VIENTIANE CAPITAL – VANG VIENG PROVINCE – LUANG PRABANG PROVINCE
TOUR CODE: LAO4
Day 1: Vientiane Capital welcomes you
Day 2: Vientiane Full-day City Tour
Day 3: Vientiane – Vang Vieng (overland)
Day 4: Vang Vieng – Luang Prabang (overland)
Day 5: Luang Prabang City Tour & Pak Ou caves
Day 6: Luang Prabang City Tour & Khouangsi waterfalls
Day 7: Luang Prabang – Departure
Day 1: Vientiane Capital welcomes you
Day 2: Vientiane, Full-day City Tour (B)
After breakfast, we explore Vientiane capital by visiting the major sights of the capital; including the oldest Wat Sisaket with thousands of miniature Buddha statues and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha Image. En route, to Lao’s national precious heritage, the famous and sacred structure of That Luang Stupa, you will have the opportunity to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is well known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. In the afternoon, we transfer out to see the Buddha Park, an enchanting collection of Buddhist and Hindu sculptures on the Mekong Riverside meadow, near the Friendship Bridge. There are approximately 200 religious images, which were created by a mysterious monk spreading his philosophy on life and to reveal his ideas about the universe. A spectacular view of over the Mekong River at sunset is a perfect way to finish the day.
Overnight in Vientiane.
Day 3: Vientiane – Vang Vieng (overland) (B)
After breakfast, we leave the capital early for our journey northbound; we will see some breathtaking scenery en-route as we pass through spectacular countryside towards the mountainous region. Along the way, we visit the busy and colorful market of Thalat where various hill tribes come to trade goods and buy provisions. The next stop of our trip is Vang Xang, famous for the archeological site dating back the 11th century. We reach our final destination Vang Vieng, which is nestled on a bend of the Nam Song River. Its stunning scenery with limestone outcrops remains unspoiled, despite recent developments with the advent of tourism. After checking into your hotel you are at your own leisure. Overnight in Vang Vieng.
Day 4: Vang Vieng – Luang Prabang (overland) (B)
After breakfast, heading 2km out of Vang Vieng town, we explore the famous caves of Tham Jang, which was once used by the local people as a hideout from Chinese invaders. We also cross the river to Ban Huai Ngai, a very pleasant village where we can explore the different lifestyles of the locals. Upon leaving Vang Vieng, the roads begin to deteriorate; however, the stunning mountain scenery makes for an interesting journey. We wind our way through the mountains to Luang Prabang. This town with its gleaming temple roofs, fading colonial architecture and stunning mountain backdrop has been claimed by UNESCO to be “the best-preserved traditional city in South East Asia”. There is little traffic on Luang Prabang roads and monks in orange robes scurry in all directions carrying umbrellas to shade themselves from the sun. Overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 5: Luang Prabang City Tour & Pak Ou caves (B)
Today, we enjoy a short guided tour seeing the city’s oldest temples of Wat Sene and the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture. We then embark on a cruise upstream on the Mekong River, which also gives us a breathtaking view of the tranquil countryside as well as exploring the mysterious Pak Ou Caves, two linked caves crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by devoted pilgrims. Along the way, we will stop at the village of Ban Xanghai, where the local rice wine is produced. On return, we take a short drive to another small village Ban Phanom, which is famous for its hand weaving. Overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 6: Luang Prabang City Tour & Khouangsi waterfalls (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 (often in the form of sticky rice) from the faithful residents. This tradition is very unique in Laos, being the only Buddhist nation still preserving the ritual.
After breakfast, we visit the National Museum (closed Tuesdays) at the former Royal Palace. It displays a collection of artifacts reflecting the richness of Lao culture dating from the days of the early kings right through to the last sovereign. There will also be time for us to look around the Central Market. We then continue towards Khouangsi Waterfall, en route, we visit the local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, Ban Ou, Laoloum and Ban Thapene, and then drive to the beautiful Khouangsi Waterfall. Here you can take a dip in the inviting pools or walk along the forest trails surrounding the waterfall. We return to Luang Prabang by late afternoon and continue to Ban Xangkhong, a village well known for silk hand weaving and traditional Saa Paper making. Overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 7: Luang Prabang – Departure (B)
After breakfast, free and easy at your own leisure until time to transfer to the airport for your outbound flight to the next destination.
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