Leisurely Luang Prabang

World Heritage treasures surrounded by unspoiled natural wonders

Step back in time as you soak up the ambiance of Luang Prabang

Some compare Luang Prabang to "Chiang Mai of fifty years ago." While there are similarities, Luang Prabang is a leisurely adventure like no other. The former royal capital of Laos, Luang Prabang reposes gracefully on a peninsula on the confluence of the mighty Mekong and peaceful Khan rivers, ringed by emerald mountains, dotted with more than thirty active temples and hundreds of architectural treasures. Daily life and the relaxed pace of Luang Prabang have barely changed in fifty years and will not change easily in the future.

The town has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage site, which means nothing new can be built and little of the existing architecture can be modified easily, although the local jail was recently converted to a dazzling hotel. Here, each day still begins in the mists of morning, with wandering monks and ethnic tribes-people heading to market, and ends with jovial dinners at magical twilight,

Day One: Climb the Serpent Stairway

Transprtation to your hotel on arrival. In the afternoon, your personal guide will lead you on a short introduction to this ancient, royal capital. Climb the Naga (river serpent) Stairwayup Phousi Mountain to Wat Paa Huak (your guide may be able to arrange for a key from the Abbot to view the spectacular murals) and Wat Thammothayalan, an active monastery with a lovely view of the Nam Khan river. As you wander around town you'll discover prime examples of 19th century French colonial villas and Lao-style homes. Luang Prabang has a multitude of charming restaurants offering outstanding Lao, French, and international taste treats.

Day Two: A Parade of Monks, a Palace, and a Psychedelic Waterfall

Be ready by 6:00 am to catch an unforgettable spectacle as hundreds of Buddhist monks quietly parade single-filearound the city collecting food offerings from citizens garbed in Lao traditional dress,

After breakfast your guide will lead you on a tour of Luang Prabang's temples and city lanes.Wat Xieng Thongis an architectural treasure trove with structures dating from 1560, spectacular mirrored murals on vividly colored walls, a three story high golden funeral chariot, and unique sacred statuary. Take a break from temple-viewing on Sisavangvong Road, lined with open-air cafes, scrumptious bakeries, busy Internet cafes, and shops. If school is in session you might enjoy visiting the students at the Ecole des Beaux Arts.  You may like to visit the former Royal Palace(no shorts allowed, closed Tuesdays). If you are weary of palaces and temples, another alternative is a trip to the spectacular Khuang Sii Waterfall, on the outskirts of the city. (Please arrange this in advance since it requires a special vehicle.)

Day Three: Statues in a Cave

Depart at 9:00 am for a Keong River boat cruise25 kilometers north to Tham Ting Cave, famous for its mystical setting filled with hundreds of Luang Prabang-style standing Buddha statues and animist offerings. Along the way marvel at spectacular scenery and the chance to visit a local village or two specializing in producing Lao rice whiskey, paper, or weaving. Stop for lunch near the mouth of the placid Ou River.  On your way back, visit the recently restored Wat Long Khun, where Lao kings went into spiritual retreat prior to their coronations, or the hilltop temple, Wat Chompet, with its beautiful decor and unobstructed view of Luang Prabang and surrounds,

Day Four: A Teary Goodbye

Free time until we take you to the airport. Are you sure you want to leave this soon?

Stay longer? Of course you can!

Most people who visit Luang Prabangdo not want to leave! There is much more to see and plenty to do here, although a longer stay should be arranged in advance since hotels are usually fully booked. How about a cooking class? We have plenty of optionsto choose from. And do not miss the opportunity to visit Vientiane.

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Prices and Hotels

Prices depend on your choice of hotel and when you want to travel.

We offer a number of different hotels in Luang Prabang, ranging from three to five stars. If you have a specific hotel in mind, please let us know. All of the hotels we use are carefully chosen for location, amenities, quality of service, security and value. We only use hotels are gay-owned, gay-managed or gay-friendly. We inspect most hotels at least once a year.

To see prices and compare hotels please click on the "$" button on the left. If you have questions or suggestions about the hotels we use, please contact us.

Custom vacations are our specialty. If this travel package is not exactly what you are looking for, we may be able to modify it to make it a perfect fit.

Can you spare an extra day? Here are some of the great things you can add to your adventure in Luang Prabang:

Learn the secrets of Lao cooking
Peddle through History
Enjoy a picnic by a psychedelic waterfall

Overnight trips from Luang Prabang

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Great Value

Includes
round trip private airport transportation, gay-friendly/lesbian-friendly accommodation (including tax, service and daily breakfast beginning on day 2, touring with private guide, night tour, Mekong boat trip, admission to places mentioned in the itinerary. Not included: airfare, local transportation, beverages, other meals, gratuities, features not specifically mentioned in the itinerary, or items of a purely personal nature. Peak season surcharges and/or compulsory Christmas and New Year meals may apply. peak season surcharges apply during Songkran festival (April).

Join Asia's LGBTQ private Travel Club

Club Sanook Members can take an instant discount when you combine our Luang Prabang and Vientiane packages. For details click on the icon and join the club!

Additional options
Final Day Car - An additional half day car, driver, guide on your final day if you do not want to go directly to the airport

Photos:
Gordon Crofoot, Francesco Gonora, Jeffrey Wood