If you are expecting sophisticated nightlife in Vientiane, then frankly you will be disappointed. Tourists really do not book a Laos holiday to go to nightclubs until the early hours of the morning. The reason for an Indochina travel package including Laos is to experience the atmosphere of the place, its people and stunning environment. Once the sun sets over the Mekong, you can enjoy a nice meal or a quiet drink either in your hotel or in one of the places in the City before looking forward to what the next day will bring. Here are some places you might like to consider, including a couple that you might like if you are on a Laos family vacation.
• Bor Pen Nyang on the river promenade is a fourth-floor bar/restaurant overlooking the Mekong but be warned; there is no elevator. It claims to have the largest range of fine whisky in Laos as well as stocking plenty of different liquors. There is a daily special cocktail, and pool & snooker on the 2nd floor. There are good views of the river and the night market.
• Déjà vunext to the L'Opera Restaurant on Nam Phu Square is a cosy bar which opens six days a week, not Sundays, and is owned by a Japanese-speaking Lao owner. Closed on Sundays.
• Jazzy-Brick in Setthathirat Road is arather expensive bar which has its own dress rules; no shorts or flip-flops are permitted.
• Khop Chai Deu is also in Setthathirat Road and is popular with tourists, expats and locals to the same extent. The food is mid-range in price with a good selection of Western, Thaiand Lao dishes. A place for a city centre glass of beer.
• Martini Lounge is just a block from the Mekong. It shows films each Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at 20:00. Thursday is salsa night and on Friday there is a DJ.
• Samlo Pub on Setthathirat Road used to get very busy because it stayed open late. These days it offersa pool table and it is the place for live sport, although the "background" music makes it difficult to hear the commentary.
• Sinouk Caféalong the Mekong River close to the Night Market benefits from a great location and serves great coffee, as well as food and alcoholic drinks. There is air-con inside if you don’t want to sit outside and watch the people go by.
• Wind West is a live music venue, generally country and western though if you want to dance, you will be disappointed.
• Lao Bowling Centre on Boulevard Khunbulom allows you to play as well as listen to fairly loud music while you sample the cold beer in the company of many locals.
It is perfectly possible to enjoy a couple of nights in Vientiane without having a really late night. The places above are a few of the recommendations though your guide may well have some others. It is worth leaving your hotel, even if it is just for a couple of hours to experience the night-time atmosphere of the city.