with kids Family with kids Good
Good for senior Senior Good
Good for couple Couple Good
Good for solo Solo Good
Good for group Group Good
  • Highly recommended by fellow travellers.
The Ho Pha keo Temple is one of the oldest temples of the Laotian capital. It was a real temple whose purpose was to accommodate the famous Emerald Buddha.

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Why Ho Pra Keo (Haw Phra Kaew) is special ?

Vientiane boasts several beautiful temples or wats, but one of the most impressive and interesting of them is Wat Ho Phra Keo. It was originally constructed in 1565 as the Lao royal family’s personal chapel, and as a home for the Emerald Buddha after it was snatched from northern Siam (Thailand). This sacred jade statue was reclaimed by the Siamese in 1778 and now sits in Wat Phra Kaew in Bangkok.

Even without the Emerald Buddha, however, Ho Phra Keo is well worth a visit. The only part of the old royal palace that has survived, the temple is no longer used for religious purposes and is now a museum. The Temple of the Emerald Buddha, as it is often known in English, is richly adorned with carved wooden features, a magnificent 16th century lacquered door with Hindu carvings, numerous Khmer stone carvings and a variety of Buddha statues.

The stone balustrade of each of the temple stairs features a dragon with its head facing the grounds, guarding the sacred building. The shady, well-kept garden is an oasis of calm that offers a welcome respite from the sun and a quiet place to meditate or simply rest.

Source: Source: http://www.visit-mekong.com/

What to explore at Ho Pra Keo (Haw Phra Kaew)?

On its veranda you will see some of the finest examples of Buddhist sculpture in Laos. 

Although it is relatively new, the Bangkok-rococo style structure has a distinctly traditional look. 

The interior of the temple is now a museum that houses many Lao treasures such as a gilded throne, Khmer Buddhist stone tablets, wooden carvings, bronze frog drums and palm-leaf manuscripts. 

The neatly tended garden contains colourful flowers, lush green lawns and charming statues set among the shady trees.

Source: Source: Source: http://www.visit-mekong.com/

How to get to Ho Pra Keo (Haw Phra Kaew)?

 As is the case with Vientiane’s other attractions, Ho Phra Keo is just a short stroll, bicycle ride or tuk-tuk trip from other parts of the city centre. From the main entertainment and business district, head east along Thanon Setthathilath or Thanon Fa Ngum, which runs along the river, and you will find the majestic Wat Ho Phra Keo in a tree-filled compound just after the Presidential Palace. 

Wat Ho Phra Keo is situated on the corner of Thanon Setthathilath and Thanon Mahosot. It is next to the Presidential Palace and across the road from Wat Si Saket. Mahosot Hospital is on the opposite side of Thanon Mahosot. 

Source: http://www.visit-mekong.com/

Selling points

  • “The royal temple of Vientiane”
  • “Former Home to the Emerald Buddha”
  • “One of the best Vientiane temples”
  • “Temple in garden - newly built ”
  • “Interesting Architecture”
3 days in Vientiane for backpackers

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3.0 days
789.16 USD
Total travel distance
Number of places
25 places




Haw Pha Kaeo

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Tips for you

  • There are monks to pray with and get blessed by if you are interested.
    Things to do
  • Need to dress modestly.
    What to wear
  • You need to do some reading before coming here because there is virtually no information about anything presented.
  • Although it is no longer a place of worship, it is still a very sacred place in Laos
  • The temple is open from 08:00 to 12:00 and 13:00 to 16:00 every day.
  • It is also sometimes spelled Haw Phra Keow, Ho Prakeo or Ho Phra Kaew.
  • The Haw Pha Kaeo Temple is located in the center of Vientiane ( Laos) to the Sisaket temple, a few meters from the Lang Xang Avenue in the Street Hospital109.
  • Right next door to the Presidential Palace.
    Things nearby


TripAdvisor View more

I arrived at this place at about 5pm,unfortunately it was closed to visitors.It is set in a large garden with rows of flower plants.The architecture of the temple was nice with bright ornamental paintings.Since the place was closed,I could only see some wood carvings at the entrance of the temple.The compound is large and there is ample place to relax and see time passes by.

TripAdvisor View more

We could see that the temple has just been built as the finishing seems new. The garden around was lovely. Similar to other temples, this place closed at noon to 1pm. We could not go inside when we came as the door was closed.Need to dress modestly. There were a couple of female tourists wearing really short shorts and tank tops who were asked to put on the long xin (skirt) one of them was also warned by the keepers to respect the location as she was posing for photos inappropriately.

TripAdvisor View more

love the old and unique architecture of it. the Buddha's statues presented in and outside are also magnificent! opening time is only until 4pm, entrance fee is 5,000LAK.

TripAdvisor View more

Entrance is 5,000 which is a bargain. The grounds are lovely. Be modestly dressed or they'll give you a sarong to cover up. The exterior of the building is gorgeous! The interior is not so much. Lots of dusty cases with Buddha statues without much signage to tell you why they're displayed. Could be better. We brought a snack with us and sat and enjoyed the gardens after our visit. Right next door to the Presidential Palace.

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