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An update from Evaneos

Best places to visit in Laos

Setting off on atrip to Laos means discovering a country which redefines serenity: here, the inhabitants exude calmness, you'll rub shoulders with monks among gleaming temples, and you'll enjoy the soothing sights of waterfalls, rivers and verdant mountains. Do be aware, however, that these beauties hide a one-party Socialist political system which imposes a curfew at midnight and a minimum wage of around 100$. The country also plays host to tourists who can be disrespectful, looking to party rather than make the most of the splendour around them. To avoid falling into these traps and to discover every facet of this fascinating country, just follow the advice of the members of the Evaneos community!

With its unusual shape, people generally travel through Laos from North to South or vice versa, before heading into Thailand or Cambodia. On the road, it's possible to stop off at multiple places.

The attraction ofVientiane, the capital of Laos, lies in its many monuments, such as the Pha That Luang or the Patuxai, and in its temples, such as Vat Simuong, Vat Sisakhet or Vat Phra Kèo. However, the city itself isn't very charming or dynamic, so don't spend too much time there. Luang Prabang is much more pleasant. The city is very much in harmony with nature: its temples, found on pretty much every street corner, sparkle with a thousand hues, and the jungle close by contains other marvels (particularly Kuang Si). Finally, another must-see in Laos are its 4,000 islands, located right in the South of the country, strewn across the Mekong. They offer fantastic sights and promise a stay which will guarantee you calm and inner peace.

By now, it should be clear: if you love nature, Laos is the place for you. The Bolovens plateau, not far from the town of Paksé, is absolutely magnificent. You'll definitely enjoy hiking up to it! A few kilometres away you'll find the Champassak province, where you can visit the temples of Vat Phou, a UNESCO world heritage site.

Laos is large country full of beauty, riches and calm. By respecting the country's environment and the history and culture of its inhabitants, you'll guarantee yourself a truly enriching experience.

Silvia Garcia & François Vioud
Khone-Phapheng waterfalls are in the 4,000 Islands in the south of Laos. They are thought to be the biggest in Asia and their flow is the biggest in the world.
Luang Prabang is a Laotian treasure. It's built on a human scale, is culturally rich and is without doubt one of the most interesting places in the country.
Vang Vieng is a small town in Laos 4 hours by road from the capital of Vientiane.
'Little brother' to Cambodia's Angkor Temple, le Vat Phou is a Laotian gem, a classified UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001.
A Laotian village on the Chinese border, Muang Sing is surrounded by beautiful mountains and plains, as well as traditional, ethnic villages.
A former colonial town, Savannakhet is a quiet retreat by the River Mekong. Let yourself be seduced by its history and people!
At 85km from Pakse, on the Bolovens Plateau, Tad Lo is a tiny village known for its superb waterfalls.
At 38km from Pakse on the Bolovens Plateau, Tad Fane is home to Laos' biggest water falls.
The 4,000 Islands region is unique in the world. It's home to Laotians but also the ideal getaway for enjoying the water and the sun and perfect for those who love walking.  
Kuang Sy is a group of waterfalls about 30 kilometres south of Luang Prabang.
Muang Ngoy is a village that doesn't have any roads, (and so no cars), that you can only get to by boat. Peace surrounded by mountains.
At 30km from Pakse, Champasak is a peaceful village in the heart of the Laotian countryside. Seeing as Wat Phu is less than 10km away, it's surprising the village remains so quiet.
The Mekong is a legendary river that crosses Southeast Asia. Its source is in the Himalayas and it crosses several countries, including Laos and Cambodia. It's an important cultural and economic resource for Asian communities.
One of the most calm little towns, lodged between the mountains in the North of Laos and the Nam Ou river, Muang Khua makes for a pleasant stop before starting a trek, the journey over the water or towards neighbouring Vietnam.
The Nam Ou is a river that stretches across the north of Laos and hooks up with the Mekong. A boat trip will give you the chance to travel through some stunning scenery!
Situated 200 km from Luang Prabang in the north of Laos in mountains covered with lush vegetation, Nong Khiaw is a sumptuous village on the banks of the Nam Ou river. 
At 35km from Luang Prabang, Pak Ou is home to stunning Buddhist caves that are carved into a cliff face. Inside, you'll find thousands of Buddha statues overlooking a breathtaking view of the Mekong.
The Plain of Jars is spread over different sites. Some are over 2,000 years old and their early usage is unknown. The jars are divided into 3 main sites.
The Bolaven Plateau, near Paksé, is a valley full of waterfalls which is ideal for a trip with family or friends. It's the main attraction of the Paksé region.
Don Khong is the biggest of the Si Phan Don, the 4,000 Islands, in the south of Laos. It is about 18 kilometres long and 8 kilometres wide and shouldn't be confused with Don Khone, a little further to the south.
Thakhek is a small town beside the Mekong n the centre of Laos. It's the departure point for those who want to do a trip round the area exploring the numerous caves.
'Laos' coffee capital', Pakxong is a great base from which to explore the Boloven Plateau, with its stunning waterfalls.
Situated at the far south of Laos, Don Det, an island surrounded by 4,000 others in the middle of the Mekong, is a peaceful retreat, where you can take a stroll or laze back in a hammock by the riverbank.
The local capital of a province that bears the same name, Luang Namtha is bordered by mountains on the Chinese side and the Myanmar border on the other.
A stopover town during a River Mekong cruise between Luang Prabang and Huay Xai on the Thai border.
Sayabouri is in the west of Laos, close to the Thai border and surrounded by mountains. It's home to the Elephant Festival, which is held every February.
Compared to other Asian capitals, Vientiane is incredibly peaceful and quiet. The town seems to live to the gentle rythym of the Mekong, which laps the fringes of the town.
Surrounded by the Mekong and the Sedon, Pakse is one of Laos' economic lungs. Being situated near to the Bolovens and Champasak, it's a useful stop-off.
Houay Xay, a Laotian/Thai border town, is an almost obligatory stopover if you're heading to Thailand.
Oudomxay is a little Laotian town, in the middle of the Luang Namtha - Luang Prabang - Phongsali triangle.
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