next 4 days
Upon arrival, meet our tour guide and transfer to hotel.
Your city tour of Vientiane starts with the oldest temple, Wat Sisaket, with thousands of miniature Buddha statues, the former temple of the Emerald Buddha--Wat Phrakaeo, and Wat Si Mouang temple. Pass the imposing Patuxay Monument, known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph as we continue to the gold-covered That Luang Stupa, the most important monument in Laos and a national symbol. After a short rest, we visit the impressive Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge and the Buddha Park – this sculpture park contains over 200 religious images.
After breakfast, we fly to Pakse and visit the Bolaven Plateau – a mountainous region with several rivers, scenic waterfalls and various ethnic groups. Its cooler temperature and abundant rainfall makes Bolaven the perfect place for coffee & tea plantations. Visit Tad Fang waterfall – the tallest waterfall in Laos and explore the wild beauty of this region. Drive back to Pakse.
Meet at Sinouk Coffee House at 9:30 a.m. and transfer to a long-tail boat for a journey to Champasak. A welcome drink and set menu lunch are served onboard. Travel to Vat Phou ruins by local transportation to visit various pre-Angkorian 10th century temples and Vat Phou museum at the ruins complex. Transfer back to boat and enjoy dinner onboard. Boat docks overnight in Ban Muang.
The boat leaves at 6 a.m.. A continental breakfast is served onboard starting at 7a.m. First stop is Huei Thamo village and Oum Muong- the mysterious hidden forest. Return to boat and start cruising south, passing the wild paradise of ‘4,000 Islands’. A set-menu lunch is served onboard. Late afternoon, stop at Ban Deua Tia and take a walking tour to visit a small Laotian village. A set-menu dinner is served onboard and the boat docks overnight at Ban Deua Tia.
A continental breakfast is served onboard starting at 7 a.m. Disembark at Ban Veuthong and transfer to a small boat for a tour to Khone Island. Visit the old French railway and walk across a bridge that links Khone Island and Det Island. Return to land by boat and have a buffet lunch at a local restaurant in Xieng Di village. Transfer to the airport for a flight to Luang Prabang. Arrive in Luang Prabang and transfer to your hotel.
Today’s city tour shows the city’s oldest temple of Wat Sene and the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground. Visit National Museum at the former Royal Palace, Central Market, the impressive stupa of Wat Visoun and the shrine of Wat Aham, Wat Mai. Climb to the top of Mount Phousi for a panoramic view of the city and the Mekong River at sunset and a visit to the sacred, gilded stupa. Explore the Night Market in the evening.
Embark on a cruise upstream on the Mekong River to Pak Ou Caves where thousands of gold-lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes are left by pilgrims. Stop at the village of Ban Xanghai for their local ‘lao lao’ rice whiskey. On the way back, visit Ban Xienglek and Ban Xangkhong, villages of handmade jute-paper making and drive to Ban Phanom village, well-known for its hand weaving. Also visit local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, Hmong Village, Ban Ou, Laoloum Village and Ban Thapene, Khmu Village before heading to the beautiful Khouangsi Waterfall to cool off with a swim in the turquoise pools or to walk along the forest trails. Return to the city by late evening and watch the sunset at Wat Phabath. (Optional extension The Luang Suay Mekong River cruise).
Early risers have the opportunity to participate in the daily morning rituals of saffron-clad monks collecting offerings of Alms (ubiquitous sticky rice) from residents - a unique tradition in Laos, the only Buddhist nation still preserve this procession. Check out by noon and transfer to the airport for departure.
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