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Laos – North to the South in 12 Days ~ Gorgeous Private Tour - is currently on backorder. You may still purchase now though and we'll ship as soon as more become available.
ITINERARY

Luang Prabang - Vang Vieng - Vientiane -  Bolaven Plateau - Khong Island (Si Phan Don) - Pakse: 12 days

All of Laos is beautiful and with this gorgeous tour you get to see wide range of its beauty. From Luang Prabang in the North to the Islands on the Mekong in the South - you can enjoy the highlight of Laos from the top to bottom!

Visit UNESCO towns, caves, small villages and waterfalls including time in the Bolaven Plateau and Si Phan Don in the South - the area is also known as 4,000 Islands and is where the Mekong reaches its widest point. 

This is a Private Tour, meaning you will have your own personal guide, driver and private car. Travelbay can cater for any size group but it will only be YOUR group and we will provide a suitably sized vehicle. You can select any date (subject to availability, with very few exclusions and please give us at least 30 days notice). We think these tours are very special and hope you will too!  

Travelbay Tips: Arrive early or stay an extra night. Another option is to pair this tour up with one of our Vietnam, Cambodia or Myanmar tour packages or contact us to arrange your very own Tailor Made Laos Tour.  

* Price includes 11 nights' accommodation, 1 domestic flight, private transfers, your own personal guide and driver, daily breakfast and more. Price does not include return international flights to Laos.

We would be happy to provide you with a quote for international flights. Flights from Australia to Laos are approximately $900 – $1300 per person return. The actual price varies depending on departure city, time of year and luck of the draw! 

Download Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Luang Prabang 

Welcome to Luang Prabang. On arrival, you will be met at the airport, welcomed by your tour guide and taken to your hotel in this gorgeous town. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage town, Luang Prabang is a special place to visit and has much to offer from gilded wats (temples) to outstanding natural beauty, delicious cuisine and more.

The night markets in Luang Prabang are exceptional and we recommend a visit, they are within walking distance from your hotel (all options) and you can visit them at your leisure. 

Overnight in Luang Prabang: Villa Chitdara - Standard Room (Standard); Villa Santi Hotel - Deluxe Room (Deluxe); Satri House - Deluxe Room (Super Deluxe)

Day 2: Luang Prabang City Tour and the Pak Ou Caves

After breakfast head off on a sightseeing tour of this gorgeous city - possibly the best preserved traditional city in Southeast Asia. Visit the former King's Palace along with various wats - Wat Xieng Thong, Wat Visoun and the shrine of Wat Aham.  What is a wat you may ask? They are temples or Buddhist monasteries. 

Take a morning cruise along the Mekong about two hours upstream from the centre of Luang Prabang and discover the numerous Buddha images at Pak Ou Caves.

Pak Ou caves overlook the Mekong River and are a group of caves that are home to thousands of Buddha images, which range from mere centimetres to two meters in height. The caves are a short distance from the village of Ban Xang Hai. Stop here to learn about LauLao (Lao whisky) and LauHai (Lao wine), before continuing down the Mekong back to Luang Prabang.

Later in the day, in time for sunset, climb up to the top of Phu Si Mountain - home to a gilded stupa and incredible sunset views of the city and Mekong River (please note: there are around 329 steps to reach the top).

On your return, in the evening, ready for sunset, climb up to the top of Mount Phousi for an enjoyable exploration of the sacred, gilded stupa. From this awe-inspiring vista, take in the beautiful sunset view of the city and the Mekong River.

Overnight in Luang Prabang: Villa Chitdara - Standard Room (Standard); Villa Santi Hotel - Deluxe Room (Deluxe); Satri House - Deluxe Room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 3: Local markets, local villages and the Kuang Si Waterfalls

This morning you may choose to wake up early and participate in the daily early morning ritual of saffron-clad monks with their black alms-giving bowls receiving offerings from the local people, including the ubiquitous sticky rice.

Please Note: It is custom to ensure shoulders, chest and legs are covered so out of respect please have suitable clothing. If you choose to go, but prefer not to make an offering, that is fine but it is requested that you stand back and observe the ritual in silence.

From here you can visit the Phosi Market where you will see diverse offerings such as dried buffalo skin and local tea among the chickens, vegetables and hill-tribe weavings. Laos is also known for its traditional crafts, and today you will visit the Ban Ouay, Hmong Hill tribe and others in the Khmu village.

Continue on to Kuang Si Waterfall - a beautiful waterfall made up of limestone formations and numerous turquoise coloured pools - a highlight for many when visiting Luang Prabang. Here you can enjoy the cooling freshness and leafy green shade of the area and bathe in some of the pools at the lower level of the waterfall. 

If you would like to arrange more walking and trekking of the surrounding area please let us know. You can walk from the Hmong Village to the waterfall through rice fields and forests under the shade of rosewood trees followed by a picnic lunch and swim at the waterfalls. 

After your time at Kung Si, return to the city and take a short drive to Ban Xang Khong and Ban Xienglek well known for its hand-made Jute Sar paper.

Overnight in Luang Prabang: Villa Chitdara - Standard Room (Standard); Villa Santi Hotel - Deluxe Room (Deluxe); Satri House - Deluxe Room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 4: Travel to Vang Vieng enjoying spectacular scenery

After breakfast at the hotel, you will be collected for the drive to Vang Vieng. The scenery of limestone karsts, steep terraced rice fields and hill villages on the drive is spectacular. There will be plenty of opportunities to take photos and stop at a few villages along the way. The roads are well paved and the drive takes around 4-5 hours by car. 

Arrive Vang Vieng in the afternoon where you will be taken to your hotel. 

Overnight in Vang Vieng: Elephant Crossing – Deluxe Room (Standard); Amari – Superior Room (Deluxe); Riverside Boutique – Deluxe Room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 5: Visit the famous limestone caves of Tham Phu Kham and meet villagers

After breakfast take a tractor ride through paddy fields to the Tham Phu Kham caves - the country’s beautiful and famous limestone caverns surrounded by forest. Along the way, you will meet local villagers and get an insight into daily life in Laos.

There is a small natural pool in front of the caves where you can swim and here you can have a picnic lunch. 

After spending the day at the caves and the surrounding area, return to Vang Vieng. En route, pass through many ethnic minority villages - including Hmong, Souay and Tai Dam people.

Overnight in Vang Vieng: Elephant Crossing – Deluxe Room (Standard); Amari – Superior Room (Deluxe); Riverside Boutique – Deluxe Room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast and picnic lunch

Day 6: Travel to Vientiane and visit the Thalat markets

Enjoy breakfast and relax at the hotel. In the afternoon drive to Vientiane (about 3 hours). On the way pass through spectacular countryside in the mountainous region and visit the busy and colourful market of Thalat where various hill tribes come to trade goods and buy provisions.

On arrival in Vientiane you will be taken to your hotel. 

Overnight in Vientiane: Family Boutique  Deluxe Room (Standard); Xaysomboun Boutique – Superior Room (Deluxe); Green Park – Deluxe Room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 7: Discover the city of Vientiane

Today you have a full day to explore Vientiane, the charming and fascinating capital of Laos - one of the classic Indo-Chinese cities with a mix of Lao, Thai, Chinese, Vietnamese, French, American and Soviet influences.

Visit the National Museum, Wat Sisaket - the city's oldest surviving temple with thousands of silver and porcelain images and Haw Phra Kaeo - a large temple is built to house the famed Emerald Buddha in courtyards filled with frangipani trees.

In the afternoon stop at the older part of Morning market and visit Pha That Luang - a giant golden stupa. Then climb the Arc De Triomphe of Laos, Patuxai. The massive arch has a beautiful mosaic tiled ceiling and from the top you get a wonderful view of the city. 

Overnight in Vientiane: Family Boutique  Deluxe Room (Standard); Xaysomboun Boutique – Superior Room (Deluxe); Green Park – Deluxe Room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 8: Fly to Pakse and on to the Bolaven Plateau

Early morning you will be collected from your hotel and taken to the airport in time for your flight to Pakse. On arrival you will be met at the airport and your driver will take you to the  Bolaven Plateau - an area of highlands situated to the east of Pakse and home to various hill tribes, such as Lavens from which the region gets its name.

Stop at Tad Lo, a series of three waterfalls and continue to Tad Yuang & Tad Fane Waterfalls, stopping en-route to visit a coffee and/or tea plantation.

Overnight in Bolaven: Tad Lo Lodge – Standard Room (Standard); Sinouk Resort – Superior Room (Deluxe); Sinouk Resort – Deluxe Room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 9: The temples of Vat Phou and on to Khong Island

This morning, leave Bolaven and head to the Champasak province to visit the fascinating UNESCO protected pre-Angkorian ruins of Vat Phou (also known as Wat Phu)- one of Southeast Asia's most dramatically situated temples. They are perched at the base of Mount Phu Kao and date back to the 5th century.

After lunch drive to Khong Island, the largest island of Si Phan Don (4000 islands). Life here is relaxed, leisurely and moves at a gentle pace. 

Overnight on Khong Island: Pon Arena Hotel – Deluxe Room (Standard); Pon Arena Hotel – Deluxe Room (Deluxe and Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 10: Cruise the Mekong around Khong Island and Si Phan Don (4000 Islands)

After breakfast, enjoy a cruise venturing into the widest point of the Mekong River where thousands of islets become visible in dry season.  Along the way, stop at the Li Phi Waterfalls, one of the most beautiful in the country and also marking the Lao to Cambodia border. Visit the fishing village of Ban Don Khone for an insight into local fishing life. 

On return, take a short drive to the Lao – Cambodia border at Veukham, and visit Khone Phapheng Falls, South East Asia’s biggest waterfall. If you are lucky, you may even see the rare freshwater Irrawaddy Mekong dolphin.

Overnight on Khong Island: Pon Arena Hotel – Deluxe Room (Standard); Pon Arena Hotel – Deluxe Room (Deluxe and Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 11:  Relax on Khong Island and travel back Pakse

Enjoy the day at your leisure and later in the day, drive back to Pakse where you will be taken to your hotel.

Overnight at Pakse: Pakse Hotel – Superior Room (Standard); Champasak Grand Hotel – Deluxe Room (Deluxe and Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 12: Time to go home or onto your next adventure

Today the tour ends. After breakfast you will be taken to the airport in time for your flight or if you would like to extend your time in Laos, we can arrange this for you. 

Meals included: Breakfast

INCLUSIONS
Inclusions:
  • 12 day private tour of Laos exploring Luang Prabang, Vang Vieng, Vientiane, Bolaven Plateau, Khong Island (Si Phan Don) and Pakse. 
  • 11 nights' accommodation.
  • Domestic flight from Vientiane to Pakse
  • All transportation throughout the tour - this is a private tour with your own personal English speaking guide and driver. 
  • Daily breakfast
  • All airport transfers – your tour guide will be there to meet you on arrival and get you to the airport on time for your departure.
  • Entrance and sightseeing fees as stated in the itinerary.
Highlights:
  • Explore Luang Prabang, a UNESCO world heritage site and a gem of South East Asia.
  • Cruise the Mekong to the Pak Ou Caves and explore the caves and sanctuaries filled with Buddha statues and images. 
  • Visit local villages such as Ban Xang Hai and discover daily life as well as the warmth of the locals. 
  • Climb Mount Phousi in the centre of Luang Prabang and enjoy the sunset views of the town and Mekong River. 
  • Watch the ritual of the monks collecting their alms - a daily sight in this town filled with orange robed monks. 
  • Visit the local Phosi markets in Luang Prabang and see the variety of goods on offer. 
  • Enjoy the spectacular scenery on the road to Vang Vieng, explore the small town and visit the famous Tham Phoukham caves
  • Discover the lovely capital of Vientiane with its many temples, monuments and general delight. 
  • Fly to Pakse, travel to the Bolaven Plateau and discover the many waterfalls of the area along with the lush jungles, hill tribes and beautiful landscape.
  • Spend 2 nights on Khong Island on the Mekong River - a wonderful place to relax.
MORE INFO

Travelbay Laos Tours - 12 Day Map 

How to get there:
This tour starts in Luang Prabang and ends in Pakse, Laos.

Travelbay works together with an excellent corporate flight booking company and is happy to provide you with a quote and organise your flights. We charge a $50 booking fee for this service. Alternatively, if you would like to arrange flights yourself you can find more information and suggestions here.

If you are wanting to know more about how far it is between destinations and how long your flight will take, you can visit www.travelmath.com and use their trip calculator.

Timezones:
To help you calculate the time difference we recommend World Time Buddy.

Visa information:
Tourists to Laos require a visa. This can be obtained on arrival and you will need a completed application form, a recent passport sized photo and the visa processing fee in January 2018 was US$35.  

Currency information:
The currency used in Laos is the Lao Kip.

What currency to take over there is a personal choice. Some people prefer to take US$ cash as a backup whilst others prefer to take AUD$ cash – it depends on what you are comfortable with. There are ATM machines available and you should let your bank know that you will be using your card over there to avoid them freezing any 'suspicious' activity.

Vaccination information:
Travelbay recommends you check with your doctor as to any immunisations that you may require or that are recommended for your travels.  Alternatively, you can visit The Travel Doctor or Travelvax for more information.

Tipping and tour guides:
A few customers have asked us about tipping. Really this is a personal matter, not obligatory and at your discretion.

Some like to provide the tour guide with a few dollars a day and a little less for the driver. If you love your guide you can of course offer more – it really is up to you. 

Tour guides will not generally join you when eating – you are welcome to invite them though if you feel to.

Climate:
The climate in Laos is classified as tropical monsoon. What that means is that the weather is tropical and the wet season generally sees a fair amount of rain.

Dry season: November to February (cool dry) and March to April (hot dry)
Wet season: May to October 

Peak season: November to December is the peak season for travel in Laos.

The New Year (Pi Mai) is celebrated from April 13 – 16 and in some places the celebrations can last even longer. The whole country celebrates and there are many water activities on the street. Many people travel home to their families and travel at this time is not recommended.

Population: 6.9 million

Language: Lao (closely related to Thai)

Predominant religion: Buddhism 

Some interesting facts: 
Laos was once called Lan Xang which translates to "kingdom of a million elephants".

Laos has been conquered by the Thai, the French and the Japanese. It gained its independence in 1949 from the French.

Laos has been labelled the most bombed country in the world. It is estimated that during the Vietnam war, more than all the bombs dropped on Europe during World War II were dropped in Laos.  

Luang Prabang has a curfew of 11.30pm. All businesses are required to be closed by this time except for the bowling alley. 

More Travelbay Laos Tours:
Travelbay Laos Tours - 10 Day Local Life in Laos Private Tour Travelbay Laos Tours - Experience the Magic of Laos in 6 Days - Private Tour
Travelbay Tip:

Arrive early and spend a few extra nights in Luang Prabang, or stay on in Vientiane at the end of the tour. For a longer holiday, add on one of our Vietnam, Cambodia or Myanmar tour packages or contact us to arrange your very own Tailor Made Laos Tour.    

Travelbay Myanmar - 10 Day Magical Myanmar Tour including 4 Night Cruise Travelbay Vietnam Tours - 11 Day Best of Vietnam 

Travelbay Cambodia - 6 Day Highlights Tour Travelbay Myanmar - 8 Delightful Days in Mandalay, Bagan, Inle & Yangon      

TERMS
Terms & Conditions

Booking Process:

Upon purchase of your tour online you will immediately receive a receipt and order confirmation. Travelbay will contact the tour operator to confirm availability for all accommodation and transportation for your tour.

As soon as we have confirmed the dates (usually within 48 hours sometimes a little longer at weekends) we will email you your booking confirmation.

We will request further information from you to ensure that all your personal preferences are taken care of. This will include details such as your accommodation preferences, dietary requests, allergies, health issues, emergency contact, any special requirements and a copy of each traveller's passport. 

Very Important:

It is extremely rare for any of these tours to not have availability (as we remove them when full) however, it is important to note that your dates are only confirmed once we have been in touch with you to confirm availability. Therefore, please wait on purchasing your international flights until you have received booking confirmation from us.

In the unlikely event that there is no availability on your chosen date we will offer you alternate dates. If these do not suit we will fully refund your payment.

Booking Information:

  • Quoted prices are per person.
  • Booking valid for selected and booked travel dates.
  • Please book at least 30 days prior to your desired date of travel. 
  • Bookings are subject to availability.
  • Child prices: Please contact us for child pricing.
  • Minimum group size is 2. 
  • The listed "Price per person ~ single room" relates to having your own room for the tour. If you are a single traveller please note the minimum group size is 2. If you would like to travel alone, please contact us and we can arrange a quote. 
  • If you would like to arrive before the start of tour or leave later and require extra nights accommodation, please contact us and we can arrange it for you at very reasonable rates.
  • If you have any other special requests including having a quote for a tailor made tour, please let us know as we can make arrangements.

Inclusions:

  • 11 nights' accommodation, twin share with daily breakfast.
  • Domestic flight from Vientiane to Pakse.
  • Private car and driver in an air-conditioned vehicle. 
  • Your own personal English speaking guide (in each location you will have a different guide).
  • Entrance and sightseeing fees as stated in the itinerary.
  • All airport transfers in private vehicle. 
  • Free wifi available at the hotel lobby.
  • Taxes and service fees.

Exclusions:

  • International airfares to and from Laos.
  • Meals not outlined in the itinerary.
  • Drinks for all meals.
  • Laos visa fee.
  • Tips and gratuities.
  • Compulsory dinner on 24 Dec and 31 Dec. Surcharge will be advised and added by tour operator.
  • Personal expenses such as telephone, laundry etc.
  • Additional activities and attractions as stated in the itinerary.
  • Others not indicated in the inclusions.

General Terms & Conditions:

  • Your contract with Travelbay commences upon us providing you with a booking confirmation (not upon payment).
  • By purchasing this tour you confirm that you have read, understood and agree to these terms and conditions.
  • All prices we list are in AUD unless otherwise stated and include GST where payable.
  • This package, including any unused portion, cannot be exchanged for other services or cash.
  • Some accommodation providers may require that you present a credit card or cash deposit upon check-in to cover any additional expenses that may be incurred during your stay, for example mini-bar. You are responsible for the payment of any such additional expenses.
  • Please check baggage allowance prior to travel. The allowance may vary according to the destination, airline, cruise or coach operator. You are responsible for any excess baggage fees.
  • Travelbay recommends travel insurance. We would be pleased to provide you with a quote and support you in your insurance needs. Please click here or contact us on 1800 020 020.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure you have a valid visa, if required. Please click here for more information on visa requirements.
  • Passport and visa regulations can change and it is your responsibility to ensure that you possess the relevant travel documents before you travel. Delays can be experienced in obtaining a passport or visa, so you are advised to apply in plenty of time. We accept no responsibility in any regard in relation to customers who are denied entry to a country because they do not possess the correct travel documents.
  • It is also your responsibility to ensure that you hold a passport that is valid for at least six months beyond your date of return. If you hold multiple passports, you may be required to present your passport of residence on departing that country. If you hold a passport for a country to which you are travelling, you may be obliged to produce that passport on entering the country. Accordingly, you could be obliged to carry more than one passport when travelling overseas. You should make your own enquiries in relation to your specific circumstances and requirements.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure that all your details are recorded correctly. Any request for a name change after documents have been issued may incur amendment fees or result in the original booking being cancelled and in the case of airlines, the loss of a seat.
  • When purchasing flights, cruises and other carriage and travel services, the name on the passport must match the name on the ticket otherwise you may not be able to travel and insurance may be invalid. If, after purchasing products or services but before traveling, any member of your party changes their name you must notify the relevant carrier, or us, immediately so that the necessary changes can be made to your documentation. You may incur a fee.
  • Travelbay recommends you check with your doctor as to any immunisations that you may require or that are recommended for your travels.  Alternatively, you can visit The Travel Doctor or Travelvax for more information. For those of you who have any medical conditions please also ensure you are fit to travel and have all the medication you need with you. Recommended inoculations for travel may change and you should consult your doctor for current recommendations before you depart. It is your responsibility to ensure that you meet all health entry requirements, obtain recommended inoculations, take all recommended medication, and follow all medical advice in relation to your trip.
  • Many but not all suppliers have facilities for people who require assistance. If you have any disabilities or require special assistance, please let us know at the time of booking so we can check if suitable services are available.
  • It is your responsibility to review travel prohibitions, warnings, announcements and advisories issued by the relevant government agencies prior to booking travel or departing to international destinations. For Australian travellers, information on conditions in various countries and the level of risk associated with travel to particular international destinations can be found on the Australian Government's travel advisory and consular assistance service website currently located at http://www.smarttraveller.gov.au. For travellers from other countries we recommend you check the travel recommendations of your country.
  • By offering reservations for travel-related products or services in relation to particular international destinations, Travelbay does not represent or warrant that travel to such points is advisable or without risk, and Travelbay is not liable for damages or losses that may result from travel to such destinations.
  • Travelbay sells tours on behalf of other Suppliers/Tour Operators. We rely on the relevant third party suppliers. Travelbay and the airlines, hotels and other Suppliers providing Services made available on or through this Website are independent parties and are not related parties. To the fullest extent permitted by law, Travelbay is not liable for the acts, errors, omissions, representations, warranties, breaches or negligence of any such Suppliers or for any personal injuries, death, property damage, or other damages or expenses resulting therefrom.
  • Whilst we take great care to provide clear and accurate information, there may be occasions where there are inaccuracies or errors. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Travelbay does not guarantee the accuracy of, and disclaims liability for, any errors or other inaccuracies relating to the information, descriptions and activities displayed on this website and in our promotional material.
  • All accommodation and hotels are subject to change. If the stated hotel is not available a hotel of a similar standard and location will be booked.
  • Hotel ratings displayed on this Website and in our promotional material are intended only as general guidelines, and Travelbay does not guarantee the accuracy of the ratings. Hotel room images are representative only and the actual room occupied may vary in inclusions and décor.
  • In some circumstances, some specific products or services as contained on this website and promotional material may not be available due to circumstance beyond our control. In that situation, we will do our best to provide replacement products and / or services of a comparable nature and quality. Travelbay and our respective Suppliers make no guarantees about the availability of specific products and services.
  • Subject to relevant laws, if Travelbay merges, sells or otherwise changes control of our business or this Website, we reserve the right, without giving notice or seeking consent, to transfer or assign your Personal Information, content and rights that we have collected from you and any agreements we have made with you.
  • Travelbay reserves all intellectual property rights, including but not limited to, copyright in material and/or services provided by us.

If you have any questions please email us 24/7 or call us Monday to Friday on 1800 020 020 to speak with one of our friendly team.

For other dates please call us - many more available

21 September 2018

28 September 2018

5 October 2018

12 October 2018

19 October 2018

26 October 2018

2 November 2018

9 November 2018

16 November 2018

23 November 2018

30 November 2018

7 December 2018*

14 December 2018*

21 December 2018*

28 December 2018*

*High Season surcharge applies, please contact us for rates

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