Things to do in
Vientiane Prefecture

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Our most recommended things to do in Vientiane Prefecture

Vientiane Highlights & Buddha Park Full Day Tour with Lunch

1. Vientiane Highlights & Buddha Park Full Day Tour with Lunch

Begin your private tour at the serene Wat Si Saket, the only temple left intact after the Thai invasion of 1828. It is one of the most beautiful temples in the capital, and its breezy teak-covered hallways are filled with thousands of miniature Buddha statues. Continue to the nearby Wat Ho Phra Keo and the nearby Presidential Palace and appreciate the building from outside. Visit Wat Si Muang, one of the most popular and venerated temples in Vientiane. Then move on to the Patuxai monument, Laos’ version of the Arc de Triomphe, where you can climb the stairs to the roof for sweeping panoramic views of the city. Next, your tour takes you to That Luang, the holiest site in Laos. Constructed by King Setthethirat in the 16th century, the temple is resplendent as the sun shines upon its towering golden spire. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and then take a 45-minute drive to the Buddha Park. En route make a brief stop and take photos of the Friendship Bridge, built by the Australian government in 1994, which links Laos and Thailand. On arrival, take a stroll around the Buddha Park (Xieng Khuan), filled with more than 200 Buddhist and Hindu statues including a huge 40-meter Reclining Buddha image.

Vientiane: Private Full-day Must-See Sights & Sunset Tour

2. Vientiane: Private Full-day Must-See Sights & Sunset Tour

In the morning, get picked up by your guide and head to Wat Sisaket, Vientiane's oldest surviving Buddhist temple. The temple is famous for its cloister wall that houses more than 6,800 Buddha icons of all sizes. You may also be able to witness the many locals that come to pray in the morning, enlightening you to traditions of the area. Stop at Wat Prakeo, which once held the Emerald Buddha and now functions as a museum, and the Patuxay Monument, a symbol of the country's resilience and independence, to learn of Laos' complex history. Take time to lunch before walking through Vientiane's laid-back streets, enjoying the refreshingly easygoing atmosphere of the capital. Pass through a number of gorgeous temples before arriving at Talad Sao, Vientiane's central market. With two distinct areas, a modern shopping mall and the sprawling original market, Talad Sao offers an abundance of treasures for you to discover. Bring your day to a stunning conclusion by heading to the Mekong River, where the sun paints the water in brilliant orange hues as it sets below the horizon.

From Vientiane: Nam Ngum Reservoir Private Day Trip

3. From Vientiane: Nam Ngum Reservoir Private Day Trip

Start your day with pickup at your hotel in Vientiane around 8.30 AM. Drive north to Nam Ngum Reservoir, a 250-square-kilometer (96.5-square-mile) lake with beaches and swimming spots located about 100 kilometers (62 miles) from Vientiane. On the way, stop at the Hmong Village to see the local market and meet the hill-tribe people. Continue to visit the archaeological sites of Vang Xang, built during the Hmong-Khmer Empire between the 8th and 11th centuries. Upon arrival at Nam Ngum Reservoir at noon, tuck into a local lunch served at the boat restaurant on the lake itself. After lunch, embark for an approximately 1.5-hour boat ride to discover fishing villages on the islands. On the way back to Vientiane, pay a visit to a traditional salt abstraction site at Ban Keun. Continue to Dong Mark Khai Market where local people gather to sell wild animals and a large selection of insects. You will reach your hotel in Vientiane in the late afternoon around 5 PM.

Vang Vieng: Kayaking & Cave Tubing with Zip Line/Blue Lagoon

4. Vang Vieng: Kayaking & Cave Tubing with Zip Line/Blue Lagoon

Start your full-day adventure with pickup from your hotel in Vang Vieng and join a 6-mile ride north to Ban Vieng Samai, the kayak starting point. Your kayaking guide will provide you with paddling instructions before you set off downstream on Nam Song River. On the journey, glide over many small rapids and enjoy the scenery of the incredible mountain karts along both sides of the river. Then, take a break from your kayaking tour with a visit to Tham Nam Cave. Tube inside the marvelous, 1,640-foot-long cave, dragging yourself with the help of a fixed rope. Take some time to enjoy a picnic lunch and then hop back on your kayak, paddling until you reach the center of Vang Vieng. Afterwards, you will have the choice to either be transferred back to your hotel, or to participate in activities such as zip lining and swimming in the Blue Lagoon 1. Before the zip line experience, your guide will walk you through instructions and safety training. Fly 4,440 feet over the green forest and river. The journey consists of 7 lines, 12 platforms, and 2 bridges. The Blue Lagoon 1 is one of the most famous locations in the city. Sit back and relax or jump in the natural pool to cool down. After your fun day out, you will be transferred back to your hotel in Vang Vieng in the evening.

Vientiane: 4-Hour Customized Private Car Hire with Driver

5. Vientiane: 4-Hour Customized Private Car Hire with Driver

Explore Vientiane at your own pace and on a flexible schedule by booking a private van and driver for 4 hours. Your driver will pick you up wherever you prefer, either your hotel in Vientiane or Wattay International Airport, and take you to all the must-see spots in the city center. Visit the Great Stupa, the holiest site in Laos. See the Patuxai Victory monument and climb the stairs to the roof for sweeping panoramic views of the city. Head to Wat Ho Phra Keo, which displays a collection of both Lao and Khmer works of art. Learn about COPE, an association working to help landmine victims, or visit Wat Si Saket, the only temple left intact after the Siamese (Thai) invasion in 1828. Or choose to visit entirely different attractions. The choice is yours. After exploring the city the way you like for 4 hours, your driver will drop you off back at your hotel or the airport.

Half-Day Nam Song River Kayak Tour with Zipline or Tham None

6. Half-Day Nam Song River Kayak Tour with Zipline or Tham None

Start your half-day trip with pickup from your accommodation in Vang Vieng city center and transfer to the kayak starting point. Before kayaking experience begins, your guide will give you the basic paddle instructions and some history about the mighty Nam Song river. Glide over many small rapids and enjoy the scenery of the incredible mountain peaks along both sides of the river. Apart from the kayaking experience, you can also choose to partake in either the zip-lining experience or Tham Nam None cave tubing. If you choose the zip line option, you’ll experience the green forest canopy that covers the mountains on the side of the river. Make your way along a stream down to the zip line at the Tham None river bank. Take a short trek up to the hut on Phar None (sleeping wall). This is a great location for taking pictures of the surrounding mountains, and has a beautiful view of the Nam Song river. Get strapped in and take an exciting zip line ride flying over the green forest and river below. There are 6 lines in total for you to enjoy. If you choose the Tham Nam None Cave option, you can explore the secluded cave that served as a place of refuge for people caught up in the chaos of the Indochina Wars. Making your way into the cave by an inflatable tube, pull on a rope to reach the walking point where you’ll see many beautiful stalactites and stalagmites.

Vientiane: Private Half-Day Guided Sightseeing Tour by Car

7. Vientiane: Private Half-Day Guided Sightseeing Tour by Car

The tour begins with pickup from your hotel in Vientiane, at 8:30am for morning departure or 1:30pm for afternoon departure. The first stop of the day is the serene Wat Si Saket temple, the only temple left intact after the Thai invasion of 1828. It is one of the most beautiful temples in Vientiane and its teak covered hallways are filled with thousands of miniature Buddha statues. Continue on to the nearby Wat Phra Keo, a religious museum that displays a collection of both Lao and Khmer works of art. Next, visit the Presidential Palace to admire the colonial architecture from the outside and learn about the building which once served as the French governor’s palace. After the palace, head towards COPE, an association working to help local landmine victims. At the center, learn about the history of the American/Vietnam war and the lasting impact of unexploded ordinances in the area and the efforts underway to clear them. Make your way to the Patuxay monument next, Laos’ version of the Arc de Triomphe, climb the stairs to the roof and enjoy panoramic views of the city. Continue on towards That Luang, the holiest site in Laos, constructed by King Setthethirat in the 16th century. Watch how the stunning temple glistens as the sun shines upon its towering golden spire, before the return journey to your hotel at the end of the tour.

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What people are saying about Vientiane Prefecture

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 20 reviews

My tour guide Soun went above and beyond during this tour! Because it was low season I was able to get a private tour of Vientiane with my own guide and driver. Soun not only showed me the sights but he taught me a lot about Laos history and culture. A must do when visiting Vientiane!!

The tour was nice and cover all the important spots. Our guide was very friendly and really try his best to explain the monuments and the local tradition. Happy with the tour!

Tour guide was great. The people working at the zip lines weren’t the nicest , some were on their phones while hooking people up to the zip line which isn’t reassuring.

King was an excellent guide. We learned so much about Vientiane. Very engaging and great fun to be with. Definitely tour with him again.

We had a good day. Saw lots and learned so much. Beautiful landscaped grounds at Buddha park.