Laos is by far one of the least known countries of Indochina. It does not have the cultural assets of neighbouring Vietnam and no fascinating structures like the temple complex of Angkor Wat in Cambodia. But the natural settings are stunning and its little villages authentic. Besides Laotians, there are 68 diverse and colourful mountain peoples and ethnic groups. Luang Prabang prides itself on being on the UNESCO World Heritage List and Vientiane, as a capital, is amongst the most laid back capitals in the world. It hardly compares to any other. Both Luang Prabang and Vientiane are located on the banks of the majestic Mekong River and so their romantic setting booms. What could be more delightful than watch the sun set over a rolling river with a drink at hand?
- Dress code:Laotians love to dress up for formal occasions. Being dressed properly shows respect for the host and the event. A tourist with unwashed hair, perspiring and dressed in shabby clothes cannot count on any respect. Short pants are no problem in-house, but in public wearing shorts is frowned upon. Keep this in mind when visiting temples, even on a hot day.
- patting someone’s head is unacceptable in Laos, even if done to kids. The crown chakra resides in the head and is as such the place of the soul and the ’highest’ link to the Universe.
- Sitting: Make sure your feet never point in the direction of someone. The feet are the opposite of the head and are mostly unclean and in contact with dirt.
- Keeping temper:losing your patience, getting angry or having a row in public means "losing face". Confrontations are preferably avoided in order not to embarrass others. Criticism is often experienced as a personal offense.
Hotels & Meals
In Laos sticky rice (khao niao) is very popular. Laotians have traditionally eat with their (right) hand (s). If there is cutlery on the table, it is usually limited to a spoon and a fork. Slide the food with your fork onto your spoon and put the spoon in your mouth (never the fork). Chop sticks are used for eating feu or any other noodle soup. There is no fixed order in serving dishes.
Laap: finely chopped mince meat or fish spiced up with herbs such as coriander and mint.
Tarn rnaak hoeng: Unripe papaya salad with peanuts, garlic, tomatoes and red pepers mixed in.
Khao nio ping: grilled sticky rice.
Ping pa: grilled fish stuffed with lemon grass, garlic, onion and salt.
Cheo pa duk: is a dip sauce made from fish fillet, finely ground eggplant and a mixture of garlic, peppers, shallots and shrimp pasta.
Khao Phoen: is a coconut-fried rice vermicelli (served cold) with a variety of raw vegetables bathing in coconut milk and flavored with buffalo meat, red peppers and unripe papaya.
Feu: : is a noodle soup available throughout Laos and is often eaten as breakfast or lunch.
Drinks: coffee and tea (often Nescafé) is available almost everywhere, as well as soft drinks and fresh fruit juices. The syrup-like Laotian coffee is self-made and tastes nice. Try the famous Laotian ice coffee! Delicious !
(source : Koning Aap)
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The tours in our brochures are just a few examples of travel itineraries possible. Our trips can be tailored to suit your specific needs. If you want to book a specific destination or combine it with a mini-tour then we will gladly make you a tailor-made offer. For a personalised day-by-day program please contact our destination experts.
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- All Belgian nationals travelling on a Belgian passport (children and babies included) must be in possession of an international e-passport (electronic), containing min. 2 blank pages, valid for at least 6 month at the date of your arrival. Laos requires a visa, which you can obtain at the border (30 USD - update 22OCT2018) or at arrival at Pakse, Vientiane and Luang Prabang. Make sure you carry one passport photo in colour.
- Travelers with a non-Belgian nationality and/or travelers travelling on a foreign passport are invited to spontaneously report this matter to the Connections travel consultant and shall contact their respective embassy (s) or Consulate (ate) to obtain the latest updates concerning all current travel requirements and documents.
No mandatory vaccinations required. To verify the latest updates on health requirements, please surf to http://www.itg.be
+5 h (summer); +6 h (winter)
Lao Kip (LAK) 100.000 LAK = 10.30 EUR & 1 EUR = 9710.47 LAK (01/05/2020)
There are no coins in circulation. Credit cards are mainly accepted in top hotels and restaurants in Vientiane and Luang Prabang. In these cities you can also pin. The north and the Laos' countryside have hardly any if any ATMS. It is good to carry cash euros, and even better US dollars or Thai baht. Dollar bills must be new and non-creased. The latest series (old dollar bills, or folded / crooked bills cannot be exchanged). You get better exchange rates for 50 and 100 dollar bills. Smaller dollar bills are useful for souvenirs.
In modest restaurants a tip is not common. You do give a tip to the bell man and room personnel at hotels. Local guides and drivers appreciate a tip too.
The Laos rainy season lasts from May to October with occasional heavy showers. The countryside is very green then and the rice paddies look fabulous. The dry season falls between November and the end of April. March and April are the warmest months of the year with temperatures well above 30 ° C. At high altitudes, however, it may still freeze at night.
Average Temperature (°C):
|Ho Chi Minh
A Taste of Laos
- Luang Prabang
- Vang Vieng
This individual programme is the ideal introduction to Laos for first-timers. You explore the highlights of the capital Vientiane, comb the historical city of Luang Prabang listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site and you will try your hand at speleology in the caves of Vang Vieng. A rich and varied circuit that you will not readily forget. Guaranteed!
- 8 days
- Bolaven Plateau
- Khong Island
- 4000 Islands
Do you have ample time and curiosity left to extend your 'Best of Vietnam and Laos' trip? Why not book our extension to Southern Laos and experience more absolute highlights this Asian pearl has to offer. Your flight from Vientiane to Pakse is included. So, is there any excuse not to go and discover the overwhelming nature scenery?
You reside on Khong Island in the middle of the Mekong River and discover the region from here. On your active programme: the impressive Tad Fane twin waterfalls, a longtail boat trip through the 4000 islands of the Mekong river, the awe-inspiring Khonephapeng Falls, which have been compared to Niagara Falls and a bike ride on Don Khone island to witness the French attempts to bypass the Mekong's rapids. A special extension that will linger in your memory.
- 4 days