This tour has the perfect itinerary taking in all the best sights Laos has to offer.Providing you with a real flavour of the country, the Lost Cities tour takes you to the beautiful south, the laid back capital Vientiane and the magical city of Luang Prabang. A great opportunity to explore unspoiled beauty, heritage, culture, history and adventure. From aimless but gorgeous river journeys to amazing colonial architectures, Laos has it all!
Day 1: Arrival Pakse – Khong Islands
On arrival at the airport, you will be met and transferred directly onto a traditional boat for a 2-hour cruise to Champassak. Disembark at this accient town, known as Champa Kingdom; continue by car to Wat Phou, another World Heritage Site in Laos, which became recognized by UNESCO in 2002. Vat Phou is the site of ruins which were once part of a temple built some time before Angkor Wat in Siem Reap. It contains some of the most AncientKhmer architectures which date back to between the 7-11th centuries. In the afternoon you will drive to Don Khone, an area of 4000 islands which is the widest point of the Mekong River during the rainy season, although during the dry months the river recedes, leaving behind thousands of islands and islets. This area of the river is also famous for being the home to the endangered Irrawaddy dolphins. En route, we stop to visit the ruins of the Khmer temple of Oup Mong at Ban Houei Tomo and continue driving to Don Khone Island at Ban Nakasung pier to board a long tailed motor boat to the peaceful Don Khone Island. Overnight on Don Khone Island
Day 2: Khong Islands-Elephant ride (B, L)
After an early morning breakfast, we begin by re-tracing the French colonial-past at Ban Khone, where some old colonial houses still stand and glimpse the first Lao railway with its own locomotive. We continue our exploration of the area of the 4000 islands leisurely by boat and visit the most beautiful Liphi waterfall, also known as the Samphamith, which forms a natural border between Lao and Cambodia. If we have luck, we may catch a glimpse of the rare freshwater Irrawaddy Mekong dolphin at Ban Hang Khone. We return to Ban Nakasang and drive to the famous waterfall of Khone Phapeng – the largest waterfall in South East Asia, also known as the ‘Niagara of the east’. In the afternoon we drive to Pakse and on the way stop in Phou Asa to visit the vestiges of the temple dating back to the 18th century. [if time permits and elephants available] We may get a chance to experience elephant riding for 2hrs through forest paths. We reach Pakse before sunset; there you will be transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Pakse
Day 3: Pakse – Boloven Plateau – Tadlo waterfall (B, L)
After breakfast we make an excursion to Tadlo via the plateau of Boloven, where tea and coffee plantations produce the famous Lao coffee. You wil have the chance to observe the traditional coffee and tea makers. En route we visit the ethnic villages of Ban Tateng to experience the traditional lifestyles of the Alack, Katu and Nge tribes. We continue to visit the charming village of Tadlo where you will be transferred to the Tadlo resort. You can enjoy swimming in the pool of the Tadlo waterfall which is situated close to the resort. Overnight in Tadlo
Day 4: Tadlo waterfall – Pakse – Vientiane (B)
In the early morning we drive to Pakse to board a flight to Vientiane. Upon arrival, you are met and transferred to our centrally located hotel. A city tour acquaints us with the major sights of the capital. We visit the sacred Wat Sisaket the oldest temple with thousands of miniature Buddha statues and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha Image. We also visit the national icon of That Luang Stupa and stop to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is well known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. We enjoy a sunset by the Mekong Riverside in the evening. Overnight in Vientiane
Day 5: Vientiane – Luang Prabang (B)
Todaywe transfer to the airport for the short flight to Luang Prabang, which is perhaps the best-preserved traditional city in Southeast Asia. After checking into your hotel, we visit the impressive stupa of Wat Visoun and the shrines of Wat Aham and Wat Mai, we then climb up to the top of Mount Phousi to explore the sacred, gilded stupa as well as have a beautiful view of the city and the Mekong River at sunset. From there, we explore the Night Market, where you can browse a lovely selection of handmade textiles made by the local people and hill tribes surrounding Luang Prabang. Overnight in Luang Prabang
Day 6: Luang Prabang – Pak Ou Caves (B, L)
Todaywe enjoy a short- guided tour of the city’s oldest temple Wat Sene and the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its sweeping low roofs, which represents the classical architecture of Luang Prabang temple. We then embark on a boat journey upstream along the Mekong River, which also gives us a beautiful view of the tranquil countryside as well as an interesting visit to the mysterious Pak Ou Caves, two linked caves crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by pilgrims. En route, we stop at the village of Ban Xanghai, where the local speciality of rice wine is produced. Once back in Luang Prabang city we take a short drive to Ban Phanom, well known for its hand weaving. Overnight in Luang Prabang
Day 7: Luang Prabang Departure (B)
After breakfast, we visit the National Museum (closed Tuesdays), which was once a king’s palace. Displayed inside this museum is a collection of personal artifacts from the royal family, including photos, musical instruments, and many gifts received from the dignitaries of foreign countries. You are then transferred to the airport for your departure. End of services!