Wat Piawat – Laos – bombed ruins

Wat Piawat - Laos

The small town of Muang Khoun, due to its proximity to the Vietnam border was bombed heavily during the Vietnam War.  All that remains of a Buddist temple built in 1582 is this badly damaged statue to the Lord Buddha.

Most people would head through this region on their way to visit the amazing Plain of Jars.

Its well worth a quick stop to visit these ruins.  For me, it was a stark visual reminder of the devastation that occured to the Laos people.

War was never declared on Laos, but there were 580,000 bombing missions on Laos from 1964 to 1973.

One bombing mission every eight minutes, 24 hours a day, for nine years.

Over two million tons of ordnance was dropped on the country, with up to 30 per cent failing to explode as designed.

Even today, 300 casulties are reported every year with 40% of these being children.

War sucks, particularly when in cases like this, its never really over.  The risk of being injured or killed is still a very real possibility for the people of Laos.



  1. Wow, I did not know the impact that the Vietnam War had/is having on Laos. Interesting what is “news” and what is not. War is a horrible thing that man consciously inflicts on fellow man, and for what? Rarely are there ever clear winners. Thank you for sharing!

    • Yes it was something I really wasn’t aware of previously and likewise how the “Vietnam war” is viewed very differently to how I had known it before with hearing it only from the US side.

  2. I think a lot of “things” are viewed differently when hearing “not from the US side.” I used to be surprised when I read the BBC news, not so much anymore. Sadly

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