LAOS DISCOVERY

12D/11N Luang Prabang, Xieng Khuang, Pakse, Champasak, Vientiane

Travel far and wide across Laos on this guided tour and discover the spectacular natural beauty and rich cultural traditions of this land locked jewel.

Start your trip with Luang Prabang discovery, the stunning UNESCO world heritage city, which is classed by many as the best preserved city in South East Asia! Enjoy wonderful natural sceneries and and cruise past some rural villages and rice fields to visit ethnic minorities.  Discover all the best that the charming city of Vientiane can offer  before travelling to the Champasak province to drink a cup of Lao tee or coffee and meet theIrrawaddy Dolphins – world’s rarest mammal species.

PRICE:From
DURATION:12 Days / 11 Nights
TOUR STYLE:Cultural & Heritage
DESTINATIONS:Luang Prabang, Xieng Khuang, Pakse, Champasak, Vientiane
TOUR CODE:
DEPARTURES:Daily (Private Departures)
STARTS:In Chiang Rai, Thailand
ENDS:In Vientiane, Laos
Enquire NowRequest Full Itinerary

At a glance

Highlights

  • Discover Luang Prabang –  the UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Visit Lao ethnic minority villages
  • Explore the capital city of Vientiane
  • Taste and learn about Lao tea and coffee
  • 120 meters Tad Fan waterfall
  • Wat Phou – Khmer temple ruins of the World Heritage Site
  • Enjoy the famous 4000 Islands
  • See Irrawaddy Dolphins – one of the world’s rarest mammal species

Itinerary in Brief

  • DAY 1: Chaing Rai – Houei Xai – Pakbeng
  • DAY 2: Pakbeng – Luang Prabang
  • DAY 3: Luang Prabang
  • DAY 4: Luang Prabang
  • DAY 4: Optional tours # 1: Luang Prabang Cycling
  • DAY 4: Optional tours # 2: Cycling Ban Som-Ban Na
  • DAY 5: Luang Prabang – Xieng Khuang
  • DAY 6: Xieng Khuang – Maung Khoun
  • DAY 7: Xieng Khuang – Vientiane
  • DAY 8: Vientiane – full day city tour
  • DAY 9: Vientiane – Pakse – Bolaven Plateau – Champasak
  • DAY 10: Champasak – Wat Phou – Don Khone – Liphi Waterfall – Dolphin Area – Khone Phapheng – Don Khone
  • DAY 11: Don Khone – Pakse – Vientiane
  • DAY 12: Vientiane – Bangkok

Tour Details

Today marks the first day of your thrilling adventure through Laos !

Your driver will meet you at the hotel, transfer you to the Lao-Thai border and help you cross it to reach Laos. From here our guide will welcome you and take you to the boat pier to board to Pakbeng. Lunch will be served on board. We can stop along the way if you wish to visit some neighboring villages.

We make the first stop of our journey in Pakbeng where we will spend the night.

Today we resume the boat trip after a good breakfast at the lodge. We have time to make a short stop to visit the famous Pak Ou cave on the way, before arriving in the wonderful cultural city of Luang Prabang.

Lunch will be served on board, as yesterday.

We shall cruise downstream towards Luang Prabang and stop just before arriving in the city to watch the incredible sunset from the boat.

We then bridge the short distance that separates us from the gorgeous Luang Prabang, where you will be met by your transportation on arrival and taken to your hotel.

You shall be given some time to relax before going for dinner with a nice view on the river.

The first half of the day is spent visiting the Museum in the former Royal Palace and the monasteries Vat Xieng Thong and Vat Vixoun.

We will then have our lunch at Wat Sean Café (just in front of Wat Sean temple), before driving to the amazing Kuang Xi Waterfalls; along the way you will be given the opportunity to visit the local village of the Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, Ban Ou, and Ban Thapene villages.

After taking our time to visit the villages as you please we continue on to another waterfall area, where you may want to freshen up in the natural pools or walk along the forest paths.

We return to Luang Prabang in the late afternoon just in time for another magnificent sunset at the top of Phousi Mountain and stroll through the lively night market before going back to the hotel.

This day is left free for you to relax and explore the city on your own.

We cycle through Luang Prabang, towards Ban Phanom, a weaving village by the Khan River, and then visit the tomb of the 19th century French explorer Henri Mouhot, the first European to rediscover Angkor Wat and to visit the Royal Kingdom of Luang Prabang.

We continue on to Ban Pick Noi village of the Youane ethnic minority and cross the Nam Khan River with a local fishing boat to Ban Pick Nyai village of the Youane & Leu ethnic minorities. The cruise takes us past some rural villages and rice fields to Ban Kokvan village of the Khmu ethnic minority and to a Hmong village, Ban Bohae.

Finally, we cruise one and half hour back to Luang Prabang. On this return journey we will pass by Ban Xang Hai, specialized in the production of Lau Lau (Lao Whiskey) and Ban Xang Khong, a Sa paper making village. Traditionally the paper coming from the Sa-trees has been used for Buddhist scripts, temple decorations at festival times, umbrellas, fans and kite making. Today it is also used for a wide variety of domestic and industrial purposes.

We first cycle downhill to the boat pier to cross the Mekong River to the other side of Luang Prabang to a village called Ban Xieng Man. We then cycle to Ban Na Kham, a village known for growing sugarcane and cooking sticky rice in bamboo sticks. You shall be given some time to have a look around and taste this popular food.

We resume cycling on to Ban Houay Tan (Khmu village). Next, we cycle to Ban Som and make a stop at Ban Na for a lunch prepared by our local cook in the village.

After lunch, we walk over to a spot where a mysterious old mango tree stands obviously defying death itself: Believe it or not, this superannuated tree is more than 500 years old! After feeling young again, we cycle to Ban Chan Neua and Ban Chan Tai, 2 jar making villages.

You will be once more taken on a fishing boat across the Mekong River, to go back to civilization, docking in the downtown of Luang Prabang. We have to cycle (or push the bicycle) a short distance up the hill to finally reach the town.

Today, you will be taken through wonderful natural sceneries on the way to Xieng Khuang. The journey will give you plenty of opportunities to take unforgettable pictures and visit hill tribe villages.

We start this new day by having our breakfast at the hotel, before hitting the road to Xien Khuang.(Approximately 6-7 hrs).

Upon arrival, we directly leave our transportation to visit Site 1 of the Plain of Jars, an impressive archaeological site where hundreds of large stone jars are scattered all over the plateau.

We first have our breakfast at the hotel before starting today’s morning visit in the interesting Central Market in Phonsavan. After this, we shall travel north to Muang Kham to visit Tham Piew cave.

This cave is located near Muang Kham town and is locally famous for having provided shelter to hundreds of local villagers, protecting them from the constant bombing during the war years. Four bombs were dropped on the caves in the early 70s, but only the fourth made it inside. All 374 inhabitants were killed. No memorial or monument has been erected. Only the blackened walls remain as testimony to this tragedy.

After that we will head back to Muang Khoun and visit the MAG exhibition (Memorial Art Gallery). We have our lunch there and spend the remainder of the afternoon sightseeing in the old capital of Muang Khoun and in the nearby villages, home to the Hmong hill tribe and Tai Dam people.

This morning is left free for you before you being taken to the Airport to catch your flight to Vientiane.

Upon landing, you will be met by another guide and transferred to your hotel in Vientiane to check in and take some time to freshen up.

After the rest, enjoy the walk along the Mekong river and stroll through Chao Anouvong Park and night market.

In Chao Anouvong Park stands the majestic statue of King Anouvong. The park was named after the King who was highly regarded amongst Lao people. The statue was constructed in 2010 during Vientiane’s 450th Anniversary to commemorate the King’s noble contribution to the city of Vientiane during his reign.

In the morning time, we take a sightseeing tour of Vientiane, and start off by visiting the Wat Sisaket, the oldest temple that survived the Siamese war of 1828. Its cloister contains more than 8000 Buddha statues.

The second temple you will be taken to is the Ho Prakeo, the former home-temple of the Emerald Buddha statue or Pra Keo from the early time of Lane Xang Kingdom until the 18th century. Today it contains a collection of Buddha statues, antiques and all artifacts found in and around Vientiane.

You will then be taken to That Luang Stupa, the single most important monument in Laos, which was built to cover the original small stupa containing a piece of Buddha’s chest bone, That Luang stands as the main and most symbolic stupa in Laos. It’s also our national symbol and is famous worldwide as a sacred place, hosting major national Buddhist ceremonies. It’s also the biggest stupa in Laos.

Last but not least you will be taken to the Patouxay (Arch de Triumph), built quite recently in commemoration of those who died during World War II and the independence war. It has now become the symbol of Vientiane.

After lunch, we continue the sightseeing tour to Carol Cassidy, a traditional weaving and natural dying gallery where all processes will be presented to you from A to Z.

We then visit the Buddha Park on the Mekong, where you can see Buddha statues in modern style shapes. This park is known to possess the largest Reclining Buddha in Laos! They were built by a Lao man after his study in India, in order to teach the following generations about religions worldwide. A larger park was built in Nong Khai, Thailand where his body has been kept.

In the early morning, you will be transferred to the airport to catch your flight to Pakse

You will be met upon arrival by our guide and drive for about 40 minutes to a local tea and coffee plantation. Here you can observe the different processes of making green tea and roasting coffee. Please feel free to taste the finished product!

After that we drive to the 120 meters Tad Fan waterfall. After some time to relax and photograph the fall we trek through the dense forest where we can see may different species of birds. With some luck, wild monkeys and goats will appear. We then stop for a delicious picnic lunch in the middle of the forest, take a stroll along the Tad Yeaung waterfall to enjoy this beautiful swimming spot (do not forget to bring your clothing to change if you wish to swim) before trekking up to Tad Yeaung through coffee plantations.

Our vehicle will be waiting for us there and will drive us to the highland area of the plateau to visit the local market at Paksong, the Lao coffee capital and home of many Mon-Khmer minority groups. There you will learn and experience how coffee is made, collected and roasted in the farm.

We then head back to the main road and stop on the way to admire another gorgeous waterfall, Tad Phasuam.

You will be given the opportunity to visit a few ethnic minorities of Southern Laos on the way (Laven, Taoy, Aluk, to name a few), as well as visit the ethnic museum, where you can see them in their traditional houses. We then make our way to Champasak in the evening and stay there overnight.

What better way to start the day, than visiting the Khmer temple ruins of the World Heritage Site, Wat Phou, in the early morning? We get back to the hotel for breakfast before crossing the Mekong to Ban Moung. From there you will reach Ban Na Kasang, after a 2 hours drive.

A boat will be waiting for you to take you through the majestic 4000 Islands and finally dock in the island of Don Khone to check-in at the hotel and enjoy lunch in a restaurant on the riverside.

After lunch, we cycle to the old French wharf and along the old French railway line to Liphi falls. From here we will swap our bicycles for Kayaks and paddle downstream for about 20 minutes to see one of the world’s rarest mammal species, the Irrawaddy Dolphin. We spend some time on the Kayak to relax, watch and photograph the Dolphins as you please.

From here we will jump on motorboat to Veunkham, a car will be waiting to take us to the biggest waterfall in Southeast Asia, Khone Phapheng.

We then make our way back to Ban Na Kasang where a motorboat takes us once more to Don Khone after this wonderful but intense day.

We leave Don Khone in the early morning back to Pakse (2.5 hours drive) to catch our flight to Vientiane.

The remainder of the afternoon is left free, and dinner will be booked for you at the locally famous Khop Chai Deu restaurant, at 19.30 (on your own account.

Today marks the end of your memorable adventure through Laos.

After breakfast, you will be transferred to the Airport for your flight.

Yangon

jasmine palace hotel deluxe room yangon hotels

JASMINE PALACE HOTEL

Comfort

Modern city hotel in Yangon with excellent location. Jasmine Palace Hotel presents good value and high standards is the perfect base for exploring the city’s highlights.

Bagan

Bagan Umbra Hotel

HOTEL UMBRA

Comfort

Charming garden resort near Old Bagan. Hotel Umbra is one of our favourite hotels in Bagan. It was recently renovated and reconstructed. Particularly the Grand deluxe rooms are nice with modern and spacious facilities.

Inle Lake

RED CANAL HOTEL

Comfort

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Mandalay

RED CANAL HOTEL

Comfort

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What's Included

  • Private tours and transfers with air-conditioned vehicles as specified in our itinerary
  • 2 bottles of water & 2 refreshing towels per passenger per day
  • Lodging with breakfast as specified in the itinerary
  • Luggage handling fees at airports
  • Entrance fees or zone fees
  • English speaking guide(other languages guide can be provide with additional charges)

What's Not Included

  • Visa to Laos
  • Domestic Airfares (always quoted and mentioned separately from tour package price)
  • International air fares
  • Meals or any other item not described in the itinerary
  • Peak season surcharges & Compulsory dinners during Xmas & New Year’s
  • Early check-in, late check-out. Normal check out time from hotels in Laos is 11am or 12 o’clock noon
  • Drinks during meals, hotel extras and expenses of personal nature
  • Camera & video fees. Some of the sites visited may ask small fees for photographing and video recording.
  • Tips & gratuities

View all our recommended hotels

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WHAT OUR CLIENTS ARE SAYING

About This Tour

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This was a fantastic journey through Laos with so many memories and experiences to last a life time, Laos was a beautiful country and the journey with Discovery assured that we saw the best of it.

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