"... by the Song river, in the shade of mountains" Top 5 Page for this destination Vang Vieng by picek

Vang Vieng Travel Guide: 166 reviews and 336 photos

go or not?

YES - Vang Vieng is backpackers haven but you can do lots of things avoiding the crowds; cycle for 10 minutes and you'll find quiet and peaceful places with a few visitors. Cycle further and you'll be almost alone in breath taking landscape. There are several enclaves for drinking and party which are all very close to the town and where you can go for your piece of fun, tubing, chill out and/or meeting other foreigners. If you want you can always avoid them and see what is to see around VV.
In and around Vang Vieng you've got a lot of great restaurants having local or foreign foods so it makes it somewhat great place for exploring Lao cusine as well as sample fine foreign ones.

If you want to see caves there are plenty of them near - some over the bridge and another if you go further along rd. 13 and exit to earthern paths leading to the foot of mountian range. Caves are trully plenty and most charge 10 000 KIP for entry - beware: can be slippery inside and bring very good torch. See bats :) Only if you're experienced caver enter caves alone but always with proper equipement. People have died - local and foreign - doing it without serious thought!

it doesn't cost much but...

... you can try this:

There are watermelons by the Road 13, sold by road stalls not that far. 4 of us were eating 10-kg heavy one. Very nice thing! Oranges growing in region are as well tasty.

To see best dried fish in Laos you can go to Tha Heua by the largest (and artificial) lake in the state which is only 25 km from VV and most buses stop there for snacks and fish shopping.

The best way to get around is by bycicle. Soon you'll be on your own. Prices for a daily rent are 10 000 KIP, for motorbike 40 000 KIP on.

If you're lucky you'll see some local festivals and then there will be lots more locals than usually. I once saw rocket festival here which was amazing - with large home made rockets, ornamented with colorful details and tapes, guys wearing funny stuff and ... lots of smoke left behind disappering rocket... nice to see.

VV kids:

Kids here are funny - they often say Give me one dollar and then happily stretch their hands towards 'falang' who enter their quiet villages under the shade of palm trees.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:scenery - mountain, river, caves+++ delicious foods
  • Cons:mass tourism in Laos look like this
  • In a nutshell:mass tourism vs. landscape
  • Last visit to Vang Vieng: Dec 2012
  • Intro Updated Apr 4, 2013
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Reviews (16)

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Comments (2)

  • DennyP's Profile Photo
    Oct 24, 2009 at 9:15 PM

    Hi Vesna...great tips on Vang Vieng..I am looking forward to returning to Laos..cheers Denny

  • planxty's Profile Photo
    Jun 11, 2009 at 6:54 AM

    Dear Vesna, what a very useful page on Vang Vieng. It is a few years since I was there, it is a pity is has become so built up. fergy.

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