Day 1: Luang Prabang -Arrival
You will be met at the airport by your driver who will transfer you to your hotel. Once you’ve checked in, the day is yours to relax and explore.
You’ll overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 2: Luang Prabang -City Tour (B)
After breakfast, you’ll begin your full day tour of the city. Our first stop is the Royal Palace Museum, which is home to Pha Bang; a magnificent gold-alloy Buddha statue that the city is named after. From there, you’ll visit Wat Xieng Thong, the city’s oldest temple, which has stunning sweeping roofs typical of traditional Laotian architecture is also famed for its beautiful exterior gold reliefs. Next, you’ll visit the Arts and Ethnology Centre, where you’ll learn about Laos’ minority ethnicities and their traditions. We then leave the city and visit the nearby villages of Ban Xieng Khong and Ban Xieng Lek, renowned for their hand-woven textiles. When we return to the city, you’ll do a short climb to the top of Mount Phousi where you can explore the sacred stupa and take in the magical sunset over the Mekong River from the stunning viewpoint. Our last stop for the day is the Night Market, which is famous for its handmade textiles made by local Hill Tribe people.
You will overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 3: Luang Prabang -Pak Ou Cave - Khuang Si Fall (B)
Your day begins with breakfast before we embark on a cruise up the beautiful Mekong River, offering you stunning views of the countryside and riverside villages. We stop at the Pak Ou Caves, which are set strikingly within the limestone cliffs along the water’s edge. The cave is filled with thousands of wooden and gold-lacquered Buddha statues, left behind by pilgrims over generations. We’ll also stop at Ban Xang Hai, ‘the Whisky Village’ where laos-Laos; the traditional rice wine is made. As we set back to the city, we’ll stop at some of the minority villages, including Ban Thapene, Ban Ou and Ban Ouay. From there, we head to our final stop for the day; the beautiful Khuang Si Waterfall. You can enjoy a refreshing swim in the waterfall’s turquoise pools or explore the forest trails in the vicinity. We then return to Luang Prabang.
You’ll overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 4: Luang Prabang- Xieng Khuang (Plain of Jars) (B)
After breakfast, we set off on a 306km trip through the beautiful hills and mountains of the countryside to Xieng Khoung Province; an area which was devastated by bombing between 1964 and 1973. Once we arrive in the province, you’ll be transferred to one of the most unique sites in Laos – the Plain of Jars. Thousands of giant stone jars lie scattered across a plateau, leaving no indication of who made them or why. If there’s time, you’ll then visit the former capital of Muang Khoun and the Hmong Hill Tribe villages nearby, who have a rich culture and interesting history.
You’ll overnight in Phonsavanh
Day 5: Xieng Khuang- Vientiane (B)
Today, we set off first to visit the local market in the morning, and then to the MAG exhibition, where you’ll learn about the UXO (unexploded ordinance) challenges that Laos faces, and how the MAG team are working to create awareness and disarm the ordinance. From there, you’ll be transferred to the airport for a short flight to Vientiane, where a driver will be waiting for you. You’ll be transferred to your hotel to check in before our adventure continues. Our first stop in Vientiane is Wat Si Saket, the oldest temple in the province, which holds almost 7000 Buddha statues. We then continue on to the impressive Haw Phra Keo, which was once the private temple for the Laos royal family and is home to Laos’ largest collection of Buddha artefacts. You’ll then visit the Patuxay Monument, an imposing stone arch, which was erected as a war memorial for all those who fought for Laos’ independence. The arch is often referred to as Vientiane’s Arc de Triumph. Our final stop on today’s tour is the remarkable That Luang Stupa, a spiritual and national symbol for the Laos people.
You will overnight in Vientiane
Day 6: Vientiane - Nam Ngum Lake (B)
Your day starts with breakfast before we make our way to the city. Our first stop is a visit to Hmong Market, wher you can do some shopping or try a few interesting delicacies before we visit Vang Xang, where five beautiful Buddha reliefs are carved into massive rocks. Our next stop is Nam Ngum Dam, where you’ll visit fishing villages set on tiny islands via log-tail boat. When visiting the islets, you’ll be able to explore and witness the traditional lifestyle of the local fishermen. If there’s time, you may also be able to stop at the Dansavanh Casino and enjoy its stunning views of the lake and avoid the afternoon heat. On our way back to Vientiane, we will stop at Ban Keun, which is famous for its traditional means of salt extraction. You will arrive back in Vientiane in the evening.
You will overnight in Vientiane.
Day 7: Vientiane - Paske - Watphou - 4000 island (Flight) - (B)
After an early breakfast, we’ll fly to Pakse, and then drive to the harbour where our boat will be waiting to take us on a cruise down the Mekong River. We’ll stop at Wat Phu to take in the fascinating ruins of one of the most dramatic mountain temples in the region. Wat Phu was built in the 10th century; predating the Angkor Empire, and is still an important place of worship today. The site is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You’ll have time to explore the ruins and their picturesque surroundings at the base of Mount Phu Kao before our journey continues. We leave the boat and drive to Ban Hat Xai Khoun and cross via ferry to Don Khong. Don Khong is the largest island in this stunning south Mekong River region, known as the ‘4000 Islands’.
You’ll overnight on Don Khong Island.
Day 8: 4000 island- Full Day Surrounding (B)
Our day begins early with breakfast before we set out early to visit the villages of Ban Khone. There is so much to discover, especially relics from its days as a French colony and Laos’ first railway – with its original locomotive still intact! The tour continues by tuk-tuk at a relaxed pace, and takes you to the Laos/Cambodia border, where you can visit Laos’ most beautiful waterfall – the Liphi Waterfall. We’ll also visit Ban Hang Khone, a tiny village at the south of the islands, and if you’re lucky, you might see some of the extremely rare freshwater Irrawaddy Mekong dolphins. Our final stop for the day is in Ban Nakasang, where we visit the famous Khone Phapeng Waterfall; the largest in South East Asia, which is often called ‘the Niagara of the East’.
You’ll overnight on Don Khong Island
Day 9: 4000 Island - Tadlo Bolaven Plateau - Paske (B)
We leave Don Khong Island after breakfast and continue towards Tad Lo. We pass through the Boloven Plateau high above the Mekong River, where countless rivers plunge off the edge in all directions, creating the most spectacular display of waterfalls amongst the lush forests below. Here in the cooler climate, the conditions are perfect for rich coffee, tea, banana and cardamom cultivation, and you’ll see plentiful crops en route. As we venture further off the beaten track we’ll visit some of the lesser-known sites in beautiful, wild southern Laos. After the stunning Tad Lo Waterfall, we visit three villages of local ethnic minority groups; Alak, Nge and Katu, each as beautiful and culturally fascinating as the next. After a full day of travel and exploration, we return to Pakse in the evening.
You’ll overnight in Pakse
Day 10: Paske - Departure (B)
After breakfast, you’ll be transferred to the airport to begin your journey home.
This tour does not include flights to add a flight to the Laos Explorer Tour please 0208 547 2857 and speak to a holiday consultant.
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