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Northern Laos is a mountainous tapestry of rivers, forests and traditional villages, home to many different ethnic minorities including Tai Lue, Khmu, Lao and Hmong. Life is very simple here and depending on the season you may encounter the local villagers harvesting river weeds, distilling Lao whisky, fishing with nets or harvesting river shrimp, a local speciality. At Nong Khiaw limestone peaks and towering cliffs rise dramatically from the Nam Ou riverbed. Muang La is a Thai Lu village sitting at the confluence of the Nam La and Nam Phak rivers. Explore the remote villages and the spectacular scenery in this untouched part of Laos.
Our “Simply” itineraries are perfect add-ons to your holiday. Discuss options with our Asia Travel Experts.
Travel with your guide from Luang Prabang into northern Laos to the village of Nong Khiaw, where limestone peaks and towering cliffs rise dramatically from the Nam Ou riverbed. Close to Nong Khiaw is Tham Pha Thok, a series of caves in the limestone cliff where villagers and provincial government officials lived during the Second Indochina War to avoid bombings. Northern Laos is a mountainous tapestry of rivers, forests and traditional villages, home to many different ethnic minorities including Tai Lue, Khmu, Lao and Hmong.
Set off from Luang Prabang and visit the mysterious and sacred Pak Ou Caves en route. The Pak Ou Caves are dramatically located in a limestone rock formation opposite the mouth of the Mekong and Nam Ou rivers. The sanctuaries of Pak Ou consist of two large caves cut into the limestone cliff to reveal hundreds of Buddha effigies of various styles and sizes, from the tiny to the colossal and spanning many centuries.
The road takes you through farmland and stunning mountainous scenery with the road following the Mekong and then the Pak Ou rivers. Stop in Ban Nambak to explore the local market before continuing to Nong Khiaw, set on the banks of the Nam Ou River.
Enjoy free time on arrival for remainder of the day. Your guide will provide restaurants recommendations for tonight.
Itinerary Option: For additional adventure, upgrade to travelling by river rather than by road.
Set out this morning with your guide by local boat along the picturesque Nam Ou River. Admire the breathtaking scenery and the limestone karst landscapes as you travel downstream to Ban Sopkhan, a Lao Loum (lowland Lao) village. Spend some time here to understand the local people and their lifestyle.
Continue hiking for a couple of hours through rice fields to Ban Pha Yoong, a Hmong ethnic village, and Ban Tad Lene, a Khmu village. Here a picnic lunch will be served before heading back to Nong Khiaw.
Travel with your guide from Nong Khiaw via Oudomxay to Muang La. Oudomxay is a Laos-China trade centre and home to a reasonably high proportion of Chinese. Muang La is a rural Thai Lu village sitting at the confluence of the Nam La and Nam Phak rivers, approximately one hour drive from Oudomxay along the Nam Phak river. Muang La features many palm trees and has a temple housing the Pra Singkham Buddha, one of northern Laos’s most revered Buddha statues.
Enjoy free time on arrival for remainder of the day
Accompanied by your guide, travel by 4x4 vehicle to meet the Ikhos and Hmong ethnic communities typical of Laos. The track climbs up to 1,000 metres (3,285 feet) and provides an incredible view. First you visit a beautiful isolated Ikho village. The people originated from Yunnan and Tibet and have remained traditional.
Enjoy lunch with spectacular views before a 45 minute trek brings you to the Hmong village of Ban Tauser. The path leading to the village is remote and affords impressive viewpoints. This ethnic group originated from the high plateaus of Tibet. Learn about their daily lives and the importance of their pigs and buffalo livestock. As you leave the village on foot, there is a viewpoint with a complete panoramic view of the surrounding region.
Rest of day depends on main itinerary. Discuss options with our staff.
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|Standard:||from AU $1,158|
|Superior:||from AU $1,723|
All GetAboutAsia prices are based on twin share and depend on availability and season. All our itineraries can be customised including international flights and extra nights. For questions or further information, Enquire Now!
Hotels each night of the itinerary (excluding your departure day). All GetAboutAsia accommodation is handpicked by us. Upgrades are available for this itinerary.
Availability of accommodation and season.