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17 days & 16 nights
Availability : December 31, 2022
Huay Xay
Huay Xay - Pakbeng - Pak Ou Caves - Luang Prabang - Kuang Si Waterfall - Elephant Conservation Center - Vang Vieng - Muang Feuang - Vientiane - Buddha Park - Paksong - Wat Phou - Champasak - Khong island

Discover the beauty of Laos with Golden Lotus Travel‘s “Along the Mekong River” tour – a 17-day, 16-night journey showcasing the country’s stunning natural landscapes, ancient temples, and unique culture.

Tour Details

Golden Lotus Travel invites you to embark on an incredible journey through Laos with our “Along the Mekong River” tour. This 17-day, 16-night adventure takes you through some of the most stunning landscapes and ancient cultures of Southeast Asia, along the Mekong River. Laos is known for its lush forests, stunning waterfalls, and beautiful temples, and this tour showcases the best of what this incredible country has to offer. From the bustling cities to the tranquil countryside, our expert guides will take you on a journey of discovery as you explore the rich history and unique culture of Laos. So why wait? Join  on this unforgettable adventure and discover the beauty of Laos.

Departure & Return Location

Huay Xay (Google Map)

Departure Time

1 hour before departure

Price Includes

  • Transportation with air-condition in private
  • Accommodation in twin/double shared room
  • Boat trip as stated in above sights
  • English speaking guide
  • Admission fee to indicated sights
  • Meals as per program (B = Breakfast | L = Lunch | D = Dinner)
  • Gov’t tax and service charge
  • Luggage handling and drinking water

Price Excludes

  • Visa stamping fee on arrival
  • All flights quoted separately (if any)
  • Travel Insurance in all kinds
  • Single room (quoted separately)
  • Other foreign language guide
  • Peak tourist season or special event rates
  • Tip, drinks and other personal expenses
  • 10% VAT in case the payment is transferred into our company bank account


After completing border formalities, our guide will pick you up and transfer by tuk tuk to the boat pier.
Here, you board a traditional boat ready for the trip down the Mekong River. The scenery along this part of the Mekong is argueably at its most beautiful. 
As your journey downriver you will stop at some tribal minority villages such as the Hmong, Yao and Khmu.
Upon arrival in Pakbeng, we visit the local market; experience the daily lifestyle of colorful hill tribe traders exchanging their goods.
Overnight in Pakbeng.


As you sail downriver as a second leg, you will pass areas of un-spoilt forest with little villages along the riverbanks and perhaps the odd elephant or two with his mahout.
You will also visit a fishing village and a rice winemaking village and perhaps even taste some of the infamous beverage known as Lao Rice wine.
Our next stop is at the Pak-Ou caves, where thousands of Buddha statues are stored.
You arrive in Luang Prabang around sunset and transfer to your hotel. Overnight in Luang Prabang.


After breakfast, we visit Royal Palace Museum, which hosts a range of interesting artifacts. 
Our next stop in the city is the magnificent Wat Xiengthong with its roofs sweeping low to the ground, which represents classical Laotian architecture.
We then transfer to the beautiful Kuang Si Waterfall where you can cool off with a refreshing swim in the pools or walk along the forest trails.
You have the rest of the afternoon to refresh at the waterfalls. If you wish, we also see up close Asiatic bears at the Bear Rescue Centre along the jungle walk to the waterfall.
Arriving back in town, we will take a short visit to the Ock Pop Tock Living Craft Center, set serenely close to the Mekong, this beautiful, traditionally styled workshop, where weavers, spinners and batik makers produce top-quality fabrics, offers free tours every half-hour.
Transfer back to Luang Prabang, we ascend the 329 steps to the top of Phousi Hill for a beautiful sunset view of the city and its glowing reflection on the Mekong River.
The tour ends after a visit to the famous Night Market, where you can find a lovely selection of handmade textiles made by local and hill tribe people surrounding Luang Prabang. Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Tip: If you are fond of various ethnic cultures, you can visit the Traditional Art and Ethnology Center (closed on Monday).


Begin today’s close-up look at daily Laotian life by heading out for a morning at a community-based living rice farm in the idyllic countryside outside Luang Prabang.
Surrounded by mountains and rice paddies, you’ll have an opportunity to experience rural life as a Laotian farmer would, trying your hand at various farm activities – or observing them from a traditional Lao rice house balcony, set amidst rice terraces and an organic vegetable farm.
You’ll have time to check out nearby workshops where local bamboo weavers, blacksmiths and sugar cane processors practice their crafts. Then take a tour of the organic garden to learn how natural herbs are used in traditional medicine.

Lunch will be served at the salad overlooking the rice field.

We have ample time to relax before transferring to the Traditional Arts & Ethnology Center, the collection of diverse Lao ethnic groups. We will stroll around to visit the center to understand more about the Lao ethnic culture.

After that, we will join the seminars of “Ethnic Diversity and Cultural Change in Laos”

This fascinating 60-minute presentation and question-and-answer session gives background on Laos’ ethnic communities, their history, and their cultural practices, including livelihoods and crafts. Guests have an opportunity to learn about lifestyles in ethnic villages and are shown unique artefacts from TAEC’s collection that are not accessible to the general public.

The seminars are led by one of the two TAEC Founder/Directors, either Thongkhoun Soutthivilay, a Luang Prabang-native who worked at the Luang Prabang National Museum for 10 years, and who has attended trainings and conferences in the US, Thailand, Netherlands, Japan, and Brunei; or Tara Gujadhur, an American who has worked in Luang Prabang for over 10 years, with a background in anthropology and sustainable tourism development. 

Overnight in Luang Prabang.


7:30AM:  In the morning, our driver will transfer you to the meeting point where we will join the minivan of Elephant Conservation Center for the transfer to Xayabouly (about 90KM).
When you have arrived at the pier at Nam Tien Lake, we will transfer you to the center by boat. You might be able to catch a quick glimpse of one of our elephants while our boat docks.
You will have some time to install yourself in your private bungalow before lunch is served. After enjoying a Laotian style meal, your guide will take you for a visit of the Center’s facilities and present our ongoing projects.
During the hospital visit our veterinarian and biologist will take you into their world and explain about the projects they are undertaking.
Through the visit of the only Elephant Hospital in Laos, you will discover the conservation actions implemented by The Elephant Conservation Center.
You will then observe the elephants’ daily bath and learn more about our giant guests’ playful characters. Elephants are surprisingly good swimmers and love water. They also use this time to socialize.
After the elephants have washed themselves, you will meet our mahouts, who will show you how they get on and off the elephant and the commands they use.
You will then have the opportunity to interact with the elephants with the mahouts at your side.
Get a feel for the elephant’s amazing skin and prickly hair, and experience up close the dexterity of their trunk as you offer them some food.
Feel free to take photos standing next to our giants!  For those who really want to get a feel of being on top of the elephant, mahout style, you can request to do so later on when bringing the elephants to the forest or socialization area. 
But this is absolutely not central to the experience we propose and is strictly on the neck, not in a chair on the elephant’s back!
While walking the elephants to their nightly resting ground you will witness the unique bond between the mahout and his elephant.
Our experienced mahouts use vocal commands to steer the animals through the thick foliage.  As you stroll together with these magnificent creatures into the dense forest of Nam Tien, take a moment!
This is the REAL land of elephants!  Your guide will give you some interesting information about the biodiversity of our protected forest.
Before dinner, take some time to take in the surroundings from our viewpoint. You can also go for a swim in the lake or visit the museum.
During meal time, feel free to ask your unresolved questions to the staff or share one of the Lao style cocktails!


On the second day you will meet up with the elephants in the forest. After spending the night grazing in the jungle it is time for another bath.
Enjoy strolling together with these magnificent creatures in their natural environment. If you wish, you can ask to ride the elephant, bareback on the neck, for a short time on their way through the forest, to get a physical feel for the animal.
When they have had their fill of water they are brought to the Socialization Area. This is an area where the elephants can freely interact during a big part of the day, recreating a semi-natural living environment.
Here the elephants can enjoy being…elephants. Follow the guide around the perimeter to learn more about the elephants. Take your time on the different platforms to see how a new herd is being formed.
This rare opportunity will bring you closer to their natural life, something which is very special about our program and difficult to find anywhere else in Laos.
Lunch is served at one of the viewing platforms. You have some time to let everything sink in.
Following the forest picnic, you can see the resident mother and baby at the nursery. The mahout of the mother stays close by while she and her baby have a bath and play. The mother trusts him around her offspring and even lets him play with her a little bit.
After visiting the nursery you can take your time to pack your bags and say goodbye to the staff. Perhaps you would like to take in the scenery for one last time before our guide and driver come to pick you up and transfer directly to Vang Vieng.

The transfer will take about 3 hours and you will arrive in town just in time to catch the sunset.

Overnight in Vang Vieng.


We will transfer to Phatang Resort around 18 km north of Vang Vieng.
After an introduction to the basics of kayaking we shall set off down the beautiful Nam Song River which offers various small but fun rapids along the way to our first stop at Tham Xang Cave.
Here we will walk up to the massive theater like cave while hearing about local history about the area!
After emerging from the cave a short kayaking will lead us to a picnic spot on the riverside where we shall enjoy lunch.
In the afternoon, we shall continue down the river until the next stop at the Organic Farm where mulberry tea and a variety of different fruit wines are produced.
Continuing downstream we arrive at Tham None Cave which is one of the largest caves in Vang Vieng! It served as a bomb shelter for local villagers during the Second Indochina War. However, today it is home to a bat family and the ‘Magic Stone of Vang Vieng’. The final leg of the journey is a gentle paddle downstream to Vang Vieng where we shall arrive just in time to catch the sunset.
Overnight in Vang Vieng.
Approximately: 15minutes transfer, 4.5 hours (wet season) 3.5 hours (dry season) kayaking, 1.5 hour caving/walking.


After breakfast, we will say goodbye to Vang Vieng and transfer directly to the remote district of Muang Feuang, which is getting more and more popular among locals and expats living in Vientiane, a weekends nature hideaway.

The transfer will take less than 2 hours with the first part via the highway Vientiane – Vang Vieng and the last part via a bumpy back road.

Upon arrival, check in your floating bungalow on the Nam Lik River.

The afternoon is free time for your own exploration. There is the option for easy kayaking, tubing, or swimming on the refreshing Nam Lik River. 

For dinner, we recommend you enjoy a BBQ whilst admiring the sunset and see life slowly passing by on the Nam Lik River. Check with our guide for this option, they will be happy to arrange the BBQ for you (Extra charge).

Overnight in Muang Feuang on a floating bungalow.


This morning, there is the chance for you to join the floating morning alms giving. The monks from the nearby temple will take the boat along Nam Lik River, passing the floating bungalow. The boat will stop at every bungalow to collect the alms given from the guesses staying at the bungalow the night before. If you wish to join, just wake up early and buy the food from the boat vendors, they will come 30 minutes before the monk boat arrives.

We then check out and have a simple breakfast (noodle) at a local restaurant before bidding a farewell to Muang Feuang and transfer to Vientiane via the road along the Mekong River.

Along the way, we will have a visit to the Sinxayaram Temple, which is considered as “Kingdom of Buddhism”. The recently upgraded temple compound has been attracting the faithful from around Laos and northern Thailand for decades and is now welcoming tourists.

We will arrive in Vientiane around mid or late afternoon depending on the road condition and the time you spend at some viewpoints along the way.

Overnight in Vientiane.


In the morning, we will first visit Wat Si Muang, which is very famous for its supernatural power.
After that drive to Buddha Park which takes around 45 minutes away. Also known as Xieng Khuan, this unusual park is filled with over 200 Buddhist and Hindu statues.
We then visit Lao Disable Women Development Center, which assist disable women to cope with their disability and advocate for their rights. Spend time watching the video and learn about the effort to earn their daily living. You can support them by buying some small handicrafts at the shop.
Start the afternoon with a visit to That Luang, the holiest site in Laos. Constructed by King Setthathirat in the 16th century, the temple is resplendent as the sun is shines upon its towering golden spire.
Then, enjoy a panoramic view over the city as you climb the stairs to the top of Patuxai, Vientiane’s own “Arc de Triomphe”.
Continue down Lane Xang Avenue the serene Wat Sisaket, the only temple left intact after the Siamese (Thai) invasion in 1828.
Continue on to the nearby Wat Phra Keo.  Used as a religious museum, Wat Phra Keo displays a collection of both Lao and Khmer works of art.
End your tour of the capital along the banks of the Mekong River as the sun begins to set. Stroll along the river, stop to enjoy a cold drink, or sample a snack from one of the many local food stalls. 
Overnight in Vientiane.

Tips: You can also visit Sinouk Coffee Pavilion to discover the Lao coffee, stroll around the mini coffee gallery, view the in-house coffee roaster and try a cup of delicious and unique coffee or tea. Discuss with our guide about this. Entrance fee and extra coffee/drinks are payable on spot.


In the morning, we took the flight to Pakse, the biggest city of southern Laos.
Upon arrival, we head east to Pakse and onto Tadlo Waterfalls in the Bolaven Plateau. Upon arrival, we will be trekking to visit waterfalls and other minority villages near the Tadlo area of Ban Kiengtanglae and Ban Nanong. We then continue driving over the plateau to Paksong.
After that, transfer to Fandee Island on Bolaven Plateau, where we will check in a treehouse to take some rest.

If you wish, there are plenty of activities on spot at the Fandee Waterpark or Fandee adventure park.

The activities range from ziplining, swimming, or flying bridge.

Overnight at Fandee Island.


After a short briefing, we will drive to Suay village, where we can find many traditional long houses made by bamboo, which are shared by some generations of 01 families.
We then continue driving to Laven village to see their daily life and their paddy field. This is the first minority group found in Bolaven Plateau.
11:00 AM, we continue driving to the Coffee Farm of Mr. Khamsone via the 10KM bumpy and muddy road, which will take you 01 hour with your special Jeep car.
Upon arrival, Mr khamsone, the Coffee farm’s owner will take 1 hour to demonstrate about coffee roasting step and finish by a coffee cupping to Savor the different kinds of coffee (Robusta, Arabica and Typica). 
After that, we will hop on the Jeep and drive 30 minutes to Tad Moun waterfalls, where we can enjoy the fresh cool water, and visit the nearby vegetable farm.
Finally, we will drive to Paksong, where our van will pick us up and transfer to the hotel. Overnight in Paksong.


After breakfast, we departure for Champasak.
Along the way, we will have a chance to enjoy the scenery around Tad Fane waterfall, which is spectacular with twin waterfalls plummeting into a deep gorge surrounded by flourishing vegetation.
We will also see the cultivation of rich coffee, tea, cardamom, bananas, and other crops that are grown in the area.
Arriving in Champasak, visit Wat Phou, an ancient Khmer religious complex dating back to the 5th Century.
Recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, Wat Phou is a spectacular pre-Angkorian temple that sits amidst the rice fields and waterways of southern Laos, which was built by the rulers of the Khmer empire before the construction of Angkor Wat.
The temple served as the most important economic and political centre of the region and still is one of the Lao people’s most revered temples.
After your visit, we continue into Champasak to see samples of French colonial architecture before transferring directly to Khong Island, which is the biggest island of the 4000-island area.

Upon arrival, check in your hotel.

Overnight in Khong Island.


After breakfast, embark on a 1.5 hour long tail boat for venturing into the widest reach of the Mekong River, where during the dry season the waters recede and leave behind thousands of islets, giving this area a lovely name” Si Phan Don”.
Upon arrival, explore the local peaceful villages of Ban Khone, where you will see an array of relics from the French colonial era and retrace the old colonial past, including old French colonial buildings and the remnants of the first Lao railway with its locomotive.
We continue to discover the 4000 islands area by tuktuk and visit the marvelous Liphi waterfall, also called the “Corridor of the Devil” one of the most beautiful waterfalls marking Lao border with Cambodia.
Free for the rest of the day for your own exploration of the island. We recommend you take a bike for a ride around the island to see the local life and admire the sunset along the Mekong riverbank.
Overnight in Khone Island.


After breakfast, return to the mainland at the fishing village of Ban Nakasang and drive further south to visit Khone Phapheng, which is considered the largest waterfall by volume in Southeast Asia.
Khone Phapheng is an impressive spot near the Lao-Cambodian border, set within an area which is teeming with wildlife, making this area one of the most breathtaking destinations in Laos.
Afterwards we drive back to Pakse.
Founded by the French in 1905 as an administrative post, the capital of Champasak Province is a relatively new town at the confluence of the Mekong and Se Don rivers.
Arriving in Pakse, we will check in NKM Homestay, which is owned by a French specialist, Mr. Nicholas and his family.

The rest of the day is your own free time to talk with Mr. Nicholas to learn more about Laos, which will give you plenty of inside information about Laos.

There is a library that you can refer to with plenty of documents made by Mr. Nicholas himself.

You can also spend time preparing the dinner with Mr. Nicholas’ wife before sharing the dinner together.

Overnight at NKM Homestay.


You are free today to stroll around the town for your own exploration. One of the best ways is to join a tour of inside the hidden Pakse guided by Mr. Nicholas.

He will bring you to the hidden routes and spots of Pakse that are rarely visited by other tourists but guarantee the unforgettable memory for your trip to southern Laos.

Overnight at NKM Homestay.


After breakfast, we will transfer directly to Ubon Ratchathani (Thailand) via Chongmek Border to take the flight to Bangkok and connect to your departure flight back home.


+ Transfer time: 3 hours including border time.

+ From Pakse, you can also take the flight to Siem Reap, Ho Chi Minh City, Vientiane, Luang Prabang, or Bangkok.

A trip in Laos is sure to bring you wonderful experiences, from discovering unspoiled destinations, to experiencing food and immersing yourself in the unique culture of this country. Let’s explore Laos with Golden Lotus Travel and create memorable memories in your life!


2 Reviews
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Priya Patel

Group Traveller

My experience with Golden Lotus Travel’s “Along the Mekong River” tour was truly incredible. The stunning scenery and fascinating local culture were brought to life by our knowledgeable and friendly guide, making for an unforgettable journey. I highly recommend this tour to anyone looking to explore Southeast Asia

January 4, 2023

Maria Santos

Group Traveller

Golden Lotus Travel’s “Along the Mekong River” tour was an incredible experience, featuring a well-planned itinerary that allowed us to explore a variety of destinations throughout Southeast Asia. Our knowledgeable guide provided invaluable insights into the local culture and history, making for an unforgettable journey. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone seeking an immersive adventure.

November 24, 2022

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