Our most recommended things to do in Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang: Cruise to Pak Ou Caves & Kuang Si Waterfalls

1. Luang Prabang: Cruise to Pak Ou Caves & Kuang Si Waterfalls

Enjoy a private or shared group boat tour to the Pak Ou Caves and Kuang Si Waterfalls departing from Luang Prabang. You will be picked up at your accommodation and travel straight to the pier. Hop onboard a long tail boat for a relaxing journey aong the Mekong River. Enjoy the views from the water as you pass by local villages and fishing communities. After the first hour and a bit, the boat makes its first short stop at the popular Ban Xang Hai, also known as ‘the whiskey village’. Explore the village, see the process of making Lao Lao, the country’s beloved rice whiskey, and taste the finished product. Continue by boat traveling slowly along the Mekong in the direction of the glorious Pak Ou Caves. Arrive at a small boat landing dock where stairs lead you straight up to the cave. These limestone Buddhist caves have been a place of worship for thousands of years, over this time a collection of Buddha statues and idols have filled these spiritual natural caves Enter the Ou River to visit the limestone cliffs. Then, after a 30-minute boat ride down the Mekong River, arrive at Manifa Elephant Camp for lunch. Enjoy a full buffet-style lunch at the restaurant overlooking the Mekong river and free-roaming elephants. After lunch break, travel by car to the Kuang Si Waterfalls. Enjoy 2 hours of free time to explore the three-layered Kuang Si Waterfalls. Walk the trails of the nature reserve and swim in the refreshing turquoise water pools and visit the bear rescue center. Depart for Luang Prabang, with a short stop at Ban Na Uan Hmong village on the way. Return to the city with drop-off at your hotel.

Luang Prabang: 3-Day Cultural Remote Trek With Homestay

2. Luang Prabang: 3-Day Cultural Remote Trek With Homestay

Day 1 Meet your guide early in the morning for preparation and departure. Take some time to store your luggage and ensure that you travel light. Travel north along the Mekong river and then the Nam Xeuang river for 1.5 hours.  Cross the river by local boat to the trailhead and trek straight into the jungle on trails that locals use to travel between the remote villages. The trek is 4-5 hour route of medium grade walking through rice paddies and jungle.  Stay overnight in a welcoming Hmong village with basic, comfortable conditions to explore local and meet the locals. Enjoy a dinner prepared by your guide and local family. Day 2 Rise to the sounds and activities of daily Hmong hill-tribe life and breakfast prepared by your guide. Embark on the shortest hike, a 4-hour long journey along valley streams to an amazingly remote and very large mixed Hmong and Khmu village situated in a valley surrounded by large mountains. You’ll arrive mid-afternoon and have more time to explore these expansive villages and their schools. Your guide will help you explore the villages and experience the local life. Enjoy your evening and relax for tomorrow’s mountain peak hike. Day 3 Set off on a hike for 6-7 hours to mountain tops with panoramic views looking over the villages and stunning views of the remote Lao landscapes. Go down to the Nam Xeuang River where the trekking ends. You will be hiking the very trails that locals take to tend their steep mountain-top rice fields and visit a Hmong mountain village along the way. You can go for a well-deserved swim in the river at the trail’s end before our return trip about 1.5 hours to Luang Prabang from this unforgettable adventure trip.

Luang Prabang: Kayak to Pak Ou Caves

3. Luang Prabang: Kayak to Pak Ou Caves

Discover Laos' varied and scenic landscapes on this guided tour. After getting picked up from your hotel in Luang Prabang, head north to the Nam Ou Riverside where you will begin your kayak tour. This is an easy river for kayaking where you can enjoy breathtaking views of the tranquil countryside and see naturally-formed limestone cliffs.  Kayak your way towards Pak Ou, where you will visit the famous Pak Ou Caves – 2 linked caves crammed with thousands of gold-lacquered Buddha statues of various shapes and sizes left by devoted pilgrims. Enjoy a guided tour of the caves before starting the second section of your kayak on the Mekong River. Paddle down the Mekong for 30 minutes to reach your lunch destination. Sit down to a delicious buffet lunch as you admire breathtaking views of the Mekong. After lunch, continue to the Kuang Si Falls and enjoy some free time to explore these unique 3-layered falls. You could go for a walk through the trails of the surrounding nature trails, take a dip in the refreshing turquoise water pools or pay a visit to the bear rescue center. Finally, begin the journey back to Luang Prabang. Stop at Ban Na Uan hmong village and get the chance to experience Hmong village life, meet some of the local people and see their traditional embroidery crafts. Get dropped off back at your hotel at the end of the day.

Luang Prabang: Mekong Sunset Cruise and Hot Pot Dinner

4. Luang Prabang: Mekong Sunset Cruise and Hot Pot Dinner

Enjoy the best views of Luang Prabang at sunset on a private cruise on the Mekong River. Experience a traditional tuk-tuk ride, sail along the Mekong, and enjoy a delicious hot pot dinner. After getting picked up from your hotel by tuk-tuk, head to the boat jetty behind the Royal Palace and set sail for a 2-hour cruise along the Mekong River. Listen to your local guide explain the history of the Mekong and its residents as you sail. Drinks and snacks are available to purchase. The cruise is timed to catch the sunset, so you can relax on the boat terrace and take in views of the sun setting behind Luang Prabang and Chompet. You can also have your photo taken by the guide. After dusk, return to land and hop back on the tuk-tuk for a quick drive to your dinner venue, Sin Dat Hot Pot and Barbecue Restaurant. Have fun cooking your own meal for dinner as the locals do before getting dropped off back at your hotel in the evening.

Luang Prabang: Foodie Walking Tour & Monk Blessing

5. Luang Prabang: Foodie Walking Tour & Monk Blessing

Join this foodie walking tour around Luang Prabang with your guide and discover all the tasty food spots that the locals love. Sample traditional snacks, learn about monks' Buddhist traditions and visit a food market and a temple. Start your walking tour at downtown cafe (Joma Bakery), your guide will meet you on foot. Walk through Luang Prabang morning food market to learn about the ingredients of Lao food. Smell the sweet aroma of spices and freshly cooked food as you walk around. Learn all about the rich, spicy flavor of Lao food from your guide. Taste one of Lao's special specialty dishes; the Luang Prabang. Need a morning coffee Don't worry, kick start your day with a Lao hot coffee. Visit a temple in the UNESCO town to learn about Buddhism from a Monk and get the blessing.

Luang Prabang: Bamboo Weaving Workshop & Cooking Class

6. Luang Prabang: Bamboo Weaving Workshop & Cooking Class

Enjoy a half-day relaxing experience combining a bamboo weaving workshop and a traditional Lao cooking class. Begin with pick-up from your hotel by tuk-tuk at 8.30 AM for the morning session or 4.00 PM for the evening session. Head to a rustic pavilion modeled on a traditional Lao house, located in a picturesque setting on the outskirts of Luang Prabang.  After a warm welcome, your guide will explain how bamboo is a key part of Lao culture. Discover how numerous items found in traditional Lao households are actually made from the versatile bamboo plant, such as fishing tools and musical instruments. Then, try your hand at weaving a souvenir mat made from strips of the bamboo plant. Your patient teacher will guide you through the techniques that have been used for hundreds of years. Learn how to sharpen knives and cut bamboo into strips, then make a small mat using an overlapping weaving process. After admiring your finished creation, learn how the bamboo plant also plays a vital role in everyday Lao cuisine. In a hands-on demonstration, assist a chef in cooking local dishes such as bamboo shoot soup, bamboo shoot steamed in banana leaf, and bamboo shoot dip. Once the activity is completed, you will be transferred back to your hotel in Luang Prabang.

Luang Prabang: Evening Cooking Class & Local Baci Ceremony

7. Luang Prabang: Evening Cooking Class & Local Baci Ceremony

On this activity, you will learn how to make a traditional home-cooked Lao dinner, as well as attend a Baci ceremony to celebrate a special event, a marriage, a homecoming, a birth, or one of the annual festivals.  Begin by meeting your driver at the lobby of your hotel in Luang Prabang at 4:00 PM. Stop at the local food market to learn more about the fresh ingredients and herbs that local people use in their daily cooking. You will then learn how to cook 5 typical dishes using the local ingredients, before eating together with the locals in the traditional Lao style. After your dinner enjoy a show of traditional music performs by local musician in the Hmong traditional costume. As you listen to the music, admire the breathtaking views of the rice fields surrounding the building.  Then, you will witness a "Baci" ceremony, which is a local custom performed when a mother has recovered from childbirth, when a sick person has been cured, or when monks are entering the temple. The ceremony can take place any day of the week and all through the year, but preferably before noon or before sunset. After this final experience is finished, you will be transferred back to your hotel.

Luang Prabang: Countryside Mountain Bike Tour with Lunch

8. Luang Prabang: Countryside Mountain Bike Tour with Lunch

This mountain bike trip combines great cycling with the chance to discover authentic Lao rural life. Leave the beaten path and find your own adventure outside of town. Get geared up and ride out of town along the Mekong River. After crossing the old communist bridge, make a stop to visit Xieng Lek Village, famous for its mulberry paper and weaving. Follow the Nam Xuang River past villages before offroading into the countryside, up and down hills, past rice paddies and local villages. Ride through vast rice paddies and Lao Leum, Hmong, and Khmu villages with locals tending to the daily activities of Lao agrarian life. The last leg of the ride will take you along the Nam Khan River. Before entering Luang Prabang City enter the beautiful Wat Phon Phao, with its huge golden stupa and an incredible view overlooking all of Luang Prabang.

Luang Prabang: Pak Ou Caves & Kuang Si Falls Day Trip

9. Luang Prabang: Pak Ou Caves & Kuang Si Falls Day Trip

Visit the Pak Ou Caves and Kuang Si Waterfall on a full-day tour, with a scenic drive up and down the length of the Mekong River. Start with early morning pickup and relax on the 40-minute drive to Pak Ou Village. Admire locally-produced crafts, before crossing the mighty Mekong River in a small boat to the base of a limestone cliff. Enter the impressive Pak Ou Caves, filled with Buddhist statues and relics. Take your time to explore this incredible place, scented with burning incense and overlooking the impressive landscape. Climb a winding set of stairs, grab a flashlight, and find another fascinating cave to visit. After enjoying the caves, stop for lunch at the base of the caves. Cross back over the water and drive downriver for 1.5 hours, to reach the famous Kuang Si Waterfall. Stop at the popular Whiskey Village along the way, to sample local Lao Lao. Admire the rushing turquoise waters of the falls, surrounded by beautiful jungle scenery. Visit the bear sanctuary while there. We drop you back in Luang Prabang where your tour ends.

From Luang Prabang: Thin Pha Trail & Tad Sae Falls Trek

10. From Luang Prabang: Thin Pha Trail & Tad Sae Falls Trek

Start with a morning transfer from your hotel in Luang Prabang 25 minutes out of town to the adventure camp. Cross the Nam Khan River by boat to the trailhead and begin the hike through rice paddies and middle canopy. Your first stop will be a Khmu village named Ban Houay Fai where your guide will introduce you to the local life and customs. Continue along ridges, limestone grottos, and rocky slopes for lunch at a Hmong village known as Ban Thin Pha, which gives this trail its name. Experience a variety of flora and fauna in the mountains and valleys, and weave your way through paddies and countryside. Stop, look, listen, and ask your guide about the life teeming around you. Chat with villagers and ask questions about life in Laos before ending the trek in the riverside village Ban Houay Yen. There, a boat will be waiting to take you down a beautiful stretch of the Nam Khan with a stop at the Tad Sae Waterfall. Relax and soak in Tad Sae Falls before returning by boat and vehicle to Luang Prabang. By choosing this adventure, you are contributing funds to support the local communities you visit. The total trekking distance is about 12 kilometers (7.5 miles), which takes about 4-5 hours through deciduous forest and farmland with elevations of 300-900 meters (984-2953 feet). During the low water season from February to July, the itinerary is the same with the exception that the Tad Sae Waterfall can be very low or dry and may be omitted. You can choose to take the tour in a public, small group or in a private group.

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What people are saying about Luang Prabang

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 196 reviews

We had a wonderful day and would recommend it to everyone. We were picked up punctually at our hotel. Then we went to Somsay's home, where we were warmly welcomed by his family. Somsay speaks very good English and taught us about the relevance of bamboo in Laotian culture. You can tell that it is also very close to his personal heart and he shared some beautiful stories from his childhood with us. It gives you a wonderful insight into local life. Afterwards, we were able to have our own experience with a master weaver. We laughed a lot with him and not only because of the offered Lao Whiskey. We were surprised how diverse bamboo can be used in the kitchen at the cooking class with Somsay‘s wife! The tasty lunch was rounded off with traditional music. Afterwards, a transport to the Kuang Si waterfalls was organised, where we could spend as much time as we wanted. Most beautiful waterfalls and not too cold to jump into the water. From there we went back to the hotel. Very well organised.

Wonderful time spent with Mister Somsay learning about Laung Prabang thru food, culture and tradition. Started our day with a coffee (or whatever your morning drink might be), and delicious breakfast at one of the town's most renowned local noodle shops --> then off to our adventures. Markets, shops, pathways and grass-ways: we sampled so many new and interesting foods that are best known from Luang Prabang, that kept our energy high. Mister Somsay is cheerful as he greets the vendors with smiles and chats...his English is near perfect, and translates anything you wish. Highly recommend this experience: time well enjoyed.

Great package to be able to get an early morning head-start of some of the town's most popular sites and scenes BEFORE the crowds. Our guide MisterPon was so much fun, and most informative. We enjoyed history, culture, craft, daily life, hiking....and FOOD!!! Highly recommend as an excellent primer to the beautiful town of Luang Prabang.

Mr. Pong was a lovely tour guide, who tried everything to make you feel comfortable. The tour was really nice, especially the waterfall and watching the sunset from the boot. Be aware that the roads are really bad.

Waterfall and boat trip are excellent, be prepared for a long minibus journey