Laos is a beautiful untouched country in South East Asia. I’d pick Laos over busy Bali any day – why? Because it’s super chilled out and has a raw beauty and serenity which I hope, I really hope, doesn’t change.
Things to see in Laos
Take a walk through the countries ancient capital that feels as if it has been frozen in time.
Popular among backpackers and Korean tourists; explore the many caves and bright blue lagoons that dot the landscape tucked among the mountains jetting up from the valley floor.
Si Phan Don (4000 Islands)
On the border of Cambodia and Laos the Mekong River gives way to a large watery plain dotted with islands. Explore the area on bikes or kayaks, take a look at the large waterfalls that plunge down towards Cambodia, or take in the serenity in your bungalow swinging in a hammock. NOTE: no ATM on the islands. Bring plenty of kip.
Tham Kong Lo
Hidden in the Phu Hin Bun wilderness area in the southern panhandle of Laos the Nam Hin Bun river flows through Tham Kong Lo cave. Float through the 7km tunnel only illuminated by flashlights and headlamps. Hire a boat from one of the nearby fishing villages. Not for the faint of heart.
Pha That Luang
The most famous and important site in all of Laos, which you’ll find on all of their currency, is a must see, especially if you arrive via Viantiane. Don’t stop here however. There are many temples, many of which are centuries old, to explore.
Kuang Si Waterfall
Hike up and around this beautiful area exploring the various falls and bright turquoise pools. An hour by tuk-tuk, don’t book a tour. Instead, find enough people to fill the back of a tuk-tuk and haggle the price.
Slow Boat to Muang Ngoi Neua and Nong Khiaw
Relax along the Ou River and travel to the quiet river villages of Muang Ngoi Neau and Nong Khiaw. Relax or hike around the infrequently visited area.
Occupied by the United States at some point decades ago during the war, some western characteristics remain like the Laos “cowboys” you may come across. Good place to visit the plain of jars from as well.