Salavanh in southern Laos was part of the Champasak Kingdom in an area known as Muang Mang. The central region is a plateau which is an important coffee production area. The western border of Salavanh is the Mekong and Vietnam is the east. It was part of Thailand in the 19th Century until it came a French Protectorate in 1893. It suffered during the Indochina War in 1971 but the capital, the town of the same name on a bend in the Se Don River before it joins the Mekong, was rebuilt when the war finished.
How to get there
The roads are frankly poor, especially in the monsoon. If you come on holiday in Laos you probably will be happy to accept that the infrastructure is less developed than some neighbours’. Vientiane is the capital and there are bus services connecting it with the whole of the Country. Those on private tours of Laos will have everything arranged for them whether they fly into Vientiane initially or whether they are making a border crossing on Indochina tour packages.
Best time to visit
The monsoon season is May to October when transport is more difficult but Laos certainly does not close for tourists during those months. The monsoons don’t mean constant rain by any means. The drier weather follows with temperatures falling slightly until they rise through March and April until the rains return.
Things to see and do
There is plenty of variety in this single Province, certainly enough to cover most tastes.
• Nang Bua Lake is 15 kilometres out of Salavanh and contains a few Siamese crocodiles.
• There is still some old colonial architecture in the capital and the colourful market area is worth a visit.
• Katang village in Toomlarn District is known for silk weaving.
• The Lapup Festival in Katang, Toomlarn, is also known as Alak Buffalo Sacrifice because they do.
• Tahoy cultural practice involves shamanistic rituals. Totems are erected during festivals with their original intention to deter visitors.
• Those interested in culture will also be interested inLam Salavane, a Lao language folksong.
The birdlife is excellent andLaos tour packagescan recognize this interest in tailoring a tour to visit several places:
• The Xe Sap Important Bird Area crosses two provinces. The highest peak is at 2,100 metres with forest containing many wonderful bird species: Blyth's kingfisher, yellow-billed nuthatch and crested argusare good examples.
• In contrast the Phou Xiengthong National Biodiversity Conservation Area is different terrain and includes nesting little terns, small pratincoles, lapwings and wire-tailed swallows.
• The Phou Xiang Thong IBA hasSiamese fireback, red-collared woodpecker,green peafowland grey-faced tit babbler.
There are plenty of guesthouses to choose from, an eco-lodge as well as hotels. Laos travel packages obviously make all travel and accommodation arrangements but they can be tailored to clients’ particular interests. The intention of a Laos travel guide is to provide basic information and create interest. Hopefully your interest has now been aroused or reinforced.