Regardless of where we go in Laos, and regardless of how many times I've been before, I always am viewing everything as if I'm seeing it for the first time. There is always a sense of wonder in what I'm seeing, and so it is when we visit Wat Xieng Thong, probably the most famous wat in Luang Prabang. As is written in the book Ancient Luang Prabang, "Situated at the tip of the promontory of Luang Prabang, where the Nam Khan river flows into the Mekong, the site is, so legend relates, where the first boundary stone of the city was laid. The most magnificent of all Lao wats, the finest example of sacred architecture in Laos, it was built by King Setthathirat, who ruled from 1548-1571. The temple survived numerous raids by Chinese marauders and it was this temple that persuaded UNESCO to make Luang Prabang a World Heritage Site."
The first photo below is the featured photo of the monk walking by the Sim. Below that photo you can see the promontory of Luang Prabang as mentioned in the quotation above, with the Nam Khan river flowing into the Mekong. I've placed a red circle around Wat Xieng Thong.
The wat is a photographer's dream, there's so much that beckons the eye, and one has to be quick to take advantage of when a monk goes walking by. For me there is a timeless quality to this shot that's reinforced by not being able to see the monk's face. I think a good photo leaves a lot to the imagination... Really, this photo could have been taken hundreds of years ago, except for the "modern" black umbrella!