Laos is a country untouched by the modern demands of the Western world. There is a calmer more peaceful way of life. The beauty of the country lies in the Lao people, century-old traditions and heritage, and in its lush, pristine landscape.
Best: November to April
DurationFrom 7 days
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Day-1: VientianeOn arrival in Vientiane, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Time permitting, your half day city tour enables us to see the major temples of Vientiane including the oldest, Wat Sisaket, a temple of thousands of miniature Buddha statues, and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha Image. We also visit Laos national icon, That Luang Stupa, and we stop to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is Vientianes own Arc de Triumph.
Day-2: Vientiane - Prabaht Ponsan - Sala Hin Boun (B-L)You will be picked up this morning, and travel south along route 13. nroute we stop at Prabaht Ponsan, an Ancient LPQ stupa dating back to the 15th Century. It is also home to the Ancient LPQ Budhhas footprint, discovered in 1933, and now an important religious site in Laos. Following lunch we continue onwards into Khammoune province and into the mountainous area, where a stop at a view point near Khoun Kham offers a breathtaking view over the surrounding area. We eventually reach Ban Naphouak, where we board a local boat on the Hin Boun River. The journey upstream takes us past some stunning limestone karst scenery, as well as a number of villages with smiling waving children. We reach your accommodation for the night Sala Hin Boun, late afternoon. You have the rest of the day at leisure.
Day-3: Sala Hin Boun - Kong Lor Cave (B-L)After breakfast at Sala Hin Boun we continue by boat upriver to Kong Lor village, where you have the chance to explore, before boarding a smaller boat into the famous Kong Lor Cave. We navigate through the cave, which is over 7km long and includes a spectacular cavern over 100m high. Following lunch in a remote village on the other side of the cave, we return to Sala Hin Boun before sunset.
Day-4: Sala Hin Boun -Vientiane -Luang Prabang (B-L)Following breakfast we set off by road to Naphouak, before heading south by boat through some of the most spectacular gorges found in Southeast Asia. Along the way we make a stop for lunch and a picturesque Lao Loum village, and then we are picked up by car and transf directly to Vientiane airport for your evening flight to Luang Prabang.
Day-5: Luang Prabang - Luang Si Waterfall and half day city tour (B)First we go to the morning Phousi Market, where you will see such diverse offerings as dried buffalo skin, local tea and saltpeter among the chickens, vegetables and hill-tribe weavings. Laos is also known for its traditional crafts, and today you will see local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, a Hmong village, Ban Ou a Laoloum village and Ban Thapene, a Khmu village. This then takes us to the beautiful Khuang Si Waterfall where you can cool off with a refreshing swim in the pools or walk along the forest trails. We then return to Luang Prabang. Your half day city tour this afternoon begins with the Royal Palace Museum, which hosts a range of interesting artifacts. We then head to the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture. We also have time to see the impressive stupa of Wat Visoun and the shrines of Wat Aham and Wat Mai.
Day-6: Luang Prabang -Big Brother Mouse -Ban Khia Luang -Pak Ou Caves (B-L)The day starts with the Big Brother Mouse shop to select some books for the village visit. We then head north by car along route 13, before taking an unpaved road to Ban Khia Luang village. We then have ample time to visit the school, play with the kids and watch them enjoy their new books. We also take some time to explore the rest of the village, where you can see weaving and the local temple. We stop for lunch at the village, which can either be a western picnic lunch, or traditional Lao food such as sticky rice, laap and fresh vegetables cooked by the villagers.
After lunch we say goodbye to the village and drive to Ban Khoklin, which takes us through some beautiful scenery of mountains and paddy fields. At Ban Khoklin we then board a private boat down the Nam Ou River for 30 minutes to Pak Ou Caves, two linked caves crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by pilgrims and continue down the Mekong River back to Luang Prabang, arriving back there by late afternoon.
Day-7: Luang Prabang -Departure (B)Depending on your flight, you may have time at leisure before you will be transferred to the airport in time for your departing flight.
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