Day 1 - Luang Prabang Arrival
Arrival Luang Prabang, welcome to the spiritual capital of Laos.
Your private car and driver will meet you and transfer you to your hotel for check-in.
In the late afternoon you will join the local petanque players. Try your skills at this sport, which is a favorite pastime of the Lao people. They will cheer you on and give you hints as you play a few games and enjoy snacks and drinks. This is great fun for all ages and a brilliant introduction to the charming Lao culture.
As the sun begins to set, climb the 328 steps to the top of Mount Phousi to enjoy a panoramic view of the city and the surrounding countryside. Return to your hotel via a stroll through the evening hill tribe market, where you may find plenty of local souvenirs to buy such as handicrafts and textiles.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 2 - Luang Prabang - Kuang Si Waterfall (B,L)
For early risers there is a very special dawn visit to watch the monks collecting the alms. As the sun begins to rise, long lines of orange-robed monks leave their pagodas and walk barefoot down the streets collecting offerings from Luang Prabang residents. It is a beautiful, serene ceremony that highlights the spiritualism of the Laos people. Return to the hotel for breakfast.
This morning your guide will collect you from your hotel at 0900. You start with a visit to the Traditional Arts & Ethnology Centre for insight in to the countries various ethnic groups and traditional crafts. Your tour will provide you with information in to the wonders of Laos, enhancing your understanding of this little-known country and its people (NOTE: closed on Monday).
Take a short transfer through the Luang Prabang countryside to Kuang Si Waterfalls (32km southwest of the city). Along the way, you will drive through beautiful landscapes of rice fields, hills, and small villages. There are also view points overlooking the Mekong River.
Stop en-route to visit a small village which is home to one of the area’s many ethnic minorities. You will have an opportunity to learn about their traditions and culture, much of which has remained unchanged for centuries.
Upon reaching Kuang Si Waterfall, relax and enjoy the beautiful natural surroundings. The water tumbles down a large drop and cascades gently in to several cool, clear pools where you can enjoy a refreshing swim (please dress modestly).
Enjoy a delicious picnic lunch next to the falls.
For the adventurous, it is possible to walk to the top of the falls via a steep track where stunning views await you at the top.
You might also like to visit the bear sanctuary which is next to the falls, run by Free The Bears Fund Inc. There are currently 23 Asiatic Black Bears living in the sanctuary, which has saved them from poaching. The main threat to these bears is poaching due to the use of their bile in Chinese medicine. You can read about their habits and observe their playful nature, whilst learning about the difficulties they are facing.
Transfer back to your hotel this afternoon.
Overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 3 - Luang Prabang - Nong Khiaw (B,L)
After breakfast your guide and private car will pick you up from you hotel and you will drive about 2.5 hours to Nong Khiaw. After checking in to your hotel will enjoy lunch at Nong Khiaw Riverside.
After lunch visit the historical cave of Phathok. The Nong Khiaw villagers used this cave as a war shelter during the “Secret War”, to shelter people from bombs dropped in the region. It is about a 30 minute gentle walk from Nong Khiaw town and takes you through beautiful scenery. Learn more about a secret part of the Lao history and explore the historical caves with your guide. From the cave you will have a beautiful view of rice paddies and the valley. Walk back to Nong Khiaw along a small path through the rice paddies.
Enjoy the sunset over the river. There is a choice of local restaurants within walking distance.
Overnight in Nong Khiaw
Day 4 - Full Day Trek to Hat Sao (B,L)
Enjoy breakfast overlooking the river as the mist hangs in the valley. This morning you will be trekking through unspoilt villages and stunning landscapes, starting at 0830. The total trekking time (excluding all stops) is roughly 3 hours, depending on your speed. The difficulty is low to moderate, making it suitable for all ages. Please expect to get wet as some of the walking is through small streams and bring a swimsuit for the waterfall.
Following the Nam Ou River you leave Nong Khiaw on small walking trails towards the village of Hat Sao. After about an hour you will arrive in this small riverside village. Your guide will explain more about the local lifestyle along the Nam Ou River in this mixed Lao Lum and Lao Thung village.
From the village you will follow small trails through a preserved piece of jungle and into the nearby mountain range. Enjoy rice fields, forests and agricultural land on your way to a refreshing waterfall. Here a picnic lunch will be served. Take your time to relax, cool off in the natural pools and enjoy the scenery.
This afternoon you will trek back to the Nam Ou River and cruise back to Nong Khiaw in a local long tail boat, arriving at roughly 3pm.
Overnight in Nong Khiaw
Day 5 - Nong Khiaw - Luang Prabang (B)
After breakfast you will be driven to Luang Prabang, taking approximately 2.5 hours. Check in to your hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.
Overnight in Luang Prabang
Day 6 - Nong Khiaw - Luang Prabang (B)
Free time at leisure in the morning. Your guide and private vehicle will meet you at your hotel and transfer you to the airport for your departure flight.