Laos is still being discovered by intrepid travellers looking to get off the well-beaten tourist path. For sheer natural beauty, few places in the world offer as much undeveloped, natural beauty as this beautiful and peaceful country. The number of natural places to visit in Laos run the gamut of tropical rain forests, emerald green valleys, majestic mountain ranges and riverside oases.
Among these stunning destinations, you’ll also come across picturesque villages with modern and modest-priced accommodations. These villages also have plenty of excellent restaurants and cafes that are worth a visit for a meal or simply to enjoy a leisurely drink and the opportunity to spend a few hours watching life go by in the village.
But if you’re a nature-lover, you’ll undoubtedly fill your holiday’s itinerary with visits to the country’s best-known natural attractions. Here are three natural places to see in Laos that no lover of the outdoors should miss on their once-in-a-lifetime visit to Laos.
Bokeo Nature Reserve
Spend a night in a treehouse at Bokeo Nature Reserve. The reserve offers these unique and inviting accommodations that allow you to spend the night surrounded by tropical beauty. But Bokeo Nature Reserve is mostly known because of the concentration of elephants, bears, tigers, gibbons and buffalo that call the reserve their home. There are also many species of colourful, tropical birds to keep any bird-watcher happy.
Be sure to make a reservation before visiting the reserve, as the treehouse accommodations have become popular with world adventurers.
Tham Kong Lo
You’ll feel like you’ve taken a journey back in time with a visit to Tham Kong Lo. This cathedral-like cave features ceilings of up to ninety metres high and stalagmites, stalactites and spectacular rock formations at every turn.
The best way to visit this cave is to hire a boat to take you on a guided tour along the six and a half kilometres of turquoise water flowing through this stunning cave. If cave exploration sounds like a memorable experience, head to Phu Hin Bun National Park to embark on the underground trip of a lifetime.
Four Thousand Islands (Si Phan Don)
Visiting the Four Thousand Islands area of Laos takes a long, overnight bus journey, or you can hire a private car to drive you, but however you choose to travel, the destination is well worth it. It’s one of the favourite places to visit in Laos for backpackers.
You’ll be staying in a guest house on the Mekong River when you visit, and there are several to choose from with different ranges of accommodations. The guest houses are mainly located on the islands of Don Det and Don Khong.
Nature-lovers should choose a guest house facing the river and away from the main villages on both islands. Your days will be spent exploring the islands by hired boat or simply lazing the day away on your balcony and watching river life pass by.
You should venture out on foot for one of the days you’re there, mainly to see the largest waterfall in Southeast Asia, Khone Phapheng Falls. It’s located on Don Khong, and it’s well worth the walk.
There are many more natural places to visit in Laos, as you’ll learn once you start travelling around the country and trading travel stories with your fellow adventurers.