This is by far my favorite place that I have visited so far. There are great similarities also to Natchez. The town has about 20,000 people, is on the Mekong River and is a very old town with incredible French architecture. Laos used to be a French colony and many people speak French in town. There are many tourists in Old Town but it doesn't seem too crowded. I got up at 5:30 am to watch the monk procession. The monks and there were hundreds of them, walk down the street at 6 am with their large bowls and the locals line up on the sidewalk and put rice mostly but also money and other things as gifts to the monks. Whatever the monks do not use they give to the poor. This happens every morning.