Tour Itinerary

Caves and Hideaways 7days / 6 Nights

This tour can be adjusted or tailor made to suit your wishes, at no extra cost.  The ATOL only applies when an International Flight is included as part of the Package.

Caves and Hideaways, introduces you, to a very different Laotian experience. This tour couples together the diverse history and culture of a region that has seen plenty of change over the generations. Starting in the former Royal City and now UNESCO world Heritage site of Luang Prabang, the royal city of temples, we head out into the mountainous and beautifully scenic regions of North and Eastern Laos to discover the caves and hiding places of governments and locals during the turbulent times of wars that affected the Region. We’ll visit one of the earliest known settlement sites to see the mysterious plain of Jars, solid stone structures dating back over 5000 years, you’ll travel amongst the stunning beautiful mountainous regions near the Vietnamese border, home to many caves and fascinating hiding places, and hear heroic stories and then return through Vientiane Province to a beautiful rural river side town, with Limestone Cliffs before arriving in the nation’s capital, rich in Lao and French architecture.

Day 1 Luang Prabang (D)

Enjoy your breakfast before taking a full day tour exploring the beautiful surrounding countryside; we’ll travel by boat along the Mekong and the Ou River stopping off to see the mysterious Pak Ou Caves which thousands of Buddha statues and images left behind by pilgrims over the generations. Then we continue on to Tham ting cave and Sanghai Village to observe the traditional process of rice wine distillation on our return journey by boat to Luang Prabang we’ll make a couple more stops at the royal temple of Wat Longkhoun and Ban Phanom hand weaving village, here you will see local wares being weaved traditionally. We return to enjoy the atmosphere at Wat Mai built in 1796 and sits at the foot of Mount Phousi; Wat Mai is the largest temple in Luang Prabang with a five-tiered roof. The main hall shows the traditional architectural style of Luang Prabang with a gold relief of Buddha’s life story inscribed on its façade, climb Phousi Hill to take in the beautiful sun set over Luang Prabang, and finish our exhilarating day with relaxing walk around the local ‘night market’

(Optional Extend your stay in Luang Prabang)

Day 2 Luang Prabang – Xieng Khouang (B/L/D)

Luang Prabang is a fascinating historical city with a delightful mix of Buddhist temples and French Colonial buildings. In fact, it is still very much a rural kind of city in comparison to neighbouring countries. Today we will spend the morning visiting the best known temples through Luang Prabang, which tell the story of the city through the ages. First we visit Wat Visoun: which is a replica of an older Temple which was erected in the same place back in 1513, this replica was built in 1898 on the same site as that of the monastery of the Middle Ages. The Wat houses numerous religious art treasures. Next we head to Wat Xieng Thong a royal Wat built on the banks of the Mekong river built in 1559 which has remained relatively undamaged by the various invasions mainly Chinese over the centuries. This temple is decorated extensively with impressive carving, murals and mosaics. We continue on to see the former Laotian Royal Palace officially known as Haw Kham which was built during the French colonial era for the King and his family.

After lunch we depart Luang Prabang heading through the beautiful countryside, along windy roads to Xieng Khouang, located in mountainous lush surroundings, this is the area well known for the archeological finds of the mystical Plain of Jars, stone structures, dating back to between 500 BC – 500 AD.

We arrive into Phonsavan city, late afternoon to early evening in time for dinner.

Day 3 Xieng Khouang – Sam Neua (B/L/D)
We’ll start the day, visiting a local market, where you’ll see the local people and tribes people, bartering and selling their merchandise before heading off to see the Plain of Jars site 2, these stone structures are shrouded  in mystery, some relics found date back to 2000 BC, and definitely from the times of the bronze and iron ages. It is believed that these jars were used through the centuries and by differing civilizations as part of funeral rituals. Research is still being conducted into these amazing finds.

We continue on heading for Sam Neua in the area of Vieng xay, through lush mountainous scenery, nearing the Vietnamese border arriving in Vieng xay, late afternoon with time to relax before dinner.

Day 4 Sam Neua (B)
Today we venture out into the mountainous surroundings that protected government officials and locals alike during the Vietnam and Indochina wars. The various caves around the area where used not only as bomb shelters, but for governmental operational centre’s during these times of conflict. This is a fascinating insight into the turbulent history of this particular area of Laos.

The afternoon and evening are free for you to explore on your own around this quaint town.

Day 5 Sam Neua – Vang Vieng (B/LD)
After breakfast we depart from Sam Neua and head through the hills towards Vang Vieng, a provincial town located by a river. On the way we will visit Tham Pieu cave, infamous for the numbers of souls that unfortunately lost their lives, trying to escape the Indochina wars. Our journey continues on through mountainous scenery to Vientiane province and Vang Vieng a small rural village which is located in a stunning natural setting, with a backdrop of Limestone Mountains by the river. We arrive here late in the afternoon, to relax and unwind in the evening.

Day 6 Vang Vieng – Vientiane (B/L/D)
Our final day takes us from Vang Vieng, to the capital city of Laos, Vientiane. On the way we make one final cave visit to Tham Chang cave, have lunch on the way before arriving into the city, early in the afternoon and checking in to our hotel. After a short time to freshen up, we head out to discover Vientiane, visiting the main temples and colonial monuments that give this city and amazing architectural and cultural contrast.

Our tour will start with the thousands of miniature Buddha’s at Wat Sisaket, the oldest temple in the city and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo which used to house the Emerald Buddha, now in Bangkok, Thailand. We’ll then take a short ride across the city to see the National symbol of Laos which is the ‘That Luang Stupa ‘and stop at the imposing Patuxay Monument Laos Arch de Triumph a reminder of the French Colonial period. We’ll arrive back at our hotel late afternoon in time for you to relax before dinner and heading out to sample the colours and exotic smells of the night market, by the river.

Day 7 Vientiane (B)
Spend the morning at the Morning Market before checking out of your hotel for your onward departure whether by flight or via the friendship bridge, overlooking the Mekong River, to the gateway into Thailand.

We can arrange a combination tour with Thailand – Please ask.

Hotels (As a Guide Only) – subject t to availability

4*3*
Luang PrabangVilla Santi ResortSala Prabang
Xieng KhuangPhu Pha DengPhu Pha Deng
Sam NeuaLocal GuesthouseLocal Guesthouse
Vang ViengElephant CrossingElephant Crossing
VientianeTai Pan HotelRamayana Gallery

TOUR COST – All Tours are subject to an Acceptance Payment/Deposit of £200 per person(included in cost).

Cost per person on twin share basis as per itinerary

4*3*
No. of PersonsPrice per Persons (£ GBP)Price per Persons (£ GBP)
114751432
2994956
3886848
4784751
5719686
6697665
Single Supplement13087

Note Single Supplement applies to all Persons numbers unless private 1 person group

Valid from 1 October 2012 to 31 October 2013

Air fare in economy class for the sector shown in the above itinerary  is subject to change by the airline before booking.

International Flight is extra (ATOL then applies)

Payment

1.    On acceptance£200 per person, Acceptance Payment/Deposit (non refundable) payable to “S W & M Miller” by International Bank Transfer to UK Bank Account.

Your Contract for all tour arrangements is directly with Xplore-Asia to whom payment for the tour is made.

Your International Flight is payable direct to the Flight Consolidator (ATOL only applicable with flight)

Payment for flights included in the itinerary may be required at the time of flight confirmations.

  1. You pay 50% of the total ten weeks prior to arrival in Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam or Thailand, or on Acceptance if less than ten weeks – in GB £/USD/THB, by or International Bank Transfer  to our Partner Company

3       The balance of 50% of the total is payable in GB £/USD/THB

14 days before arrival in USD/THB by International Bank Transfer – or cash – subject to prior agreement

Credit Card

A credit card is not always acceptable and a charge applies in certain countries – please ask
WE RECOMMEND: Payment via our Currency Payment transfer system which gives a commercial rate and NO bank charges apply – http://www.thegroup4you.com/currencies/agent_converteria.php

Cancellation Charges

35 days prior to arrival a cancellation fee of US$200 per person will be applicable.
30 days notice of cancellation a fee of 25% of the total amount will be applicable.
25 days notice of cancellation a fee of 75% of the total amount will be applicable
Less than 25 days notice incurs the full amount.

Flight cancellation is not included in these charges

Acceptance Payment non refundable

Included in the Cost

  • Accommodation on a twin sharing basis in the hotels mentioned above or equivalent – subject to availability
  • Any single room subject to supplement shown.
  • Room and breakfast basis – or meals as indicated in the itinerary (B), (L) and (D)
  • Full board at Wildlife Park if applicable.
  • All transfers, sightseeing and excursions by air-conditioned vehicle where appropriate.
  • Domestic economy airfares, indicated in the itinerary, are subject to change
  • Services of an English speaking local guide (or a naturalist in National Parks)
  • Entrance fees at monuments and parks where applicable
  • Basic porterage at airports, rail stations and hotels (not tips).
  • All currently applicable taxes.
  • Where US$ are quoted the UK pounds price shown is for comparison only and is subject to change.

Excluded from the Cost

  • Expenses of a personal nature:  table drinks, laundry, telephone calls, Internet charges, mineral water, tips, shopping etc.
  • Any other meals or services not mentioned in the itinerary or ‘includes’ list.
  • Any international airfares to India and Asia
  • Any airport taxes where applicable in each country
  • Any subsequent increase in airfares, fuel costs, monuments/sightseeing fees.
  • Any other taxes subsequently introduced by Government, State or Tourist Ministry.
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visa Fees, if applicable, in any country – Cambodia Visa Fees on arrival $20 US per person – Phnom Penh Airport departure Tax $25 US per person
  • Any Christmas, New Year and Gala Dinners

General note:

All elements included in this quotation are subject to availability until the booking is made.  The hotels/ services as quoted may change when giving you the final confirmation, based on current availability.