Mysteries of Laos Tour – 7 Days
This multi desination tour combines the historical city of Luang Prabang, the Plain of Jars site at Xieng Khouang and the pleasant capital of Vientiane. Although a small country, Laos is rich with attractions, culture and mystery. Laos preserves its unique heritage, the tradition of the daily procession of the offerings of alms to nearly 200 monks at dawn in Luang Prabang, is an attraction in itself. The AncientPlain of Jars and bizarre Buddha Park are intriguing sites; their functions and origins remain mysteries.
Dates: No fixed departure dates. You may go whenever you wish.
Starts/Ends: Luang Prabang / Vientiane
Tour routes: Luang Prabang - Xieng Khuang - Vientiane
Tour Type: Landscape and Nature, adventure
Tour Customizable: Absolutely! (Tell us your specific requirements in the inquiry form)
Day 01: Luang Prabang – Arrival (-/-/-)
Day 02: Luang Prabang - Pak Ou Caves – Xiengmene (B/-/-)
Day 03: Luang Prabang - Elephant village - Khuang Si Waterfalls(B/-/-)
Day 04: Luang Prabang - Xieng Khuang(B/-/-)
Day 05: Xieng Khuang - Muang Khoun - Plain of Jars(B/-/-)
Day 06: Xieng Khuang - Vientiane(B/-/-)
Day 07: Vientiane - Departure(B/-/-)
DAY 01: LUANG PRABANG – ARRIVAL – CITY TOUR (-/-/-)
On arrival at the airport, you will be met and transferred to check in the hotel.
After a soft rest, your city tour begins with a visit to the Traditional Art and Ethnology Center to learn about Laos’ many ethnic cultures. We then head to the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture. We still have time to visit the Royal Palace Museum, which hosts a range of interesting artifacts. If time permits, we will take a stroll around the city to visit Big Brother Mouse, which is the most famous bookshop in Laos. The next stop is Ock Pop Tock, meaning East Meets West, where you can learn about the traditional weaving in Laos. A visit to Luang Prabang would be incomplete without ascending the 329 steps to the top of Phousi Hill for a beautiful sunset view of the city and its glowing reflection on the Mekong River. The tour ends after a visit to the famous Night Market, where you can find a lovely collection of handmade textiles made by local and hilltribe people surrounding Luang Prabang. Overnight in Luang Prabang
Optional: Enjoy a private Baci ceremony after sunset at a local family. The Baci ceremony as a traditional ritual of the Lao people expresses the spirituality of the country and is a highly memorable experience and a deep insight into Lao culture for the participants.
DAY 02: LUANG PRABANG – PAK OU CAVES – XIENGMENE (B/-/-)
An optional early start gives you the fantastic opportunity to participate in the daily morning rituals of saffron-clad monks collecting offerings of Alms (ubiquitous sticky rice) from the faithful residents. This tradition is very unique in Laos, being the only Buddhist nation still preserving the procession. From there, we will take a short visit to the morning local market near the Royal Palace. At the market, you can find anything from rice, to fresh vegetables, to steamed fish, frogs, and anything else that might be the day’s catch, just set up on the ground, this is what the locals do every day. This is really the chance for you to get a real flavor of the local culture.
After breakfast, we embark on a cruise upstream on the Mekong River, firstly stopping at Xiengmene Village, where we visit Wat Long Khun temple and the limestone cave Tham Sakkarin, and a tour around Ban Xiengmene village. We then continue by boat up the Mekong which also gives us a breathtaking view of the tranquil countryside as well time to explore the mysterious Pak Ou Caves, two linked caves crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by pilgrims. After lunch, we return by road back to town. Along the way, we visit the village of Ban Xanghai, where they make the local rice wine and continue to typical Lao villages at Ban Xangkhong and Ban Xienglek, well known for its handmade Jute Sar paper.
DAY 03: LUANG PRABANG – ELEPHANT VILLAGE – KUANG SI WATERFALLS (B/-/-)
ABF, your car and guide will take you to Elephant Village. On arrival at the camp, you can stroll around to make friends with some very big elephants before enjoying the elephant riding in about 30 minute to the nearby jungle.
We then transfer to Kuang Si Waterfalls where you can cool off with a refreshing swim in the pools or walk along the forest trails. Along the way, we take a short visit to the tomb of the 19th century French explorer Henri Mouhot; the first European to rediscover Angkor Wat and to visit the Royal Kingdom of Luang Prabang. Before coming back to Luang Prabang, we stop to visit the Kuang Si Falls Butterfly Park, one of the must-visit spots, newly opened on January 2014. We will also stop to visit local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, a Hmong village, Ban Ou a Laoloum village and Ban Thapene, Khmu villages. Arriving in Luang Prabang, we transfer to Wat Siphouthabath to admire the sunset. Overnight in Luang Prabang
DAY 04: LUANG PRABANG – XIENG KHUANG (B/-/-)
After breakfast, we make our way over the mountains to Xieng Khuang, the province which is best-known for having been heavily bombed during Indochina War. But of course it is also famous for its historic Plain of Jars. The journey takes about 8 hours and we can make some stops at villages to observe the rural life of local people, including ethnic minorities such as the Hmong people. Arrival in Phonsavanh, the capital of Xiengkhouang province and check into your hotel. Overnight at hotel
DAY 05: XIENG KHUANG – MUANG KHOUN – PLAIN OF JARS (B/-/-)
In the morning you will journey through Phonsavan and the Plain of Jars.
The Plain of Jars is a huge archaeological complex littered with mysterious 2000 years old stone jars sized from 70cm up to 3 or 4 meters. Their true origin remains a mystery. It seems that they were carved into boulders. Several researches lead by the French archaeologist Madeleine Colani in the 30’s suggested that they could be old graves, but to this day they remain an enigma.
Your trip will enable you to visit the 3 sites and also discover some local villages where you can observe local village life. Site 1, close to the town is settled at Thong Hai Hin and is the biggest site. Site 2 is at Hai Hin on Phou Salator, “Phou” in Lao means “Mountain”. End your tour at site 3 in Hai Hin Lat Khai. Site 3 is the most impressive with over 150 jars. Close to this site, you will visit Ban Xiengdi where there is a small monastery with Buddha images. On the way back, you will pass areas that were important battlefields during the American secret war. You can still see bomb craters from that time today.
Attention: The Plain of Jars has been heavily bombed during the war and you have to respect all the signs and stay along the defined trails due to bombs, UXO and landmines.
In the afternoon, enjoy a half day trip to Muang Khoun. Muang Khoun one place in the old provincial capital that was not been destroyed by the American bombings during the secret war. Muang Khoun is home to unique sitting giant Buddha as well of some old pagodas that lies in ruins. The foundation and columns of Wat Pia Wat are still standing and close to this site, there is also an old 30m stupa constructed in the Lan Xang/Lanna period.
Then return to Xieng Khouang and overnight.
DAY 06: XIENG KHUANG – VIENTIANE (Flight) (B/-/-)
We will take the morning flight to Vientiane.
Upon arrival, enjoy a guided tour to discover the hidden charms of Vientiane. Vientiane is one of the quietest capital cities in the world, far away from the bustle and hustle of other Asian capitals.
Your tour begins at the serene Wat Sisaket, the only temple left intact after the Siamese (Thai) invasion in 1828. It is one of the most beautiful temples in the capital, and its breezy teak covered hallways are filled with thousands of miniature Buddha statues.
Continue on to the nearby Wat Phra Keo. Used as a religious museum, Wat Phra Keo displays a collection of both Lao and Khmer works of art. Also nearby, is the Presidential Palace. Although you are not allowed to visit inside, it is a good glimpse in to the town’s colonial past as this building formerly served as the French governor’s palace.
Visit COPE, an association working to help landmine victims. A visit to the center provides in-depth information about the history of the American/Vietnam war and the lasting impact of unexploded ordinances (UXO) in the area and the efforts underway to clear them.
In the afternoon, continue to the Patuxay monument, Laos’ version of the Arc de Triomphe, where you can climb the stairs to the roof for sweeping panoramic views of the city.
Next, your tour takes you to That Luang, the holiest site in Laos. Constructed by King Setthethirat in the 16th century, the temple is resplendent as the sun is shines upon its towering golden spire.
End your tour of the capital along the banks of the Mekong River as the sun begins to set. Stroll along the river, stop to enjoy a cold drink, or sample a snack from one of the many local food stalls.
Overnight in Vientiane.
DAY 07: VIENTIANE – DEPARTURE (B/-/-)
You are free for the last minute shopping before taking the departure flight
What's included ?
- Transportation with air-condition in private
- Accommodation in twin/double shared room
- Boat trip as stated in above sights
- English speaking guide
- Admission fee to indicated sights
- Meals as per program
- Gov’t tax and service charge
- Luggage handling and drinking waterr
What's Excluded ?
- Visa stamping fee on arrival
- All air tickets quoted separately
- Travel Insurance in all kinds
- Single room (quoted separately)
- Other foreign language guide
- Peak tourist season or special event rates
- Tip, drinks and other personal expenses
- Itinerary is subject to change depending on the confirmed flights, road conditions, and room availability.
- Hotels listed in above might not be up to standard of your expectation, especially in the remote area where limitation of accommodation.
- Prices are subject to change in case of VAT or other tax increases and USD currency fluctuations
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