LAOS Vang Vien Huts On The River Logo Laos (1)
Back to Listing


Thakhek is the principle town of Khammouane province in central Laos, southeast of the capital Vientiane. Formerly known as Sri Gotabura, Thakhek was the outpost of the My-Khmer kingdoms of Funan and Chenla. Its name dates from the colonial French, meaning "mooring point for guests".

The main draw of the town is the wider province, but the town itself is also rather charming. Situated on the banks of the wide Mekong river, opposite Nakhon Phanom in Thailand, the town affords sweeping views, especially from the old quarter. Here, there are numerous French-colonial buildings, which are a mixture of shop-houses and grand government buildings. The local population is ethnically diverse and composed of Phuan, Tahoy, Kri, Katang, Maling and Hmong peoples. The riverfront comes alive in the evening when the street-food vendors are at their busiest and families come out to join the fun. If you stay over in the town, we highly recommend spending the evening dining on the riverfront, overlooking Thailand. You are not likely to see huge numbers of other foreigners in the town, since this is still an off-the-beaten-path area and has only caught on with for those looking for adventure travel in Laos.

Khammouane province is a region of rugged landscapes and has some of the most fertile land in Laos. As well as producing rice, sugar cane, cabbages and bananas, Khammouane province also has two protected areas of biodiversity, the Khammouane Limestone National Biodiversity Conservation Area - also known as Hin Boun - and the Nakai-Namtheun Park. Thakhek is the perfect gateway to exploring this area, with its caving and climbing opportunities. Just outside of Thakhek is a seven kilometre long cave system that can be explored partly by boat. Perfect for those that would like to combine a more traditional Laos itinerary with some rugged adventure. The best time to visit Thakhek on a tailor-made holiday to Laos is between November and March, and if you are interested in trekking, caving, or climbing it is certainly best to go during a dry time of year when the water levels are not too high.

Features in the following itineraries

Thakhek (3).jpg Thakhek (3).jpg
Thakhek (2).jpg Thakhek (2).jpg
Thakhek (1).jpg Thakhek (1).jpg
My favourite thing is to go where I've never been.
Diane Arbus

Client Testimonials

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
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
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
Ampersand provided a bespoke and flexible holiday, tailored to my every whim. Their highly professional staff had only one goal which was to arrange an exceptional holiday and some unforgettable experiences in India. I have no hesitation in fully recommending them and they will be the first company I approach in the future - 10/10
- Anonymous, 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
I thought the Ampersand team was outstanding. We couldn’t have hoped for anything more.
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, 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
I would recommend Ampersand without any hesitation!!! The best travel agent that I’ve ever had. Everything – from the individual care and attention in planning the trip, through to the efficiency of the agents on the ground in India – was handled brilliantly. An absolutely first-class service all round!
- Matthew Annable, Rajasthan, 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
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

Let us keep you up to date

Sign up to our newsletter and never miss out on unmissable exclusive luxury experiences