Laos is a magical destination, untouched by the passing of time and the surge towards modernity of its busier neighbours.
Luang Prabang and the North
The curved roofs of ancient temples, resident monks in saffron coloured robes and golden Buddhist stupas characterise the serene charm of Luang Prabang. With more than thirty temples in this small riverside town, there is a sense of peace and tranquillity and this is a truly captivating place to spend time, in fact it is one of our Asia favourites. Situated at the confluence of two rivers, the Mekong and the Khan it is surrounded by jungle clad mountains and a cruise on the river is a must.
Southern Laos is one of the most charming and unspoiled areas to be found in modern Asia. Stepping onto one of the picturesque islands is like stepping back in time. Discover the beautiful Four Thousand Islands region. Here, the Mekong River has formed several small islets and islands, a handful of which are inhabited and even fewer of which have electricity. Stay at either Kingfisher Lodge or River Resort or join a live aboard traditional rice barge cruise through the region. North of Pakse, travellers can visit the Bolaven Plateau which is home to lovely waterfalls, ethnic minority hilltribes, coffee plantations and a large protected bio-diversity area.
Capital of the ‘Land of a Million Elephants’, since the sixteenth century, Vientiane must surely qualify as Asia’s most quiet and most sleepy capital city. With an estimated population of only around 200,000 people, she can be crossed leisurely by bicycle in under a morning and this remains a popular method of transport for local Laotians, who never hurry anywhere.
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