Discova Laos Destination Guide 2023/24

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Laos Destination Guide
Luang Prabang, Mekong River, Laos
Contents 07 08 10 14 15 16 18 24 30 36 40 41 Climate & Weather Things to Know Festivals Responsible Travel Initiatives What to Eat Explore Our Regions Luang Prabang Vang Vieng Vientiane Southern Laos Incentive Travel & Corporate Retreats Educational Opportunities Click on the icon to return to this page
Laos Destination Guide
Thanouvanh Souvannalith (Tia) Assistant Country Manager Laos

Sabaidee! My name is Tia and I’d like to welcome you to Laos, a country filled with natural beauty and rich cultural heritage.

From the lush green forests to the majestic Mekong River, there’s so much to explore and discover here. If your travellers are looking for some iconic landmarks to visit, be sure to check out the beautiful ancient city of Luang Prabang, with its stunning temples and colonial architecture. The Plain of Jars is another fascinating site, with its mysterious collection of large stone jars scattered across the landscape. For those seeking a bit of adventure, the Bolaven Plateau is a must-visit destination. This region is known for its picturesque waterfalls, lush coffee plantations, and beautiful natural scenery. And of course, the Mekong River is always a highlight, offering opportunities for boat rides and breathtaking views of the countryside.

Whatever your travellers’ interests may be, we hope they’ll enjoy their time in Laos and discover all that this amazing country has to offer!


Myanmar (Burma)


Luang Prabang


Vang Vieng

Muang Phon-Hong •


Phonsavan •

Xiengkhuang (The Plain of Jars)

• Nam Ngum Reservoir


Annamite Mountain

• Pakxan


Mekong River •

Gulf of Tonkin


Xe Banghiang River


• Sekong


Thakhek Wat Phou

Bolaven Plateau

• Attapeu

Muang Champassak

• Xe kong

4,000 Islands Si Phan Don

Mekong River •


Landlocked Laos has a tropical climate with the year being divided into green and dry seasons. May to October brings hot and humid weather as well as heavy rainfalls, especially in August and September. As the rain subsides at the end of October, temperatures slightly drop too. During this time Laos is its most pleasant with warm and dry weather until February, when temperatures start to rise again, making March and April the hottest months of the year. Whilst the change in degrees is minimal in the south, the mountainous north can get quite chilly during the winter months.

South China Sea

River Attapeu Sekong
Jan Destination Luang Prabang Vientiane Thakhek Feb Mar AprMay JunJul AugSep OctNov Dec Pakse Climate
Cold Temperatures can rise up to 30 ºC during the day but at night can plummet to 20 ºC or lower. Warm Temperatures usually between 22 ºC and 32 ºC Hot Temperatures rise above 32 ºC Rain Regular rainfall with high humidity and temperatures usually between 25 ºC and 33 ºC
* The actual climate of Laos’s Regions can vary a bit.
Averages in Laos

Things to Know



7 million

Capital City Time Zone



The Lao kip (₭ or LAK) is the country’s official currency. Other currencies often accepted in tourist areas are Thai baht and the US dollar. As the kip cannot be exchanged outside of Laos, it’s recommended to carry baht or US dollars and exchange at local banks or moneychangers. Some banks in Luang Prabang and Vientiane also accept other major foreign currencies, including UK pounds, euros and Australian dollars. Even though ATMs are common in major towns and tourist areas, beware that they have a low withdrawal limit, coupled with fees for every transaction.


Many travellers to Laos are eligible for a visa on arrival (VOA), which is available at the country’s three international airports as well as most land border crossings. The VOA is valid for a single entry of 30 days and may be extended by an additional 60 days. Alternatively, most nationalities are also eligible to apply for a tourist e-visa online to avoid long queues when entering the country. All visa applications require a passport with six months validity and an empty page, as well as two passport photos and visa fee in cash (amount depends on nationality). As travel policies change regularly, it’s best to check the official government website for the latest regulations before visiting.

Laos Destination Guide
Lao and numerous regional dialects and minority languages
GMT/UTC + 7h Indochina Time

Nong Khiaw, Laos


Experiencing local traditions

Lao New Year

Or Pi Mai Lao, is the country’s most important festival. The Buddhist holiday is celebrated over three days in mid-April, but festivities can last up to a week. During this time families come together, make merit and hold baci* ceremonies. An important element of Lao New Year is water. To wash away bad luck from the past, people clean their homes, pour scented water on Buddha images as well as the hands of monks and elders, and soak each other by the bucket-load.

Boun Bang Fai (Rocket Festival)

This is a popular festival that takes place in May, just before the start of the rainy season. Villagers launch homemade rockets into the sky to encourage the gods to bring rain for a good harvest.

Boun Khao Padabdin (Rice Festival)

Celebrated in September, this festival is all about giving thanks for the harvest and making offerings to the spirits.

Laos Destination Guide

Held in November, this festival is the biggest and most important in Laos. It celebrates the country’s national symbol, the golden stupa at That Luang, with processions, music, and dance.

That Luang Festival Hmong New Year

Celebrated by the Hmong ethnic minority, this festival takes place in December and features traditional dances, music, and colourful clothing.

These are just a few of the many festivals that can be experienced in Laos. Each festival is unique and provides a window into the country’s rich cultural traditions.

“One of the most unique traditions in Laos is a baci ceremony. An important element of our culture, this ritual is performed on special occasions, such as weddings, Lao New Year or when welcoming guests. Amongst other reasons, a baci is usually held to ‘call upon the spirits’ for blessing. Part of the ceremony includes tying a white string around a person’s wrist, which is meant to restore harmony and bring good luck.”

Laos Destination Guide
Luang Prabang, Laos

Sofitel Luang Prabang

Sofitel Luang Prabang, originally built as a French governor’s residence in the 1900s, is located in the quiet residential quarter of Ban Mano. It is just five minutes away from the city center and 10 minutes away from the Luang Prabang International Airport. Notable attractions in the vicinity include the Wat Mano Temple, the Royal Museum, Mount Phousi, the Wat Xiengtong and UXO Bomb Museum.


Responsible Travel Initiatives

Carbon Impact Correction

We partnered with Path Net Zero in early 2023 in order to provide our partners with an international, certified carbon emissions calculator. We can now measure the carbon emissions of the Discova tours you book for your travellers, and find alternative, lower-impact solutions.

Social Enterprises...

...are an easy and sustainable way to give back to local communities. In Laos, we work with a variety of social enterprises that help preserve traditional crafts, empower local artisans, create opportunities for rural communities and promote the conservation of elephants. By incorporating social enterprises into our supply chain, Discova contributed more than 10,000 USD of revenue last year.

Local Community

From service-learning projects for educational travel groups to homestays and cultural activities run by local hosts, our community-based tourism projects are designed to contribute to the sustainable development of the communities whilst allowing travellers to experience the local life in Laos.

Protecting Children

The ChildSafe Movement trains individuals and organisations and provides them with the tools to protect children and youth. Your travellers can rest assured that they follow child safeguarding standards when they travel with Discova, and that all of our global staff are ChildSafe trained, from our tour guides right to our top management teams.

Laos Destination Guide

What to Eat

Local flavours and delights

Khao Jee Sandwich

Available on almost every street corner, these scrumptious sandwiches are a delicious fusion of Laotian cuisine and its French colonial heritage. Cut open lengthwise, the massive baguettes are filled with lettuce, tomatoes, carrots and cucumbers, then topped with slices of pork and, most importantly, a thick layer of pâté!

Laap Meat Salad

Translated on most menus as simply a ‘meat salad’, laap (or larb) is one of the ultimate Laos food staples. Minced meat (favourites are chicken or duck) is fried with fish sauce, fresh herbs and lime juice, and mixed with toasted ground rice to give it its signature texture and flavour. Enjoy with sticky rice and fresh vegetables.

Khao Lam Bamboo Sticky Rice

This popular and interesting-looking street food is a dessert favourite among Laotians. Made of sticky rice, red beans coconut milk and sugar, the mix is roasted inside a thick bamboo tube. It’s a sweet and simple treat and a must-try dish if you get the chance!

“Luang Prabang is known for its unique cuisine and one of the city’s specialities I recommend trying is Or Lam. This popular stew is made with a variety of local spices, eggplants, grilled meat and tiny rice balls, resulting in a thick and comforting broth. The most important ingredient is sakhan, a spicy forest vine, which gives the stew its iconic peppery flavour.”

Explore Our Regions

Souphattra Luang Prabang

Located next to the UNESCO World Heritage town in Luang Prabang, Souphattra Hotel radiates all the understated elegance and charm of a colonial-era mansion, luxuriously appointed with refined furnishings throughout. Guests will enjoy its tranquil location, excellent facilities and authentic Lao hospitality.

Laos Destination Guide
Luang Prabang, Laos

Luang Prabang

Well-preserved examples of unique French-Indochinese architecture, over 33 golden temples and an exceptional, varied cuisine make Luang Prabang, without doubt, the country’s most enchanting town. Nestled at the confluence of the Mekong and Khan River, favourite daytrips include the stunning, turquoise Kuang Si Waterfall and the sacred, riverside Pak Ou Caves. Luang Prabang also serves as a great base for trekking adventures into the scenic highlands of the remote north, home to many hilltribe villages.

Laos Destination Guide
Alms Giving & Kuangsy HD Private Morning Tour 1 Pak Ou Buddha Cave Full Day Private Tour Morning Tour 3 • Kuang Si Waterfall Pak Ou Cave • • Tat Sae Waterfalls
Nahm Dong Park Wat Xieng Thong
Ban Thon
LAOS Luang Prabang
Merit Preparation Experience Half Day Private Tour
Luang Prabang, Laos

1. Alms Giving & Kuangsy HD Private Morning Tour

The day begins with an opportunity to observe a beautiful spiritual practice, with tavellers joining Luang Prabang’s locals in the morning for Sai Bat (morning alms). Sai Bat is a longstanding tradition in Laos Buddhist culture, and in observing it, the devoted offer food to monks throughout the city every morning. Afterwards, the journey continues to the stunning Kuang Si Falls, just less than an hour away. Known for their milky turquoise waters, there are multiple pools scattered throughout the area; the main pool has rope swings, and an overhanging tree limb from which visitors can jump into the water. There’s also a lookout point just a short hike away, offering breathtaking views of Lao’s countryside.

2. Merit Preparation Experience Half-Day Private Tour

A truly authentic, immersive journey, during which your travellers experience the traditional merit-making process. They will depart in the morning to the Phosy market and meet their local family, who will guide them in buying and preparing fresh market ingredients. Afterwards, they will head to the family’s home to cook typical Laos dishes, and then take these to a nearby Buddhist temple to offer them to the novices and reverred monks. A tour guide and the family host will lead the offering ceremony and afterwards, travellers can enjoy a lunch at back at the house to conclude their memorable morning.

Laos Destination Guide
The Discova Difference: An exploration of the special Luang Prabang morning market and atmosphere, discovering local lifestyles, unique desserts, fresh vegetables and the cultures of the H’Mong people. The Discova Difference: A priceless introduction to the local Buddhist faith of Laos, and the warm hospitality of its people.

3. Pak Ou Buddha Cave

Full-Day Private Tour Morning Tour

Situated on the Mekong River, just a short distance from Luang Prabang, Sacred Tham Ting Cave is home to thousands of Buddha statues which have been venerated for centuries. The number of Buddha images continues to increase as locals bring more Buddhas to the cave when they visit. To get to the cave, visitors can take a boat trip to the point where the Nam Ou River meets the Mekong, or drive to Xang Hai Village. At the village, visitors can witness the locals making ‘Lao Lao’ (fermented rice liquor), sample the drink, and purchase locally made handicrafts.

The Discova Difference: A beautiful scenic journey along the Mekong riverbanks and exploration of the Whisky Village to experience local lifestyles and unique Lao Lao liquor. Luang Prabang, Laos

Recommended Hotels in Luang Prabang

Burasari Heritage

Burasari Heritage invites visitors to enjoy a classic Indochinese experience in Luang Prabang, Asia’s most celebrated UNESCO World Heritage city. Located on a tranquil riverside lane, Burasari Heritage blends classic French colonial aesthetics with the warmth and coziness of traditional Lao teakwood houses.

Santi Resort & Spa

Mountains in the horizon with never ending rice fields at their doorstep and canals of lotus flowers, creeks and waterfalls stretch through the sprawling serene landscape of Santi Resort & Spa. The 12-hectare resort offers 67 elegantly designed rooms, bungalows and suites, each boasting a private balcony. Located a 15-minute drive from the centre of Luang Prabang, the resort offers a free form swimming pool, spa, steam sauna and gym for ultimate rejuvenation and relaxation.

Laos Destination Guide


Villa Chitdara

Villa Chitdara was built in 2007 by the Chitdaras, a Luang Prabang, Lao-French family. The property is located in the heart of Luang Prabang near the city’s main attractions, and features 25 rooms (15 superior and 10 deluxe).

Sala Prabang

Sala Prabang is a charming boutique style residence comprised of five original World Heritage Buildings, a traditional Lao Bungalow, and Luang Prabang style villas. iTS 36 rooms, which have been individually designed in the spirit of colonial elegance, feature a subtle blend of traditional and contemporary styles.


Luang Prabang View Hotel

Guests will feel like the kings and queens of the hill at the Luang Prabang View. Rooms present a throne overlooking the river valley, backed by a panorama of rugged mountains. Guests can capture the wide natural canvas during a swim in the hotel’s 31-metre-long infinity pool or savour the scene while they dine, either indoors or outside in the breeze. Meetings or events can be held in the hotel’s ASEAN MICE-award winning function room.


Muang Thong Hotel

Muangthong Boutique Hotel offers a special Lao architectural experience without sacrificing any essential facilities. Situated right on the edge of downtown, guests can experience both the tranquility of Luang Prabang as well as enjoy the advantages of being close to town. The Phousi Mountain, the Royal Palace, and numerous temples are just a stone’s throw away.


Vang Vieng

With sharp karsts rising from an emerald carpet of jungle and rice fields, Vang Vieng’s picturesque scenery looks like a place picked out of a fairy tale. Once notorious for its parties, the small town has been remarketing itself as an outdoor adventure destination. Several hours east lies the small town of Phonsavan, the gateway to the famous Plain of Jars. Sprinkled across the landscape, these mysterious giant stone jars are the source of various archaeological theories and local lore.

Laos Destination Guide
Discover Vang Vieng Full-Day Shared Tour
The Vang Vieng Cycling Loop Full-Day Shared Tour 3 •
• Pha ViewNgern Point •
• Sengsavang • Viengkeo Blue Lagoon Kaeng Nyui Waterfall Nam Song River LAOS Vang Vieng
Vang Vieng Cave & Kayak Explorer Full-Day Shared Tour 2
Vang Vieng, Laos

1. Discover Vang Vieng Full-Day Shared Tour

This day tour takes travellers to several sites in the vicinity of Vang Vieng and introduces novices to the thrill of cave explorations. This rich experience gives them plenty of opportunies to gain insight into the way of life of Lao people, before concluding the trip with kayaking on the peaceful Nam Song River.

2. Vang Vieng Cave & Kayak Explorer Full-Day Shared Tour

A truly authentic, immersive journey, during which your travellers experience the traditional meritmaking process. They will depart in the morning to the Phosy market and meet their local family, who will guide them in buying and preparing fresh market ingredients. Afterwards, they will head to the family’s home to cook typical Laos dishes, and then take these to a nearby Buddhist temple to offer them to the novices and reverred monks. A tour guide and the family host will lead the offering ceremony and afterwards, travellers can enjoy a lunch at back at the house to conclude their memorable morning.

Laos Destination Guide

3. The Vang Vieng Cycling Loop Full-Day Shared Tour

Invite your travellers to explore the most distinctive caves in the area with a stunning cycling route across rice fields and a wade through rivers amidst the impressive limestone mountains of Vang Vieng. Amidst the explorations they can relax in a blue lagoon surrounded by these towering monoliths, before ending the day with a cycle back to Vang Vieng in time for sunset.

Vang Vieng, Laos

Recommended Hotels in Vang Vieng

Riverside Boutique Resort

Ideally located on the bank of the Nam Song River, just 90 minutes from Vientiane, Riverside Boutique Resort is a country hotel with charm and character. Thirty-four artfully designed guestrooms and suites are laid out around one of the most inviting swimming pools to be found in Laos. This award-winning hotel offers stunning views of the surrounding limestone mountains and is a perfect base for discovering the unique charms of Vang Vieng.

Amari Vang Vieng

At Amari Vang Vieng, travellers can expect a warm welcome and a home-from-home stay. The hotel is conveniently located in the vibrant centre of town, with shopping and entertainment nearby, and Vientiane International Airport just 1.5 hours away. Guests can enjoy modern rooms with Laotian inspired décor and floor-to-ceiling windows that let in an abundance of natural daylight.

Silver Naga

Ideally situated on the riverbank in the heart of town, Silver Naga welcomes guests to experience magnificent mountain views and warm hospitality. With a focus on ethical tourism, the environment and excellent service, the hotel offers the perfect combination of luxury, convenience, and natural beauty.

Laos Destination Guide
Vang Vieng, Laos


Those who have visited Vientiane in the past will notice the massive change its undergone with new developments popping up all over the city, but to everybody else, the country’s largest city still feels more like a sleepy town than the capital city. Nestled on a bend of the Mekong River and with just a few sites of note, days here are best spent at the city’s many excellent cafes, strolling through markets and enjoying sunset drinks along the riverfront.

Laos Destination Guide
• Phuo Khao Khouay National PArk • Buddha Park Wat Si Saket • Mekong River • LAOS THAILAND Vientiane Vientiane City Half-Day with Guide Private Tour 1 Orchid Hike at Phou Khao Khuay Park Full-Day Private Tour 3 Vientiane City Tour & Buddha Park Full Day Private 2
Pha That Luang, Vientiane

1. Vientiane City Half-Day with Guide Private Tour

Vientiane is home to numerous temples, including the Wat Ong Teu, Wat Si Saket, Wat Phra Keo, Wat Si Muang, Wat Mixai and That Dam. Visiting the plethora of temples can become overwhelming, so we recommend picking just two or three to explore in detail, and admiring the rest from the outside. Wat Si Saket, the oldest temple in the city, is especially impressive. The temple itself is beautiful, but the surrounding cloisters are even more remarkable. There are 2,000 Buddha sculptures displayed in a covered walkway around the temple.

2. Vientiane City Tour & Buddha Park Full Day Private

The Pha That Luang, or “Great Stupa”, is the national symbol of Laos. Visiting the golden building in Vientiane is a must-see for anyone who wants to take in the city’s highlights. Inside, visitors can learn about the city and the stupa. Nearby, the Wat That Luang Tai houses a large, reclining golden Buddha. For a unique experience, we then head to the Buddha Park, 25km outside of the city, which houses a collection of Buddha and Hindu god statues in all shapes and sizes. Built in the 1960s by a priest, it merges Buddhism and Hinduism teachings.

Laos Destination Guide
The Discova Difference: A discovery of the unique culture and history of Laos, with a glimpse into local life in the capital city, Vientiane, including a visit to the iconic Patuxai Monument. The Discova Difference: Visitors experience the best of Laos in its capital city by exploring the Triumphal Arches of Laos, Patuxai Monument as well as the oldest temple in Vientiane.

3. Orchid Hike at Phou Khao

Khuay Park Full-Day Private Tour

A memorable journey through the remote jungles of Laos with an orchid hunting expedition! Travellers enjoy a full-day tour from Vientiane, trekking through lush forests and marvelling at the various orchids found in Ban Hatkhai in the Phou Khao Khouay National Protected Area. Here they’ll discover a stunning variety of contrasting landscapes, from evergreen dipterocarp forest to large pine tree stands, bamboo groves, sandstone plateaus, and rugged mountain slopes. This trip is perfect for those who love nature!

The Discova Difference: Nature-lovers experience the beauty of Laos’ unique ecological wonders by exploring four stunning waterfalls deep in the jungle of Phou Khao Khouay with our knowledgeable guides. Patuxai, Vientaine, Laos


Salana Boutique Resort

The Salana Boutique hotel has a Lao contemporary style which is complemented by real timber wood furnishings, exuding a true sense of comfort and class. Guests can take pleasure and comfort in experiencing the hotel’s perfect blend of outstanding service level and attention to detail.


Settha Palace

In the heart of bustling Vientiane stands a remarkable hotel. Built in the early part of the last century, circa 1932, and painstakingly restored to its former imperial glory, the Settha Palace Hotel serves as a testament to the long lost era of classical elegance, gracious service and French colonial charm.

Laos Destination Guide
Recommended Hotels in Vientiane



Lao Poet La Seine Hotel

Whether for business or leisure, Lao Poet offers guests sophisticated relaxation in the heart of Vientiane. Luxurious rooms and suites provide a perfect escape for the weary traveller. Mrs. Lamphoune Voravongsa, creator of Satri House in Luang Prabang, has crafted this unique hotel with the elegance and comfort of 1930s Indochina and modern touches. Guests can look forward to a warm welcome and an original, distinct hospitality experience.

Inspired by a love of fine wines, the Parisian art de vivre (the art of living) and the warmth and beauty of Lao culture, La Seine reflects Vientiane’s rich French colonial history and enduring, romantic charm. Luxury boutique accommodations featuring daring modern Art Deco interiors, artistic handmade Lao fabrics and a sublime romantic atmosphere make this an ideal retreat for winelovers, romantics and stylish travellers.

Golden Wat Pha That Luang, Vientiane, Laos

Southern Laos

With its renowned coffee plantations and several spectacular waterfalls, the verdant Bolaven Plateau is one of the highlights of southern Laos. Covering parts of four different provinces, the cool highlands are best reached from Pakse, the region’s biggest city. An hour south from Pakse lies Wat Phu Champasak, an ancient Khmer temple, but follow the Mekong to the country’s southernmost tip and you’ll find the laidback river archipelago known as Si Phan Don (or 4000 Islands).

Laos Destination Guide
• Bolaven Plateau • Si Phan Don • Xe Pian National Bio-Diversity
Wat Phou Temple
Mekong River
Bolaven Plateau Full-Day Tour Private
4000 Island & Khonephapheng Waterfall Full-Day Private Tour
Wat Phou Temple Full Day Private Tour Bolaven Plateau, Laos

1. Bolaven Plateau Full-Day Tour Private

The landscape of the Bolaven Plateau is characterised by coffee and tea plantations and dramatic waterfalls. An expanse of highland from an ancient volcano, the Bolaven Plateau is a haven for lush vegetation. Here your travellers will explore the area’s unique blacksmith villages, enjoy incredible scenery and a variety of teas and coffees. They will also come across various ethnic groups who inhabit the area, such as the Alak, Katu, Ta-oy, and Suay.

2. Wat Phou Temple Full Day Private Tour

Wat Phu is an ancient ruined temple complex located at the base of Mount Phou Khao, 40km outside the town of Pakse. The temple was originally built by the Khmer Empire and dedicated to Lord Shiva, and serves today as a centre of Buddhist worship. Its striking resemblance to Angkor Wat is evident, but the smaller Wat Phu is lesser-known and therefore significantly quieter. Travellers climb up the age-old stone steps to find a modest temple with statues of Buddha and crumbling carved stones. Visitors can relax under the shade of green trees on the natural terrace, admiring the surrounding landscapes and the mighty Mekong River.

Laos Destination Guide
The Discova Difference: A discovery of both the breathtaking natural scenery and the nuanced way of life in southern Laos. The Discova Difference: Wat Phousalao is the highest temple in Pakse and offers magnificent panoramic views of the city.

3. 4000 Island & Khonephapheng

Waterfall Full-Day Private Tour

4000 Islands, or Si Phan Don, is a collection of islands in the Khong District of Champasak Province near the Laos-Cambodian border. Only 33 islands are actually inhabited, while some of the smaller ones are submerged during the rainy season. This full-day tour introduces travellers to an old French colonial-era railway, the largest waterfall in Southeast Asia, and Don Khone Island (through an exciting tuk tuk ride).

4000 Islands, Laos

Incentive Travel & Corporate Retreats


Vientiane is known for its laidback atmosphere and it’s true that life moves slowly here, attracting those who enjoy a peaceful, relaxed vibe. Exploring centuries-old Buddhist temples is one of the most popular things to do in the Lao capital, which travellers can do on foot, bicycle or tuk-tuk.

Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang is located in northern Laos at the heart of a mountainous region. The town is built on a peninsula formed by the Mekong and the Nam Khan River. Mountain ranges (in particular the Phou Thao and Phou Nang mountains) encircle the city in lush greenery.

Luang Prabang is exceptional for both its rich architectural and artistic heritage that reflects the fusion of Lao traditional urban architecture with that of the colonial era. Its remarkably well-preserved townscape reflects the alliance of these two distinct cultural traditions.

Laos Destination Guide

Educational Opportunities

We ensure our innovative range of themed programs and educational tours for adults and students make a positive impact and provide opportunities for inspiration, exploration and learning.

In partnership with the local community, district authority and village chiefs, Discova’s educational travel experts have set up a community-led tourism project in the Seuang River community in northern Laos’ Pak Xeng District. Located about two

hours northeast from Luang Prabang, the mountainous area is among the poorest districts in the country, with little access to education. By setting up this initiative, we offer educational groups access to a range of service-learning experiences and immersive activities that promote cultural exchange whilst ensuring the sustainable development of the community. All groups are accompanied by Discova’s facilitators, providing translation services and cultural guidance.

Community Health Promotion Service Learning

In partnership with agencies, universities and local health authorities, Discova provides clinical placements for faculty-led medical students and professionals in the Seuang River community. Mobile clinics are conducted to control, protect and promote health through check-ups, vaccinations and health education. Medical groups work in the clinics to treat ailments under supervision of the local health care practitioners.

Educational travel groups can take part in a range of building projects which have been carefully selected through a community needs analysis. At the Seuang River community, groups have supported the community by helping in the construction of family homes, classrooms and teacher dormitories, as well as water tanks and sanitation facilities. Discova’s educational experts provide well-informed project management, ensuring groups contribute effectively to the development of the communities and donations benefit the projects directly.

Cultural Immersion

From gaining a different perspective to being adaptive to different environments – there’s no better way to learn about a different culture than by immersing yourself into the community life. At the Seuang River community, educational groups can experience local lifestyles through homestays and a variety of cultural activities, that range from cooking classes and bamboo raft building to hands-on craft workshops and countryside hikes. The residents have been trained and financially supported to become service providers, creating additional revenue streams for the host communities.

Discova’s community-led project in the Seuang River Community has recently been opened for FIT travellers. From planting rice and harvesting vegetables, independent travellers get the opportunity to gain insights into the life of locals in the Laotian countryside and, in turn, contribute to the livelihood of the community.

Laos Destination Guide


Luang Prabang

Ban Phonpheng, Phonpheng New Road, House No 05/206, Luang Prabang District, Luang Prabang Province


Toong Royal Square, 3rd Floor, Room 42, Samsenthay Road, Nongduang Nuea Village, Sikhottabong District, Vientiane Capital, Laos

Visit our Laos destination website section.


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