Take that step to travel to Laos to visit some of its most iconic cities, experience local culture and tradition, through visiting small communities in the mountains such as Living Land Farm & COPE Centre, so you as a couple can support individuals with disabilities. Discover the UNESCO town of Luang Prabang with its variety of heritage buildings, tastefully designed in a French Colonial style and explore the wonders of Wat Xieng Thong temple and the Royal Form Palace. Enjoy the wonders of Vietnam as a couple and truly create lasting memories with this 6 day tour.
Your guide will be waiting at your chosen airport to transfer you to your hotel for the night.
Drop off your bags and belongings at the hotel and go out to experience the sights, sounds and tastes of Luang Prabang in this lip-smacking evening street eats tour. Meet at the Joma Bakery and take a guided walk to the bustling Night Market to begin this culinary journey.
Sample the finest ‘Namchuen’ or fried spring rolls on the market, try ‘Kaojii Ping’ or grilled sticky rice with egg, ‘Khao Nom Khok’ or coconut pancakes and much more. Have the chance to explore narrow alleyways that positively overflow with delicious-smelling local produce before a delectable Sin Dat (DIY BBQ) overlooking the Mekong. Choose the ingredients, be instructed on how to cook and serve yourself and your partner before enjoying the creation with an ice-cold beer…..bliss! The perfect way to eat like a local in Luang Prabang!
Rise early to the sound of the temple gong and witness Luang Prabang’s mystical ritual. In the early cool of the morning, walk downtown through quiet streets to watch the daily procession of about three hundred young monks walk silently by, collecting sticky rice and other foods in their bronze bowls. The ritual is linked to a Buddhist tradition in which monks beg for their daily food as a way to demonstrate humility. Almsgiving is an important religious act in Buddhism, and it must be carried out respectfully by locals and tourists alike.
If you would like to be involved in the offering of food, your guide will be more than happy to show you the best way to interact with monks. Watch as the monks disappear down the road in a long, saffron-coloured ribbon. Feel free to take photos, however, please use discretion and refrain from using your flash. Now is the perfect time to stroll through Luang Prabang’s morning market where you will see the locals haggling for fresh meat, fruit and vegetables. Get a peek into the life of a local rice farmer on this half-day trip into the peaceful Laos countryside. Travel from Luang Prabang to the Living Land Farm, a community project in Pong Van Village. In response to the destructive use of chemicals and pesticides, several local families combined their land and adopted alternative farming methods to grow organic rice, vegetable and herbs. Nowadays, the farm even sells their produce to restaurants and hotels, whilst also supporting the local community through a range of projects, including education for underprivileged children.
Surrounded by idyllic mountain scenery, spend the morning in the beautiful rice fields where farmers plough, plant and harvest without the aid of machinery. Get knee deep in the mud, help plant rice and get the opportunity to steer a water buffalo to plough the field. Pick fragrant herbs and colourful vegetables and learn to husk rice the traditional way.
There is always plenty to do on a farm, so lending a hand is not only appreciated by the local farmers but will also provide invaluable insight into local life in rural Laos! Of course, it’s not compulsory to join in the fields, it’s also possible to take a break on the veranda and watch from afar. The farm is also home to a basket weaving workshop, a blacksmith and a traditional wooden sugar cane juicer. Witness the craftsmen at work and have a sip of the refreshing drink before relaxing at the farm’s restaurant. Then take a short distance from Luang Prabang to the Kuang Si Waterfall. The turquoise colour of the water with a backdrop of white limestone cliffs gives the waterfall a magical appearance. Depending on the season the water level varies, and swimming may not always be possible. Next to the falls is the Sun Bear Reserve, a conservation
centre that rescues animals from the wildlife trade. Meet the cute furry residents and learn about the efforts to protect Sun Bears in the wild.
- Meet locals in the community
- Steer a water buffalo to plough a field
- Venture to Kuang Si Waterfall and take a dip in the idillic water
- Meet Sun Bears
Enjoy a half day tour around the atmospheric town of Luang Prabang. Visit Wat Xieng Thong, the finest example of Luang Prabang architecture, visit the National Museum that was the former Royal Palace, where relics from LAOS’ royalist past remain, Then check in to climb the 328 steps up Phousi Hill for panoramic views of Luang Prabang city.
Day 3 of the tour gives you multiple options to choose from which include:
This half day experience in Northern Laos lets you be part of a local family-run business that aims to preserve local culture and traditions whilst promoting responsible tourism through unique experiences.
Start the experience with a hands-on bamboo weaving workshop; create a personal souvenir using this traditional handicraft that has been passed down for generations. You and your partner will understand the importance of the plant in Laos culture before taking part in an interactive cooking class by preparing tasty dishes with bamboo. The journey into the world of bamboo is rounded off with a show by a local Hmong group who will perform traditional songs and dances, using bamboo instruments and utensils.
Local Cooking Class
Drive out to a local village to meet your host family, and then head off to the market to buy your ingredients. You’ll soon be familiar with galangal and lemongrass and be able to identify the weird and wonderful herbs with the help of your host chef. With your ingredients bagged up, head back to the family house and get ready to cook. Laos’s cuisine is quite similar to Thai but hotter and spicier with lots of chilli! Depending on what was available in the market you might make laap, a spicy salad of minced pork or chicken with sticky rice or the popular green papaya salad with shrimp paste, sugar and lime juice – Yum! Sit down and taste-test your cooking skills, then after lunch take a stroll through the village and return to Luang Prabang.
Private Sunset Cruise
Today taking your time for a relaxing, sunset cruise by the beauty of the Mekong in the light of the setting sun on a magical cruise from Luang Prabang. Be picked up from the hotel in the early evening and embark a traditional wooden boat. Float down the mighty Mekong river and gaze at the verdant Lao countryside, soaking up the calming atmosphere. Don’t forget to capture this romantic moment and use the light of ‘golden hour’ to take a photo, drink beer and some snack against the charming background before have dinner at the restaurant in town.
Natural dye, Weaving and Sunset Cocktail at Living Craft Centre
Discover all there is to know about Laos textiles with a visit to the East Meets West Living Crafts Centre. This charming house on the Mekong River’s banks is the headquarters of a project called Ock Pop Tok, meaning east meets west. The goal is to empower Lao women through their high-quality artisanal weaving, and by selling their wares.
Spend an interactive afternoon meeting the women and watching them create fabulous textiles with distinctive patterns woven on traditional looms. You’ll have the chance to hand-dye scarves in vibrant hues and try your hand at spinning and weaving. Learn about the process from start to finish beginning with silk cultivation, the worms and the difference in the silk they spin.
Start your day off with breakfast at the hotel with your guide and driver meeting you in the lobby after to take you the airport for your transfer to Vientiane.
Begin a whirlwind tour starting at Wat Sisaket Vientiane’s oldest-surviving monastery and its thousands of Buddha statues. Then hear the history behind by Hor Pha Keo and how it was raised to the ground not once but twice by an invading ancient Thai army. You’ll see Pha That Luang a national symbol of Laos that is represented on the national seal and currency. Admire the large stupa covered in tons of gold leaf and surrounded by 30 smaller stupas, and make sure you see the impressive hand painted frescos that adorn the internal walls. Climb to the viewing platform of Patouxai, Vientiane’s arc de triomphe, and a window into its French-colonial history. The monument also has the nickname of the ‘vertical runway’ due to the Laos government using cement that was intended to build a new airport!
Then you will enjoy your lunch (included) at the local restaurant there you will taste traditional Lao cuisine.
- Visit Wat Sisaket Vientiane’s oldest-surviving monastery
- Climb to the viewing platform of Patouxai, Vientiane’s arc de triomphe
- Enjoy the local Lao cuisine
Enjoy the cooked/continental breakfast at the hotel and after you’ll be visiting the COPE Centre where you’ll help people with mobility-related disabilities move by supporting access to physical rehabilitation services in the Lao PDR. Once your good deed of the day is complete, you’ll visit Carol Cassidy’s textile where you’ll learn about Lao weaving.
Then, continue to the wonderful and quirky statues of Buddah Park just 25kms outside of Vientiane. The park is the folly of Luang Pu Bunleua Sulilat, a monk, shaman and mystic of Hinduism and Buddhism. Untrained in sculpture, Sulilat and his students created more than 200 cement statues filled with cryptic symbols of horror and fantasy.
Keep your eye out for the skeleton thin Buddhas, a giant pumpkin with a demon head, a gigantic 40m long reclining Buddha, or Shiva waving his menacing eight arms of swords! You will have fun photographing the weird and whacky icons that would look at home in a zombie movie!
- Visiting the COPE Centre
- Visit Carol Cassidy’s textile
- Photography the weird and whacky icons situated throughout Buddha Park
Enjoy breakfast at your hotel for your last day in Vietnam!
Depending on the time your flight is, you can enjoy the last day adventuring and exploring the nearby area until the chosen time that your guide will detail to you, when you need to meet them in the lobby for your return flight home.