Located on the banks of the Mekong River near the Laotian border with Thailand and nicknamed “City of the Moon”, Vientiane (also called Viengchan) is the capital city of Laos. Formally the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, the landlocked country occupies the center of mainland Southeast Asia’s Indonesia peninsula.
Per metrics from Central Intelligence Agency’s World Factbook, the real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate for Laos was 7.5% in 2016–among the 10 best real GDP improvements in the world.
In the world of global trade, Laos places far down the list of exporters at number 116 compared to other countries shipping an estimated US$4 billion worth of goods in 2016. Highest-value Laotian exports are copper, electrical energy, lumber, fertilizers and natural rubber according to the International Trade Centre.
Capital Facts for Vientiane, Laos: Quick Reference
Capital landmarks: Lao National History Museum, Buddha Park (Xieng Khuan), That Dam (Black Stupa), Sisaket Temple/Museum and the Wat Si Muang (Buddhist temple)
Below, you will find 10 of the most famous people born in Vientiane, Laos:
- Saynakhonevieng Phommapanya, soccer player/footballer (born Oct. 28, 1987)
- Siluck Saysanasy, actor (born Jan. 30, 1974)
- Bryan Thao Worra, writer (born Jan. 1, 1973)
- Sengphachan Bounthisanh, soccer player/footballer (born Jun. 1, 1987)
- Loc Do, actor & director (born Oct. 20, 1968)
- Sompet Laungsouphom, actress & makeup artist (born May 18, 1970)
- Tom Tate, City of Gold Coast mayor (born Jan. 15, 1959)
- Visay Phaphouvanin, soccer player/footballer (born Jun. 12, 1985)
- Keo Souvannavong, journalist & actor (born Sep. 10, 1969)
- Bangbay Siboliban, cinematographer (born 1979)
Note: Data for our Famous People tab was sourced from Google searches mostly targeting published Wikipedia articles specific to each person’s name.
Demonym for a Vientiane resident: Laotian
Population: 760,000 (Vientiane city)
Density: 15,200 people per square mile (5,846 per square kilometer)
Population: 820,924 (Vientiane Prefecture)
Density: 544 people per square mile (209 per square kilometer)
Population: 7,019,073 (Laos)
Density: 79 people per square mile (30 per square kilometer)
GDP: US$37.32 billion in 2015 (for Laos, per CIA World Factbook)
GDP per person: $5,300
Note: The above country-level GDP metrics are on a Purchasing Power Parity basis and are in U.S. dollars. Credible city GDP statistics for Vientiane were unavailable.
Official currency used in Vientiane: Lao kip
Brookings Institution, Global Metro Monitor Report (includes GDP data). Accessed on January 4, 2017
Central Intelligence Agency, Country Comparison: GDP Real Growth Rate. Accessed on February 14, 2017
Central Intelligence Agency, East & Southeast Asia: Laos. Accessed on February 14, 2017
Central Intelligence Agency, World Factbook, Field Listing: Major Urban Areas. Accessed on January 4, 2017
CityMetric, Where are largest cities in the world? 2015 edition. Accessed on January 4, 2017
Demographia, World Urban Area, 12th Annual Edition. Accessed on January 4, 2017
Official Government Website, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lao PDR. Accessed on January 4, 2017
Wikimedia Commons, City Flags. Accessed on January 4, 2017
Note: Some city flags were unavailable. If so, attribution belongs to Wikimedia Commons for pertinent country flags.
Wikipedia, Laos. Accessed on February 14, 2017
Wikipedia, Vientiane. Accessed on January 4, 2017
Wikipedia, Vientiane Prefecture. Accessed on January 4, 2017
Vientiane’s population count was an estimated 760,000 residents in 2015, living over a land area measuring 50 square miles (130 square kilometers).
The larger Vientiane Prefecture is a geographic entity that encompasses the Laotian capital city, covering a vast land area of 1,510 square miles (3,920 square kilometers). At 820,924 people, Vientiane Prefecture’s population is modestly higher than Vientiane city itself.
At the country level, Laos has a land area of 89,112 square miles (230,800 square kilometers) which serves as home to seven million Laotians as of July 2016.
Population density is much higher within Vientiane’s city limits with an average 15,200 residents per square mile (5,800 per square kilometer).
Density diminishes significantly to an average 544 people per square mile (209 per square kilometer) for the larger Vientiane Prefecture area.
Widening the scope to the national perspective, the overall population density for Laos is 79 Laotians per square mile (30 per square kilometer).
Laotians celebrate Republic Day as a national holiday each December 2.