Laos and Vietnam overland tour
Description of Laos and Vietnam overland tour
This tour combines a chance to explore one of South East Asias best kept secrets Laos with an intriguing look at Vietnam's lesser-known north. You'll experience travel by longboat and motorbike, vibrant riverside markets and homestays with local families. The trip also offers the wonderful architecture and atmosphere of Hanoi, plus a chance to learn about craft traditions include silk weaving.
You'll experience at first hand the way of life in remote hill villages alongside encounters with fascinating local flora and fauna in some of Asia's least-explored nature reserves like the Phou Louey National Protected Area. Swim in the turquoise pools beneath the Kuang Si Waterfall and visit a refuge for the region's endangered Sunbears.
The region also provides a fascinating weave of history, from 500-year-old Luang Prabang temples to thought-provoking reminders of recent conflicts, including the former Indochina war caves of Viengsay.
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PlanetWhen travelling in a country such as Laos that has very few tourists, there is an additional responsibility on us as a company and on our clients visiting the country to do everything possible to minimise our impact.
We do everything possible to reduce our waste while travelling, using local cafes and restaurants. We also work extremely closely with our locally owned suppliers to inform and educate their staff about a range of issues, including litter and waste disposal, and the recycling of material. Clients are advised to bring their own water bottles rather than purchase plastic.
Our visit to Nam Et-Phou Louey National Protected Area supports the local rangers. Clients receive a briefing by park staff about the on-the-ground efforts in protecting tigers and their prey.
Wherever possible we use environmentally friendly local accommodation. If this is not possible we make every effort to alert the management of the accommodation in question to ways of improving their service with the environment in mind. Many of the hotels and lodges we use are in extremely remote areas and are therefore almost entirely self-sufficient, using local sources of food, labour and construction materials.
PeopleOur very small groups and limited departures in Laos means that our impact both cultural and environmental on the areas that we visit is small and truly sustainable. All of the guides we use are local, and most have been working with our local team in a full time role for a number of years, rather than just as seasonal jobs.
We visit a number of local villages, purchasing goods locally and supporting their efforts to remain independent. With the help of a local guide and an audio tour, we travel to Mai Chau to some of the nearby caves to see how the Lao Peoples Revolutionary Party lived during the war We also visit Son Koua Village; an ethnic Khmu village were we will be welcomed by the village guide and boatmen. They take us on a short tour of the village we learn about the animist tradition of appeasing the village spirit
All of our trips include visits to local markets, craft shops and fairs. As well as being good for the local economy this gives travellers to the country a real feel for the life and culture of Laos.