Highlights of Laos

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Best time to go: January to April, October to December

7 Nights | from £1,895pp

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • Explore the museums, temples and riverside bars of charming Vientiane
  • Watch the daily dawn procession of Luang Prabang's saffron-robed monks
  • Float down the Mekong to see Buddhist caves and whiskey-brewing villages
  • Discover the unique culture of Laos' diverse hilltribes
  • Swim in the azure waters of Kuang Si Falls


Day 1 London / Vientiane
Maximise your time by flying overnight from Heathrow to Vientiane, via Bangkok.

Day 2 Vientiane
Vientiane isn't like other Asian cities –the pace of life here makes it feel like a welcoming small town rather than a country capital. This relaxing vibe is amplified by staying at the Ansara, tucked on a quiet lane overlooking lush private gardens. There's plenty to see here though: visit Wat Sisaket and the Haw Pha Kaew museum of arts and antiquities, and finish at That Louang, Laos' most important religious building. Then retreat to the Kualao Restaurant to tuck in to traditional dishes –from Mekong fish wrapped in banana leaves to kang nor mai (bamboo shoot soup).
Ansara Hotel | Meals: Breakfast

Day 3 Vientiane
North of Vientiane, where the rice-growing flatlands begin to meet the mountains, is pretty Nam Ngum Reservoir. Take a boat trip on the lake, stopping at secluded swimming spots and exploring the archaeological site of Vang Xang. Have a picnic on your own private beach, then return to the city to chill with a cold Beerlao –the national beer –and watch the sun sink into the Mekong.
Ansara Hotel | Meals: Breakfast

Day 4 Vientiane / Luang Prabang

If Vientiane is laidback, Luang Prabang is positively horizon-tal. It's only a short flight to this UNESCO World Heritage-listed former royal capital, a scatter of tree-lined avenues, colonial mansions and Buddhist temples languishing at the confluence of two rivers. Stay at the striking Hotel de la Paix, a renovated French fort in the heart of the town.
Sofitel Luang Prabang | Meals: Breakfast

Day 5 Luang Prabang

Immerse yourself in the rich culture of Luang Prabang. Visit the gilded halls of Wat Xieng Thong and Wat Visoun, walk through the former Royal Palace, and learn about the diverse traditions of Laos' hilltribes at the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre. Also, allow plenty of time for getting lost down the town's riddle of hidden lanes.
Sofitel Luang Prabang | Meals: Breakfast

Day 6 Luang Prabang
It's worth rising early in Luang Prabang, to join the locals seeking to gain merit by offering alms to the monks. Watch as a trail of saffron-robed monks processes in the calm pre-dawn, accepting bowlfuls of sticky rice. A mesmerising sight. After your own breakfast, set sail on the mighty Mekong, headed for the limestone caves at Pak Ou where, for centuries, pilgrims have left Buddha images. On the return, pass small villages where women pan for gold and children play on the banks;stop at a whiskey and weaving village, famed for trading hand-woven cloth and making lao-lao, a potent brew.
Sofitel Luang Prabang | Meals: Breakfast

Day 7 Luang Prabang
Leave Luang Prabang to see more of rural Laos. The sur-rounding countryside is lush and mountainous and tickled by waterfalls –in particular, the chance to swim in the turquoise cascade of Kuang Si should not be missed. But there are also small ethnic minority villages where you can gain a real insight into the unique traditions of Laos' hilltribes.
Sofitel Luang Prabang | Meals: Breakfast

Day 8 Luang Prabang
Head to the airport for your flight home.
Meals: Breakfast

Want to stay longer...?
Add on more of IndochinaIt's easy to combine Laos with other spots in the region –perhaps Cambodia's Angkor temples, the hills and beaches of Thailand, or a journey through Vietnam.

Pricing
At A&K all of our journeys are individually tailored to suit your needs and timescale. As a guide, this 8 day suggested holiday will cost from £1,895 per person, based on two sharing, including international flights.

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Call 01242 547 895 to speak to a specialist Enquire


Meet the Orient & Indian Subcontinent Team

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Annie, Brandon, Debbie, Margaret, Vicky Smith, Lynne and Rachel - are experts in designing travel experiences across the region to suit your personal needs, interests and budget.

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Useful info

laos map

Best time to be there

The cooler part of the dry season, November to February is when Laos is at its best, avoiding the torrential rains of the summer months, and the sweltering heat of April and May.

Fly to

Luang Prabang or Vientiane via Bangkok

flying time

13 hours via Bangkok

time difference

GMT + 7 hours

Visas

Issued on arrival

Health Requirements

Yellow Fever certificate if arriving from an endemic area

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