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This multi-destination tour combines the historical city of Luang Prabang, the Plain of Jars site at Xiengkhouang, and the pleasant capital of Vientiane. Although a small country, Laos is rich with attractions, culture, and mystery. Laos preserves its unique heritage, the tradition of the daily procession of the offerings of alms to nearly 200 monks at dawn in Luang Prabang, is an attraction in itself. The AncientPlain of Jars and bizarre Buddha Park are intriguing sites; their functions and origins remain mysteries.
On arrival at the airport, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Luang Prabang is perhaps the best-preserved traditional city in Southeast Asia. After a short rest, we visit the impressive stupa of Wat Visoun and the shrines of Wat Aham and Wat Mai; we then climb up to the top of Mount Phousi to explore the sacred, gilded stupa as well as capture a beautiful view of the city and the watch the setting sun as it is reflected on the Mekong River. From there, we visit the Night Market, where you can browse a lovely selection of handmade textiles made by the local and hilltribe people surrounding Luang Prabang. Overnight in Luang Prabang
An optional early start gives you the fantastic opportunity to participate in the daily morning rituals of saffron-clad monks collecting offerings of Alms (often in the form of sticky rice) from the faithful residents. This tradition is very unique in Laos, being the only Buddhist nation still preserving the ritual. You can also visit the morning Phosi Market where you can see such diverse offerings as dried buffalo skin, local tea, and saltpeter among the chickens, vegetables, and hill-tribe weavings.
AM: After breakfast, we enjoy a short-guided tour seeing the city’s oldest temple of Wat Sene and the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture. We then board a cruise upstream on the Mekong River, which also gives us a panoramic view of the tranquil countryside as well as an interesting visit to the mysterious Pak Ou Caves, two linked caves crammed with thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by pilgrims. Along the way, we stop at the small village of Ban Xanghai, where the local rice wine is distilled. We return to Luang Prabang in the afternoon, on the way we take a short drive to Ban Phanom, a small village well known for its hand weaving.
PM: After lunch we continue towards Khouangsi Waterfall, en route, we visit the local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ou, Ban Ou, Laoloum and Ban Thapene, and then drive to the beautiful Khouangsi Waterfall. Here you can take a dip in the inviting pools or walk along the forest trails surrounding the waterfall. We return to Luang Prabang by late afternoon and continue to Ban Xangkhong, a village well known for silk handweaving and for traditional Saa Paper making. We return to the city by late evening to watch the sunset at Wat Siphouthabath. Overnight in Luang Prabang (B)
After breakfast you will be picked up from your hotel and begin our days drive through beautiful mountain scenery to Xiengkhouang, a province of Laos famous for its ‘Plain of Jars’. There will be plenty of opportunities to stop off and visit the numerous villages along the way. On arrival we check in to the hotel, the evening is free at your leisure. Overnight in Xiengkhoung (B)
Following breakfast at Hotel, we transfer out to visit the Plain of Jars, an impressive archaeological site encompassing hundreds of large stone jars scattered throughout the plateau. In the afternoon there will be time to see the old capital of Muang Khoun Province and its’ nearby villages which are home to the Hmong hill tribe and Tai Dam people who possess an interesting local culture and a vibrant history. We then board our short flight to Vientiane. On arrival we check in to the hotel. After short rest, we will visit the Morning Market and the weaving village of Ban Nong Bouathong. Overnight in Vientiane (B)
Today, we see the major sights of the capital; including the oldest Wat Sisaket, the temple with thousands of miniature Buddha statues and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha Image. On the way to Lao’s national icon, the famous and sacred structure of That Luang Stupa, we stop enroute to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is well known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. In the afternoon we transfer out to see Buddha Park, an enchanting collection of Buddhist and Hindu sculptures on the Mekong Riverside meadow, close to the Friendship Bridge. There are approximately 200 religious images dating back over 500 years, which were created by a mysterious monk spreading his philosophy on life and revealing his ideas about the universe. A spectacular view of over the Mekong River at sunset is a perfect way to finish the day. Overnight in Vientiane (B)
After breakfast, we transfer to the airport for our departure flight (B)
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