Trek through rugged landscapes, cruise past sleepy riverbanks, discover stunning temples and meet laid back locals. The variety of activities and things to explore make Laos a must for any traveler. Here’s a list of the top 10 things to do in Laos!
Discover the majesty and charm of Laos, where adventure and relaxation await in unique conjuncture. A country that’s often overlooked, this sleepy land of elephants is filled with sights and activities that will amaze any visitor! Here’s 10 things to do that cannot be missed when visiting Laos.
Trek the Bolaven Plateau
Laos boasts spectacular mountainous landscapes–perfect for adventurous trekkers! But often overlooked, is the South of Laos where the Bolaven Plateau lies. Here, visitors can follow dirt tracks, hiking through local villages, past coffee plantations, waterfalls and into the plains. Large boulders, sturdy pines and even wild orchids can be spotted in this mesmerizing area. Located close to Pakse, this area is a must when discovering the natural wonders of Laos!
Kayak in Si Pha Don
Si Phan Don is a large archipelago that lies at the bottom tip of Laos where the Mekong River flows through Khone Waterfall before running down into Cambodia. Also known as 4000 Islands, this easygoing area is perfect to explore on a kayak venturing past deserted islands and swaying palm trees.
Cycle and Temple Hop in Luang Prabang
The UNESCO World Heritage city of Luang Prabang is famous for its many majestic temples, that are perfect examples of Laos architecture and spirituality. Nestled in a picturesque setting amid lush mountains and where the Nam Khan and Mekong River converge, this sacred place is perfect to explore on a bicycle! Pedal past golden temples, along the peaceful riverbanks and stop to hike to the top of Mount Phousi for a spectacular view of the city below.
Live Like a Mahout
Laos is known as the “land of a thousand elephants” and for good reason! However, these gentle giants have faced environmental threat, thus conservation efforts have been launched to help. While in Laos, a worthwhile adventure is a visit to Sayaboury Elephant Conservation Centre where travelers can learn the trade of a mahout firsthand. Learning the techniques of command, riding through the jungle and giving your giant friend a bath in a river, its a must do for any visitor to Laos!
Muang Ngoi Neua
A one hour drive along the river of Northern Luang Prabang will take you to the mountainous town of Muang Ngoi Neua. If you enjoy hiking, then the mountains here will not disappoint. With the river running along one side and the high mountains on the other; Muang Ngoi Neua is a haven of natural calm and peace.
Swim and Hike Kuang Si Waterfall
Only 50m wide, Kuang Si Waterfall amazes anyone who sees it. With several cascades of crystal water flowing down through limestone rocks and bright turquoise pools, its perfectly enticing to take a dip! Not only is a refreshing swim seconds away, you can venturing to the top of the waterfall and see it at the source, with an incredible view of the jungle covered mountain side.
Discover the Plain of Jars
The Plain of Jars is a mysterious archaeological site in the north of Laos. These giant heavy stone vessels are scattered over rice paddies and forests, yet know one knows why they were placed there. Dating back over thousands of years, the stones are complete and utter mystery and well worth exploring during any trip to Laos.
Wander Around Khmer Ruins
The mighty Khmer Empire once stretched into Southern Laos, where some sacred ruins still remain. Often overlooked by travelers, some of these structures actually predate the famous Angkor Wat. Enveloped in the rain forest, a wander around Wat Phou is a must. Perched on the mountainside and adorned with Hindu carvings this relic is still an important site, visited by Buddhist monks. The lesser known Um Muang is also worth a stop, dating back to the 9th Century.
Cruise the Mekong
The Mekong is the largest river in South East Asia and flows through many nations. It’s calm pace and gorgeous scenery is perfect for a gentle cruise. Whether for a long journey or a short excursion, never be afraid to sail on the river and observe traditional local life along it’s banks. With a cool breeze, mountain peaks in the distance and small inlets to explore, the Mekong is a perfect activity to do in Laos!
Exploring Vieng Xai
With immense limestone karsts, Vieng Xai was built in the hidden caves during the 19060s. As Laos was secretly bombed for nine years during the Vietnam War with the United States, it was imperative to find safety. Through hard work and ingenuity, the Laotians built a refuge of a village in a network of caves. This shelter could hold over 20,000 people as well as a hospital, theatre, school, military base and government ministries! Truly impressive, it’s a must when venturing through Laos.
Buffalo Tours offers a wide range of Laos tours to guide you on great trips around this magnificent country. For tours in Luang Prabang and Kuang Si waterfall, please check here. For other tours in Laos, please check here.