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Why Laos Should Be Next on Your Travel List


[SPONSORED CONTENT] Long one of the region's underrated gems, the nation's vibrant culture, natural splendor and laid-back way of life beckon travelers to explore. AirAsia's regular flights make it both convenient and affordable to explore this intriguing land.

Published on Jun 8, 2017

WITH ITS UNIQUELY relaxed atmosphere, pristine Laos is the antidote to symptoms of travel fatigue.




Luang Prabang

Long regarded as one of the sleepier capitals in the region, Vientiane has roused itself into an increasingly dynamic destination. Serenity remains the main draw, but there are lovely diversions. Golden Pha That Luang Temple, the most important national monument, is said to house a relic of the Buddha; other key sights include Patuxai Gate, modeled on the Arc de Triomphe, and Buddha Park, with more than 200 Hindu and Buddhist statues. Visit the lively night market and Chao Anouvong Park, which unfolds alongside the mighty Mekong River.



Vientiane

Amidst wondrous limestone karsts, the little town of Vang Vieng continues to evolve from backpacker favorite to a world-class adventure spot. Boost your adrenaline by hot-air ballooning, ziplining, caving and “tubing”—a fun float down the Nam Song River.



Vang Vieng

While other parts of the country are expanding their fan-base, Luang Prabang remains the big-ticket destination. The city is UNESCO World Heritage-listed, brimming with cultural wonders such as royal palaces and ornate temples. Highlights include Wat Xieng Thong and Wat Phou Si, which is atop a hill and offers incredible sunset views across the city towards the mountains. Dive into the cultural history at the Royal Palace Museum, originally built in 1905 for former King Sisavang Vong.

Early risers should witness the daily alms-giving ceremony where monks clad in saffron robes collect offerings. Later, hit the city’s night market, an ideal place to fill up on spicy Lao cuisine. Outside town, nature puts on a show at such waterfalls as Kuang Si and Tad Sae, and the mountainous hinterland, home to highlights including a renowned elephant sanctuary.



Kuang Si

The “Land of a Million Elephants” remains relatively undiscovered, but the secret is well worth digging for.

 

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