Beautiful Laos - 8 days
FROM USD $1,999
Explore the splendours of this diverse and intriguing country and discover the ancient temples of Bagan, the tranquil shores of Inle Lake, local village life and majestic pagodas including Yangon’s stunning Shwedagon Pagoda. Other fantastic highlights include a visit to Salay, home to the impressive Yoke-son Monastery, mystical Mount Popa and Heho with its remarkable caves which contain over 9000 statues of Buddha.
Day 1: Luang Prabang
Welcome to Laos. Upon arrival you will be greeted by your guide and driver at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Late afternoon offers free time, take a walk around this quaint town and take the time to explore the Luang Prabang Night Market, where you can find an array of handmade textiles made by local villagers and the hill tribes of the area. A welcome dinner will be served at a local house accompanied by a traditional Baci ceremony.
Overnight - Luang Prabang
Day 2: Pak Ou Caves
Today discover the incredible Pak Ou Caves on a Mekong boat trip. Here, hundreds of tiny gilded statues of Buddha, worshipped for centuries teeter on stone shelves in the cave walls. Visits are also made to the local villages of Ban Xanghai and Ban Muangkeo. Overnight - Luang Prabang (B, L)
Day 3: Temples of Luang Prabang
After breakfast explore Luang Prabang by bicycle, a fun and eco-friendly way of exploring the town visiting the temples of Wat Visun, Wat Aham and the beautiful Wat Xieng Thong, famed for its intricate mosaics and painted figurines. Visits to local villages where silk and Saa (Mulberry) Paper are made and from Phou Sy Mountain, witness Luang Prabang's stunning temple tops fade as the sun sets.
Overnight - Luang Prabang (B)
Day 4: Vientianne - Laos Cuisine
This morning we journey to Tamarind Cafe where we will take part in an introductory lesson in cooking real Lao cuisine. We will tuk-tuk to Phou Sy market to buy our ingredients for the cooking class. Our chef teacher will share his knowledge on local ingredients while touring the market before travelling to our lakeside classroom outside of town where we will learn to prepare some local favourites such as khao niauw (sticky rice), oh paedek (soup with ground pork) and laarb kai (spicy Laotian chicken salad). Afterwards, we will have the chance to enjoy our creations.
Later today we make our way to the famous Khouang Si waterfall, visiting the Bear Sanctuary en-route before we have time for a relaxing swim or just relax by the water’s edge. Late afternoon we return to Luang Prabang and the airport for our flight to Vientiane.
Overnight - Vientiane (B, L)
Day 5: Vientienne by Tuk Tuk
Today we visit the COPE educational centre, a compelling centre that teaches us about Laos’ Hidden War and the aid that is being given to help civilian victims of conflict. Afterwards we continue on to the unique Buddha Park or Xiang Khouan as it’s known locally, the park is filled with hundreds of Buddhist and Hindu statues creating a peaceful atmosphere.
On our way back to town we visit the Vientiane Orchid Centre which hosts one of the largest orchid collections in the world.
Later, take a tuk-tuk tour of Vientiane visiting - Wat Sisaket, one of the oldest temples and home to thousands of miniature Buddha statues, and also visiting the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo. En route to Lao’s national icon, That Luang Stupa, we pass the Patuxay Monument, known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. Overnight - Vientiane (B)
Day 6: Khong Island
Today fly to Pakse, the laid back provincial capital of Champasack and drive to the ancient temple of Wat Phou, one of the oldest archaeological sites in Laos. Then enjoy the beautiful lush scenery as you take a boat across the Mekong to Khong Island. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure exploring this sedate and picturesque island and its villages on foot or by bike. Overnight - Don Khong Island (B)
Day 7: 4000 Islands Boat Trip
Set sail this morning on a scenic 4000 Islands boat trip, where you may spot the rare Irrawaddy Mekong Dolphin! Later return to Pakse, visiting thundering Khone Phapeng - Southeast Asia’s largest waterfalls en route. Overnight - Pakse (B)
Day 8: Pakse
Explore Pakse town your own way. Arrangements come to an end after breakfast and onward departure transfer to the airport. (B)