MEKONG DOWNSTREAM TOUR IN DEPTH
Day 1: Laos Downstream Cruise Tours: Huay Xai – Pakbeng Cruising Tours (B/L)
The Luang Say Cruise boat leaves Houei Say pier at 09:00 hrs for a cruise down the Mekong to Pakbeng. En route one stop is made to observe rural life along the Mekong and visit minority ethnic groups; then, a buffet lunch on board. Arrive Pakbeng before sunset and check-in at LuangSay Lodge. You can then enjoy dinner on the terrace overlooking the Mekong River. Overnight in Pakbeng.
Day 2: Laos downstream Cruise Tours: Pakbeng – Pak Ou Caves – Luang Prabang Sightseeing Tour (B/L)
Full breakfast at lodge, (Optional: walk to Pakbeng market, where people from the surrounding minority villages exchange their goods). At 08:30 board the boat for the second leg of the cruise. A short stop to discover a Hmong village before having a buffet lunch on board. Continue to Pak-Ou village at the mouth of the Nam Ou River, and then visit Pak Ou Caves "Cave of a thousand Buddha's". On the way to Luang Prabang a brief stop is made to observe the traditional process of manufacturing local rice alcohol. Arrive at Luang Prabang before sunset. Overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 3: Laos downstream Cruise Tours: Luang Prabang Half day city tour – Kuang Si Waterfall (B)
Your half day city tour begins with a visit to the Royal Palace Museum, which hosts a range of interesting artifacts. We then head to the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture. We also have time to visit the impressive stupa of Wat Visoun and the shrines of Wat Aham and Wat Mai. In the afternoon we will visit local villages of Lao ethnic minority groups at Ban Ouay, a Hmong village, Ban Ou a Laoloum village and Ban Thapene, a Khmu village. This then takes us to the beautiful Khouangsi Waterfall where you can cool off with a refreshing swim in the pools or walk along the forest trails. We then return to Luang Prabang by early evening. Overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 4: Laos downstream Cruise Tours: Luang Prabang – Vientiane Half day city tour (Flight) (B)
You will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Vientiane. Upon arrival you will be checked into your hotel and following lunch Your half day city tour enables us to see the major temples of Vientiane including the oldest, Wat Sisaket, a temple of thousands of miniature Buddha statues, and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha Image. We also visit Lao national icon, That Luang Stupa, and we stop to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. Overnight in Vientiane.
Day 5: Laos downstream Cruise Tours: Vientiane – Pakse Cruising to Champassak – Vat Phou Cruise (Flight) (B/L/D)
You will depart Vientiane early for your 6.30am flight to Pakse. On arrival you will be met and transferred to the Vat Phou Cruise leaving Pakse for Champassak at 10:00am. Once on board, we head south, arriving at Champassak in time for a riverside lunch, followed by a guided tour of the mysterious pre-Angkorian 10th century temple of Wat Phou, the boat’s namesake. As dusk falls, we board the Vat Phou for a relaxing cruise down-river, enjoying the tropical sunset on the deck. Dinner is served on board, while the boat docks for the night alongside a remote Laotian village. Overnight on board Vat Phou Cruise.
Day 6: Laos downstream Cruise Tours: 1-day rejoining on Vat Phou Cruise (Huei Thamo - Oum Moung Temple - Khong Island) (B/L/D)
After a leisurely breakfast on board, we set sail for the village of Huei Thamo, only a few minutes walk away from the spectacular hidden Ancientforest temple of Oum Moung. We rejoin the boat for a leisurely cruise southbound and enjoy lunch on the deck, continuing south to the wild paradise of the “4,000 islands” region. In the afternoon we will arrive at Ban Dua Tae, a traditional Laotian Village where the traditional way of life has not changed in centuries. We observe traditional village life and learn about the daily activities within the village. This evening we enjoy a quiet dinner on board, under the stars, serenaded by the songs by the songs of the buffalo toads. Overnight on board Wat Phou Cruise.
Day 7: Laos downstream Cruise Tours: Vat Phou Cruise to small village of Ban Veuthong - the “Niagara of the East - Xieng Di" – Pakse (B/L)
Today we will enjoy breakfast on the upper deck, while cruising to the small village of Ban Veuthong, where we will board a small longtail boat to Khong Island, the largest island in the 4,000 islands region. After visiting the island, we take a long tail boat back to the mainland for lunch amid the bygone splendid of another age; colorful French colonial houses and an old customs post, alongside a stone quay. We will transfer by minivan to the encaptivating, scenic splendor of the Khone Phapeng waterfall, “the Niagara of the East“, close to the Cambodian border. We return to Pakse for “civilization”, which is a two-hour journey by road, arriving in the late afternoon. Overnight in Pakse.
Day 8 : Laos downstream Cruise Tours: Pakse - Departure (B)
After breakfast; you will be transferred for catching a flight to Siem Reap-Cambodia or exiting Laos overland from the Chongmek International checkpoint to Ubon Ratchathani Thailand.
End of service!
Inclusive of above prices:
• Transportation in private
• Accommodation in twin shared room
• Domestic airticket as stated only
• Boat trip as stated in above sights
• English speaking guide
• Admission fee to indicated sights
• Meals: daily breakfast at hotel
• Gov’t tax and service charge
• Luggage handling and drinking water
Exclusive of above prices:
• Visa stamping fee on arrival
• Int’l air tickets to/from Laos
• Travel Insurance in all kinds
• Lunch or dinner unless where stated
• Single room (quoted separately)
• Other foreign language guide
• Peak tourist season or special event rates
• Child or adult in triple sharing room
• Tip, drinks and other personal expenses
• Itinerary is subject to change depending on the confirmed flights, road conditions, and room availability.
• Hotels listed in above might not be upto standard of your expectation, especially in the remote area where limitation of accommodation.
• Prices are subject to change in case of VAT or other tax increases and USD currency fluctuations
Note for LuangSay Cruise:
High season: From 01 November 2011 to 30 Apr 2011 Departures every Monday, Thursday and Friday for Cruise Down.
Low season: From 01 May 2011 to 31 October 2011 Departures every Monday and Friday for Cruise Down.
Note for Vat Phu Cruise:
High season: From 01 November 2011 to 30 Apr 2011 Departures every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday on a cruise down or cruise up
Low season: From 01 May 2011 to 31 October 2011 Departures every Tuesday for Cruise up & Saturday for Cruise Down.