Phonsavan, the capital of the Lao province of Xieng Khouang, is not captivated by its architectural beauty or the charm of the winding streets. The city, which has about 60,000 inhabitants, is well-known beyond the borders of Laos in Southeast Asia for its proximity to the Plain of Jars.
The actual capital Muang Khoun was destroyed by American air raids. Not far from the old city Phonsavan was built in the mid-1970s. It extends on both sides of the river Nam Kat. Rice fields are located in the middle of the town. The hospital, police headquarters, barracks, high school and most of the authorities are situated on a broad avenue in the south of the city, while most of the shops, markets and post office are located in the main street in the northern part of the city. Since 2002, all major roads in the town have been asphalted, and the grid was connected in 2004.
In Phonsavan you can also observe the work of the MAG (Mines Advisory Group) in Laos, or see their successes. The local inhabitants take mine, and bomb parts defused by MAG and use them to build houses, fences or as decorations. For strangers initially frightening and bizarre, the residents have made a virtue out of necessity.