Monta Champassak Garden draws visitors to Pakxong
Monta Champassak Garden in Pakxong district, Champassak province, is set to become a highlight for visitors with an interest in agriculture after temporarily opening in December 2016.
The garden will become one of the province's designated areas of scenic beauty and will be one of 116 officially recognised natural attractions.
It will be open in time for International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development and Visit Laos Year 2018.
An attractively landscaped section of Monta Champassak Garden.
The garden is located at Ban Laksip-aed (Km 11) village in Pakxong district and is not far from the large town of Pakxe. Leaving Pakxe you drive for about one hour or about 60km on the road to Pakxong district where you take a newly paved road that leads directly to Attapeu province. After about 11 km on this road, you will see a sign on the left hand side, indicating the garden.
The garden's owner Mrs Somchit Souvannajak told Vientiane Times on a recent visit “We opened the garden temporarily because many people wanted to see it. So we decided to open it up to satisfy people's curiosity.”
The 30-hectare site has been developed since 2015 and is now about 30 percent complete.
She currently has over 60 staff working in the garden, who also take care of people who stop by to look around and buy fruit and flowers. For the price to enter the garden is 20,000 kip per a person.
Among the main attractions are blackberries, gooseberries and strawberries. Gooseberries sell for 60,000 kip per kg, blackberries for 120,000 kip and strawberries for 120,000 kip per kg.
Visitors can also buy flowers and plants and take them home to plant. The garden has many kinds of flowers growing in attractively landscaped plots, which are a popular photo opportunity.
Those wanting an interesting collection of photos can also pose with a model of the Plain of Jars and a sign of the garden at a picturesque mound covered in green grass and stones and adorned with buffalo carts. There is also a small stream running past the foot of the mound next to a bamboo restaurant where visitors can enjoy local food.
Mrs Somchit said “We also are building 11 bungalows which we expect to open in April and plan to build more in the near feature. As far as the garden is concerned, we will completely finish our development plan in the next three years and then we expect to open officially.”
She said they have so far received an average of 300 visitors a month, with most living locally.
Champassak province has 216 official tourist sites, of which 116 are of scenic or natural interest, 60 are of cultural interest and 40 are historical in nature. In 2016 the province received more than 621,000 visitors.
By Times Reporters
(Latest Update March 11, 2017)