WELCOME TO LAOS
Overview: With untouched nature, a gentle culture, and a refreshingly simple take on life, Laos lets you explore temples, relax on the river, go on active adventures through the rice fields, soak up traditional village life, and leave feeling rejuvenated and completely at ease. Travel back in history as you watch Laos move into the future. As one of the least densely populated countries in South East Asia, Laos offers a special blend of traditional culture and unexplored nature. Its wild and mountainous jungle-clad interior is a Mecca for adventurers and nature-lovers alike.
The mellow riverside capital city of Vientiane looks much the same as it did decades ago when it was still a sleepy outpost of colonial French Indochina. With a gentle culture and friendly people, it is easy to slip into relaxed explorations of this refreshingly simple lifestyle.
Wake up at sunrise to feed the saffron-robed monks, meander through the temples of the ancient royal capital, Luang Prabang, or make your way into the heart of the forested mountains for some active adventuring in beautifully tranquil Laos.
Luang Prabang: one of the most beautiful places of South East Asia and top destination of Laos. Being the formal royal capital of the Lan Xang Kingdom until 1545 and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Luang Prabang is considered by many the heart of Laotian culture. The town has what it takes to make your time worthwhile and will continue to leave great memories in your heart afterwards: the former royal palaces, over 33 Wats (temples), the old town, French historical architecture, nature with Mekong river and waterfalls…
- Pak Ou
- Wat Xieng Thong
- Royal Palace
- Ban Phanom
- Kuang Xi Waterfalls
Vang Vieng is a small town north of Vientiane, on the Nam Song River in Laos. It is surrounded by striking limestone mountains and caves. Tham Poukham, to the west, is a cave with a blue-green lagoon and a reclining Buddha statue. North is the deep Tham Nam Cave, which has a spring at its entrance. Nearby, Tham Xang Cave has a stalactite resembling an elephant. The town is home to 16th- and 17th-century monasteries. (Wikipedia)
- Tham Chang
- Kaeng Nyui Waterfalls
- Tham Poukham Cave
- Wat That
Vientiene: Laos’ capital. Located in the heart of Laos, Vietiene carries on its own a long history of Buddhism and French colonization. Buddhism has tremendous influence in many aspects of Laotian life. Located in the city centre is the sacred gilded stupa of Pha That Luang (The Great Stupa), a national symbol and cultural monument of Laos.
In the heart of Laos lies Vientiane, the largest city and the country’s capital. Vientiane, which means “city of sandalwood”, sits on the banks of the Mekong River near the border with Thailand and prides itself for its Buddhist temples and French colonial architecture scattered throughout the city.
- Pha That Luang
- Wat Si Sake
- Wat Si Muang
Vieng Thong is a district and a town in Houaphan Province in north-eastern Laos. It is the gateway for the Nam Et-Phou Louey National Protected Area, which is home to a number of endangered species including tiger. The protected area headquarters are located in the Muang Hiem (Viengthong) town.
- The Hot-spring
- Nam Nern Night Safari
- Treking tours The Nests
- Cloud Forest Climb
Pakse is the capital of Champasak Province, founded by French colonialists in 1905. The kingdom was destroyed in 1946 after which the Kingdom of Lao was created. Pakse is located at the mouth of the rivers Xedong and Mekong. The term Pakse means the ‘Mouth of the River Se’. This city is inhabited by 70,000 people and the Pakse International Airport serves as a link to the Bolaven Plateau. The construction of this airport was completed in November 2009, and has connections to Siem Reap, Vientiane and Bangkok.
- Mount Phou Asa
Pakse Night Market
- Vat Phu
- Si Phan Don
REASONS TO VISITLaos
Adventure and Laos go hand in hand. Few places offer an opportunity to explore, get active and experience such a grand dose of adventure! Trekking, kayaking, caving, rock climbing and mountain biking are available to do throughout Laos, getting you off the beaten path and the chance to see more of this incredible country. Kayak from Vang Vieng to Vientiane, via the Nam Lik and experience grade 2-3 rapids while witnessing traditional river life or mountain bike through the myriad of trails through jungle terrain while visiting secret waterfalls and blue lagoons.
It may not be home to the Grand Palace or the ancient ruins of Angkor Wat, but Laos is filled with plenty of temples of intricate design and inspired architecture, displaying craftsmanship and faith. The UNESCO-listed, World Heritage City, Luang Prabang, alone has over 32 temples and 1000 active monks. The phrase “temple fatigue” just doesn’t exist here.
THE RIVER LIFE
In a landlocked state, it is the rivers that flow throughout which provide the soul and lifeblood of this nation. Here commerce is traded, people, livestock and possessions transported, life is lived and sustenance is found. Far from the noise and clutter of the roads and cities, you will find villages only accessible by these flowing highways, relatively untouched by development of the modern era. The majority of Laotians live in rural settings and it is the rivers that help to connect each other.
Meandering rivers of the Mighty Mekong that flow through the country, verdant jungle jutting from dramatic karst peaks, caves carved out over thousands of years – filled with secret lakes and Buddhist offerings – waterfalls and blue lagoons, fertile land tended and terraced through generations and a land that’s sublime beauty transcends time. Laos is breathtakingly beautiful.
Few people are as a genuinely welcoming as the people of Laos. They’re always up for a laugh and you’re guaranteed a good time. They are passionate about their country, family and culture and their willingness to share this with others is heartwarming. Come find yourself invited into their homes to share stories and laughs over tea or for a round or two of Lao Lao (pungent rice whisky)!
Simple, fresh, local ingredients, cooked and prepared to perfection! Classics like pho (an addictive noodle broth), green Laos curry and the fiery Som Tam Lao (green papaya salad) to the lesser known but equally delicious laos larb (a mincemeat salad), and bamboo shoot soup all find our way onto our plate while in Laos.