Enjoy a leisurely walk to the magnificent stupa of Wat Visoun and continue to Wat Aham and Wat Mai. Wat Maiis Luang Prabang’s oldest Pagoda. Continue to Wat Xiengthong with its classic Laos’ style roofs, which are a magnificent sight to behold. End your day with a short climb to the top of Mount Phousi, located in the centre of town and admire the wonderful view from the top of the town across the Mekong and Khan rivers as well as the surrounding mountains.
Visit one of Luang Prabang’s most picturesque sights, the Kuang Si waterfall. Stop en route at Phosy market where you can observe the locals trading in fresh produce. On arrival, take a leisurely hike through the national park towards the Kuang Si waterfall. For the more adventurous, continue to the top of the main waterfall where you may choose to swim in a large pool.
Enjoy a postprandial stroll through the nearby H'mong Night Market, where the hill tribe people sell their textiles and other handmade creations every evening.
Take part in the age old tradition of making rounds for alms. Awake at sunrise, and join a procession of monks as they make their way to homes and shops to receive their daily rice, an event of great merit for all Lao people.
Embark on a two hour cruise in along-tail boat on the Mekong River and visit the mysterious Pak Ou Caves to explore the sanctuaries which consist of two large caves. Both repositories house thousands of Buddha images, which range from mere centimeters to two meters in height.
Transfer to a serene temple overlooking the whole of Luang Prabang town. Bring some offerings such as fruit, candles and incense sticks to offer to the monks and the nuns before partaking in a blessing ceremony that is believed to bring your health, happiness and longevity. After the blessing, a white thread will be tied your wrist – it is believed that this will help you to success in realizing your dreams. The blessing ceremony itself only lasts about 20 minutes but the good tidings it brings will be carried with you throughout the remainder of your journey in Laos and hopefully return home with you.
Spend a morning on a community based living rice farm situated in the idyllic countryside, surrounded by mountains and centuries old rice paddies. Experience the life of a farmer and try your hand at some of the activities. Or just view it all from the comfort of our traditional Lao rice house balcony, which is surrounded by rice terraces and our organic vegetable farm. All can join in and there are great photo opportunities. While there, spend some time to visit some local handicraft workshops like bamboo weaving, blacksmith work, and sugar cane processing. Finally, join a tour of the organic garden with explanation on how natural herbs are used in traditional medicine.
Baci ceremonies are an integral part of Lao culture. Held to celebrate a special event, whether a marriage, a homecoming, or a departure, it is based on an ancient belief that the human being is a union of 32 organs and the“kwan” (or soul) watches over each of them. Since the kwan is often the attributed cause of an illness or bad fortune, the Baciceremony calls the kwan from wherever it may be roaming back tothe body and re-establishes equilibrium. The mohkwan is a village elder who chants and calls the kwan. At the end of the ceremony, the village elders wrap a white cotton thread around your wrist while chanting an invocation to strengthen the power of the blessings. In Laos, white is the colour of peace, good fortune, honesty and warmth. The ceremony is set up at a 115-year-oldrustic house situated by a lotus pond. Enjoy traditional music and dance after the ceremony as you will feel refreshed and enlightened by taking part in this ancient practice.
The Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre is a non-profit museum and resource centre dedicated to the ethnic cultures of Laos. The professional exhibits feature clothing, tools, religious items, photos and fine arts from the north of Laos. An informative talk with the founder and current director, Ms. Tara Gujadhur, will provide you with a fascinating insight into the varied lifestyles and traditions of Laos’ ethnic minority groups. Tara is an American anthropologist who has lived in Laos for over six years, advising the government and conducting research in rural villages.