Laos Quick Discovery


Laos Quick Discovery

Day 01:
Arrive Luang Prabang
Dinner at the hotel | Indigo House or similar

Our guide is waiting to meet you at the arrival hall, and you will soon be transferred to the hotel. Luang Prabang is perhaps the best-preserved traditional city in Southeast Asia. The tranquility and charm of this town, with its splendid natural scenery and cultural sights, make it one of the most delightful places to visit in Laos. The city is the home of many significant temples (Wats) and those are to be included in your today’s program, including Wat Visoun, a half-watermelon stupa, the shrine of Wat Aham, and Wat Xieng Thong, a magnificent piece of architecture, which nestles at the meeting of the Mekong and the Nam Khan River. The temple structures are decorated in various ways with gilded stuccoes as well as doorways, and the main sim has a marvelous “tree life" mosaic pattern on an outer wall. We then climb up to the top of Mount Phousi for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa, as well as to view a beautiful and panoramic sunset over the Mekong River. Then it is time to stroll down the night market, where you can find a lovely selection of textiles made by the locals and the hill tribe people surrounding Luang Prabang.

Day 02:
Buddha cave, Kwang Si waterfall
Breakfast at the hotel, Lunch at local restaurant | Indigo House or similar

After breakfast, we then board a cruise upstream on the Mekong River to Buddha Cave, locally called Tham Ting. These two linked caves are crammed with thousands of gold-lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes, left by pilgrims for centuries. Up the river for about five minutes is Ban Muang Keo, where we spend time walking around the village to witness how people live here. Kids are playing on the ground. You may also notice some ducks, dogs, pigs, and roosters are also around. You may ask to sample lao-lao (rice whiskey). 

On the way back to the mainland to continue our excursion toward Khouangsi Waterfall, en route we visit local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, Hmong Village, Ban Ou, Laoloum Village, and Ban Thapene, Khmu Village, then drive to the beautiful Khouangsi Waterfall, where you can splash around in the turquoise pools and walk along the forest trails. The Khouangsi Waterfall setting really illustrates paradise. Visit a bear rescue center and a buffolo farm when returning to Luang Prabang in the late afternoon. Visit Ban Xangkhong, a village well known for silk hand weaving and traditional Saa paper-making. Sunset at Wat Phabath and rest at leisure. 

Day 03:
Elephant care, Mt Biking
Breakfast at the hotel, Lunch at local restaurant | Indigo House or similar

After picking the right bike for you we will leave Luang Prabang on a small dirt road that guides out into nature and remote areas. The first stop we have at Wat Pa Phon Phao, a forest temple famous for the teachings of Ajahn Saisamut. This large golden stupa contains three inside levels plus an outside terrace with a view into the countryside and Luang Prabang. The inside walls are painted with many Buddhist stories and moral admonitions.

The dirt road will bring us through teakwood plantations and rice fields up the Nam Khan valley. We pass the tomb of Henry Mouhot, the French explorer who showed Angkor Wat to the world. Henry Mouhout perished of malaria in 1861 in Luang Prabang. We will continue our bike adventure through rice paddies and some forests before we arrive in our Elephant Park Project area where the Elephant Village is located. After crossing the small river, you will be introduced to our Asian elephants and observe them in their habitat. Lunch will be served either on the magnificent Tad Sae Waterfall or on the Mountain View veranda of the Elephant Village.

*Water dries during February – August*

Day 04:
Luang Prabang, Pakse, Champassak
Breakfast at the hotel, Lunch at local restaurant | Residence Bassac or similar

After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport for a flight to Pakse, operated by Lao Airlines, Champassak. Pakse is the capital of Champassak province, the fourth largest town in the country of Laos, serving as a major transport and commerce hub for southern Laos. Drive on National Road No. 13, south to visit the ruins of Wat Phu (a UNESCO World Heritage site), which is well known as the most important Hindu sanctuary of the Khmer Empire between the 9th and 13th centuries. There is also a chance to visit some nearby Khmer temples and Buddhist shrines. Based on the lunar calendar, the Wat Phu festival takes place yearly on the full moon night around January or February, with a spectacular illumination of 4000 oil burners around the complex.

Day 05:
Champassak - Khone Island
Breakfast at the hotel, Lunch at local restaurant | Sala Donkhone or similar

We will then continue our road drive further down south to visit Khone Phapheng waterfall, also known as “The Niagara of The East". You will then be transferred to Ban Nakasang for a boat trip to Khone Island. We explore the local, peaceful villages of Ban Khone by bicycle, where you will see an array of relics from the French colonial era and retrace the old colonial past, including old French colonial buildings and the remnants of the first Lao railway with its locomotive. We continue to discover the 4000 islands area and visit the marvelous Liphi waterfall, also called the “Corridor of the Devil", one of the most beautiful waterfalls marking Laos’ border with Cambodia.  

Day 06:
Khone Island, Boleven Plateau
Breakfast at the hotel, Lunch at local restaurant | Sabaidee Valley or similar

Drive out to the Bolaven Plateau on route 16E, heading to Paksong. Bolaven is known as an elevated region in Southern Laos – an expanse of highland formed by an ancient volcano. Pay a visit to the local coffee and tea plantations; you will see both Arabica and Robusta grown in village plots throughout the region. Tad Fan is the highest waterfall in the south, with two lines of water falling down from the top to the bottom from about 130 meters. Tad Yuang waterfalls are next to Tad Fan, just 6 km away. Paksong Market is the center of trading for people around Bolaven. Rest and stay at your leisure.

Day 07:
Bolaven Plateau, Vientiane
Breakfast at the hotel, Lunch at local restaurant | Lao Orchid Hotel or similar

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for a flight to Vientiane. Beginning your afternoon, pay a visit to Wat Si Muang, the country’s most well-known worship site and home of the Guardian spirit. The temple is believed to be drawn by its good luck or good fortune power, and it is also the presence of a city pillar. Afterward, visit That Luang Stupa, a gold-covered stupa. The stupa is believed to enshrine a relic of the Buddha. A yearly procession and ceremony are held, which includes alms giving, a wax castle procession, traditional music and songs, a Lao hockey game, and night fare. On our return, a guided walk around the victory monument – Pratuxai – built in 1957 and dedicated to those who fought for independence from France. We finished the day with a beautiful sunset walk along the Mekong River at Chao Anouvong Park.Some are here for outdoor workouts, jogging, or dancing. Nonetheless, there are many food stores at the night market there for you to try.

Day 08:
Depart Vientiane
Breakfast at the hotel |

After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport for your next destination.

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