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Spotlight Destination

Unknown Hill Tribe of Laos

Price: Available upon request. Duration: 14 Days
Overview

Enter Laos by land border from Thailand, you’ll enjoy a 14-day tour exploring the life along the Mekong River with the traditional boat cruise combined to some interesting trekking deeper to Laos minorities village to discover their vibrant culture and an interesting history.

As you’ll be travelling tailor-made, you can transform this sample tour into your dream holiday. Just ask us to make any changes, and you’ll have a revised itinerary with 24 hours – no limit to the number of changes, and no charge for making the amendments!

Day 1: Pickup at Laos border (HoueiSay Pier) and transfer to hotel in HoueiSay for overnight.

Day 2: Enjoy a full day touring to Ethnic villages in Luang Namtha. Overnight in Luang Namtha

Day 3: Transferring to Ban Nalan for a trekking around the area of Khmu minority village. Overnight with homestay in village.

Day 4: Enjoy a full day trekking in Ban Nalan and Ban Namlu. Overnight in Luang Namtha

Day 5: A full day touring to hill tribe communities in Moung Sing. Overnight in Muong Sing.

Day 6: Visiting the morning ethnic market before drive ahead to Oudomxay through Luang Namtha.

Day 7: Enjoy boat trip from Nong Khiow to Luang Prabang and visiting the Pak Ou Caves. Overnight in Luang Prabang

Day 8: A full day tour exploring Luang Prabang

Day 9: A full day visiting to Kwangsi Waterfalls and surrounding area. Overnight in Luang Prabang

Day 10: Enjoy city tour in Luang Prabang before flight to Vientiane. Arrival, visit to Xieng Khouang and overnight here.

Day 11: A full day touring to Plain of jars. Overnight in Xieng Khouang

Day 12: Flight back to Vientiane. Arrival, pickup and transfer to hotel for check in and overnight.

Day 13: Enjoy a full day city tour in Vientiane.

Day 14: Transferring to Vientiane’s airport for departure flight

DAY 1: HOUEI SAY ARRIVAL

On arrival at the Lao border checkpoint at HoueiSay pier, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Today you are free at your leisure to explore this town, visiting the local market and villages nearby. The surrounding areas of HoueiSay are home to 34 ethnic minority groups, the second most ethnically diverse province in Laos.

Meals: None

DAY 2: HOUEI SAY - LUANG NAMTHA

Early morning we head out the town to Luang Namtha, this will be a bumpy ride driving along dirt roads, uphill and downhill. The scenery is great and wonderful which makes it worth it; we visit hill tribe villages along the road at Muang Phouka and other surrounding area. Luang Namtha, which is located on the banks of the Namtha River, is a land of rugged mountains and beautiful tropical forests and shares its border with China and Myanmar. We arrive in Luang Namtha in late evening.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 3: LUANG NAMTHA - BAN NALAN

Heading out of the town, we take a short drive to Ban Chalernsuk, a Khmu minority village 20 kilometers away from Luang Namtha. We get well and truly off the beaten track as we trek into this beautiful mountain region, using the local tracks. Today’s trekking may be tough at times with some steep uphill and downhill climbs, but the experience is unique and rewarding. The friendly Khmu hill tribe people conquer this small village; they have a primitive and basic lifestyle. We arrive at Ban Nalan by late afternoon; here we have a chance to understand a little more about the local culture and their daily lifestyle as we spend time with a Khmu family. We enjoy a local dinner and will reside as guests at the Khmu family house, the best way to experience authentic village life. The accommodation is simple dormitory style, no western facilities.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner

DAY 4: BAN NALAN - BAN NAMLU - LUANG NAMTHA

Today’s trekking leads us along the bank of the river to Ban Namkoy, passing picturesque landscape of forests and rice fields. The forests here vary from a few isolated trees to overgrown bamboo. On arrival at Ban Namkoy we embark on a three-hour walk uphill. This trek is a real challenge; however some physical preparation will enable you to maximize your enjoyment from the walk. As we pass through several hamlets, we are sure to attract attention from the locals, as visitors do not frequently encounter this remote part of the country. At the small village of Ban Namlu, we meet up with our truck and drive back towards Luang Namtha Town.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 5: LUANG NAMTHA - XIENG KOK - MOUNG SING

Early this morning, we travel by road to Moung Sing, also home to various hill tribe communities. There is a significant Chinese population and a lot of trade goes on between here and China. We stop along the way at the Akha hill tribe village. This ethnic group originally lived in China but immigrated into Laos over a century ago. They are very poor, but have a vibrant culture and an interesting history. We depart this village, heading westbound, travelling over bumpy roads to Xieng Kok, which is a border town near the golden triangle. In late afternoon, we drive back to Muong Sing with stopover at the Lantern minority village.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 6: MOUNG SING - LUANG NAMTHA - OUDOMXAY

Early morning, we visit the bustling colorful Morning Market and the impressive Ethnologic museum, dedicated to region’s ethnic minorities. This local market also attracts numerous ethnic minorities that converge from the surrounding mountainsides or valley to barter and trade their goods. We visit these sights before making our way back to Luang Namtha and then to Oudomxay. On this rough and scenic journey, we see very few travelers, mostly rural dwellers who are just as interested in finding out about our lives as we are of theirs.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 7: OUDOMXAY - NONG KHIOW - LUANG PRABANG

We depart early for our drive to Nong Khiow, where we board a traditional boat down the Nam Ou River to Luang Prabang. This tranquil town with its gleaming temple roofs, fading colonial architecture and stunning mountain backdrop has been claimed by UNESCO to be the best preserved traditional city in South East Asia”. En route we visit the mysterious Pak Ou Caves where thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues are crammed into the two caves carved out of a towering limestone cliff. Continue down river to Ban Sang Hay village to sample the local rice alcohol known as Lao Lao. Arrive in Luang Prabang in the late afternoon and transfer to hotel.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 8: LUANG PRABANG ORIENTATION

After breakfast, we begin our sightseeing starts with the impressive stupa of Wat Visoun, the shrine of Wat Aham, Wat Mai, and then climb up to the top of Phousi Hill for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa. A visit to Luang Prabang would be incomplete with ascending 329 steps to the top of Mount Phousi for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa and to enjoy a beautiful sunset view of the city and its glowing reflection on the Mekong River.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 9: LUANG PRABANG - KWANGSI WATERFALLS - LUANG PRABANG

An optional early start gives you the fantastic opportunity to participate in the daily morning rituals of saffron-clad monks collecting offerings of Alms (ubiquitous sticky rice) from the faithful residents. This tradition is very unique in Laos, being the only Buddhist nation still preserving the procession. From there you will visit the morning Phosi Market, where you will see such diverse offerings as dried buffalo skin, local tea and saltpeter among the chickens, vegetables and hill-tribe weavings. Laos is also known for its traditional crafts, and today you will visit local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, Hmong Village, Ban Ou, Laoloum Village and Ban Thapene, Khmu Village, then drive to the beautiful Khouangsi Waterfall where you can cool off with a refreshing swim in the turquoise pools or walk along the forest trails. After returning to Luang Prabang by late afternoon, we continue to Ban Xangkhong, a village well known for its silk weavings and for its Saa (jute) Papermaking. We return to the city by late evening to observe the sunset at Wat Phabath.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 10: LUANG PRABANG – VIENTIANE - XIENG KHOUANG

This morning we visit the National Museum (close Tuesday) at the former Royal Palace, which displays a lovely collection of the artifacts reflecting the richness of Lao culture dating from the days of the early kings right through the last sovereign. We then take a flight to Xiengkhouang via Vientiane. On arrival, we visit the “Plain of Jars”, an impressive archaeological site where hundreds of large stone jars are littered all over the plateau. The largest jar reaches a height of 3.25 meters; researchers still question the origin and significance of these jars.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 11: XIENG KHOUANG – PLAIN OF JARS

After breakfast we head out to the old capital of Muang Khoun province and its nearby villages, home to the Hmong hill tribe and Thai Dam people. Our excursion continues to the 2nd and 3rd Plain of jars fields, where you can obtain more scenic views. Along the way, we visit more local villages and learn about the local culture and lifestyle. Return to Phonsavanh by late afternoon.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 12: XIENG KHOUANG - VIENTIANE

Today we visit the local market of Phonsavanh and nearby villages of the Hmong. You are free at your leisure until your transfer to airport for your flight to Vientiane. On arrival at Wattay airport you will be transferred to city centre. Located on the banks of the Mekong River, Vientiane is a charming and fascinating capital, with an interesting mix of Lao, Thai, Chinese, Vietnamese, French, Soviet and American influences. This wonderful city is best explored on foot and a guided walking tour provides you with a pleasant introduction to the main points of interest, taking in some of the city’s fine colonial architecture. We spend our evening by the Mekong River at sunset absorbing this splendid city at night.

Meals: Breakfast

DAY 13: VIENTIANE CITY TOUR

Today we start visiting some the major sights; including the oldest temple Wat Sisaket, an amazing structure featuring remarkable frescoes and Buddha images. We also visit the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha Image. En route to Lao’s national precious heritage, the famous and sacred structure of That Luang Stupa, you will have the opportunity to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is well known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. We also take a visit to the central market Talat Sao. In the late afternoon we visit the weaving village of Ban Nong Bouathong, and then we drive to the outskirt of the city to see the Buddha Park, a scattered enchanting collection of Buddhist and Hindu sculptures on the Mekong Riverside meadow, near the Friendship Bridge. There are approximately 200 religious images dating back over 500 years, which were created by a mysterious monk spreading his philosophy on life and revealing his ideas about the universe. Observing the spectacular view of over the Mekong River at sunset from one of the riverside bars is a perfect way to finish the day.

Meals: Breakfast / Lunch

DAY 14: VIENTIANE DEPARTURE

Your time will be your own until your private car and driver arrives to take you to the airport for your departure flight.

Meals: Breakfast

 

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