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Exploring Southern Laos

9 days from £2,990 per person

Little villages, areas of outstanding natural beauty, historic temples and stupas and the occasional reminder of French colonial history are scattered through southern Laos. This itinerary starts in the capital of Vientiane where the colonial influence is evident in the best boutique hotels, and the temples of Wat Si Saket and Ho Phra Keo are well worth exploring. Enjoy a Laotian barbeque in a tranquil spot away from the crowd this evening.

The itinerary follows a leisurely meandering routh southwards, with stays at three different rustic riverside properties, each with something unique to recommend it. At the Spring River Resort deep in the natural forest and lime karst scenery of a national park near Hin Boun, explore Kong Lor cave - one of the world's largest, in what is considered the caving capital of the world.

Explore little villages en route to Thakhek, capital of Khammouanne province with a French colonial feel and some great little restaurants along the Mekong riverfront with sunset views.

Continue on south to Tadlo, a charming and unspoilt little cluster of guesthouses, little restaurants and bike rental shops around an impressive waterfall on the Bolaven plateau. bathe in pools below the waterfall, or simply enjoy the view and watch Tadlo Lodge's two elephants being bathed each evening. Offroad biking trails here are great for the more intrepid.

Complete the week at a river resort in Champasak, otherwise known as 4,000 islands - a charming unspoilt array of little islands, villages, waterfalls and slowly crumbling French colonial buildings. Wat Po temple complex here is the most impressive in the region, well worth the climb up steep steps to the temple itself which is built into the rockface. After a relaxing sojourn here, fly on to you next South East Asian destination or fly home from Pakse via Bangkok.

Itinerary details

9 days from £2,990 per person

  • Day 1 - in transit
    Fly overnight to Vientiane via Bangkok.
  • Day 2 - Settha Palace - Vientiane
    Arrive into Vientiane, tour the city and enjoy a Laotian barbecue dinner.
  • Day 3 - Springriver Resort - Hin Boun
    Be driven through Khammoune province via villages, markets and historic stupas to Hin Boun.
  • Day 4 - Inthira - Thakhek
    Explore Kong Lor cave by boat and enjoy a picnic lunch before being driven on to Thakhek.
  • Day 5 - Tad Lo Lodge - Tad Lo
    Visit Tham Pa Pha cave of Buddha statues, and the French colonial town of Savannakhet en route to Tad Lo waterfall area.
  • Day 6 - The River Resort - Pakse
    Guided tour of ethnic minority villages and plantations en route to Champasak (4,000 Islands).
  • Day 7 - The River Resort - Pakse
    4,000 Islands and waterfalls guided tour.
  • Day 8 - The River Resort - Pakse
    Visit Wat Phou temple complex, Don Daeng island and enjoy sundowner drinks & canapes on Turtle island in the Mekong River.
  • Day 9 - in transit
    Fly home via Bangkok.
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