Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre, Luang Prabang

4.2
#2 of 13 in Museums in Laos
History Museum Museum
Discover the Akha, Khmu, Tai Lue, and Hmong cultures of Laos at Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre, a museum highlighting its various ethnic groups. Though small, Laos is a country full of diverse people, culture, and history. Since opening in 2007, the museum's permanent and visiting exhibits have been educating visitors from around the world on these various populations. Tour the collections of historical artefacts, religious objects, textiles, photographs, and video for insight into the country's past and present. Don't forget to stop into the onsite activity center, cafe, and museum shop, which sells goods from all of Laos's 12 provinces. Use our Luang Prabang itinerary builder to visit Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre on your trip to Luang Prabang, and learn what else travelers and our writers recommend seeing nearby.
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18 days in Laos BY A USER FROM CAMBODIA September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 23 days in Thailand, Laos & Cambodia BY A USER FROM NETHERLANDS August, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 22 days in Asia BY A USER FROM BRAZIL November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: November, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 14 days in Vietnam & Laos BY A USER FROM FRANCE December, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 30 days in Asia BY A USER FROM NEW ZEALAND September, teens, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, teens, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 16 days in Laos & Vietnam BY A USER FROM ECUADOR April, popular PREFERENCES: April ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Vientiane & Luang Prabang BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Vientiane & Luang Prabang BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 12 days in Laos & Myanmar BY A USER FROM ITALY September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Luang Prabang BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 60 days in Asia BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 60 days in Asia BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
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Where to stay in Luang Prabang

Although accommodations in Luang Prabang can be pricier than elsewhere in the country, the city boasts a wide variety of options for overnight stays, ranging from budget backpacker hostels to luxury heritage hotels. You can find a plethora of boutique guesthouses in Luang Prabang, from family-run places to mid-range and upscale establishments situated in colonial-era villas.
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4.3
  • This centre helps to promote the local culture to the visitors with exhibitions, hand-ons and possibly visits to the local tribes. It is located on a small hill well hidden from the main road. Recomme...  more »
  • For such a small space, about 3 rooms this museum packs quite a punch above its weight. If you want to know the different ethnicity and crafts that made this state beautiful and remarkable then this s...  more »
  • We did the 3-hour Hmong embroidery workshop, which included a tour of the museum and a drink, in addition to the embroidery lesson. The staff at the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre were both inf...  more »
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  • They do a great job of providing history of the area and explaining the aspects of each culture. The displays are well thought out and description are interesting. Well worth the 25,000kip admission.
  • Prepare to sweat in here! They have fans but it was an oven. It's a short visit, only taking maybe half an hour if you go through everything. Seemed pricey for what you get but it's for a good cause.
  • The entrance is inexpensive, only 25000 Kip, (£2.50, COP9000). The TAEC is engaged in research, artefact preservation, exhibitions, education and handicraft development. The TAEC building was constructed in 1920 during the French colony. Even though the museum is quite small, it consists of only three rooms, it still allowed me to get an insight into ethnic groups, rural lifestyles, traditional clothes and customs of Lao tribes. The information is orderly exhibited and easy to go through with English labels. It includes feature text, photographs and objects from villages of northern Laos. I learnt about the distribution of the four ethnolinguistic groups: Tai-Kadai, which includes ten subgroups; Hmong-Yao, which includes three subgroups; Sino-Tibetan, includes in another nine subgroups; and the Austro-Asiatic, includes in another thirty subgroups The museum also has a small souvenir shop which promotes sustainable livelihoods. It has authentic handicrafts directly sourced from ethnic artisans, primarily ethnic minority women who earn a fair share. 50% of the shop income goes back to the villages across Laos. I purchased a beautiful double-sided textile cap made by Tai Lue women, as a present for my sister Sandra who loves hats, for 200000 kip (£19, COP71000). Tai Lue group is devoutly Buddhist and famous for their handwoven cotton and silk textiles.
  • Interesting to learn more about the etnic groups before purchasing handicrafts or visiting the village. The information is well displayed and easy to learn. Fair priced the souvenir shop. However they could expand to include more local women at work, explaining the tye dye process or the weavinh there was no one when I went.
  • Great place to learn about the cultures and textiles in Laos. Entrance is very cheap for a museum at $2.5. Gift shop is also very reasonably priced with handicrafts where the producers earn a fair share.