Golden temples, green cities & world heritage sites await
Laos is one of the most beautiful countries in South East Asia. It is a country where you truly feel you have stepped back in time. A time where emperors roamed the land and wonderful temples were built to honour religion and spirituality.
A country with exotic forests, enigmatic heritage sites and friendly people, you will not fail to be impressed by everything this hidden gem has to offer.
Nestled between Vietnam, China, Thailand and Myanmar and with such impressive neighbours it has often been overlooked. However, more people are choosing to include Laos as part of their adventure and tour around South east Asia. It is often referred to the Thailand of 20 years ago.
A tour around Laos is the best way to appreciate everything this country has to offer, tours give you the perfect chance to tailor make your holiday and you will get to learn about all the best places to go from the experts.Laos tours can include adventure, culture and cities or you can simply choose to relax in one of the beautiful resorts.
Tourists are choosing to visit Laos as it still offers so many chances to seek out places other tourists are yet to discover. A country which is cheap to tour and full of friendly people, what is there not to love about this beautiful country?
We have selected the top five best things for you to experience and build into your Laos tour. A local tour operator will be able to assist with building your perfect holiday to Laos.
1. Luang Prabang
An impressive city with over 30 temples nestled between its green lush countryside surroundings and pretty french colonial style buildings. Luang Prabang is a recognised UNESCO world heritage site. Dating back to the 5th century, you will be welcomed by culture and heritage in abundance.
Its unique location means it is surrounded by the most lush countryside. You could be walking the many temples one day and discovering cascading waterfalls the next.
A town full of colour, history and amazing places to eat, sleep and have fun.
Our Top Tip: Do not miss a visit the the Pan Ou Caves, dating back thousands of years and packed with almost 4000 Buddha icons to marvel over. Beautiful and breathtaking.
2. That Luang
This impressive golden temple is a national symbol in Laos and you will not fail to be blown away by its utter beauty. Its high golden walls and sharp edged spires make the building feel more like a fortress, but do not be fooled by its facade. The temple has seen its fair share of upset and was damaged in the war, but it was lovingly restored back to former glory in the 1930s.
You can wander its many rooms, feel part of royalty walking around the perfectly manicured gardens and marvel at its elegantly crafted statues.
Our Top Tip: Visit in early November to witness the Boun That Luang festival. Watch thousands of people come to pay their respect to the national monument.
3. Bolaven Plateau
People are often surprised at just how scenic and beautiful Laos is. With unexplored villages and hidden waterfalls and forests, it is easy to see why people fall in love with Laos. Green is a colour you will see in plenty supply in Laos, cities and villages are surrounded by it and the backdrop of golden temples highlight its lush countryside.
Bolaven Plateau has to be a ‘must see’ on any tour around Laos. It is home to some of the best waterfalls South East Asia has to offer. The area is farmed for its tea and coffee and is known for the exceptional quality.
Our Top Tip: Take a hike to Tad Fane twin falls, at an impressive 100 metres high the noise alone will take your breath away. They are surrounded by a forest where monkeys, tigers and elephants wait to be discovered.
4. The Plain of Jars
Imagine a vast flat land speckled with giant stones shaped like jars. The Plain of Jars are one of the most iconic sites in Laos. With some of the stones measuring nearly 4 metres high and dating 2000 years it is easy to be taken back in time. Although their true meaning is now known, locals believe they could have held rice, wine or even the dead!
Our Top Tip: Ask your tour guide to take you the most popular places to see the best view of the plains and the jars. They will also be able to advise the best time of day to visit so you can wander around them in peace.
5. Vang Vieng
A pretty little village north of the capital. Vang Vieng sits on the Nam Song river and you cannot fail to miss is presence as it winds its way around the town. The town is geared towards tourism, so expect to see more street vendors and fellow tourists looking for their next adventure
Due to its location Vang Vieng gives you so many chances to experience a range of different activities. You would be trekking to local villages on one day and enjoying a relaxing traditional boat trip along the Nam Song the next. You will be spoilt for choice.
Our Top Tip: Trek to local ethnic villages of Lao, Kmou and Hmong. You will be able to watch locals making traditional crafts and learn about their organic farming. A very interesting insight into traditional Laos life.
What are you waiting for?
Using a local tour operator will make your experience unique and personal, they will be able to spend time building your perfect itinerary and ensure you are aware of customs and traditions