For those looking for alternative ways of feeling disoriented further away from the usual urbanized areas, we’ve got something for you. Go remote, go green, and go responsible Outdoor activities like river cruising, mountain biking, bicycling, trekking, kayaking, helicopter flights, Laos’ far North is the ideal area for those in search of adrenalin, nature and emotion filled encounters and experiences. The Asian ecotourism movement has found its roots here, in Laos. Thanks to its real commitment towards the environment, Lao tourism authorities have put the Nam Ha protected area, around Luang Namtha, in the spot light of best practices in this field. Hill tribes located in the up North mountainous regions, like the Khamu, Akha and Hmong people, have greatly beneficiated from the opening to the world and special care this form of tourism is bringing with it when it is properly conducted. Trekking in the jungle of the Nam Ha protected area, kayaking the gentle Nam Ou River, spending a night into a remote village of Phongsaly province, camping into a safari style camp in Oudomxay province, here are just a few suggestions to put you in appetite. The area offers ample possibilities for responsible and nature based tourism with many picturesque villages that propose excursions and programs ranging from an amazing half-day excursion to a week-long exploration in the vicinity of charming Muang La, Muang Khua, Muang Ngoi, Nong Khiaw and Muang Sing to name just a few. The “Plain of Jars”, in Xieng Khuang Province, around its regional capital Phonsavanh is also worth a detour. Of course, the unresolved mystery behind the massive stone jars scattered around 3 geographic sites makes the most appeal of the mountainous area. Vieng Thong’s Night Safari is a lesser known attraction that deserves some more visibility. Backed by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), this sustainable tourism project takes guests to some remote corners of Nam Et Phou Loey National Park. Visitors will be escorted by local rangers who will tell them more about their efforts to protect endangered endemic species of wild tigers. The intrepid guests will overnight under mosquito nets right in the middle of a jungle camp, after they spend some time ambushed to capture night infrared pictures of the local wildlife. Quite a unique experience only enjoyed by a few, every year. Slightly up north is Huaphanh province with Phatet Lao (Communist Party)’s birthplace in Vieng Xay. The caves that sheltered Lao revolutionary leaders in early times of fight for liberation are now open to the public. This corner of Laos is much less visited as it is quite out of the centre of more easily accessible tourist destinations. However, if you plan to cross (or come from) to Vietnam’s Mai Chau area, then, a stop is an absolute must. Magnificent waterfalls, rich fabrics and ancient bronze drums are some of the worthy attractions to spend some time on. Local airline Lao Skyway has frequent flights to the province capital’s Samneua. Many tours of Laos also start or end in North-western province of Bokeo, at Houey Say, the border town giving access to Thailand’s Chiang Rai’s province. Why? 2 hours away from the border, one can take a domestic flight to Bangkok with a vast choice of onward connecting possibilities. Once you have crossed the Mekong into Chiang Khong, opposite of Houey Say, you are just a few minutes drive from the (in)famous Golden Triangle area, where Thailand, Myanmar and Laos’ borders meet. Houey Say is an important gateway to start or end a leisurely paced cruise on the Mekong River. You will most likely overnight uphill in Pakbeng, half way down to (or up from) Luang Prabang. Pakbeng is a small locality that boasts tragic sceneries over the Mekong, especially at sunset and sunrise. A breakfast or sundowner treat with a view is priceless. A stroll at the local market can also be a nice introduction to the exoticism of Lao country style food. Cooking classes and elephant rides or bathing experiences will remarkably complete a stay that way too many visitors skip, preferring embarking on road adventures up north to Oudomxay or downstream on a river cruise. Those who are not afraid of heights will perhaps consider “The Gibbon Experience”, just a few kilometres outside of Houey Say. It consists of a high rope course with tree houses and all facilities to make your stay a memorable one, at the level wild gibbons live in the primitive forest. Discover more jaw-dropping regions of Laos, by CLICKING HERE. CLICK HERE to discover all our tours of Laos.