Being overlooked by its more famous neighbors Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia, by chance, helps maintain Laos as the most enchanting destination in Southeast Asia. Old-fashioned charm and unmixed culture, colonial towns and hill tribe villages, mighty Mekong River, and sleepy island life, our highly knowledgeable tour guides will help you experience them all. Traveling with Exotic Voyages, your trip to Laos is anything but unforgettable.
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We began planning our holiday vacation for two couples to Vietnam and Laos with Exotic Voyages back in June. As frequent international travelers, we've worked with a variety of tour companies over the years. We found Exotic Voyages and their travel planners to be super responsive, clear and concise ...
We began planning our holiday vacation for two couples to Vietnam and Laos with Exotic Voyages back in June. As frequent international travelers, we've worked with a variety of tour companies over the years. We found Exotic Voyages and their travel planners to be super responsive, clear and concise in correspondences, and flexible in planning the best activities given our time frames. We included a couple of days in Hanoi, two nights in Ha Long Bay, two in Sapa and three days in Luang Prabang. A few observations for those planning travel in similar cities/areas: 1. Laos and Luang Prabang was our favorite part of the trip. We had possibly our favorite guide of all-time, Latta Latda, who showed us so many great gems of her city and region. If you're considering Laos, DEFINITELY add it to your itinerary. It is a much-needed relief to the hustle/bustle/honking/smells of Hanoi! Also, I think it's probably the massage capital of SE Asia, with plentiful and excellent $6 massages (we got lots of these!). Also, great restaurants, amazing night market, great day activities, quality lodging and friendly locals. We're already planning our trip back to Laos! 2. Ha Long Bay is stunning and a must-see for northern Vietnam. We did the Paradise Luxury cruise, which we'd highly recommend. It's apparently the nicest boat with fewer than 20 cabins, so you get to know your fellow travelers as much or as little as you like. While a gorgeous area, be warned that this is a very busy place with lots of other cruise boats floating nearby. Also, there was more trash in the water than we expected. Hopefully Vietnam and UNESCO will work on this in the future and consider limiting the number of visitors or expanding the area a bit. 3. Sapa is another must-visit when in that part of the country. The terraced fields are breathtaking and there are lots of small villages to visit throughout the valley. We did a 10 mile hike through these villages where we got to see things close-up (and get some much-needed exercise!). The town is pretty touristy and busy and many of the roads are under major construction, so things can be muddy/dusty. The lodging was great. We stayed at Aira, which is walkable to everything downtown, yet far enough away from all the noise. Highly recommend. 4. We took the luxury night train to/from Sapa/Hanoi. It's small, but comfortable, but there's lots of shaking/banging, so bring some pills to help you get to sleep. 5. I'd say Hanoi was probably our least favorite part of the trip, but only because we're into more quiet/relaxed experiences. Hanoi - much like Saigon - is a frantic city of scooters and honking. We visited the Mausoleum of Ho Chi Mihn and hit a couple of museums, but beyond that, there weren't many things to do. Lots of little shops, interesting food and people-watching though. If planning a trip, I'd say 2 nights there is more than enough unless you're into big crowds and noise. Overall, this was definitely one of our favorite trips and Exotic Voyages made everything super easy. If you're planning a trip to SE Asia, I'd definitely recommend using them! Visited Januaray 2019 This review was originally posted on TripAdvisorREAD MORE
The trip was so much more than we ever expected; definitely a trip of a lifetime. We do hope to revisit some of the places. We especially liked Luang Prabang and Hoi An. Our guides, Pong and Tommy (Luan) were the best! We were also very pleased with our accommodations. The?Victoria Hotels were very ...
The trip was so much more than we ever expected; definitely a trip of a lifetime. We do hope to revisit some of the places. We especially liked Luang Prabang and Hoi An. Our guides, Pong and Tommy (Luan) were the best! We were also very pleased with our accommodations. The?Victoria Hotels were very nice and we also enjoyed the special service we received at the Kiridara in Lao. We would highly recommend them. Special thanks to you for your flexibility in meeting our travel requests, and for working with the credit card company on the double billing. It was great getting to meet you in Hanoi. We will certainly recommend Exotic Voyages to our friends.READ MORE
We arrived safely back in the UK yesterday morning after a really good trip so thank you for all your help in planning it. Everything went well with being met at the airports (the only problem being that the flight was delayed by 3 hours but nobody can do anything about that). Apart from that ...
We arrived safely back in the UK yesterday morning after a really good trip so thank you for all your help in planning it. Everything went well with being met at the airports (the only problem being that the flight was delayed by 3 hours but nobody can do anything about that). Apart from that however, we enjoyed everything else. We loved our time in Laos, cruising down the Mekong on our own boat (which was a lovely surprise) was a real treat and everyone looked after us very well. The Lodge in Pakbeng was perfect and we were well taken care of and finally Luang Prabang was a delightful place to finish our tour in Laos. So all in all, it was a most memorable trip and thank you once again for helping me plan everything. I won't hesitate in recommending you company to friends here. Kind regards AnneREAD MORE
Our Tour Operator & Travel License is 01-448/2011/TCDL-GPLLHQT, granted by Vietnam Tourism Administration Board.
Work with your designated travel designer to customize your trip to your exact requirements.
In our customers' words: "All of the activities Exotic Voyages recommended were great, and a handful were truly exceptional where we were the only westerners/tourists around. "
With EV guides, you shake hand when you meet and will be giving them hugs when you leave.
As we are running our own operation in Vietnam, you are getting the direct price from the source. Say goodbye to third party commission or referral fee.
All of our staff live and travel extensively throughout Vietnam and its neighboring countries, we offer you the insider knowledge.
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Like many other Asian countries, Laos is home to a wide variety of exquisite temples that are well worth visiting. To get a bird's-eye view of Luang Prabang - home to 33 active gold-covered temples, climb Mount Phousi. While there, check out the enormous Buddhas etched into the cliffs.
Vang Vieng, which is located next to the Nam Song River, is now regarded as a popular spot for traveling groups and outdoor activities among many foreign tourists. Kayak down the Nam Song at white-water rafting speeds for a thrilling experience. In order to fly over the treetops, pull up to the river's edge, exchange your paddles for a harness, and board a zipline. The journey ends with an exciting steep drop that will make you feel like you'll end up in the river below.
Although Vientiane serves as the country's economic hub, this Mekong River city stands out from the bustle of other Southeast Asian cities thanks to its laid-back vibe. With more than 200 Buddha statues, including the extremely stunning gigantic lying Buddha that is 40 meters long, Buddha Park is full of amazing sights that are sure to awe any visitor. One of your unique sensations in the capital city of Vientiane will be feeling as though you are lost in the enchanted world of Hinduism, surrounded by extraordinarily revered statues.
The northeast province of Xieng Khouang is known for its famous Plain of Jars, one of the most archaeological impressive sights Laos has to offer. The Plain of Jar is located in the main city of the province named Phonsavanh, a laid-back and beautiful city not only processes great landscapes for adventure trips but also incredible sights, pagodas, villages for cultural tours. The unique image of the Plain of Jars has a 1,000-year-old civilization with evidence of human beings in the past.
Lao cuisine has one distinctive feature: very spicy. The majority of foods have slightly more bitterness than sweetness and frequently use raw veggies and fresh herbs. The typical rice cuisine is sticky rice (khao niaow), which is eaten by hand from little baskets. You must pinch off a small amount of rice by hand, roll it into a ball, then dip it in the sauce and enjoy. Laap, a "salad" of minced meat combined with herbs, spices, lemon juice, and chile, is the national dish you should not miss.
In contrast to its neighbors, such as Thailand and Vietnam, where people are constantly in a hurry, Laos has its own style of life, which is leisurely and low-stress. One of the highlights of your exploration of the North is the little but wonderful town of Pakbeng in the Laotian province of Oudomxay. This town, which serves as a meeting place for numerous local hill tribes like the H'mong, Lue, Khamou, and others, is located halfway between Houeixay and Luang Prabang. You can observe natives living their traditional lives in this picturesque area of Laos and be inspired by their calm and uncomplicated way of life.
Whilst the people of Laos are renowned for their hospitality, Muang Ngoi would win as the friendliest town in the entire country. With just 800 residents, it is a tranquil, beautiful village in northern Laos. There are no banks, no internet services, and not even a landline phone in this area so knowing this is precious time for unwinding. You may easily get a sense of local daily life by strolling down the 500-meter-long, dirt road in the village, where roosters can be seen strutting past villagers fixing fishing nets. In this community, swinging a hammock from a balcony could seem like the right or only thing to do, but there are more options than you can do: trekking, paddling, caving, camping, and even kayaking.
Pakse, the capital of Champasak province in southern Laos, is known for the produce grown by ethnic minority groups on the nearby Bolaven Plateau and sold in Pakse’s colorful markets. The town is also the gateway to the Khmer archaeological site of Wat Phou Champasak, which stretches over the lower slopes of the sacred mountain, Mount Phu Ka. This UNESCO World Heritage Site, which was built by the founder of the first Khmer empire, is smaller than the more well-known Angkor Wat but is mystical with its tumbled-down pavilions and tall trees. Visitors to Champasak province can also trek on elephants, visit Southeast Asia’s highest waterfall, KhongPhapeng, and experience traditional life on the nearby islands.
Khong Island or Don Khong is an island of southern Laos, located on the Mekong River, in the Si Phan Don. It is a beautiful natural and cultural tourism site and is also famous for rice plantations and fishermen. With its lovely fishing villages, serene monasteries and lush vegetation, the pretty island offers a unique opportunity to experience the peaceful Laotian lifestyle. Besides, magnificent waterfalls also are things the residents of the island are proud to offer their lovely visitors. Some interesting activities you should try to discover on this incredible island are going by dugout canoe through Si Phane Done, crossing to Done Det Island partly by foot, visiting a pretty fishing village.