The building, typical of French colonial architecture, was built in 1925. It was the place where independence was declared in 1945. Since then, the building has been extended and used for various purposes: acting as the headquarters of Laos government, housing the King when he visits from Luang Prabang, and being the prime minister’s office until 1975, when the Lao People Democratic Republic was established. On December 1st, 1980, the building was converted into the Lao exhibition Hall of the revolution and in 1985 it was further upgraded to the Lao museum of the revolution. In early 2000, the building was newly opened as the Lao National Museum, which now houses some 8,000 artifacts across the country. The museum’s collection continues to increase, representing paleontology, archaeology, history and ethnology.

However, this charming French-era building, flanked by cherry blossom and magnolia trees, is being moved to newer premises. Formerly known as the Lao Renolutionary Museum, much of its collection retains an unshakeable revolutionary zeal. Downstairs, there are potted accounts of Khmer culture in the south, accompanied by tools and Buddha statuary; upstairs, there are ponderous displays that tell the story of the Pathet Lao, prepared with busts of Lenin and Ho Chi Minh.

Closed for relocation