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Why Wat Wisunalat is special ?
The temple houses an important collection of ancient Buddha images. On the grounds are a sim of fairly plain architecture and the That Pathum, a large Singhalese style stupa.
The temple burned down in 1887 when Luang Prabang was largely destroyed and looted by the Black Flag Army, a militia group from China. It was rebuilt in 1898.
An engraving made by Louis Delaporte, a French explorer who travelled extensively in Cambodia and Laos in the 1860’s and 1870’s shows a much more elegant and ornate sim structure built early 16th century. The print shows a large temple, its roof supported by massive 30 meter high wooden pillars.
Records suggest that the original was quite spectacular, with some 4,000 trees needed to complete its construction. The dozen pillars that supported the interior were each 100 feet tall and the building's exterior was made entirely of wood.
The impressive scale of the temple didn't sway the Black Flag invaders, who razed it in 1887. A decade later work began to rebuild the temple using brick and plaster, much to the relief of Luang Prabang's remaining forests. While the new structure tries to recreate the original style in brick, featuring many wooden balustrades in the windows, it doesn't really pull it off. Nevertheless the site remains an important repository of religious art, including a large number of cast Buddha statues.
What to explore at Wat Wisunalat?
The Wat Wisunalat is an active temple. The resident monks live in the kuti, the monks private quarters. As is the case with many Buddhist temples, the grounds contain a large Bodhi tree, a tree much venerated because it was a Bodhi tree under which the Buddha meditated and reached enlightenment.
Source : https://www.renown-travel.com
How to get to Wat Wisunalat?
The temple is found next to the Wat Aham on Thanon Wisunalat, South of Mount Phousi and Kingkitsarath road. Much of the town can be reached on foot. A tuk tuk or jumbo to the temple will cost between 10,000 (about US$ 1.30) and 15,000 Kip (about US$ 2) depending on the distance.
- Craftsmanship at its best
- An interesting templez
- Well worth to visit
- An unforgettable experiences
- Unique 16th century Singhalese style stupa
Visounlath Rd, Luang Prabang, Laos
Tips for you
Built by and named after the King in the 16th century, it is the holiest temple of the city, though rebuilt after it was destroyed by the invading Black Flag marauders from South China. The watermelon stupa is located in the courtyard. The older part of the building is wood construction, whereas the later parts added have more stone. The images stored are relics considered to be objects of art.