Sapa Trekking Tours

Wat Sisaket in Vientiane, Laos

When exploring Vientiane, this stunning Buddhist temple is hard to miss. Located just across the Presidential Palace, Wat Sisaket is the oldest surviving monastery in the capital city built by King Anou in the early 19th century. It is believed that the temple was spared during the Siamese invasion because it resembles the structure of Thai temples. Wat Sisaket now houses a museum and more than 2,000 ceramic and silver Buddha images.

Wat Sisaket in Vientiane, LaosWat Sisaket in Vientiane, Laos

The Wat Si Saket is an early 19th century Buddhist monastery in the center of Vientiane. It is the oldest temple of the town that is still in its original form.

The Wat Si Saket was built in 1820 near the Royal Palace in the center of town by King Anouvong, the last King of Vientiane. It is one of the very few temples that survived the destruction that came with the Siamese armies, that looted and burnt the city in 1827.

The cloister and sim have been turned into a museum housing thousands of Buddha images, the oldest ones being from the 16th century. The museum houses over 10,000 images of the Buddha in various mudras. Almost 7,000 of them are contained in niches in the galleries surrounding the cloister. A fenced storage room contains hundreds of broken Buddha images that were discovered during excavation works.

The temple was restored in the 1930’s. Next to the cloister is the more recent, active part of the temple with resident monks. Right across the street is another one of Vientiane’s most important temples, the Haw Phra Kaew.

Art enthusiasts will be thrilled to see many figurines and sculptures fashioned by highly skilled craftsmen such as the five-metre long beautiful detailed wooden naga (in Sanskrit, it means serpent deity) as well as a Khmer-style Buddha seated on a coiled naga.

How to get to the Wat Si Saket

The Wat Si Saket is located on the intersection of Lane Xang road and Setthathirat road in Vientiane, near the Presidential Palace and the Haw Phra Kaew temple. It can be reached on foot from many of Vientiane’s attractions. Alternatively, get there on a rented bicycle which will cost around 10,000 Kip per day. A shared tuk tuk in the center of Vientiane will cost around 20,000 Kip per person, a private one double or triple that.