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Eat and meet

Cafes and Bakeries

If you're one prone to starting your day with a stiff espresso, you're in the right part of the world. Vientiane has a good selection of cafes to choose from and free WiFi is becoming more common.

  • Common Grounds
    4.5 stars

    Tasty treats for the whole family

    35 Chao Anou
    T: (020) 7872 7183

    Vientiane has some of the best bakeries in Southeast Asia so there’s little difficulty finding fresh bread or tasty pastries — in French, Swedish or Indian varieties, just for starters. A recent addition to the bakery scene here is Common Grounds, which serves up the best Mexican meals in town ... read more

  • House of Fruit Shakes
    4.5 stars

    Perfectly blended shakes

    Samsenthai Rd
    T: (021) 212 200

    Though nearly every restaurant and riverside food stall has fruit shakes on their menu, no one does them like the House of Fruit Shakes. ... read more

  • Le Banneton
    4.5 stars

    Delicious and charming

    Nokeo Koummane Rd
    T: (021) 217 321

    Le Banneton is a wonderful French patisserie, boulangerie and cafe serving fabulous meals and sweet treats to a clientele more willing to pay for quality. ... read more

  • Cafe Sinouk
    4 stars

    Great coffee and people watching

    Corner of Fa Ngum and Rue Francois Ngin, Vientiane

    Great coffee and croissants are never far away in Vientiane, with more than a dozen cafes all vying for business in the few blocks that front the river near Wat Ong Theu. Thanks to an authentically French atmosphere and some fantastic food and drinks, one of our favourites is Cafe Sinouk. ... read more

  • Croissant d'Or
    4 stars

    Great for people watching

    Nokeokoumane Rd
    T: (021) 223 741

    Croissant d'Or serves up delicious pastries, coffee and breakfast a few doors up from Le Banneton. ... read more

  • Joma Bakery and Cafe
    4 stars

    Never fails to please

    Setthathirath Road, near Nam Phou. Second location at Dongpaina Road between Sengdara gym and the water tower
    T: (021) 254 333

    You could eat just about every one of your meals at Joma Bakery and Cafe and you wouldn't be disappointed. ... read more

  • Scandinavian Bakery
    3.5 stars

    An institution

    74/1 Phangkham Road (in Nam Phu square)
    T: (021) 215 199

    The Scandinavian Bakery is almost an institution in Vientiane, particularly so at breakfast when baguettes, croissants, and their famous honey bread are served fresh from the oven. ... read more


You are in Laos afterall! But if you find market eating a bit too down-to-earth for you, there are some outstanding specialist Lao food eateries well worth exploring. Makphet in particular should not be missed.

  • Noodle soup in Vientiane
    4.5 stars

    Lots to try

    Noodle shops are abundant in Laos and noodle soup is a favourite meal at any time of day. There is, unfortunately, a long spectrum when it comes to quality of soups. Some places serve aromatic and refreshing bowls of deliciousness; others warm MSG-infused water with meat that looks as if a ... read more

  • Pha Khao Lao
    4.5 stars

    Best selection of Lao food

    An alley between Wat Ong Teu and the river
    T: (020) 7751 7272

    Tucked away on the alley between Wat Ong Teu and the river road, Pha Khao Lao is often overlooked, but shouldn't be if you're on the lookout for excellent Lao and Thai cooking. ... read more

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    Tamnak Lao
    4.5 stars

    Worth the effort to find

    100 That Luang Rd (just past Patuxay)
    T: (021) 413 562

    Sister to the popular restaurant in Luang Prabang, Tamnak Lao restaurant in Vientiane is a little harder to find, though well worth it. ... read more

  • Makphet
    4.5 stars

    Delicious modern Lao cooking

    On the street behind Wat Ong Teu (parallel to Sethathirat Rd and the Mekong River front)
    T: (021) 260 587

    Satisfy your appetite and your conscience with a dinner at Makphet, a charitable establishment that hires and trains former street kids to be cooks and waiters. ... read more

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    Phatoke Laoderm
    4 stars

    Lovely Lao cultural experience

    Chao Anou Rd, before Rue Hengboun
    T: (020) 2246 2461

    Anyone with an interest in performance art will enjoy this evening put together at the Senglao Hotel. ... read more

  • Nameless noodle shop on nameless dirt road
    4 stars

    Best pho in town

    On the left of the dirt road running directly behind the National Assembly lot, turning right off of Kaysone Phomvihane Ave

    Complete your visit to That Luang with a bowl of the best pho in town. A five-minute-walk from the temple complex, this place makes only pho and they do it very well. ... read more

  • Amphone
    4 stars

    Lao elegance

    37 Soi Wat Xieng Gneun, Setthathirath Rd
    T: (020) 771 1138

    Easily the most elegant spot to sample Lao cuisine, Amphone Restaurant is set in a gorgeous indoor/outdoor area on a quiet lane behind Wat Xieng Gnuen. ... read more

  • Ban Vilaylac
    4 stars

    Tasty Lao and Thai

    On the road behind Wat Ong Teu
    T: (021) 222 049

    Ban Vilaylac serves tasty Lao and Thai cuisine from a traditional wooden house converted into a small, homey restaurant. ... read more

  • Seoul Restaurant
    3.5 stars

    Closer than Korea

    Bourichane Rd
    T: (020) 5566 8605

    If you’re in the neighbourhood of Vientiane’s Thai consulate and you’re hungry but all Lao food-ed out, you’ll find an abundance of Korean restaurants. Of the various to choose from, we reckon Seoul has the best food, cooked fresh and seasoned well. ... read more

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    Restaurants on the river
    3.5 stars

    Cheap and relaxing

    The banks of the Mekong make a great place to sit and enjoy a meal. ... read more

  • Ban Lao Restaurant and Beer Garden
    3.5 stars

    Great open-air setting

    Francois Ngin Rd
    T: (021) 212 930

    The food at Ban Lao Restaurant and Beer Garden is nothing to write home about, but we love the open-air setting in a lush little garden complete with fairy lights and a pond. ... read more

  • Kua Lao
    3.5 stars

    Popular, with a show

    111 Samsenthai Rd
    T: (021) 214 813

    In a beautifully restored colonial mansion, Kua Lao has a great atmosphere and popular set menus of Lao food and wine. ... read more

Other Asian

  • PVO
    4.5 stars

    Best Vietnamese food in Vientiane

    On the small unnamed street parallel to Khou Vieng, one block East of Rue Sakkarine
    T: (021) 214 444

    PVO sandwiches has little in the way of ambience or presentation, but this makes it all the more authentic as a prime Vietnamese eating establishment. ... read more

  • Fuji Restaurant
    3.5 stars

    Pop Japanese Food

    Francois Ngin Rd
    T: (021) 254 722

    A Thai chain restaurant that has spilled over into Laos, Fuji has quickly become one of the more popular Japanese restaurants in Vientiane. ... read more

  • Nazim
    3.5 stars

    The Lao-wide chain

    Fa Ngoum Rd and Ban Phonexay (near Australian embassy)
    T: (021) 223 480;(021) 413 671

    Part of a chain with locations in every Lao town big enough to have tourists, Nazim's is a cheap and cheerful Indian restaurant with two Vientiane locations. ... read more

  • Osaka
    3 stars

    Japanese comfort food

    Nokeokoummane Rd
    T: (021) 213 352

    Osaka is the poorer cousin of Fuji and brings Japanese cooking down to a level on par with a late night diner -- nothing too fancy with a bit of extra grease. ... read more

  • Cafe Indochine
    3 stars

    Good value, nice atmosphere

    199 Setthatilath Rd
    T: (021) 216 758

    An understated restaurant on a busy road, Cafe Indochine pays nod to all countries of former French Indochina, though the focus is on Vietnam. ... read more

  • Dok Champa
    3 stars

    Staggering selection

    Chao Anou Rd (opposite the Lao Orchid Hotel)
    T: (021) 251 739

    Dok Champa has rebranded itself as a Korean restaurant, likely in response to the many tourists from this corner of the world now coming here. ... read more


  • French restaurants in Vientiane
    4 stars

    A few solid options

    One of the best French colonial legacies in Laos is the abundance of French restaurants serving classic French cuisine. After a few weeks, or months, of trekking around in tattered boardies and living off of pho, it can be a very refreshing experience to put on your most dapper-looking threads and ... read more

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    Ray's Grille
    4 stars

    Cheap and good Western favourites

    Nokeokoummane rd
    T: (020) 5896 6866

    Ray's Grille is a fantastic concept by an American/Thai couple who know what people want and duly deliver. ... read more

  • Sticky Fingers
    4 stars

    Home to the tom yum martini

    10/3 Francois Nginn Rd
    T: (021) 215 972

    Sticky Fingers is a groovy little bar/restaurant and a favourite with the local expat community for its good quality Western food made with fresh ingredients. ... read more

  • Chokdee Cafe
    4 stars

    Belgian beers and fries

    Fa Ngum Rd
    T: (020) 5610 3434

    Chokdee Cafe is Vientiane's only Belgian bar, and it proudly displays its heritage with abundant, yet tasteful, Belgian beer paraphernalia and Tin Tin imagery. ... read more

  • Restaurant Le Provencal
    4 stars

    A long-running favourite

    Nam Phou Square
    T: (021) 219 685

    For a fine meal at midrange prices, and right beside the fountain, you can't beat Le Provencal. ... read more

  • Aria
    3.5 stars

    Lovely lunch buffet

    8 Rue Francois Ngin
    T: (021) 222 589;(030) 5700 831

    Aria Mixay serves fine Italian fare cooked up by a real live Italian chef. ... read more

  • Full Moon Cafe
    3.5 stars

    Decent food, comfy atmosphere

    Francois Nginn Rd
    T: (021) 243 373

    With good drink specials and spot-on American food, the Full Moon Cafe attracts a steady crowd of expats and tourists. ... read more

  • Istanbul Restaurant
    3.5 stars

    Only Turkish restaurant in Laos

    Francois Ngin Rd
    T: (021) 218 320

    It seems like all the riverfront restaurants have added Middle Eastern food to their menus, but the new Istanbul Restaurant offers traditional Turkish dishes. ... read more

  • Xayoh
    3 stars

    A bit hiss and miss

    Corner Nokeo Koummane and Samsenthai Rds
    T: (021) 262 111

    This steakhouse has a mighty selection of meats, mostly served with veggies, salad and your choice of fried or jacket potato. Expect a broad range of price and quality. ... read more


You will rarely see Lao people drinking without eating (or eating without drinking, for that matter). Locals generally go to restaurants to consume their BeerLao, and while they are starting to open more clubs and bars, the bar scene in Vientiane is mostly catered to tourists and expats. That said, a majority of tourists and expats in Laos share a deep-rooted appreciation for BeerLao and other intoxicating beverages, and a number of establishments in which to imbibe have sprung up.

  • The Highlander Bar
    4.5 stars

    Vientiane's best sunset spot

    Khamkhong Rd, west on Fa Ngum
    T: (021) 251 206;(020) 7759 4971

    Further down Fa Ngum, where the river widens, The Highlander lays perched over one of the best riverfront views in Vientiane. ... read more

  • Deja Vu
    4 stars

    A great little spot

    Nam Phu Fountain Square, Vientiane
    T: (021) 244 288

    Vientiane’s nightlife may not be the most raucous or exciting in Southeast Asia but if you know where to look there are a few great little spots to be found away from the backpacker haunts that serve up Beer Lao and little else. ... read more

  • Bor Pen Nyang
    4 stars

    Popular riverfront bar

    Fa Ngum Rd by the Inter Hotel
    T: (021) 26 1373;(02) 221 2200

    As carefree as its name ('no worries' in Lao) suggests, this is a popular traveller bar and restaurant right on the riverfront. ... read more

  • Jazzy Brick
    4 stars

    Cocktails and jazz

    34/1 Setthathilat Rd
    T: (020) 244 9307

    An upscale and downright cosy establishment, Jazzy Brick wins for style and comfort. ... read more

  • The Spirit House
    4 stars

    Cocktails galore

    West on Fa Ngum Rd, past SIthane Rd
    T: (021) 243 795

    This bar and restaurant is tastefully built in the likeness of its namesake. ... read more

  • I-Beam
    3.5 stars

    Sleek and sophisticated

    88 Setthatirt Rd
    T: (020) 5561 2092;(021) 254 528

    Another upscale jazz bar opened in recent years, I-Beam offers cocktails at price levels similar to Jazzy Brick, plus an elaborate wine and tapas menu. ... read more

  • The Samlo Pub
    3.5 stars

    Everyone's favourite dive bar

    Samsenthai Rd
    T: (021) 222 308

    The Samlo Pub is almost as much of a Vientiane icon as the three-wheeled vehicles that are its namesake. ... read more

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