Laos Northern Highlights

Handcrafted Travel
Daily Departure
  • Active Adventure
  • Culture & Heritage
  • Family
  • Off The Beaten Path

Overview

Day 1 – 4 Luang Prabang – Kamu Lodge
  • Arrive in Luang Prabang, enjoy a welcome dinner
  • Sightsee the charming ancient town, ride a boat to the famous limestone caves of Pak Ou caves, And do not miss the glorious sunset at Mount Phousi.
  • Ride a boat to Kamu Lodge, have a stroll around the neighborhood.
Day 5 – 8 Kamu Lodge – Pak Beng – Muang La
  • Board a traditional slow boat trip to Pak Beng. Stops to visit the local villages of different ethnic minorities along the way.
  • Drive 4 hours to Muang La. Visit local villages, trek through the forest to a cooking waterfall, climbs to 1,000m above sea level and enjoy magnificent views of the stunning mountain scenery.
Day 9 – 11 Muang La –Muang Khua –Nong Khiaw
  • Discover the most picturesque cruises in the region, down the Nam Ou River to Nong Khiaw.
  • Embark on a boat trip for one hour on the Nam Ou River, explore the stunning 100 waterfalls, have a delectable lunch at the top of the falls, then take the trails to a local village.
Day 12 Nong Khiaw – Luang Prabang – departure
  • Visit a traditional cotton weaving before driving back to Luang Prabang International Airport to end the trip.

Customizable itinerary

This tour will show you Laos Northern highlight destinations in 12 days. Learn about the local heritage in Luang Prabang, where traditions are well preserved, and life is the perfect balance between people and nature. Explore the beautiful Kuang Si waterfall and the mysterious Pak Ou Caves. Relax in Kamu Lodge and take in the amazing landscape. Travel to Pak Beng and Oudomxay, where you can discover the wonderful scenery along the Nam Pak River, en route visit some villages of the ethnic minorities. Trek to isolated villages near Muang La and understand more about their daily routine. Ride on a long-tail boat down the Nam Ou River to visit the stunning sights in Muang Khua and Nong Khiaw valley. Before returning to Luang Prabang, you will trek along the local trails to see the most spectacular landscapes of Nong Khiaw – the gorgeous 100 Waterfalls, lush rainforests and dozens of cascading pools. 

Saibaidee! Welcome to Luang Prabang, Laos.

Upon arrival at Luang Prabang Airport, your private guide and driver are waiting to meet you, holding up a welcome signboard with your names on it and take you directly to your hotel.

After checking-in, you will have time to relax and adjust to the pace of Luang Prabang. There will be a short tour briefing this evening with your guide followed by a welcome dinner at Friends Restaurant, KhaiPhaen. It’s a social enterprise based restaurant that empowers disadvantaged youth with vocational training amongst other support.

Please note: You must have both a passport and a visa to enter Laos. And your passport must also have at least six months’ validity remaining beyond the date that you enter Laos. You can get a visa on arrival in Laos. Make sure you have two passport-sizes photographs.

Overnight in Luang Prabang
Meals: (_/_/D)


Morning
Wake up early and head by Tuk-Tuk like a local to the peninsula to witness and attend almsgiving. Every morning, hundreds of monks from the various monasteries walk through the streets collecting alms. This ancient ritual is locally known as “tak bat”. After the ritual, return to the hotel for your breakfast.

Following your breakfast, start a sightseeing tour of this charming city. You’ll first step into the serene calm of one of the city’s most elaborate monasteries, Wat Mai, and then to the former King’s Palace, where you’ll discover the history and present life of Luang Prabang. Next, head to the ancient Wat Xieng Thong temple, which features a spectacular low sweeping roof. It’s Luang Prabang’s most distinctive and recognized monastery.

Afternoon
After lunch at a local restaurant, you will visit the UXO Visitor’s Centre to get an incredible insight into the horrific bombings endured by the Lao people and the effect it still has today. The UXO centre is an amazing NGO that does fantastic work, yet just scratches the surface of this little known issue.

Continue to explore the 16th century Wat Visoun temple, best known for its enormous stupa and its collection of old gilded Buddhas.

Pay a visit to the Traditional Art and Ethnology Centre (TAEC)**, the only independent resource center in Laos dedicated to the country’s many and diverse ethnic groups. If time permits, you can visit 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.

Feeling suitably enlightened, end your day with a climb to the top of Mount Phousi, the city’s highest point where you’ll enjoy sweeping views of the city and the Mekong River below.

Overnight in Luang Prabang
Meals: (B/L/_)

Morning
Start your day with a visit to the Morning Market, a lively street where locals shop for everything from colorful vegetables and exotic fruits to live frogs.

After breakfast and check out of the hotel your private guide and driver will meet you for transfer to the boat pier for a cruise up the Mekong River to Kamu Lodge. Along the way, you will pause to visit the famous Pak Ou caves which house thousands of Buddha statues of all styles and sizes. There are two caves, both accessed by stairs. The lower cave, Tham Ting, is naturally lit. The upper cave, Tham Phum, is deeper yet easily explored.

Afternoon
Arrive at Kamu lodge at noon, check in to your tent and have lunch in the middle of the rice fields.

Kamu Lodge offers a deliberate retreat from the comforts of modern life. Leaving behind WiFi, satellite television, or even an unlimited flow of electricity, Kamu Lodge is a private eco-lodge engaged with low-impact tourism, seeking a balance between tourism and conservation of local culture and ethnic heritage.

The rest of the day is at your leisure. Spend your time to enjoy the comforts of the lodge or have a stroll around the neighborhood. Dinner will be at the Lodge.

Overnight in Kamu Village
Meals: (B/L/_)



The “tents” at Kamu Lodge are comfortable fully-appointed. You can just relax and take in the beauty of the landscape.

Apart from the relaxing time, there is so much to do around Kamu Lodge. You can choose from a wide range of activities in the jungle among villages and rice paddies. Participate in hands-on learning about rice planting, or even try your hand at gold panning and archery as the locals do it. The Kamu Lodge is designed to expose you to and give you an opportunity for the hands-on experience of the lifestyle of the Kamu ethnic group.

Overnight in Kamu Lodge
Meals: (B/L/D)

After breakfast and check out of the lodge, you will board a traditional slow boat trip up the Mekong River to Pak Beng. You will make some stops to visit the local villages of different ethnic minorities.

We’ll arrive in Pakbeng in the afternoon and check into the Sanctuary Pakbeng Lodge. Sitting by the bank of the Mekong, the Lodge is halfway between the World Heritage Town of Luang Prabang, and Huay Xai, the main border crossing between northern Thailand and northern Laos, both towns reachable within a day by cruise.

Overnight in Pak Beng
Meals: (B/L/_)

Morning
After breakfast depart Pak Beng for a four-hour drive to the remote province of Oudom Xai (Muang Xai on some maps), the heart of northern Laos, rich in mountain scenery and many ethnic minorities.

Arrive and check into the luxury Muang La Lodge. Hidden in the small village of Muang-La by the river, this lodge features 5 wooden villas and 9 traditionally designed guestrooms. Exuding peace tranquillity, and mountain views, the river houses a natural hot spring.

Afternoon
After having lunch at the resort, head out to discover the rural life of the Pak La village in Muang La, stroll through the area, and take in the panoramic views over the Nam Pak River. You will learn more about how the Khmu people live in harmony with their environment. The site at Muang La is dominated by the temple of Pha Chiao Sing Kham, which houses a sacred Buddha. According to those responsible for its protection, the statue simply appeared hundreds of years ago and so that the temple is now a sacred place of pilgrimage.

Return to the Lodge in the late afternoon and spend the remainder of the day at your leisure. Relax in the therapeutic on-site hot springs at the Lodge.

Overnight in Muang La
Meals: (B/L/D)

Morning
Set off in the morning by 4×4 for a short drive to Pak Khai. The ride offers some magnificent views over the Nam Pak River, terraced rice fields, and many small villages.

On arrival, you will begin a culture and nature trek on small winding paths that locals use between their villages in the jungle. You will arrive at the Khamu village of Wang Wanh where the villagers make sacks from the fibers of local plants. You will be welcomed by a local family who will take you on an in-depth and hands-on learning experience where you will participate in 14 steps of the rice cycle.

Continuing into the forest, after 1½ hours you will reach the village of Ban Phavie, a beautiful Khmu village on top of a hill. Here you will enjoy a picnic lunch prepared by your personal guide.

Afternoon
After lunch, continue your trek to a cooling waterfall where you can relax in the clear water cascade (weather permitting). Then return to the lodge for your leisure time.

Enjoy diner and spend the second night at the lodge.

Overnight in Muang La
Meals: (B/L/D)

Morning
After breakfast, take another 4×4 ride on a beautiful road along the Nam Pak River to an Ikhos village and a H’mong village; two of the many ethnic groups in Laos. Your route climbs to 1,000m above sea level and offers some magnificent views of the stunning mountain scenery.

Your first visit is a completely isolated Ikhos village. The Ikho people are one of the most reclusive communities in Laos, and originate from Yunnan Province in China and Tibet. It is a remarkable experience to glimpse into the culture and lives of the Ikho, in whose mountain villages you will see houses made of wood and bamboo and learn about their way of life and their belief in the spirit world. The Ikho are known for their method of dyeing their clothes using natural dyes made from the plants of the jungle.

Continue to visit the H’mong village and then enjoy a picnic lunch with amazing surroundings.

Afternoon
After lunch, return to your lodge and spend the rest of the day at your leisure.

Enjoy dinner and spend the last night at Muang La lodge.

Overnight in Muang La
Meals: (B/L/D)

Morning
After breakfast, you will leave Muang La and travel along a scenic road to Muang Khua where you will board a long-tail boat to begin your scenic journey down the Nam Ou River, discovering numerous villages dotted along the banks of the river and some stunning limestone formations as the sheer cliffs rise from the water’s edge. The cruise trip Nong Khiaw today, is, without doubt, one of the most picturesque cruises in the region!

You will enjoy a barbecue picnic lunch on one of the beaches along the river.

Afternoon
You’ll arrive at Nong Khiaw to check into your bungalow at the Mandala family Resort. This premier bungalow resort is situated high on the banks of the scenic and tranquil Nam Ou river, offering spectacular sunset views over the virgin rain forest, mountains, and the karst limestone cliffs of Nong Khiaw.

Overnight in Nong Khiaw
Meals: (B/L/D)

Morning
After breakfast, embark on a boat trip for one hour on the Nam Ou River. You will arrive at a local Hmong village where you will disembark and follow local trails through the rice paddies to the foot of the forested mountain slopes. Along the way, your guide will explain the local fauna and flora, use of plants for traditional medicine, and local culture and traditions.

You will arrive at the gorgeous 100 Waterfalls, which has only been on the radar recently and traveled to by foreigners, which is during the late 2000s. For the next 3 hours, you will follow the cascading stream as you ascend the mountain covered in thick virgin rainforest, following the water through dozens of pools, cascades and huge rocks.

After exploring the stunning 100 waterfalls, you will be provided with a delectable lunch at the top of the falls served by your guide in the traditional way – folded banana leaves.

Afternoon
After lunch, take the trails again from the top of the waterfall that is used by the local villagers, which will lead you away from the waterfall and to the village. Behold the stunning sights along the Nam Ou valley, overcrowded with old-growth forests that thrive within the fertile lands. The Nam Ou valley lacks well-paved roads and still carries the natural charm of the olden days without being too overcrowded by people along the trails. Upon arrival to the village, you will be greeted by the friendly smiles of the inhabitants as they are engaged in their daily activities before heading back to Nong Khiaw along with a small boat.

Overnight in Nong Khiaw
Meals: (B/L/D)

This is a free day for you for your further explorations of Nong Khiaw. Relax and take in the grandeur of the Karst scenery, and explore nearby caves if you choose.

Overnight in Nong Khiaw
Meals: (B/_/_)

After breakfast and check out you are taken back to Luang Prabang following the Nam Ou River and traveling you up and over the mountains. Along the way, you will pause to visit the village of Ban Na Nyang, which is famous for its traditional cotton weaving. Almost every household has its own weaving loom where the families create beautiful scarves, table cloths, and ornate wall hangings.

After the village visit, continue on the road to the UNESCO world heritage city of Luang Prabang and then transfer to Luang Prabang airport for a short flight to Bangkok where you connect via your outbound flight home.

Meals: (B/_/_)

Useful Information

This sample itinerary was created by our travel experts as inspiration for your next trip. Ready for your customization. You pick to suit your budget, desires, and cultural experiences. The price of this trip will vary, depending on the number of people in your party, dates of departure, and the availability of ground services. Please click on REQUEST A FREE QUOTE (above) and give us the necessary information to enable us to send you a FREE personalized quote within 48 hours if not sooner!


Sightseeing Highlights

  • Visit various temple and museum in Luang Prabang to learn about the culture of Laos
  • Cruising along the might Mekong river to visit the mysterious Pak Ou caves
  • The first sight of the beautiful Muang La Resort
  • The panoramic view from the top of the mountain in Muang La, and from the top of Phousi Hill over the ancient town of Luang Prabang
  • Trekking to the famous 100 waterfalls in Nong Khiaw
  • Cruising along the lazy Nam Ou River and Mekong River, experiencing the authentic lives, and its untouched nature along the way
  • The visit to the local villages during the tour to see the local life


Dining Experience

  • 11 hotel buffet breakfasts.
  • 7 dinners and 9 lunches at well-selected restaurants


Travel Highlights

  • Your own private guide and driver for in-depth cultural touring based on your interests
  • Firsthand, sophisticated destination knowledge and recommendations from our locally born travel specialists
  • Itineraries that are customized according to your interests and preferences
  • A seamless travel experience, including all logistics, hand-picked hotels and restaurants, private airport transfers, internal transportation, and entry visa assistance…etc
  • Around-the-clock support from your travel designer and concierge before, during and after your trip


What’s Included?

Private English speaking guide, accommodation, private tours and transfer, A/C vehicles, some main meals, all entrance fees, tax, and service charge.


What’s Not Included?

Your international flights from and to Laos, the entry visa to Laos, personal expense, tips to guide and driver.

                           

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After speaking with two other family friends, we booked our vacation through Chloe and it was one of the best trips we have been on. We spent 10 days traveling from Siem Reap, Cambodia to Hoi An, Halong Bay and Hanoi, Vietnam. As a family of 5 (Kids ages 8,5, &3) it is hard to find accommodations and activities that meet the needs of all family members. However everyone came back happy campers. We loved every activity and all the food was wonderful. We saw temples, rode bikes, explored downtowns and went kayaking. Hands down worth every penny.

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