Hidden Gems of Laos
Bespoke Holiday Itinerary / Experience Tour

Info : Hidden Gems of Laos

This unusual journey between Vientiane and Luang Prabang is something quite special. Unique aspects of the tour include awe inspiring Kong Lor Caves in the centre of the country and a 2 day private boat tour through remote rivers in the North. 

Highlights include.

  • Awe inspiring Kong Lor Caves.
  • Private boat cruise along the Nam Ou. Off the beaten track, remote and beautiful.
  • Muang La Lodge.
  • Elephants at Shangri Lao.
  • Learn how to cook Laos cuisine.
  • Magical Luang Prabang
  • Exploring Vientiane

Pricing & Inclusions

From £2999 pp inclusive of flights from the UK.

This price is based on a tour price of £2140 pp and international flights from the UK from £872 pp = £2999pp

Day-to-Day Itinerary : Hidden Gems of Laos

Day 1 

Fly from the UK to Vientiane overnight.

Day 2 Vientiane

 Upon arrival in Vientiane, your guide and driver will meet you and transfer you to the hotel. 

Day 3 Vientiane

 An optional early start enables you to visit Thongkhankham, a fascinating market where locals shop. A wide variety of weird and wonderful foods are on offer. You continue exploring the city after breakfast by visiting the oldest Wat (temple) in Vientiane, Wat Sisaket with thousands of miniature Buddha statues. Your morning will also include a visit to the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which now serves as a museum. As you travel up Lanexang Avenue you have an opportunity to take pictures of the imposing Patuxai Monument. The climb to the top offers great views over Vientiane.  The final visit of the morning will be to the excellent COPE exhibition centre, highlighting a much overlooked aspect of Laos and a major problem that many of the local people face on a day to day basis in the form of unexploded ordnance as a result of heavy bombing campaigns during the Vietnam War era. 

In the afternoon you visit the quirky yet impressive Buddha Park, an enchanting collection of Buddhist and Hindu sculptures on the banks of the Mekong River. By no means historic - Buddha Park was built in the 1950's by a self-styled "holy man" - the park features some very photogenic and unusual sculptures, including a huge reclining Buddha, and a giant pumpkin!

A spectacular view of the Mekong River at sunset is a perfect way to finish the day.

 Day4  Hin Boun/Kong Lor

 Your guide and driver will meet you this morning for your journey south along route 13 to the central Lao province of Khammoune.  En route you’ll stop at Prabaht Ponsan which is a stupa dating back to the 15th Century. It is also home to the Budhhas footprint, left when, as legend has it, he was crossing the Mekong.

After lunch you continue onwards into the mountains of Khammoune province with breathtaking ‘limestone forest’s’ en route. The last stop of the day is Ban Thabuk, the ‘bomb boat village’ where they use old bomb casings from the Vietnam War as boats! You reach Hin Boun area by late afternoon, where you have the rest of the day at leisure.

Day5  HIN BOUN/Kong Lor

 After breakfast at your lodge, you will travel by boat to Kong Lor Cave. This is a 2 hour boat trip upstream taking in spectacular limestone scenery en route. Once inside the cave, you transfer to a smaller boat and begin to travel through the cave. The cave is over 7km long and includes a dramatic cavern over 100m high, as well as a breathtaking stalagmite gallery which you can explore on foot. When you emerge from the other side of the cave you can take a short walk past some tobacco drying huts to Ban Pon Ngam, a remote village, where you can enjoy a picnic lunch. 

Day 6 Vientiane

 After breakfast, you will be transferred by car from Hin Boun area back to Vientiane. 

Day 7 Muang La

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your morning flight to Oudomxay in Northern Laos. Upon arrival in Oudomxay, your guide will meet with you and transfer to you to Muang La resort for check-in.  Muang La is a Beautiful riverside lodge with natural hot springs and superb accommodation.

Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.

Day 8 Muang La

 Today you have a 2 to 3 hour walk to discover the rural life of the villagers near Muang La and admire the panoramic views of the river Nam Pak, the beautiful rice terraces and salt mines.

The Muang La site is dominated by the temple “Chiao Pha Kham Sing” which houses a sacred Buddha and is a sacred place of pilgrimage.

Day 9 Nong Khiaw

 This morning you board a local private boat for an unforgettable cruise down the Nam Ou River to Nong Khiaw. This particular stretch offers stunning scenery and remote villages, including Ban Sob Jaem a Khmu and Hmong village that can only be accessed by boat.  You reach Nong Khiaw by late afternoon.  Upon checking into your hotel, you have the option of taking a short bicycle ride to the picturesque local limestone caves nearby.

Day 10 Nong Khiaw – Luang Prabang 

 This morning your journey downstream to Luang Prabang continues past lush green forests and landscape. Along the way you stop to visit the mysterious caves of Pak Ou.

Arrive in Luang Prabang by early evening and enjoy dinner at leisure in this beautiful town.

Day 11 Luang Prabang  

You can discuss with your guide whether you would like to get up early today in order to partake in "Tak Bat" which is giving alms to the Buddhist monks. This is a unique ritual and Luang Prabang really comes alive as the saffron red clothed monks pass through the streets. The early start is really worth it.

After breakfast you visit the quaint Royal Palace Museum, this gives a good overview of local history. Following this you'll explore Luang Prabangs most famous temples, these beautiful structures are both historic and enchanting. 

In the afternoon you'll have chance to visit the Arts and Ethnology Centre which will give you an insight into the ethnic mix and culture of Laos. There will also be chance to visit weaving and textile villages. Towards the end of the day you will climb Mount Phousi which has a panoramic view over Luang Prabang and the Mekong and is a spectacular spot to watch the sun set.

Day 12 Luang Prabang  

 The day starts with an introductory tour of the Shangri Lao elephant camp where your guide will teach you about elephants. You can talk with the veterinarian, feed the elephants and relax by the riverside.

 Your morning expedition begins with an elephant ride through diverse landscape. After crossing the river, the trail enters jungle and then teak forest over the hills to the beautiful Tad Sae Waterfall. Along the way you can stop to see the amazing scenery of the Nam Khan River Valley. There is chance to rest at the Tad Sae Waterfall and enjoy this beautiful place with its fantastic limestone formations and turquoise blue pools in the forest. The Huay Sae stream ends here falling over several cascades into the Nam Khan River so you have the option to swim in the natural pools.

Down at the Nam Khan River, a luxury bamboo raft awaits with a typical Lao lunch on board, relax and watch the traditional village life of farmers and fishermen along the river as you enjoy lunch. On arrival at the Shangri Lao camp your guide with transfer you back to your hotel.

Day 13 Luang Prabang  

This morning you will be transferred to Roots and Leaves Restaurant for a cooking class.  Visit the local market with the chef, who will teach you about the ingredients used in the dishes you will prepare.  Return back to the restaurant and begin your class under the expert tuition of your chef.  Lunch will be your own efforts, and a recipe book will be available to take home.

 In the afternoon drive out of the town to the beautiful Kuang Si Waterfall where you can cool off with a refreshing swim in the turquoise pool or walk along the forest trails.  

 Return to Luang Prabang by early evening, where your guide will take you to Wat Phabath Tai to enjoy a beautiful sunset.


 Depending on your departure flight, you may have free time at leisure, before being transferred to the airport for your flight.

Customer Feedback
Matt really listened to what we were looking for and our itinerary was a joint project making good use of his knowledge and experience. We were really impressed by how well most of the hotels and guides were integrated into their local communities and were particularly impressed by Pong who guided us in the north of Laos. He really went the extra mile to help us meet and talk with local people and he was clearly well known and liked in the villages we went to!

Customer Protection


The air holiday packages shown are ATOL protected by the Civil Aviation Authority. Our ATOL number is ATOL 9324. Please see our booking conditions for more information.

Why not give us a call
0207 924 7133

Request a Quote

Go Top