An utterly pristine region of richly forested hills and undisturbed river valleys, isolated hill tribes and time-honoured traditions, a journey into northern Laos promises a magical adventure well off the beaten path.
Away from the mighty temples of Luang Prabang and the tiny capital of Vientiane, the enchanting landscapes of northern Laos still feel remarkably untouched.
Scattered about these green hills and luxuriant forests lie sleepy farming villages like Muang La, a small community on the banks of the pretty Nam Pak River just north of Oudomxay. A stay here offers a unique window into Laotian rural life, from silk weaving and sacred ceremonies to crafting houses from woven bamboo. You’ll even be able to see how salt is extracted from the Nam Pak River, and learn about the uses of forest plants in both food and healing.
When not picnicking in the rice fields or wandering into ancient temples, the area surrounding Muang La offers some wonderful hiking, kayaking and cycling opportunities. You can also enjoy visits to the mountaintop villages of the Ihkos, Khmu and Hmong for a deeper insight into the centuries-old traditions of Laos’ ethnic groups. Wherever you go you’ll be met by charming rural scenes at every turn, whilst Muang La’s natural hot springs provide the perfect remedy for any tired muscles.
Other highlights of northern Laos include the remarkable caves and karst scenery of Vieng Xai, in addition to the tranquil forests of Nam Et-Phou Louey National Park where you’ll find gaur, sambar deer and the white-cheeked gibbon.
For more inspiration, get in touch with one of our Laos experts today.