We believe that travel should entail an exchange of knowledge and perspectives, a sharing of wealth, and a genuine appreciation of Laos's beautiful natural environment. This philosophy underpins the heart and soul of our style of travel. We recognise that poorly planned itineraries or poorly informed tourists contribute less to cross-cultural understanding and less to the livelihoods of local people.
This journey represents the highlights of Laos, in a way which brings attention to some important cultural and developmental issues. At the start of our journey you take part in a 'baci' welcome ceremony. This traditional ceremony takes marks the beginning of your holiday and takes place in the home of a Lao family. Your small group will have the chance to interact with a local family, before discovering the elegant Buddhist monasteries of riverside Vientiane.
In the World Heritage town of Luang Prabang our low impact walking tour takes us to some of the town’s 32 wats and monasteries, and past rows of atmospheric French colonial architecture. During time with a Buddhist monk we learn about the fascinating Buddhist religion, and in the evening of day three we take part in a cooking class which aims to promote an awareness of traditional Lao food.
From Luang Prabang we also travel to the picturesque Kuang Si waterfalls, one of the many beautiful waterfalls near Luang Prabang, and to the Cave of 1,000 Buddhas’ at Pak Ou, and we spend time at the small Arts and Ethnology Museum and gain an insight into the lifestyles of some of the 34 ethnic groups which make up the population of Laos.
On this journey our local guides are trained to share their knowledge of cultural and other local issues in a balanced, informative way; you will meet two local guides from different provinces in Laos. They will share real experiences from their own lives and insights into their family life, influences and beliefs. This is what motivates our guides; not shopping commissions. A western tour leader will also accompany your small group - we believe that this pairing with a local guide provides a balanced and informed perspective on the culture of a country and of the region of Asia. In your free time you will be encouraged to make a donation to the infant book publisher ‘Big Brother Mouse’, which we support, and you will also be encouraged to read our 'Tread Lightly' booklet, distributed on arrival in the 'Land of a Million Elephants.'