Tour Details

Backroads to Luang Prabang 10days/9nights

Departure Date

Daily

Views

1104

Inclusions

Drinking water
Meals where stated
All entrance fees and activities
Tour guide
Private vehicle
Hotel with breakfast

Tour Overview

Day 1

Vientiane – Arrival

Upon arrival at the airport, you will be met by your guide and driver for transfer to your hotel. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure. Overnight in Vientiane at Beau Rivage – Superior Mekong room Meals: None
Day 2

Vientiane – Half day city tour, Evening Tuk Tuk Night Safari

Your half day city tour begins with the oldest temple in Vientiane, Wat Sisaket with thousands of miniature Buddha statues, and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which now serves as a museum of arts and antiques. We then travel up Lanexang Avenue you will have the opportunity to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxai Monument, which resembles its Parisian inspiration, the Arc de Triomphe. The climb to the top offers great views over Vientiane. We continue onwards down Rue Singha 23 to Laos’ National icon, and most important religious building, the golden stupa of That Luang. The final visit of the day will be the excellent COPE exhibition centre, highlighting a much overlooked aspect of Laos and a major problem many of the local people face on a day to day basis in the form of unexploded ordnance as a result of heavy bombing campaigns during the Vietnam War area. We then return to your hotel with the afternoon free at leisure. At 06PM we go out to explore the city at nighttime. We travel by tuk tuk to the food-night-market near That Luang. At night it comes alive and is a firm favourite amongst locals with few tourists to be seen. Wonder over the market and learn from your guide about the different dishes and the local dinner culture. Try some of the tasty dishes on the spot or bring them with you to our next stop; a traditional Lao style BBQ or Sindat. A favourite night spot for the locals, which few tourists ever visit. The guide will introduce you with his favorite dishes. After dinner we return by tuk tuk back to your hotel. Overnight in Vientiane at Beau Rivage – Superior Mekong room Meals: B, D
Day 3

Vientiane – Hin Boun

Meet your guide and driver in the morning and travel south along route 13 to the central Lao province of Khammoune. En route we stop at Prabaht Ponsan, a stupa dating back to the 15th Century. It is also home to the Budhhas footprint, left when, as legend has it, he was crossing the Mekong. Next stop is at the interesting Ban Ton Na Mae Hmong Market, then continue onwards into Khammoune province and into the mountainous area, where a stop at a view point near Khoun Kham offers a breathtaking view over the karst scenery, or ‘limestone forest’. We reach Hin Boun area by late afternoon, where you have the rest of the day at leisure. Overnight in Hin Boun at Spring River Resort – Bungalow Riverview Meals: B
Day 4

Hin Boun – Kong Lor Cave and Boat ride down the Hinboun

After breakfast at your lodge, we drive to Kong Lor village and board a small local boat into the famous Kong Lor Cave. We navigate through the cave, which is over 7km long and includes a spectacular cavern over 100m high, as well as a breathtaking stalagmite gallery which you can explore on foot. On the other side of the cave, we take a short walk past some tobacco drying huts to Ban PonNgam, a remote village, where you can enjoy your picnic lunch. Following lunch, we return through the cave by boat, then continue by river downstream for a two-hour boat trip, taking in the spectacular limestone scenery en route. You will arrive back at your lodge by late afternoon where you have the rest of the day at leisure. Tips: bring a torch with you for the cave Overnight in Hin Boun at Spring River Resort – Bungalow Riverview Meals: Breakfast , Lunch
Day 5

Hin Boun – Muang Khoun - Phonsavan

We depart early this morning (7am) for the long drive along the backroads of Laos. Our first stop is Ban Thabak, the ‘bomb boat village’which technically are actually fuel tanks from the Vietnam War used as boats. We continue through rolling countryside scenery, stopping to admire the Nam Mouan River before arriving at Ban Thasi for lunch. In the afternoon we begin our climb up into the mountains and stop at a number of minority villages, including at Tai Lu weaving village, and a Hmong village. Late afternoon, we arrive at the ancient town of Muang Khoun, the former provincial capital, where you can explore the ruins of a number of ancient pagodas in the Lanna style and Wat Phiawat, a ruined temple containing a huge sitting Buddha. We continue, and arrive in Phonsavan by early evening. Overnight in Phonsavan at Vansana XKH – Standard room Meals: B
Day 6

Phonsavan – Plain of Jars tour

This morning we visit the Mines Action Group (or MAG) office to learn about the important work they do in clearing land mines and unexploded ordnance in the area. We then drive out to the picturesque Jar Site 2, and begin a 1 hour trek along the ridge to Jar Site 3, consisting over around 150 jars located on top of a hill, offering great views. In the afternoon, we visit Jar Site 1, the largest site, containing over 300 jars. At 16:00, we will pay a visit to the Lone Buffalo Foundation, a community project where western and Lao teachers are passionate to improve opportunities for the local children through Education and Sport. Meeting foreigners helps the students to overcome their shyness of speaking in public. Have a chat, or play a language game while learning more about the Lone Buffalo Project. Afterwards, we transfer to the PhouXang Viewpoint, to enjoy the panoramic sceneries and possibly a beautiful sunset! The Lone Buffalo Foundation is closed at weekends and school holidays Overnight in Phonsavan at Vansana XKH – Standard room Meals: B
Day 7

Phonsavan – Luang Prabang by road

We start early this morning, visiting the interesting Central Market. We then begin our long, but scenic drive to Luang Prabang. En route we stop at Ban Somboun, a Hmong village. Following lunch at the small market town of Phou Khoun, we stop to visit Ban KiuKharmPom, a friendly Khmu village, and Ban Nam Ming, which offers nice views from its bridge and an opportunity to stretch your legs. We arrive in Luang Prabang by early evening. Overnight in Luang Prabang at Villa Chitdara – Standard room Meals: B
Day 8

Luang Prabang – Full day city tour

After breakfast, we visit the quaint Royal Palace Museum, which gives a good overview of the local history. We then begin our temple tour taking in some the cities most beautiful structures, including the country’s most historic and enchanting temple Wat Xiengthong, with its roof sweeping low to the ground, representing the classical Luang Prabang style, as well Wat Visoun, known as ‘The Water Melon Stupa’ due to its shape. Our last visit of the morning is the excellent ‘Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre’, which gives us a great insight into the ethnic mix and culture of Laos. In the afternoon, we visit the weaving and textile villages of Ban Xangkhong and Ban Xienglek. Our final stop of the day is a climb Mt Phousi, which offers a spectacular sunset and a panoramic view over Luang Prabang and the Mekong River. Note: The T.A.E.C. is closed on Mondays Overnight in Luang Prabang at Villa Chitdara – Standard room Meals: B
Day 9

Luang Prabang – MandaLao Elephant Sanctuary – Baby Elephant Excursion

Beginning in the morning, you will be met at 07:45 AM at your hotel by our Elephant Specialist Guide and transferred to a beautiful elephant oasis just 40 minutes outside of Luang Prabang. During the shuttle our guide will give you a brief introduction to himself and the recently opened sanctuary. On arrival, you will meet with one of the directors of the Elephant Sanctuary who will fill you in on more detail with some fascinating stories about the elephants and their refuge. Learn the challenges they’ve faced and how they are learning to improve the situation one elephant at a time. After being regaled you will cross the river by boat where you will be met by 2 adults and a baby Asian elephant! Your guide and the mahouts will help you feed and later bath these majestic creatures in the river. Next, follow the elephants on a 1-hour trek through rice paddies and meandering creeks during which you will witness the unique bond between the mahouts and their elephants while the guide explains more about the incredible history that Laos has with the elephant. After saying goodbye to your pachyderm friends, you’ll head back to camp where a tasty lunch of local specialties awaits you. After lunch overlooking the Nam Khan River, it is time for a transfer back to town, arriving in the early afternoon. Overnight in Luang Prabang at Villa Chitdara – Standard room Meals: B, L
Day 10

Luang Prabang – Departure

Depending on your departure flight, you may have free time at leisure, before being met by your guide for a short transfer to the airport for your flight onward. Meals: B

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