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Pakbeng

Pakbeng is a tranquil village along the Mekong, lying halfway between the Thai and Lao border crossing at Huay Xai and Luang Prabang, which is regarded by many as the cultural centre of Laos. Most visit Pakbeng as part of a two-day scenic boat journey along the Mekong river in either direction. This village is the perfect introduction to the quiet and slow rhythm of Laos, with beautiful sunset views and a number of good restaurants. Like much of the less populated parts of the country, it is a sleepy village with most places closing around 10pm, meaning that you are sure to have a restful night's sleep with no disturbance from pedestrian or road traffic during the night.

Accommodation comes in the form of basic yet well-equipped bungalows, and one is never far from the flowing Mekong river. Its scenic banks are a wonderful place to sit and take in the landscape and atmosphere of Laos, especially when just arriving from over the border in Thailand. The local restaurants will offer a lovely introduction to sumptuous Lao food for the first-time visitor. We recommend trying Som Tam (a spicy papaya salad) and freshly grilled fish from the Mekong river.

If you are an early riser, why not get up for sunrise and visit the local market. While here, you can wake up with a strong Lao coffee – this is a great way to start the day as the hot glow of the tropical sun burns in the distance through lush green vegetation, before continuing your journey up or down the Mekong river.

Visit Pakbeng on your tailor-made tour of Laos to combine this country with northern Thailand and admire the similarities and differences between the two countries. For an ideal start of a holiday in Laos, we suggest travelling to Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai in northern Thailand before crossing into Laos, and having a two-day boat journey down to Luang Prabang, via Pakbeng.

Features in the following itineraries

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I can't think of anything that excites a greater sense of childlike wonder than to be in a country where you are ignorant of almost everything.
Bill Bryson

We had a wonderful holiday - everything was perfect. Thank you for helping us to make a thoughtful plan to enjoy and make most out of our trip. The places we visited, the guides, the transportation and driver, the hotels selected... Everything was great!
- Jaime Benitez, South India
Without question, you put together the best trip I have ever taken. We were shown around like visiting dignitaries, the hotels were fantastic and the itinerary was just right. Everybody I know will hear about how amazing Ampersand is!
- Leslie Siben, India
Difficult to articulate just how good the service from you and your team really was. We know you will continue to do well and hope we have the chance to seek your assistance again before long.
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
Ampersand’s preparation, attention to detail and interaction before and during our trip show exactly why good travel agents have a role in today’s internet booking age. They were a delight to deal with!
- Mr David Wallace, North India
Everything you did for us whilst we were away was hugely appreciated, and Ampersand has been exemplary in every way. I'll always recommend you!
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
So many highlights to choose from! The hotels were amazing but Maya Villa was a highlight… I loved just hanging out in the hammock reading my book and watching the peacocks chase the cows!
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
I thought the Ampersand team was outstanding. We couldn’t have hoped for anything more.
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
I had a very lovely time and was looked after splendidly. My first visit to India could not have been better, save for being longer! But I shall return at some point and I shall look to you to make the arrangements.
- Matthew Nicklin, North India

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