One of the best way to appreciate the abundance of natural beauty that surrounds Luang Prabang is trekking with a local guide. Many options exist, from difficult hikes across challenging terrain to leisurely walks through the countryside. Trekking pathways often crisscross the traditional routes between ethnic villages in Laos, offering you the chance to experience traditional rural life and meet locals. You’ll never forget the views of mountains, rice plateaus, and dramatic sweeping valleys. Learn more about trekking have a look at tour operators in town (mostly located on the main street).
Popular treks include one-day trips to Kuang Si and Tad Sae waterfalls, both of which pass through Hmong and Khmu villages, green forests, and mountains along the way.
Just across the river from Luang Prabang city, in Chomphet district, you can join a trek that has great views of Luang Prabang, some challenging climbs on forest trails, and an overnight stay in a Hmong mountaintop village.
Further north, in Muang Ngoi, a two-day trekking experience winds through a large network of waterfalls and caves used as shelter by villagers during the Indochina War before making its way to high limestone cliffs with great views. This trek also includes a homestay, in a Khmu village and a boat ride on the beautiful Nam Ou river.
Consider trekking in conjunction with a homestay, camping, or other activities. Many packages exist, and operators will help you to design your own trekking experience.
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Become a mahout for the day, bathe with an elephant, or ride one of these beautiful beasts through the jungle. There are many elephants camps, with different ethical approaches, to visit in Luang Prabang.
A trip like this has the best of everything: activity, great views, and plenty of opportunities to interact with locals in small ethnic villages in this part of the country.