• Laos is an ideal place for buying handicrafts and souvenirs. Best buys from Laos are hill-tribe crafts and textiles. Antique textiles from north Laos are occasionally available. There are a wide variety of modern materials that are used to make the pha sin, the Lao sarong, and pha baeng, or shawl, worn by Lao women.

  • Making silverware is a traditional craft in Laos - most of it is in the form of jewellery and small silver pots. Chunky antique tribal jewellery, bangles, pendants, belts and earrings are often sold in markets in the main towns or antique shops in Vientiane. The tribal belts (sai ao) that are part of the traditional dress of Lao women are especially popular with tourists.

  • Craftsmen in Laos still produce carvings for temples and coffins. Designs are usually traditional, with a religious theme. Craftsmen produce carved panels and statues for tourists that are available in outlets in Vientiane. Elephant statues ranging in size from small to huge are also very popular.

  • The export of antiques, Buddha statues and important cultural or historical items from Laos is prohibited.