Top things to do on 1 day in Vang Vieng:

  • Explore the majestic caves
  • Fly in a hot air balloons
  • Go kayaking, tubing on the river
  • Refresh by bathing in the Blue Lagoon
  • Go climbing and bicycling

Vang Vieng is one of the most unique cities that should not be missed during your travel to Laos. This city is certainly a must-visit for lovers of sports activities in the heart of nature and thrilling treks. 1 day in Vang Vieng is a good idea to better understand the culture and lifestyle of Laotians. Here are the best destinations and activities to pass the time during your stay in Vang Vieng.

1 day in Vang Vieng

Poetic scenery in Vang Vieng

Best Time to Visit Vang Vieng

Vang Vieng has a savannah climate with dry winter according to the Köppen-Geiger classification. The summers are much rainier than the winters in this region. The average annual temperature is about 23.2 ° C. The average annual rainfall is about 2332.1 mm.

In short, the time for traveling to Vang Vieng is from January to April and from October to December.

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Transportation for 1 Day in Vang Vieng

By minibus

This city can be reached either from Luang Prabang or from Vientiane by minibus.

You can go from Luang Prabang for 100,000 kips (a sum nonetheless – $11 – for a not so long ride) by minibus. It will take you a little over 4h, including a break of 1/ 2h.

By minivan

As you may have guessed by reading the paragraph above, taking the minivan to Vang Vieng is much faster than taking the bus.

In reality, mini-vans often operate according to their own schedules. Also, it is a fact that minivans are much more affordable than VIP buses.

You can buy your ticket through your guest house or hotel, the latter including a tuk-tuk ride from your residence to the bus station. Besides, you will not have to worry about having to find the way yourself.

Things to Do for 1 Day in Vang Vieng

1. Visit the caves

The spectacular karst formations of Vang Vieng contain a large number of impressive caves. Cave exploration is also one of the major tourist attractions of Vang Vieng. The magnificent Tham Xang cave or elephant cave is worth spending time to explore.

2. Fly in a hot air balloon

To have an even more spectacular overview, take the height and enjoy a hot air balloon flight, a unique experience to live for on your Indochina discovery!

Hot air balloon flying in Vang Vieng, Laos

Hot air balloon flying in Vang Vieng, Laos

You can admire the panoramic view of the beautiful landscapes. This is an adventure at a very reasonable price that allows you to fly over Vang Vieng and admire majestic scenery. Three are incredible karst mountains, caves and rivers that run between beautiful rice fields.

3. Kayak on the Nam Song River

If the pipes do not interest you, but you are passionate about water sports, consider kayaking and canoeing! Kayaking down the Nam Song River is a very popular activity in Vang Vieng and you will understand why this activity is pleasant.

It is easy to hire a kayak to navigate the river for hours or a full day. You can admire the beauty of the caves while kayaking.

While the kayak trip allows you to experience the charming river landscape of Vang Vieng, the canoe safely gives you the scenic trip along the river.

Indeed, kayaking the Nam Song River allows you to admire the beauty of the countryside of Vang Vieng, including its fabulous limestone landscapes at the foot of which sneaks the river.

4. Bath in the Blue Lagoon

This destination is an extraordinary attraction to give you an ideal feeling in Vang Vieng. You can choose to travel by bike, on foot or by motorbike to admire a beautiful rice paddies campaign stretching to infinity.

Coming to this paradise, tourists can relax and cool off, especially during the hot afternoons. More and more dramatic photos on Blue Lagoon have been shared, and all agree on its persistent blue charm.

Go to the blue lagoon preferably in the morning or at the end of the day to avoid the crowds.

5. Go climbing

Tourists can enjoy climbing all year round in the grand limestone karst landscape at Vang Vieng. Several routes have been opened on sometimes vertiginous walls.

To ensure safety, you are advised to work with the Adam Climbing School founded in 2004 and dedicated to offering climbing courses for beginners and the experienced. You can register during a half-day, full day or several days. An outdoor activity out of the ordinary to discover!

6. Take a bike ride

If you want to explore the beautiful city of Vang Vieng yourself, then cycling is also a nice choice. Tourists can admire the beauty of a city, including spectacular rice fields, long-lasting karsts, agricultural activities, and traditional local houses. You can rent either the bike at any terrain (from 20.000 kip) or the street bike (from 10.000 kip).

7. Go down the river by tubing

Tubing on the Nam Song River is a unique and favorite activity. This fun action, long reserved for young backpackers, is now very popular with all travelers. This activity is perfect for those who love thrills and outdoor pleasures. The tube allows you to discover the amazing landscapes of limestone on the river.

Wandering around by tubing is an ideal experience that you cannot miss in Vang Vieng

Wandering around by tubing is an ideal experience that you cannot miss in Vang Vieng

You will also have an opportunity of your quiet navigation to stop by many bars located on the banks to take a break, sip a fruit juice or a cocktail. This is a preferable activity on the rainy season in November, when the level of the river is quite large and promotes better navigation.

Best Food to Enjoy for 1 Day in Vang Vieng

1. Laap/ Larp (minced meat mixed with fish sauce and herbs)

Laos-food-Laap

Laap, the representative of Laos’ cuisine

This traditional salad from Laos is known by the name “Laap or Larp”. Laap includes minced meat and viscera (pork, buffalo, beef, duck or chicken) then mixed with fish sauce, coriander, mint, red pepper, lemon juice green and lime juice, sprinkle with grilled rice.

Laotians often eat this dish with Khao Niao (sticky rice) and fresh vegetables such as dried peppers, banana flowers and raw vegetables. Although locals prefer this raw dish (Tiger laap), travelers could ask for a freshly prepared dish containing no gut. You can taste this typical dish in all restaurants of Laos.

2. Ping Pa (roasted river fish)

The name of the river fish stuck on bamboo skewers is Ping Pa, seasoned with chopped kaffir lime leaves, galangal, lemongrass, coriander and lime juice before being roasted on skin. This is generally considered a “fast food”, to consume with a portion of sticky rice.

3. Khao Soi (flat rice noodles)

This dish of Laos is often found in Luang Prabang. This is a rice noodle soup dish mixed with ground pork, tomatoes, peanuts, chilli peppers and fermented bean sauce. Even if they share the same name with Chiang Mai ‘Khao Soi. These two dishes are very different. The Thai version is an egg packed with noodles and served with coconut milk.

4. Khao Poon (rice vermicelli soup)

Delicious and nutritious Khao Poon dish

Delicious and nutritious Khao Poon dish

Kapoon is a spicy rice vermicelli soup known as the signature of Laos. It is a soup kitchen in Laos throughout the Southeast Asian region. This cuisine is rich in vegetables, herbs, spices and rice noodles. It is made from crushed or shredded chicken, fish or pork, seasoned with ingredients such as lime leaves, galangal, garlic, shallots and red peppers. Khao Poon is traditionally cooked with rice vermicelli (a thin rice noodle with a tangy taste). Traditionally, this Laos soup is served at weddings.

Some Notes for 1 Day in Vang Vieng

  • Just a few hotels and restaurants accept US dollars or Baht (Thailand currency). For most services, prepare kips tickets with you. (Most of the tourist services are located mainly in the main streets of the city).
  • Many ATMs accept all popular credit cards, especially the master and visa card. However, lack of money is a frequent problem in local ATMs.
  • It is normal to negotiate the price for transportation (tuk-tuk, taxis) and for souvenirs. Not only in Vang Vieng but also in other destinations, price negotiation is necessary for small purchases during your 1 day in Vang Vieng.
  • The state of roads is not very good. Even in the main streets of the city, you can be carelessly injured because of large holes in the roadway.
  • The current of the river is strong in many places – even the most courageous tourists should avoid swimming against the current.

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Bich Ngoc

As a true Vietnamese enthusiast of music, books and coffee, Bich Ngoc loves researching into those typical cultural characteristics of Vietnam as well as exploring further destinations in the country of thousand years of civilization.

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