Duration: 14 days 13 nights

This 14-day travel is a poetic journey of grandeur, from the high valley of the Mekong, the crossroads for Indochinese mountaineers migrations, to the ancient Khmer capital of Angkor. With this incredible adventure, you will be completely amazed by the beauty of Laos and Cambodia. This trip will be highlighted by the descent of the Mekong River in the heart of unspoiled landscapes, as well as visiting the incredible sites of Angkor and Luang Prabang.


  • The beauty of Luang Prabang, the magnificent Kuang Si Falls, and the amazing Pak Ou Caves
  • The surprising capital city of Laos, Vientiane; and the bustling capital city of Cambodia, Phnom Penh
  • Pakse and its surrounding, and the wonderful 4,000 Islands region
  • The landscapes and the archeological remains of Kampong Thom and Kampong Cham
  • Siem Reap and the breathtaking sites of Angkor, highlighted by Angkor Wat,  Angkor Thom, Banteay Srei, and Beng Mealea


Day 1: Arrival in Luang Prabang (-)
Day 2: Luang Prabang – City Tour (B)
Day 3: Luang Prabang – Pak Ou – Kuang Si Falls – Flight to Vientiane (B)
Day 4: Vientiane – City Tour (B, L)
Day 5: Vientiane – Flight to Pakse – Bolaven Plateau – Tad Lo (B, L, D)
Day 6: Tad Lo – Paksong – Champasak Province (Wat Phu) – Khong Island (B, L, D)
Day 7: Khong Island – 4,000 Islands – Khong Island (B, L, D)
Day 8: Khong Island – Khone Phapheng – Stung Treng – Kratié (B)
Day 9: Kratié – Kampong Cham – Skuon – Kampong Thom (B, L)
Day 10: Kampong Thom – Siem Reap (B, L)
Day 11: Siem Reap – Angkor Thom & Angkor Wat by Tuk-Tuk (B, L)
Day 12: Siem Reap – Banteay Srei – Beng Mealea (B, L, D)
Day 13: Beng Mealea – Phnom Penh (B, L)
Day 14: Phnom Penh – City Tour – Departure (B, L)


Day 1: Arrival in Luang Prabang (-)

Upon your arrival at the airport, you will be picked up and driven to Luang Prabang.

Check-in and free during the evening.

Overnight at the hotel in Luang Prabang.

Day 2: Luang Prabang – City Tour (B)

You will have free time to visit Luang Prabang on your own. This town, the ancient capital of Xang Lane Kingdom, is today the religious center of the country. Today, Luang Prabang is listed as a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO.

Interesting sites to discover in Luang Prabang include:

  • Wat Visoun (or Wat Wisunarat): this temple dates from the 16th century and is today acting as a museum where you can find a lot of religious items
  • Wat Aham: dating from the 19th century, this temple is guarded by two tigers and by statues representing Ravana and Hanuman.
  • Wat Xieng Thong: largely recognized as the most elegant temple in the city, this 16th-century edification is remarkable due to its original architecture.
  • National Museum: the old Royal Palace now houses a collection of precious items that include the famous Pha Bang statue, a flamboyant 83-cm gold-alloy Buddha representation. 
  • Phu Si (or Phou Si): you will have to climb 328 steps to get to the top of this hill, from where you can enjoy a panoramic view on Luang Prabang.
In the evening, you will discover the night market, where you will find beautiful artisanal fabrics.

Overnight in Luang Prabang.

Day 3: Luang Prabang – Pak Ou – Kuang Si Falls – Flight to Vientiane (B)

Wake up early in the morning if you want to see the Tak Baat ritual, the morning alms round occurring every morning at dawn. Every morning (between 5:30am and 7:00am), Luang Prabang monks, cladded in their orange robes, line up in the streets with their black alms bowls. Sitting on the sidewalks, followers wait for each monk to pass by and collect sticky rice or other foods, and even money. By giving to the monks, the local people earn merit and blessings. 

After this daily ritual, you will have breakfast. Then, you will cruise on Mekong River while enjoying the beautiful countryside, until reaching Pak Ou. There, you will visit the famous Pak Ou Caves, home to thousands of gold-lacquered Buddha statues of different shapes and sizes. Then, you will board a boat for an excursion along the river, until reaching Ban Xang Hai, a village specializing in manufacturing a local rice whiskey.

In the afternoon, you will visit Ban Xang Khong and Ban Xieng Lek, villages specializing in weaving crafts. You will then continue until reaching Kuang Si Falls. During this journey, you will also go to ethnic minority villages: Ban Na Ouan (a H’Mong village), Ban Ou (a Laoloum village) and Ban Thapene (a Khmu village).

Later, you will be transported to the airport for your flight to Vientiane (QV 106: 5:05pm – 6:00pm). Upon arrival, you will be taken downtown.

Check-in at the hotel and overnight.

Day 4: Vientiane – City Tour (B, L)

After breakfast, you will meet the guide and start a city tour. First, you will visit Wat Si Saket, erected in 1818 by King Anouvong and designed according to the ancient Bangkok style. Then, you will go to Haw Pha Kaew, an old royal temple now acting as a museum, Wat Si Muang, the most revered temple in Laos, and Pha That Luang, the national monument of Laos symbolizing both Buddhism and Lao sovereignty. After that, you will discover the Central Market.

After your visit, you will be driven along the Mekong River until reaching Chao Anouvong Park, where you will enjoy a nice walk. A bronze statue of Chao Anouvong was installed in this park named after him. There, you will visit the night market, where you can shop for local snacks and products while also bargaining for other items such as wood sculptures or mountain clothes.

Overnight at the hotel in Vientiane.

Day 5: Vientiane – Flight to Pakse – Bolaven Plateau – Tad Lo (B, L, D)

You will leave Vientiane early in the morning for your flight to Pakse. Upon arriving at Pakse Airport, you will be picked up by our driver and transported to Tad Lo (120 km from the airport), located at the northeastern part of Bolaven Plateau.

The Bolaven Plateau is a region where tea, coffee, and cardamom plantations are widespread, among many other vegetable and fruit crops. Before reaching Tad Lo, you will go to several villages inhabited by Alak, Lawe, Katu, and Ya Heune ethnic minorities. You will also visit Ban Kok Phoung and Ban Pong-Tai villages, inhabited by the Ta-Oi and K-Lac minorities, who live in stilt houses. Later, you will visit Pha Xuam eco-tourist site. Upon reaching Tad Lo, you will check in a bungalow located in the forest and on Sexet River border.

Overnight at Tad Lo Lodge (www.tadlolodge.com).

Day 6: Tad Lo – Paksong – Champasak Province (Wat Phu) – Khong Island (B, L, D)

Today, you will go to Champasak Province, famous for being home to Wat Phu (also spelled Vat Phou), a pre-Angkorian site. Before getting to Wat Phu, you will stop at Paksong and visit several sites: coffee export center, Tad Fan Waterfall, and a traditional tea workshop at KM 33.

Later, you will finally arrive at Wat Phu, a structure that was assembled between the 9th and 13th centuries, before Angkor Wat in Siem Reap. You will also explore the Champasak Historical Heritage Museum. After that, you will continue your road up until reaching Khong Island.

Overnight at Pon River Guesthouse on Khong Island (standard room – www.ponarenhotel.com).

Day 7: Khong Island – 4,000 Islands – Khong Island (B, L, D)

Have a nice breakfast before going for a cruise on the largest portion of the Mekong River, where nearly 4,000 islets emerge during the dry season. This explain why this region is called “Si Phan Don” which means 4,000 Islands.

During this cruise, you will stop at Don Khone Island to visit the remnants of the French Colonial Era (which include a bridge and a railway, built by the French in order to circumvent the waterfalls), Liphi Waterfalls, and the local village. Later, you will return on Khong Island.

Overnight at Pon River Guesthouse on Khong Island (standard room – www.ponarenhotel.com).

Day 8: Khong Island – Khone Phapheng – Stung Treng – Kratié (B)

After having breakfast at the hotel, you will be driven to Khone Papheng, located at the extreme south of the country and near the border of Cambodia. This place is home to the biggest waterfalls of the Mekong in Laos. You will have time to admire this magical natural sight. Have lunch during the visit.

Later, you will go to the border between Laos and Cambodia. You will arrive to the international checkpoint between Nong Nok Khian and Pra Preng Krian, where you will exit Laos to enter Cambodia.

On the other side of the border, you will be welcomed by our guide and driver and driven to Stung Treng, then Kratié.

Check-in at the hotel.

Dinner on your own and overnight in Kratié.

Day 9: Kratié – Kampong Cham – Skuon – Kampong Thom (B, L)

After breakfast at the hotel, you will leave Kratié and drive through vast rubber tree plantations, which were established during the French Colonial era. You will have the opportunity to learn more about the process of extracting latex from the trees. Then, you will continue your road until reaching Kampong Cham. There, you will visit the Wat Nokor, an 11th-century sandstone temple with a modern pagoda housing a colorful courtyard. Inside the temple, you will see intriguing sculptures, and the striking contrast between its Hindu past and its Buddhist present makes this temple a unique structure in Cambodia.

After a nice lunch, you will continue your travel and head to Kampong Thom province. Before reaching Kampong Thom, you will stop at Skuon, a city also called “Spiderville” by locals: you will have the chance to try the local specialty, fried spiders.

Later, you will finally reach Kampong Thom. Check-in at the hotel.

Dinner on your own and overnight in Kampong Thom. 

Day 10: Kampong Thom – Siem Reap (B, L)

After a good breakfast, you will go to discover the pre-Angkorian capital of Isanapura, today mostly known under the name of Sambor Prei Kuk, which was the first real temple complex in South East-Asia. The brick-made temples of Sambor Prei Kuk are contrasting with their famous Angkor counterparts. For you, visiting these old buildings before going to Angkor will offer you a good overview of the evolution of Khmer architectural style throughout the centuries. At this site, you will visit the major temples, such as Prasat Tao, recognizable with its lions with beautiful manes, and Prasat Sambor, with its collapsed shrines. Then, you will go back to Kampong Thom.

Later, you will take the RN6 road and go northwest. This old road, used by the Khmer centuries ago, will lead you to Kampong Kdei, where you will visit a magnificent Angkorian bridge: the Spean Praptos (also called Kampong Kdei Bridge). This bridge is made of more than 20 arches and offers a sumptuous view of the surroundings. You will have lunch while on your way to Siem Reap, where you will arrive in the afternoon.

In the afternoon, you will discover one of the most ancient site of Angkor, the Hariharalaya, better known as the Roluos. You will start your visit with the Lolei Temple, which was originally built on an island located at the center of the Indratataka baray. This temple is housing complex sandstone carvings that are very-well preserved, and its huge main gate was carved from a single block of stone.

Afterwards, you will go to Preah Ko Temple (or “The Sacred Bull Temple”) – named after the Shiva’s mount, Nandi. This temple is mostly made of pre-Angkorian briques that are typical of sanctuaries dating from the Chenla Empire (and thus not made of sandstone, which was used for building temples later on). Originally filled with stucco and murals, the temple is still covered with old plaster, especially on the rear towers.

Finally, you will have the time to admire the first mountain temple ever built, the Bankong, whose architectural style later became the signature of the great Khmer rulers. This huge pyramid has at its four cardinal points of each level, bases that served for gigantic elephants. You will have the chance to climb to the top of the structure, from where the view of the surroundings is just purely amazing.

Overnight in Siem Reap.

Day 11: Siem Reap – Angkor Thom & Angkor Wat by Tuk-Tuk (B, L)

After breakfast, you will go to Angkor Wat, one of the most famous and incredible temple in the world. Considered the largest religious edification ever built, this gigantic temple is a model of symbolism and symmetry, and is the pride of the people. Erected in the 12th century under King Suryavarman II’s reign, it is widely recognized by experts as the eighth wonder of the world, and is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1992. Then, you will visit the Ta Prohm Temple, engulfed by tree roots, and the temples of Preah Khan (“Sacred Sword”) and Neak Pean.

Lunch at a local restaurant.

In the afternoon, you will discover the marvelous city of Angkor Thom, the masterpiece of the most powerful of all Khmer kings, Jayavarman VII. This ancient city is accessible at the South Gate by a finely crafted bridge representing a famous scene in Hindu mythology: the Churning of the Milk Sea.

You will start to discover Angkor Thom by visiting the Terrace of the Leper King. In the past, the royal crematorium was disposed on this gigantic platform. There, you will find a statue, which was before believed to be a representation of the Leper King but is in fact a representation of Yama, the God of Death. Next, is a visit to the Terrace of the Elephants, a location were shows, parades, and traditional sports events took place.

A little further south, you will visit the temple of Baphuon, one of the most beautiful temples of Angkor, dating from the 11th century and the reign of Uditayavarman. The temple of Baphuon has undergone a massive renovation that was take on by École Française d’Extrême Orient (French School of the Far East) and is again open to visitors today.

The highlight of your visit will be the discovery of the enigmatic Bayon Temple. Located in the center of Angkor Thom, it perfectly expresses the creative genius and the ego of the most ambitious of all the Khmer kings. Its 49 towers are all adorned with four faces of Avalokiteshvara (the Buddha of Compassion), whose resemblance to the sovereign itself is troubling.

Dinner and Overnight at the hotel.

Day 12: Siem Reap – Banteay Srei – Beng Mealea (B, L, D)

After breakfast at the hotel, you will go to Banteay Srei, a jewel of Khmer art. This small pink sandstone temple is the expression of refinement of the sculptural Angkorian art. The delicacy of its sculptures makes it one of the most remarkable site in all Angkor. Its name, which means “Citadel of Women”, derives from its delicate engravings, considered too subtle to have been made by men.

Originally believed to be dating from the latest period of the Angkorian era, the inscriptions found on this site suggest that this temple was built by a Brahman in 967. However, architects and historians agree that these inscriptions may actually date from a former structure that already existed on this same location during the construction of Banteay Srei.

Then, you will visit Banteay Samré, dating from the 12th century. Built by King Suryavarman II, to whom we also owe the phenomenal Angkor Wat, this temple was later renovated almost entirely. Pediments above the interior doors contain engravings considered among the most beautiful of all the similar sculptures dating from the Angkorian period.

Lunch at local restaurant.

In the afternoon, you will depart for the remote temple of Beng Mealea, a giant edification that has been nestled for centuries in the heart of Cambodia's forests. This is the most accessible of all the temples buried in the jungle, mirroring the beauty of Angkor Wat but today largely devoured by the voracious appetite of nature. Also built by King Suryavarman II (1113-1150), it is hard to exactly guess the shape of the monument from these ruins that are swallowed by the massive and invasive vegetation.

Overnight at a homestay in Beng Mealea.

Note: Two types of accommodations are available. Either at the village guesthouse, or a homestay. Shared bathroom and toilets. There is no A/C at the homestay, but there is a ceiling fan at the guesthouse. No hot water, but the water tank is naturally heated by the sunlight. The accommodation and the activities in the village are managed by a NGO responsible of a sustainable tourism project, in cooperation with the local community.

Day 13: Beng Mealea – Phnom Penh (B, L)

After breakfast at the homestay/guesthouse, you will depart for Phnom Penh (6-hour drive).

Lunch at a local restaurant.

In the afternoon, you will discover the Russian Market, one of the best places to shop in the capital. Known as Tuol Tom Pong Psar, it is also called "Russian Market" since the 1980s, when the Russians were the only tourists in Cambodia. This place is a giant bazaar where everybody bargains and where you can find almost everything you can imagine: local crafts, sculptures, silk and other textiles, clothing, footwear, computer software, music CDs, and DVDs.

After a good stroll in the narrow alleys of this market, you will head to the impressive Central Market, one of the most famous monuments in Phnom Penh. Built and opened by the French in 1937, this imposing Art-Deco-styled structure is known by the inhabitants as Psar Thmei (or "New Market"). The huge central dome allows the market to be naturally ventilated. There, you will also find an incredible diversity of items. However, don’t shy away from bargaining and trying to negotiate good prices, because the merchants in this market have a reputation of giving higher prices to tourists.

Finally, you will discover the Wat Phnom, the symbol of the city. Located on one of the few hills of the capital, the first pagoda was originally built in 1373 to house Buddha statues discovered on the Mekong River by a woman named Penh. This lady is at the origin of the city’s modern name: Phnom Penh, which literally stands for “Hill of Madame Penh”. The Wat Phnom is today a place of pilgrimage where Cambodian regularly gather and pray.

Dinner on your own and overnight in Phnom Penh.

Day 14: Phnom Penh – City Tour – Departure (B, L)

Have a good breakfast at the hotel. In the morning, you will visit the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh, home of the royal family and the symbol of the Kingdom. You will start your tour with the beautiful gardens of the palace, adorned with many species of tropical plants. Next, you will enter the Throne Hall, where official receptions are organized and where the coronation of the King took place. Then, you will go through the steel-made Napoleon III Pavilion, which was made as a gift by the French emperor to the Cambodian royal family in the 19th century.

After that, you will go to the Silver Pagoda, its name is explained by the presence of 5,000 silver tiles covering the soil. It contains the most extraordinary treasures of Cambodia such as a life-sized golden Buddha adorned with 9,584 diamonds, the largest weighing in at 25 carats. You will also see a delicate Emerald Buddha, made of Baccarat crystal, which presence explains why the temple’s Khmer name is Wat Preah Keo (“Temple of the Emerald Buddha”).

Then you leave the Royal Palace to visit the National Museum of Fine Arts in Phnom Penh, which houses the most fabulous collection of sculptures dating from the Angkorian period. This astonishing structure was built between 1917 and 1920, and possesses a beautiful courtyard with a lush garden surrounded by the unique art pieces of the museum.

Lunch at local restaurant.

In the afternoon, you will be transported to the airport for your departure flight.

Please contact us for more information about this tour or to customize this itinerary.


  • All transportation
  • Accommodation (hotels: twin room or double room + homestay in Beng Mealea)
  • All entrances fees
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B for breakfast, L for lunch, D for dinner)
  • English-speaking tourist guide
  • One small bottle of water on the bus everyday
  • Services fees

  • Personal expenses
  • Insurance
  • Drinks
  • Flight tickets
  • Visa to enter Laos and Cambodia

Other Tours:
XMCT04: Wonderful Expedition in Vietnam & Laos – 15 days