Pakse Town

The Chinese Vat SopSé Temple

During the French colonial period at the beginning of the 20th century, Pakse became the capital of Champasak Province. The old quarter is located in the bend of the Sedone River where you can still see a few remaining buildings from that period.

If you wish to delve deeper into the Chinese influence in Pakse, you may like to explore the little known and secluded Vat SopSé. ‘Sopsé’ means the lips of Se River while ‘Pakse’ means the mouth of Se River.

According to local legend, this Chinese temple is famous for the spirit that lives there, Pu SopSé, (Grandfather SopSé). He is the guardian of the area and is believed to make wishes come true. Some locals believe he is a personification of a naga.

People go to the temple and ask for a favor; if it comes true, they thank the spirits with offerings such as fruits, money, roasted pork and cakes. The temple is very lively during Chinese and Vietnamese festivals such as Chinese New Year, Tet, and the Mid Autumn Festival, and is much revered by the local Chinese and Vietnamese communities.

See and do:

  • Hear about the local legends of Grandfather SopSé
  • Cast your own wish and see if it comes true but don’t forget your offering
  • Visit during new year or festival times and celebrate in the temple with the locals

Entrance fee:

The entrance to Vat SopSé is free

How to get there:

You can walk to the temple from the centre of town. It is diagonally across the river from Vat Luang where the Sedone and the Mekong Rivers join each other.