Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Adventure Travel Holidays in “Laid-Back” Laos

The People’s Democratic Republic of Laos is a quiet place, where travelers can experience adventure travel holidays without having to fight with huge crowds or hurry from one hot spot to another. This small South Asian country is off the beaten track of the Asian tourist and is usually overlooked in the much sought-after attractions of Burma or Myanmar, Vietnam, Thailand, and the rest of the once Khmer dominated region.

However, don’t be fooled by it’s quietude – this ethnically diverse region, which has approximately 50 indigenous ethnic groups, and many different types of cultural, religious and natural beauty spots to offer the visitor, also has plenty of really interesting, heart racing Laos adventures outdoors to offer.

View  of Luang Prabang
Laos North - once the capital region of Laos, this is a mountainous area, with plenty of hill tribe villages, dense forests, and good trekking spots. The trail of Ban Nalan is a 2-day hike through splendid countryside; the nature reserve in Bokeo is the only remaining region of the elusive Gibbon.
Luang Prabang, the region’s capital city offers some of the best historic as well as nature sites, and set along the Mekong Delta, Houay Xa and Pakbeng is the perfect place to begin a trip down the Mekong River, whereas mountainous Muang Long, along the Myanmar border, offers spectacular hiking and trekking opportunities. The topsy-turvy terrain affords the adrenalin junkie many opportunities for the perfect Laos adventure vacation, including riding through the mountain forests and through the local villages with their slant eyed rosy cheeked inhabitants; trekking through the trees in search of an unexpected flower, fruit or animal; taking a deep dive into a clear mountain stream, and rafting in the rivers that originate in this mountain side.

Kuang Si Waterfall near Luang Prabang
Laos Central- is the modern central region of Laos, where Vientiane, its capital resides. This quiet, easygoing city, distinguished by it’s ‘smell the roses’ attitude, is absolutely different from most European, American, or even Asian capitals. The region combines the city of Vientiane, with rural villages such as Phon-Savan, Kha-Ek Tha, Vang Or Bhang Vieng and others, offering the adventure seeker alternating sites of a capital Asian city interspersed with the rural Asian countryside. This is a great region to just take a walk- do some shopping, eat some street food, and try out a rickshaw or other local conveyance and then just relax.

Enjoy the street food
Laos South- The mountainous terrain in this region is great for hiking, trekking and biking past the rolling countryside. The jungles offer travelers plenty of adventure with the chance to stay in a tree house overlooking a forest.

…and zip-lining to the jungle floor
Don’t forget to try out some of the local food – an adventure to the taste buds in itself, like sticky rice ‘Khao Niaow’, The La-Ap, the crab ferment curry, the fo or pho noodles, and the French fusion food, Khao Ji Phat Te. Drink some fermented rice spirits, and the coffee grown in the Laos South Bolaven plateau.

Yum! The food is great!
Laos is the perfect destination to experience Asia unspoiled. A taste of oriental leisure and oriental mystery, Buddhist glamour, quiet Asian serenity, and some unexpected thrills, make Laos the perfect destination for family adventures galore and memories to last a lifetime.

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