6 DAYS LUANG PRABANG NATURE & CULTURE
- Tour code: LPA08
- Duration: 6 days 5 nights
- Exploring all the must-see attractions inside Luang Prabang city to better understand the culture and history of Luang Prabang
- Admire the mighty Mekong, its life and nature along the banks of the river
- Experience of traditional way of farming of ancient Lao people
- Visiting the most beautiful waterfalls of Kuang Si
- Exploring the authentic Tad Sae waterfalls and some nearby local hill tribe villages
- Walking into the first and only botanical garden of Pha Tad Ke
- Adventuring the feelings with the elephant riding into the Namkhan river
Day 1: LUANG PRABANG – ARRIVAL – CITY TOUR
On arrival at the airport, you will be met and transferred to check in the hotel.
After a soft rest, your city tour begins with a visit to the magnificent Wat Xiengthong, a superb piece of Lao temple architecture, which presents a sweeping two-tiered roof and ornate mosaics including a beautiful ‘tree of life ‘glass montage on the rear temple wall.
If time permits, we will take a short walk around the small streets of city center, watching the life of local people, and visiting the traditional house of Heuan Chan, the Chantal wooden house dating back to 100 years old.
After that, you will visit Royal Palace Museum, which was built in 1904 during the French colonial era for King Sisavang Vong and his family.
Late afternoon, we climb up to the top of Mount Phousi for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa as well as a panoramic sunset view of the city and the Mekong River.
The welcome dinner will be served at the local restaurant with traditional dance & folk song, the best way to experience Lao culture. The tour ends after a visit to the famous Night Market, where you can find a lovely selection of handmade textiles made by local and hilltribe people surrounding Luang Prabang.
Overnight in Luang Prabang
Day 2: LUANG PRABANG – PAK OU CAVES (CYCLING)
We depart Luang Prabang by starting cycling to the suburb and then heading up the north road number 13 to explore the beautiful country side. We cycle approximately 2 hours to Ban Xang Hai village which has for centuries made the clay jars which are used to ferment Lao wine.Nowadays the tradition still continues, however today the village now specializes in producing a wide range of ‘Lau Lao’ the Lao whisky and ‘Lau Hai’ Lao wine.
After the visit we continue to cycling on dirt road approximately for 45 minutes to Ban Pak Ou where we will stop for lunch in local restaurant. After enjoying our lunch, we cross the Mekong River to visit the famous Buddha Caves which sit amongst the limestone cliffs where the Mekong and Nam Ou rivers meet. The caves are spilt in two, one named Tham Ting and the other Tham Theung. They are both filled with thousands of Buddha images and statues which have been deposited here over centuries.
Pak Ou remains a popular pilgrimage site for Lao people, especially during the Lao New Year in April when the caves become crowded with pilgrims who gain merit by ceremonially washing the Buddha statues.
After the visit we put our bicycles in the boat and head down the mighty Mekong towards Luang Prabang. During the trip you will enjoy the beautiful scenery along the river. If time allows, we will stop on our way to visit Ban Xang Khong village to see expert of mulberry paper making. Arriving back in Luang Prabang at approximately 4:30pm.
Overnight in Luang Prabang
Day 3: LUANG PRABANG – RICE EXPERIENCE – KUANG SI WATERFALLS
Begin today’s close-up look at daily Laotian life by heading out for a morning at a community-based living rice farm in the idyllic countryside outside Luang Prabang. Surrounded by mountains and rice paddies, you’ll have an opportunity to experience rural life as a Laotian farmer would, trying your hand at various farm activities – or observing them from a traditional Lao rice house balcony, set amidst rice terraces and an organic vegetable farm.
You’ll have time to check out nearby workshops where local bamboo weavers, blacksmiths and sugar cane processors practice their crafts. Then take a tour of the organic garden to learn how natural herbs are used in traditional medicine.
Lunch will be served at the terrace overlooking the rice field.
Later on, we drive to the beautiful Kuang Si Waterfall which is the biggest in the Luang Prabang area with three tiers leading to a 50-metre drop into spectacular azure pools before flowing downstream. The pools also make great swimming holes and are very popular with both tourists and locals
We will also take a short visit to the Bear Rescue Center, which houses a couple of dozen animals rescued from the hands of poachers and traffickers. On the way back to the town, we will take a short visit to the Ock Pop Tock Living Craft Center, set serenely close to the Mekong, this beautiful, traditionally styled workshop, where weavers, spinners and batik makers produce top-quality fabrics, offers free tours every half-hour. This place is also the perfect spot to admire the sunset.
Overnight in Luang Prabang
Day 4: LUANG PRABANG – PHA TAD KE EXPERIENCE
The Pha Tad Ke boat departs Ban Wat That at 9:00 (please be at the pier at 8:45). Enjoy a 15-minute leisurely boat trip down the Mekong River. Upon arrival at Pha Tad Ke Botanic Garden reception you will be given a short presentation about the gardens. After that walk through the Ginger Garden and the Ethno-botanic Garden, which is the centerpiece of the garden. Follow the path through the Limestone Walk and take in the amazing mountainous Mekong landscape.
Learn how to make a bamboo stick animal at the site of the hunting lodge of the former royal family. Then continue your tour of Pha Tad Ke Botanical Garden walking through the Arboretum, Palm Garden, and Bamboo Garden to our viewpoint that overlooks the rice field. Stop by the Mist House where you will learn more about the importance of biodiversity conservation and finish your excursion with an optional orchid talk at Pha Tad Ke Nursery.
All of the gardens will have introductory panels and labels. You can always ask our expert staff should you have any questions or require more information.
Enjoy a delicious Lao set lunch at Pha Tad Ke’s café. After lunch embark on a trek following our limestone paths to the Pha Tad Ke cave. Inside you will find a rustic Buddhist shrine. Return to the Pha Tad Ke café for a refreshing beverage and snack some delicious Lao delicacies.
We then join the workshop about Lao Traditional Medicinal Herbal Teas. This workshop introduces you to the rich botanic heritage of the Lao people and their medicinal herbs. Learn how these herbs can make our everyday life healthier and more balanced.
Finish your workshop at about 17:00 with some more free time to spend walking around the gardens or relaxing in the restaurant.
The boat will depart back to Luang Prabang at 17:30. Transfer back to your hotel by tuk tuk.
Overnight in Luang Prabang
Day 5: LUANG PRABANG – WATERFALLS + TRIBE VILLAGES + ELEPHANT EXPERIENCE
We start this soft adventure day around Luang Prabang with a short 20 minute drive out of town and into the Lao countryside. Your knowledgeable and experienced local guide will bring you straight to the elephant camp for the first part of today’s activities.The elephant camp is located in the middle of a wonderful forested mountainous area at the banks of the scenic Nam Khan River.
Enjoy a new perspective from riding on the top of an elephant. Stunning landscapes and the quietness of nature make for a relaxing ride on the back of a local Asian elephant. Transfer by small boat across the river to begin trekking. This is an easy hike through beautiful jungle with surrounding mountains in the river valley.
Arrive at a Khmu hill tribe village where your local guide will help you explore life nestled in the mountains. The village is nestled at the foot of a big mountain range. Most of the people here are farmers and fishermen and subsist on their traditional way of agriculture. They even speak a different language here, and your guide will help to ask any questions you have.
We’ll refresh with a break before a scenic and easy walk off the mountain to the Tad Sae Waterfall. At the waterfall, you can hang out for some swimming and bathing in the refreshing cool water. Conditions range from impressive strong currents during the height of the rainy season to slow-flowing and inviting crystal clear waters great for swimming.
(Note: During the dry season, from Feb. to Jul., the Tad Sae Waterfall can be low or even dry. The itinerary remains the same with the exception that instead of the waterfall, trekking is extended to visit a riverside village and a longer boat ride is enjoyed on the Nam Khan River through jungle)
A Lao Style Lunch will be served either at the magnificent waterfalls or at a local village.
Return by boat and vehicle to conclude your Laos elephant and jungle adventure.
Day 6: LUANG PRABANG – DEPARTURE
Wake up as the sun rises, we will prepare to join the most sacred tradition of Laos, the daily morning alms giving, which dates to the 14 th century. More than 200 Buddhist monks depart from various temple to gather their daily meal from the faithful residents sitting quietly on the streets.
From there, we will visit the temporary morning market near the former Royal Palace. Just set on the ground, the local people come here to barter their day’s catch from rice, to vegetable, to fish, or chicken. This is the last highlight of your visit to Luang Prabang before taking the departure flight for the next destination
- Hotel accommodation with daily breakfast
- Private car transportation with aircon as stated
- English speaking tour guide
- A bottle of mineral water
- Meals as indicated
- Boat trip
- Entrance fee in each destination
- Visa and Insurance fees
- International & Domestic fights
- Drinks, tips and personal expenses
- Any other items and services not mentioned in the program