Secrets of Laos Tailor-made

Laos

Secrets of Laos Tailor-made

The perfect itinerary for discovering the very best of Laos. Marvel at the majesty of Luang Prabang, cruise the Mekong and Nam Ou rivers – perhaps glimpse the endangered Irrawaddy dolphins. Join a master cookery class. Learn a little about elephants at an Elephant village. Explore the Temples of Vientiane. Then travel south to the cool Bolaven Plateau, the amazing Wat Phou and the sleepy islands of Si Phan Don (the 4000 islands).

14 days from £3,215.00 per person
Luang Prabang - Baci Ceremony - Cookery Class - Mekong River Cruise- Pak Ou Caves – Elephant Trek - Vientiane - Bolaven Plateau - Tad Lo Waterfalls - Champasak - Wat Phou - 4000 Islands (Si Phan Don) – Pakse
Highlights
  • Partake in a traditional Baci ceremony to welcome you to the charming town of Luang Prabang. Guardian spirits will be bound to your wrist in the shape of 32 strings to protect you on your journey.
  • Join the morning alms giving ‘Tak Bat’ to saffron clad monks in Luang Prabang.
  • Learn the language of the mahout to control these animals as you move through the beautiful Lao countryside. Help to give the elephants a bath in the Nam Khan River.
  • Explore the Mekong on board Vat Phou Cruise between Pakse, Champasak and Don Khong Island.
  • Relax at the charming La Folie Lodge.

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Itinerary View Map

Day 1: To Bangkok

Morning depart from London Heathrow with direct Thai airways flight to Bangkok.

Day 2: Luang Prabang via Bangkok

Arrive Bangkok and onward connection with Lao Airways to Luang Prabang. Met upon arrival in Luang Prabang and transferred to the hotel. Barci welcome ceremony with music and dance. Remainder of day at leisure. Three nights at Satri House.

Accommodation: Satri House – Luang Prabang

Day 3: Luang Prabang

Dawn visit to observe the long lines of orange-robed Monks leaving their pagodas to receive offerings of food from the residents of Luang Prabang. It’s a unique experience. After breakfast, city tour includes the former Royal Palace, now the National Museum, Wat Mai, a Temple renowned for its golden bas-reliefs. Next see Wat Xieng Thong, perhaps the most photographed Temple in Luang Prabang, and the unique Wat Visoun, entirely rebuilt after its destruction in 1887 by the invading Black Flags from southern China. In the courtyard of Wat Visoun stands the Watermelon Stupa; shaped like the fruit it takes its name from. After lunch visit the excellent Arts and Ethnology Centre giving further insight into the ethnic mix and culture of Laos. Also visit the weaving and textile villages of Ban Xangkhong and Ban Xienglek before returning to the Old Town to climb Mount Phousi and enjoy the stunning views across Luang Prabang as the sun set.

Day 4: Luang Prabang - Cooking Class and Pak Ou Caves

Another opportunity, if wished, to see the procession of Monks receiving their food as dawn rises. After breakfast explore Lao cooking, with a masterclass under the expert instruction of a chef from the Roots and Leaves Restaurant. The class starts with a visit to the fresh produce market. After the demonstration, lunch is an opportunity to ‘enjoy’ your morning's efforts!
(Please note: there will be other guests joining you at the cooking school). Remainder of day at leisure. An afternoon departure by boat up the Mekong River to the Pak Ou caves, housing thousands of Buddha statues, hidden from the looting Chinese Haw in times gone by. The statues range from a few centimetres to the size of a human.

Day 5: Luang Prabang – Day walking excursion with Elephant and Bamboo Raft rides

Walk in the footsteps of French explorer Dr. P. Neiss, who once surveyed the local tribes around Luang Prabang. First visit the Elephant village for a brief introduction into the great work they do there. Talk with the veterinarian in the hospital and feed the awe-inspiring elephants. Later take an elephant ride through an interesting countryside to a delightful waterfall and stop for a traditional Lao lunch. After a short 1.5km trek arrive at the Nam Khan River – board a charming bamboo raft complete with pillows and mats and elegantly sip tea or coffee. It takes 30-60 minutes depending upon the current to reach the jetty.

Day 6: Luang Prabang - To Vientiane

At leisure until midday flight to Vientiane. Two nights at Settha Palace.

Accommodation: The Settha Palace’s – Vientiane

Day 7: Vientiane Market and City Tour

Early morning visit to the fascinating local market of Thongkhankham, where a bewildering array of foods and produce are on offer. After breakfast city tour to include: Wat Sisaket, the only Temple to be left intact after the Siamese invasion in 1828. It’s arguably the most beautiful temple in Vientiane and houses thousands of miniature Buddha statues within its walls. Next is Wat Phra Keo, now a religious museum, with many Lao and Khmer works of art on display. Also see the Patuxai monument - also called Anousavari – climb the steps to the roof for fabulous views; visit That Luang, the holiest place in Laos, and Wat Simuang, the most popular and venerated Temple in Vientiane. Stop at Talat Sao, the morning market, for souvenirs – look out for silk and silver jewellery.

After lunch visit the quirky Buddha Park, an enchanting collection of Buddhist and Hindu sculptures situated on a Mekong Riverside meadow outside of the city centre. The statues were created by a mysterious Monk to spread his philosophy on life and revealing his ideas about the universe. Stop at the Lao Disabled Women’s Centre, which provides valuable training and schooling for disabled women in Laos.

Day 8: To Pakse, Bolaven Plateau, Tad Lo Waterfalls

Morning transfer to the airport for flight to Pakse. On arrival start the journey east across the Bolaven Plateau, passing by many plantations producing coffee, tea, cardamom and bananas. The area is also famous for its many waterfalls; the most beautiful is Tad Fan. During high waters, the scene is spectacular with twin waterfalls plummeting into the deep gorge below. Visit the ethnic minority group villages of Alak, Nge, and Katu. Take a sunset swim in the waterfall. Overnight at La Folie Lodge.

Accommodation: La Folie Lodge Champassak

Day 9: Vat Phou Cruise

After meeting at the Sinouk Coffee House in central Pakse transfer via long tail riverboat, for a two and half house journey to Champassak. Upon arrival at the Vat Phou boat, check into your cabins. Later visit Vat Phou ruins - the majestic pre-Angkorian 10th century temple complex. Two nights on board the Vat Phou Cruise.

Accommodation: Vat Phou Cruise

Day 10: Vat Phou Cruise

Breakfast is on board as we set sail for the village of Tomo. This is a small village a few minutes walk away from the mysterious hidden forest temple of Oum Muong. Afterwards rejoin the boat to continue cruise southwards. Lunch is on the deck, while leisurely sailing closer to the wild paradise of the "4,000 Islands" Late afternoon disembark from the boat to walk through Ban Deua Tia, a small Laotian Village where the traditional way of life has not changed in centuries.

Day 11: Vat Phou Cruise – La Folie Lodge

While you have breakfast on the deck, the Vat Phou boat cruises down the Mekong to the small village of Ban Veuthong, where you board a small boat to meander among the 4,000 Islands to Khone Island. Return to the mainland, visiting Khone Phapheng, considered, by volume, to be the largest waterfall in South East Asia. In the afternoon boat trip across the Mekong to the island of Don Daeng. Three nights at the La Folie Lodge.

Accommodation: La Folie Lodge Champassak

Day 12-13: At leisure

At leisure at La Folie Lodge.

Day 14: To London via Pakse and Bangkok

Transfer to Pakse airport to board Lao Airways flight to Bangkok connecting onwards with Thai Airways to London.

Looking to extend your holiday ? Contact our consultants today for your options.

Itinerary map

Prices

Price per person (Double/Twin share)
£3,215.00
Cost includes:
  • International & internal flights in economy class.
  • Accommodation in a double/twin sharing room with en-suite facilities.
  • Daily breakfast throughout. Fullboar meals on Vat Phu Cruise. Lunch at cookery class on Day 4 and Picnic lunch on Day 5.
  • Services of English speaking guide during sightseeing.
  • Transfers as per the itinerary by air-conditioned car.
  • Excursions, sightseeing and entrance fees as per the itinerary.
  • Full ATOL Bonding.
Cost does not include:
  • Visa Fee.
  • Any optional Excursions.
  • Any expenses of a personal nature.
  • Travel Insurance.

What our clients say

We recently returned from Sri Lanka and wish to thank you for arranging a most enjoyable and informative tour for us. We both greatly appreciated your efficient handling of our booking and the professionalism of all personnel involved with our holiday which enabled us to relax and enjoy our time in this beautiful country. Our driver was always punctual, courteous, and extremely informative with regard…

Eileen and Simon Peters - Sri Lanka Holiday