An essential site to visit on a tour of Vientiane, the capital of Laos, the Patuxai Monument is one of the city’s most striking landmarks that should be included in your sightseeing itinerary.
This impressive arch is in the heart of the city within a 10-minute drive from properties such as Somerset Vientiane. It can be found at Patuxai Park, at the end of Lane Xang Avenue close to serviced apartments Vientianne has to offer. It’s open daily from 8:00am and closes at 4:30pm on weekdays and 5:00pm on weekends.
The words “Patuxai” means “Victory Gate” and that is exactly what this monument signifies; completed in the 1960s, it was built as a memorial for Laotian soldiers who gave their lives for the country both during World War Two and the struggle for independence with the French in 1949.
Those who have seen or visited the Arc de Triomphe in Paris will notice its architectural influence on the Patuxai Monument. However, also of note are the signature Laos-style design elements; amongst the unique local ornamentation that adorn the ceilings are portrayals of Hindu deities like Brahma as well as mythological creatures.
At the Top
You can pay an entrance fee and head to the top of this monument; on your way up a stairway of seven floors, you will pass a variety of souvenir shops, offices and food vendors. At the summit, there are Laos-style towers with floral motifs as well as an observation deck overlooking the city and river.