Cruise and wellness
ITERERARY: Luang Prabang – Cruise up the Mekong – Pak Ou caves – Ao Nang – Koh Phi Phi – Ao Nang
DURATION: 8 days and 7 nights.
Note: Upon your arrival at Luang Prabang International Airport, it is possible to obtain your visa on arrival (VOA). Simply bring 1 passport picture along with between USD 30 and 45 / person in cash, visa fees varying from one nationality to another. Make sure your passport is valid at least 6 months beyond your return departure date. Visa on Arrival forms are available before immigration counters.
Meet and greet your Lao English-speaking tour guide in the arrival hall and transfer to your hotel for check-in.
Lunch at Tamarind restaurant, where you can try the intriguing and fresh new tastes of Lao cuisine.
In the afternoon, head to the top of Mount Phou Si for panoramic views of the city and the surrounding hills. The mountain is dotted with small shrines and monasteries. The top of Mt. Phou Si is a popular spot to watch the sunset, as the golden spires of nearby Vats are beautifully illuminated.
Once back to ground level, stop at the awakening Hmong minority people Night Market. It is held daily in the streets around the National Museum. Villagers come here to sell their handicrafts.
Accommodation in Luang Prabang.
05h40 – Head by Tuk-Tuk to the peninsula to witness and attend alms giving. 06h – Long lines of monks and novices stroll the street of the town center to collect their daily food subsistence from the worshippers. This ancient ritual is locally known as “Tak Bat”.
Continue with a visit to the open-air fresh food market that is held daily in the streets nearby the former Royal Palace. Lao people still like buying fresh food. While fridges are widely spread in households, people prefer going to local markets and returning home with fresh ingredients.
Return to hotel for breakfast.
Morning, visit to The National Museum that used to be the former Royal Palace. Inside the complex of the National Museum, you will see the “Prabang” sacred golden statue, giving its name to the town. Then visit Vat Mai, the former royal temple.
TAEC, the Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre depicts Laos ‘rich ethnic diversity with themed rotating exhibits. It is hosted in a former French colonial times judge’s mansion.
The Heritage House being a perfect example of Luang Prabang traditional building made of wood on poles, at the back of Vat Xieng Muane and the beautiful Vat Xieng Thong, one of the most emblematic temples in Laos. It is located at the top of the peninsula, where the Mekong and Nam Khan Rivers meet.
Lunch at “Luang Prabang Kitchen”. This 1920’s restored mansion is an enjoyable place in a quiet part of town. The terrace with frangipani trees is pleasant.
Afternoon, transfer to pier and take a boat excursion up the Mekong River to the holy caves of Pak Ou, where some of the most famous Buddhist sculptures in Southeast Asia are found. In Pak Ou cave, thousands of gold lacquered Buddha statues are crowded into the two caves carved out of a towering limestone cliff. They range in size from a few centimeters to the size of a human. Re-board your boat and travel downstream to rice-wine producing villages on the banks of the Mekong.
7pm – Head to Hive Bar to attend an “Ethnic Fashion Show” with drinks and snacks. This shows displays 95 different costumes from ethnic minority people inhabiting northern Laos. It is the largest private collection of costumes in Asia. They are worn by young Laotian models willing to showcase the rich diversity their country has to offer.
Accommodation in Luang Prabang
Breakfast at the hotel.
In this morning, start your tour with Vat Visoun where you will see the famous Watermelon Stupa, shaped like the fruit it takes its name from. This temple was destroyed in 1887 by the invading Black Flags from China, and was restored in 1930 by Buddhist monks and local people. Vat Aham, where you will see the altar of the 2 geniuses of Luang Prabang.
Visit to Ock Pop Tok, traditional weaving center to better understand of Lao textiles.
After that, we head to Kuang Si waterfalls, 32 km south-west of Luang Prabang. Kuang Si is a good place to get more familiar with endemic and it is also possible to hike to the top of the falls via a steep trail, and if the weather is good, you might enjoy a swim in the crystal clear water ponds at the foot of the falls.
Take your picnic lunch there and enjoy the views.
En route to the falls, your guide will take you to some of the nearby ethnic minority villages for a look into Laotian rural life and a chance to interact with the locals. You will also have the opportunity to visit the Asian Black Bear Rescue Center.
This afternoon, cross the Mekong to Ban Xieng Mene and ascend to the top of the hill and enjoy the views over Luang Prabang form Vat Chompet. Go down the steep staircase and head to Vat Longkoun, this very distinctive temple complex that stands out for its timber post facades. If you are fortunate, take a chance to talk to the small monk community that gathers in the afternoon under the large and old mango tree in the front yard. Return to town and free time at leisure.
Return to town and enjoy Petanque games with local residence. Another French legacy here. This balling game is extremely popular with Lao gentlemen. Civil servants and retired people are numerous to gather in the late afternoon and evening to share some happy moments together. Bottles of Beerlao are often around and chit-chat playing with friends is another opportunity to cheer on any occasion!
Rest of the day free at leisure.
Accommodation in Luang Prabang.
Breakfast at your hotel and free time at leisure in the morning till your transfer to the airport for your flight to Bangkok and then Krabi.
Flight Lao Airlines QV 631 Luang Prabang- Bangkok at 1345-1525
Flight Bangkok Airways PG 263 Bangkok- Krabi at 1720-1845
(flights subject to change without prior notice from the airlines)
Arrival in Krabi, airport welcoming and transfer by private jeep to your resort in Ao Nang.
Check in, relax and spend the night in Ao Nang.
After breakfast (around 10:30am) you will start your 2 days trip to Koh Phi Phi and Ao Nang local islands (4 island area):
Our first stop will be Bamboo Island located a few kilometers away from Koh Phi Phi; due to the great combination of hard corals amongst soft corals, this is one of the best snorkeling spots where you may be lucky enough to swim with turtles and sharks!
The tour continues onward to one of the most beautiful spots in Thailand Phi Leh Lagoon, a natural lagoon of crystal clear water surrounded by limestone cliffs. Then go to discover the mythical “Maya Bay” from the movie “The Beach”. With lunch served onboard in the middle of this natural pool, you’ll have plenty of time to relax and enjoy the stunning views.
Next stop will be Phi Phi Don and its fabulous beaches including Monkey Bay, a white sandy beach where monkeys also come to relax!
Finally Ao Nui, a beautiful little bay ideal for snorkeling and the perfect spot to admire a wonderful sunset.
For dinner, we’ll head to a restaurant in Loh Ba Gao – a lovely and quiet fisherman village, followed by the arrival to your 3* hotel and overnight stay in Koh Phi Phi.
Starting at 10:30am, we will begin our day visiting some more must-see spots around Phi Phi according to your preferences, before heading to the 4 island area of Ao Nang. We will stop at Koh Sii, one of the best snorkeling spots in the area due to its great visibility and where you can see hard corals and beautiful tropical fish.
Next visit will be Koh Tup, a fabulous white sandy beach surrounded by crystal clear water. Koh Tup is connected to Chicken Island by sandbanks at low tide and when we go around this island you will see its incredible rock formation in the shape of a chicken.
Then we will reach the famous island of Koh Poda where you will have time to relax on the beach and enjoy the amazing views, afterwards you will be transferred to your hotel around 5:00pm to enjoy your evening and overnight stay in Ao Nang.
To finish your trip in the most unique and relaxing way we provide you with a wellness day in the jungle. Starting at 9:00am and finishing at 4:00pm, you’ll visit the local fruit market, hydrotherapy bath and practice the art of Thai Yoga massage on the riverside.
After a delicious Thai lunch, you’ll discover the hot waterfall and tropical planting followed by a body scrub with fresh ingredients! The evening is then yours to enjoy in Ao Nang and overnight stay in your resort.
Free day in Ao Nang and transfer to the airport by private jeep car according to your flight schedule.
Each program is absolutely customizable in terms of duration, itinerary, stops, types of accommodation, inclusions and activities. Anything actually! In line with your wishes and budget constraints.