Travel Laos in 8 Days

Travel Laos in 8 Days is one off-the-beaten path road trip we combine with popular places of the northern Laos including Pakbeng, Oudomxay, Nong Khiow, Luang Prabang, Vang Vieng, Vientiane.

Trip Description & Day-by-day Itinerary

Travel Laos in 8 Days is one off-the-beaten path road trip we combine with popular places of the northern Laos including Pakbeng, Oudomxay, Nong Khiow, Luang Prabang, Vang Vieng, Vientiane.

Itinerary

Day 1: Chiang Khong – Pakbeng

On arrival Houei Say, Laos from Chiang Khong (Thailand), we embark on our traditional boat cruising downstream on the Mekong River. This part of the Mekong River is quite narrow and both banks are bordered by beautiful green forests and towering hills. The pace is very relaxed, a perfect way to observe rural life up close. Along the way, we stop at Ban Houeilampen to visit the Hmong people. We’ll arrive in Pakbeng in the afternoon. Overnight in Pakbeng.

Day 2: Pakbeng – Oudomxay – Nong Khiow

We have an early start visiting the hill tribe market before leaving Pakbeng. We then venture into the mountainous and remote area of Northern Laos. The verdant and rugged mountain scenery combined with the colorful local population makes this an unforgettable experience. Oudomxay province is residence to 23 ethnic minority groups and we’ll make a few rest stops along the way so that you can meet with some of them. Hill tribe people are unfailingly friendly, welcoming you with waving hands and smiling faces. We’ll reach our destination in late afternoon – the remote village of Nong Khiow; situated by the banks of the river with a commanding view of the valley below and surrounding mountainous scenery. Overnight in Nong Khiow.

Day 3: Nong Khiow – Luang Prabang

After breakfast we board the boat, stopping along the way in some ethnic minority villages. A highlight is visiting the Pak Ou Caves, two linked caverns crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by pilgrims. We continue our trip to the UNESCO World Heritage City of Luang Prabang. This former royal capital with its gleaming temple roofs, fading colonial architecture and stunning mountain backdrop retains a unique charm rarely found in Asia. There is little traffic on the roads and monks in orange robes scurry in all directions carrying umbrellas to shade themselves. We’ll ascend the 329 steps to the top of Mount Phousi to see the sacred, gilded stupa and enjoy a beautiful sunset over the city and the Mekong River. From there, we explore the Night Market, where you can find a lovely selection of handmade textile and souvenirs. Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Day 4: Luang Prabang City Tour

An optional early start gives you the fantastic opportunity to participate in the daily morning alms giving ritual to saffron clad monks. This tradition is unique to Laos, being the only Buddhist nation still preserving this procession. After breakfast, we explore this charming city, seeing Wat Xiang Thong, the most important Buddhist monastery in the country, Wat Visoun, Wat Khili and Wat Mai. Later, we visit the former Royal Palace, now a National Museum (closed Tuesday) where you will find ornate, gilded and brocaded reception rooms, as well as many spectacular artifacts. Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Day 5: Luang Prabang – Vang Vieng

After breakfast, we leave this charming city for our journey to Vang Vieng. The drive can be strenuous as the scenic route is also one of the roughest in Asia. In the afternoon we’ll arrive in Vang Vieng, a small and tranquil town nestled on a bend of the Nam Song River. The place is a natural paradise and is perfect for some R&R. Before settling down for the night, we’ll visit the 7km long Tham Hoy Cave and some Khmu and Hmong villages. Overnight in Vang Vieng

Day 6: Vang Vieng – Vientiane

After breakfast, you are free to explore the town on foot or by bicycle until we depart for Vientiane in early afternoon. The drive is lengthy, but there will be plenty of photo opportunities along the way. When we arrive, you are transferred to your hotel and have the evening free to walk along the Mekong Riverside. Overnight in Vientiane.

Day 7: Vientiane City Tour

A city tour acquaints us with the capital and after breakfast. We’ll visit the major city sights; including Wat Sisaket, which contains more than 8000 Buddha statues, Wat Ho Prakeo the former home of the Emerald Buddha statue and That Luang Stupa, the single most important monument in Laos. We also see the Patuxay (Lao Arc de Triomphe), which was built in commemoration of those who died during past wars; today it is the city’s main landmark. We will make sure to watch the sunset by the Mekong Riverside and spend the evening absorbing the city’s nightlife.

Day 8: Vientiane – Departure

Today, you are free until your departure flight out of Laos

Additional Information

Primary Activity

Off-The-Beaten Track, Sightseeing

Duration

8 days

Tour Starts

Houay Xai

Places to Visit

Luang Prabang, Nong Khiow, Oudomxay, Pakbeng, Vang Vieng, Vientiane

Tour Ends

Vientiane

Adventure Level

Easy

Itinerary Disclaimer

Occasionally our tour itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travelers’ comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the service proposal. It’s very important that you print and review a final copy of your itinerary a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. If you have any queries, please contact us. We are here to help you!

Please note that while we operate successful trips in Vietnam throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary from time to time.

Inclusions

Our trip cost usually includes the following services. Please bear in mind LOTUSSIA Travel is specialized in tailor-made trips. Trip cost vary depending on group size and other details.

  • Car transfers.
  • Local tour guide. The English-Speaking guide is provided by default. Other language may be available upon request (with extra charge).
  • Local porter(s).
  • Accommodation.
  • Meals.
  • Entrance fees.
  • Bottled water.

Exclusions

Unless required most of the following services are usually not included in our tour price.

  • Visa
  • Flight/Train tickets.
  • Accommodation pre/post trip.
  • International travel insurance.
  • Tips.
  • Personal expenses.

Tour Guide

Our tour guides speak English or French. They hold a university degree in tourism and national license as a guide. If you wish to send a tour leader along with any group, he or she can fully rely on the knowledge and experience of our local guides.

Remote treks are always accompanied by a local representative to deal with permits and authorities and manage the porter team. They speak the local dialects, know the cultural traditions and give tips on suggested behavior in fragile ecological areas and tribal communities. For some itineraries, the role of tour leader and representative is combined.

Trip Routes

Principally, LOTUSSIA Travel requires all the trip associates to know the destinations well by any means of traveling or enquiry to the local suppliers to figure out all the relative details of any trip. For adventure tours such as jungle trekking, mountain hiking, sea kayaking, river rafting or biking, cycling tours, LOTUSSIA Travel will never add any new routes into available schedule until survey or pre-view it.

Accommodation

LOTUSSIA Travel carefully choose all the hotels, guest-houses or homestays based on service quality, location, and characteristics, doing best to make the accommodations in the remote small places as comfortable as possible. Please bear in mind that hotels in Vietnam might not be in the same standard in other country. Generally hotels in major cities such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh city, Hoian, Hue…are much better than hotels and guest-houses in mountainous areas.

Meals

LOTUSSIA Travel take dinning as an indispensable experience to clients since it is an important part in Vietnamese culture. Therefore, LOTUSSIA Travel will not intend take clients to the most expensive restaurants but non-touristy local ones which offer delicious, local food, with nice or interesting atmosphere. The restaurants might be simple in the country but LOTUSSIA Travel guarantee is sanitary and cleanliness. Or even on our trek, we encourage our cook offer client food with new tastes from day to day. During adventure itineraries to mountainous or remote areas, there is sometimes no choice for hotel and restaurants. We will try our best to bring you the best taste of local food.

Drinks

As the tap water in Vietnam is undrinkable, LOTUSSIA Travel recommend clients to drink bottled water throughout your trip, or boiled water on treks. LOTUSSIA Travel offers bottle water all the day, and soft drinks like Cola, Sprite or Vietnamese Tea or if possible juice in restaurants (if mentionned in itinerary). This is not automatically included in the packages. In simple restaurant or on camping, LOTUSSIA Travel offers boiled water, instant coffee or juice, wrapped milk (Details are confirmed in bottom of your itinerary).

Vehicle

In most destinations of Vietnam, all the roads are well paved though the traffic is quite messed up like in Hanoi, Hai Phong… We use proper vehicles, car, minibus or coach in good condition based on the size of the groups. We use 4WD only on the rough road where the other vehicles could not pass through or based on clients requirement on overland journeys or treks. For cycling itineraries, we usually use our support minibus or minibus with support truck. For sea kayaking, river rafting trips, diving packages we use standard boat as support. Detailed information is provided on our service proposal.

We use drivers who are native or local of each travel destination and maintain good safety records for all trips. Most of our drivers can speak English but a little bit. This is just enough to understand basic words such as “time of departure”, “stop”, “restaurants”, “hotels”…If you want to learn more about Vietnamese culture and information about sightseeing sites, booking a tour guide is highly recommended.

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