A Quick Overview of Laos 

Laos is often known as the "Land of a Million Elephants". This relatively less-explored country boasts a timeless charm characterized by its pristine landscapes, ancient temples, and warm-hearted locals. 

With a rich cultural tapestry influenced by its neighbors - Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, and China, Laos offers a unique blend of traditions and customs. Laos invites travelers to embark on a journey of discovery, where lush jungles, serene rivers, and a sense of serenity await at every turn. 

You can experience a tropical climate marked by distinct wet and dry seasons. The country has three regions that vary in weather patterns. 

  • In the north, you'll find a temperate climate with cooler temperatures during the dry season (November to February). The average temperature is 15°C. Warmer weather is during the wet season (June to September), the average temperature is 30°C. 

  • The central region, including Vientiane, the capital, typically has a hot and humid climate year-round, with temperatures peaking from March to May, the average temperature is 25 - 40°C.

  • In the southern part of Laos, the weather is characterized by a pronounced wet season, which can bring heavy rains from May to October, the average temperature is 24 - 40°C.

weather in laos

Laos promises an exciting adventure through famous sites

Top 10 best places to visit in Laos

Laos has everything, from ancient temples and tranquil riverfront towns to spectacular waterfalls and lush national parks. Among them, these ten places to visit in Laos promise unforgettable experiences for every tourist.

Elephant Village Sanctuary

  • Location: Sisavangvong Road, Luang Prabang

  • Opening Hours: 08:00 - 16:00 

  • Entrance fee: 5 USD

Coming to the Land of a Million Elephants, you must visit this site to interact with these friendly elephants. The Elephant Village Sanctuary, located in Luang Prabang town, is a locator of optimism for elephants that have been retired from arduous labor or rescued from unfortunate circumstances. 

Elephant Village Sanctuary in laos

Elephant Village Sanctuary

It is a very different tourist destination among places to visit in Laos. Here, travelers can witness these magnificent creatures living in a natural and nurturing environment, free from exploitation. You will have the unique opportunity to engage in ethical elephant interactions, from feeding and bathing to learning about their incredible journey to rehabilitation. 

The Elephant Village Sanctuary offers a chance to get up close and personal with these awe-inspiring animals. Simultaneously, this place advocates for their well-being, making it a  heartwarming and enlightening experience for all who visit.

Plain of Jars

  • Location: Site 1, aka Thong Hai Hin (Stone Jar Plain), 15 km (9 miles) southwest of Phonsavan

  • Opening Hours: 8:30 - 17:00

  • Entrance fee: 0.76 USD

The Plain of Jars, also known as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, shrouded in mystery and ancient allure, is one of the most remarkable places to visit in Laos. This archaeological site is in the central plain of the Xiangkhoang Plateau in the Phonsavan area. 

This enigmatic landscape has hundreds of enormous stone jars. Some of them weigh several tons and stand taller than a person. These intriguing megalithic jars, dating back to the Iron Age over 2000 years ago, have puzzled archaeologists and historians for decades, as their purpose and origin remain shrouded in speculation. 

Plain of Jars in laos - places to visit in laos

Plain of Jars

The stones believed to be ancient burial site relics are a testament to the mysterious and complex history of the region. Visiting the Plain of Jars will make you feel like stepping into a world where time becomes stagnant, and the whispers of the past resonate through the beauty of the landscape. 

Tham Kong Lo Cave

  • Location: Khamouane Province in Central Laos

  • Opening Hours: 8:00 - 4:00 

  • The hiring of a motorized boat fee: 6 USD per person

Tham Kong Lo, often known as the Konglor, is a karst limestone cave in the Phou Hin Bun National Park near Konglor in Laos' Khammouane Province. This colossal limestone cavern, carved over millennia by the Hinboun River, stretches for over seven kilometers and is a breathtaking subterranean labyrinth waiting to be visited. 

Tham Kong Lo Cave in laos - laos things to do

Tham Kong Lo Cave

After gliding through its dark, mysterious chambers on a traditional long-tail boat, the cave's otherworldly beauty unfolded. Illuminated by the soft glow of handheld lamps, you'll marvel at the towering stalactites and stalagmites. 

Tad Sae Waterfalls

  • Location: 15 km from Luang Prabang, going south to Vientiane.

  • Opening Hours: Every day from 08:00-17:30

  • Entrance fee: 20,000 Kip (~2,3 USD)

Among places to visit in Laos, Tad Sae is the name that you should not miss because it is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Luang Prabang. This site offers a refreshing and picturesque escape into the heart of nature.

These waterfalls are amid the dense jungle, which creates a mesmerizing landscape of cascading tiers and crystal-clear pools. What sets Tad Sae apart is the opportunity for visitors to immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the falls. 

Tad Sae Waterfalls - best places to visit in laos

Tad Sae Waterfalls

Here, you can immerse yourself in the cool water, enjoy a natural massage from the cascading falls, or even take an elephant ride along the riverbanks. The falls offer a perfect respite from the tropical heat, making them an ideal spot for picnics, swimming, and relaxing in the serene ambiance of Laos' untouched wilderness. 

Phapheng Waterfall

  • Location: Situated in southern Laos near Don Khon and Don Det islands

  • Opening hours: 8:00 - 18:00 daily

  • Entrance fee: 55,000 kip (~ 7.00 USD)

Phapheng Waterfall, often known as the "Niagara of Asia," stands as a breathtaking testament to the sheer power and beauty of nature in southern Laos. This waterfall is in Champasak Province on the Mekong River in southern Laos, close to the Cambodian border. 

The highlight of Pha Pheng is undoubtedly the immense width of the falls as the Mekong River dramatically plummets down a series of cascades and rapids, creating a thunderous spectacle that reverberates through the lush surrounding landscape.

Phapheng Waterfall - places to visit in laos

Phapheng Waterfall

The area around Pha Pheng is rich in history, with remnants of a French-built railway and remnants of the colonial era, providing further intrigue for history enthusiasts. Visitors to Phapheng can explore a range of activities to enjoy this natural wonder. 

  • Stroll along well-maintained pathways to various viewpoints

  • Capturing mesmerizing photographs

  • Soaking in the grandeur of the falls. 

  • Take a boat tour to get up close to the falls, feeling the cool mist on your skin as you witness the raw power of the Mekong.

Get a broader view by checking out our Laos travel guide!

Kuang Si Falls

  • Location: Around 29 kilometers from Southern Luang Prabang

  • Opening Hours: 08:00–17:00

  • Entrance fee: 20,000 kip/person (~1.01 USD). Under the age of 12 years old free entrance)

Kuang Si Falls is the largest waterfall in Luang Prabang town. The highlight of this place is undoubtedly the main waterfall tumbles down a 50-meter limestone formation, creating a breathtaking spectacle of power and beauty. As you explore this natural wonder, you'll be captivated by the vibrant blue waters that seem almost otherworldly. 

Kuang Si Falls in laos

Kuang Si Falls

Visitors to Kuang Si Falls can partake in various activities to enhance their experience.

  • Hiking trails lead through the dense forest, offering opportunity for bird-watching and wildlife spotting. 

  • For those seeking a more tranquil experience, there are numerous spots for a leisurely picnic amid the serene surroundings. 

Wat Xieng Thong

  • Location: On the main street at the end of the peninsular

  • Opening Hours: 08:00–18:00

  • Entrance fee: 20.000kip/person (~1.01 USD)

Nestled at the confluence of the Mekong and Nam Khan rivers, Wat Xieng Thong stands as an architectural masterpiece and a spiritual sanctuary of Laos. This historic Buddhist temple, dating back to the 16th century, is a magnificent testament to Lao art and culture. 

Its intricate gilded facades, graceful roofs, and intricate mosaics make it one of the most beautiful temples among places to visit in Laos.

Wat Xieng Thong

Wat Xieng Thong

As you step through its intricately carved gates, you'll be immersed in a tranquil world of spirituality and serenity. Besides, the temple's peaceful grounds are adorned with serene Buddha statues and intricate glass mosaics. The atmosphere here invites visitors to explore its rich history and experience the essence of Lao Buddhism. 

Ancient Wat Phu temple

  • Location: at the base of Mount Phou Khao, some 6 kilometers (3.7 mi) from the Mekong in Champasak Province

  • Opening Hours: 08:00–18:00

  • Entrance fee: 50,000 kip/person (~2.53 USD)

Wat Phu temple is one of the most mysterious places to visit in Laos. It is at the base of the Phu Kao mountain range in Champasak Province. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it stands as a captivating testament to the Khmer Empire's architectural and spiritual influence in southern Laos.

Ancient Wat Phu temple

Ancient Wat Phu temple

Wat Phu's intricately carved sandstone structures, grand staircases, and sacred pools evoke a sense of wonder and reverence as you explore its sacred precincts. The temple's layout, aligned with the cardinal directions and richly adorned with Hindu and Buddhist iconography, reflects the region's spiritual syncretism. 

Pha That Luang pagoda

  • Location: Thanon That Luang, a few kilometers Northeast of the Vientiane city center

  • Opening Hours: 08:00–12:00, 13:00–17:00

  • Entrance fee: 5,000 kip (~ 0.25 USD)

As for solemn places to visit in Laos, we should not miss Pha That Luang which is located in the heart of the Laotian capital, Vientiane, is a symbol of both spiritual devotion and national pride. This magnificent golden stupa stands as a testament to Laos' rich Buddhist heritage and is considered one of the most important religious monuments in the country. 

Pha That Luang pagoda

Pha That Luang pagoda

Encased in a shimmering gold leaf, Pha That Luang radiates a serene and awe-inspiring presence, especially when the sun casts its warm glow upon the glistening surface. Believed to house a relic of the Buddha, the stupa is a place of veneration for pilgrims and a source of inspiration for visitors from around the world. 

Si Phan Don Islands

  • Location: In the Mekong River, Champasak Province in southern Laos 

  • Opening Hours: All-day

  • Entrance fee: Free

Si Phan Don, often referred to as the "4,000 Islands", is a tranquil and enchanting archipelago. These islands are nestled in the southern reaches of Laos, where the mighty Mekong River widens into a network of islands, sandbars, and cascading waterways. 

si phan don islands in laos

Si Phan Don Islands

Si Phan Don Islands is an idyllic destination among places to visit in Laos where tourists can do some activities like: 

  • Serenely escape from the hustle and bustle of modern life, where time seems to slow down to the pace of river currents. 

  • Enjoy a laid-back atmosphere that beckons travelers to relax in hammocks. 

  • Watch the sunset over the river.

  • Explore the lush landscapes by bicycle. 

Laos is still a country worth experiencing but receives little attention compared to other countries in Asia. To help you have a memorable trip with great experiences, we have compiled the top 10 fascinating places to visit in Laos. If you need more information about a detailed itinerary in Laos, please contact the New Asia Tours agency.