Laos Travel Guide: 10 Days Itinerary
Laos packs quite a bang for a landlocked nation, especially compared to its more well-known neighbours, Thailand and Vietnam. Laos has all you need for a relaxing vacation in South East Asia, with its charming towns, picturesque landscapes, wild jungle, adventurous activities, fascinating history, friendly locals, delicious food, and of course, a cold Beerlao or ten.
You need a Laos Visa to enter the country. A 30-day electronic visa for Laos costs between USD$45 and USD$60, depending on the traveller’s home country. It’s valid for 60 days after you get the approval letter and allows you one entry to any of Laos’s five entry points.
Laos 10-days Itinerary
Day 1-4: Luang Prabang
Get a flight to the beautiful city of Luang Prabang. The town’s architectural significance and remarkable preservation of spiritual rituals and customs earned it a place on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Explore the gorgeous temples decorated with gold and surrounded by purple and pink flowers. In the morning, the town’s spirituality is at its peak during the alms-giving ceremony, when orange-robed monks march through the streets in search of donations of food and flowers from the locals.
Day 5-8: Vang Vieng
It’s about 5 hours to drive from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng. Since the roads in Laos are not highly developed yet, getting around the country can be a challenge. You can grab a shared minivan from the Luang Prabang bus terminal anytime between the early morning and late afternoon.
Those seeking excitement will find their match at Vang Vieng. The village is surrounded by limestone karsts, providing great hiking and spectacular views. Get yourself on a motorcycle and cruise to one of the many neighbouring blue lagoons and caves.
The town’s scenic Nam Song River location makes it an ideal spot for water sports like tubing and kayaking. Pack your days full of adventure and end them with a stroll through the breathtaking paddy fields at sunset.
Day 9-10: Vientiane
On average, a minibus ride to Vientiane takes four hours, though traffic conditions can make it longer.
Visit Vientiane, Laos’s capital, to round up your trip. Its official designation as a city belies its more rural character. Therefore, you will just need a day or two to explore everything there is to see in Vientiane. The city is a great spot to get your fill of culture and history, as it is home to the stately presidential palace and other impressive temples.
Spend a morning getting to know the city and then head 25 kilometres outside town to the beautiful Buddha Park. Over two hundred enormous Buddha statues, each with its unique blend of the bizarre and the wonderful, may be found in this park. The bus ride is 40 minutes long, but exciting sights await you at the other end.
Other places to visit in Laos
We recommend the following destinations for those planning a longer trip. Northern Laos is where you will find Houayxai and Phonsovan, two destinations that go perfectly with the plan I outlined above. Southern Laos is home to many must-see attractions, including Pakse and the 4,000 Islands.
Bordering northern Thailand, Houayxai is often the first stop for visitors continuing to Laos from Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai. On the slow boat, the trip from Houay Xai to Luang Prabang takes two days. About 1.5 hours from Houayxai, Gibbon Experience in Laos is a must-do for every nature lover. Treehouses are located high in the forest canopy, and guests can explore the lodge via zip line.
Phonsavan and Plain of Jars
Also, you can consider going to Phonsavan, where the mysterious Plain of Jars is the main attraction. The valley is littered with thousands of stone jars. It’s a mystery what the jars were originally used for, just like Stonehenge.
Located in southern Laos, Paske is a quaint French colonial old town that is reminiscent of a less touristy, more relaxed Luang Prabang. Moreover, it serves as an entry point to the province of Champasak, where jungles, waterfalls, and islands are among the top attractions.
Si Phan Don-4000 Islands
Si Phan Don, aka the Four Thousand Islands, is a stunning archipelago in the southern part of Laos, near the Cambodian border. Si Phan Don is a group of islands in the Mekong River. Smaller islands are submerged at high tide, whereas larger ones are home to entire communities.
Best time to visit Laos
Before booking your vacation to Laos, make sure you know when is the best time to visit the country.
The best time to visit Laos is during the cold, dry season, from November through February. Like many other Asian countries, Laos experiences both a dry season (from October to April) and a wet season (from May to September). Even while the rainy season often consists of short, afternoon downpours rather than continuous, heavy rain, it can still cause land-based transportation and infrastructure problems. Typically, August is the wettest month.
Laos enjoys constant tropical heat all through the year. Heat and humidity levels peak as the dry season winds down and the rainy season begins (March to June). Farmers often burn off crops during this time, contributing to the haze. Climate is likewise different in different parts of the country, with (sometimes surprisingly) cooler temperatures further north.