Laos Remote Village Trek

Fitness Level 3

Unforgettable Adventure

Local Expert Guide

Our Incredible 13-Day Village-to-Village Trek in Northern Laos

Are you the kind of person who likes to go seriously off the beaten path and have experiences that no one else does?

If so, join us in Northern Laos for a combination of beautiful treks, wow-worthy landscapes, and exploration of local cultures amongst the villages of the Khmu and Hmong peoples of Laos. These remote villages don’t see as many travellers as locations on other popular treks, so you’ll get to experience a unique adventure. The hikes will be moderately challenging, and you will be spending a lot of time on your feet, but overall, it’s an easier trek than some of our others.

The highlight of this journey is a 3-day village-to-village trek, where you’ll be hosted by local families in their homes. It’s a special opportunity to make lifelong memories with the people you encounter on your journey, along with a small group of other women trekkers.

Besides hiking to remote locations, you’ll also discover the UNESCO World Heritage site of Luang Prabang. With a friendly, slow pace and authentic charm, life in Laos’ ancient capital city continues to unfold the way it always has.

If you’re ready to experience a brand new trek that allows you to connect with the diverse locals living in the area, our Northern Laos walking adventure is the one for you.

Why Choose Laos Trekking?

Trek to remote hill tribe villages

Enjoy 2 overnights in village homestays

Picnic on a boat as the sunsets on the Mekong River

Visit Heritage Listed Luang Prabang

Be part of village family homelife

Stay in boutique hotels in inspiring settings

Uncover more info by clicking the tabs below!

What our Camino Women say

Anne Skelton
Northern Laos Trek November 23. A wonderful trip with a great group of women over 11 days. A little bit of 'everything' and all fun - from jungle trekking, village stays, hotel stays, local interest, crafts and food - . Every day was varied and full of interest and something new. I definitely recommend doing this if you're up for a bit of adventure.
12/19/2023
Joy Taylor
I just experienced the Northern Laos trek, for eleven days, with 9 ladies from Australia and New Zealand, ranging in age from 18 to 74. I had a wonderful time, and am very happy that I made the decision to go, even though I didn't know anyone else. We had a great group! My highlights include: * Our guides! Mr Khone cared for us all the whole time, and Mr Tuey made me feel confident we were always heading in the right direction on our trekking days. They both communicated well and shared their stories and answered all our questions. * The food! Mostly arranged by Mr Khone, I loved the variety of dishes. * The village experiences! Both homestays were unique, and exceeded my expectations. The trekking part was a little bit more challenging than I had expected, but we all made it! The touring part gave me the opportunity to see more of the country that I would not normally expect to see, and learn more about the Lao, Khmer and Hmong people, plus take in the splendid landscapes and natural environment. Thanks go to Stevie and the Camino Women team, for putting together this opportunity to experience Laos!
12/16/2023

Dates


17 November 2024

1 spot left

Starts: Luang Prabang, November 17, 2024

Finishes: – Luang Prabang, November 27, 2024


Price – $3,582 AUD (per person twin share)

Single supplement: $900 AUD


24 November 2024

2 spots left

Starts: Luang Prabang, November 24, 2024

Finishes: – Luang Prabang, December 4, 2024


Price – $3,686 AUD (per person twin share)

Single supplement: $900 AUD




10 February 2025

NEW DATE

Starts: Vientiane, February 10, 2025

Finishes: – Vientiane, February 22, 2025


Price – $4,321 AUD (per person twin share)

Single supplement: $1,160 AUD

 

The 2025 trip is 2 days longer than the 2024 trip.

Trip Map

Trip Details

Price

According to departure date

  • $1,650 AUD deposit (for 2025 departures)
  • A 2-week cooling-off period applies.
  • Lifetime deposit. If you need to cancel, your deposit is transferable to other trips.
  • Twin Share: we’ll match you with a roomie if you’re travelling solo.
  • Partial private supplement available (not in homestays) – $1,160 AUD, max 2 spots.

Please refer to our payment terms in the FAQs.


Trip length

  • 13 days, 12 nights
  • Trip starts and finishes in Vientiane

Meeting point

Salana Boutique Hotel, Vientiane


Departure point

Salana Boutique Hotel, Vientiane


Group size

Maximum 12


Participation requirements

  • You’re open-minded and open-hearted.
  • You try to embrace the little things.
  • You understand that even in the best vehicles, the air-con sometimes breaks.
  • You don’t mind that even in the best restaurants, the service is sometimes a little slow.
  • You acknowledge that all of the above is just part of the adventure, and you choose to be gracious.

Fitness

Level 3 or Moderate Plus

A good amount of endurance and a slightly higher than average level of fitness are essential for our Level 3-rated trips. Anticipate walking between 4 and 7 hours per day, covering approximately 10 to 15 kilometers. It’s worth noting that we’ll maintain a moderate pace through undulating terrain to cover this distance. Some days will be dedicated solely to trekking through pristine wilderness, offering breathtaking scenery, while others will provide opportunities for relaxation and cultural experiences.

During the trekking days, be prepared for diverse terrains, including walking along rivers, navigating vines, encountering drop-offs, traversing steep tracks, and venturing through dense jungle. Your journey promises a mix of challenges and rewards, ensuring a well-rounded and memorable experience.


Included

  • Meals: 10 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 10 dinners
  • List transport: Eg: Fast Train and & private vehicle transportation
  • 10 nights boutique accommodation
  • 2 nights traditional village homestays with local families.
  • A top-rated and English-speaking Tour Leader
  • 3 days trekking guide during Mountain Village Homestay Trek
  • All listed activities and more!

Not included

  • International Flights and travel insurance (necessary).
  • Tourist Visa on arrival .
  • Additional hotel nights & late checkouts.
  • Drinks and other other personal expenses.
  • Tip kitty $55 USD. Note: Aussies and Kiwis are not used to tipping, we know! However, small tips for services are appreciated. 
  • Any meals not listed.

Accommodation Preview

While you’ll have the opportunity to do some home stays on this trip, we’ve lined up some Laos luxury resorts for you to enjoy when you’re not. Take a sneak peek here:

The Capital Hotel (1 night)

Namkat Yorla Pa Eco Resort (2 nights)

Nong Khiaw Riverside Resort (2 nights)

Get To Know Your Northern Laos Trekking Itinerary

What You'll See & Do

Day 1: Welcome to Laos

Welcome to Laos! Let the adventure begin! Arrive in Vientiane, the capital of Laos. Nestled along the tranquil banks of the Mekong River, Vientiane is a place where French colonial architecture mingles effortlessly with Buddhist temples. At the airport you’ll be greeted warmly in the arrival area by our knowledgeable guide and driver. 

Tonight you’ll meet your fellow travellers at a welcome dinner. Enjoy the delicious food at a local restaurant, and start bonding—you’re about to get to know each other and your guide very well over your days of trekking and exploring together.

Accommodation: Salana Boutique Hotel or similar
Included: Dinner

Day 2: Luang Prabang

Today you’ll catch your train to Luang Prabang, the ancient capital of Northern Laos and UNESCO World Heritage town. Located on the bank of the Mekong River, this town has elements of traditional Lao architecture seamlessly sharing space with structures from its colonial era. Luang Prabang is an increasingly popular destination, but it still manages to retain a welcoming, hospital atmosphere. You’ll be able to experience this atmosphere by embarking on a city tour upon your arrival. Let the magic of Luang Prabang unfold before you as you leisurely explore its charming streets, engaging in delightful conversations with locals, admiring ancient temples, and uncovering hidden gems alongside your knowledgeable guide. Relax into the rhythm of this mystical town, where every corner reveals a new story waiting to be discovered.

Accommodation: The Capital Hotel or Similar
Included: Breakfast

Day 3: Luang Prabang to Muang Xai

Hopefully, you got a good night of rest at your hotel because you’re in for an exciting first full day in Laos. After breakfast, say goodbye to Luang Prabang. Don’t worry, it’s just for now, not forever. You’ll be back to this unique city again soon.

Travel by high-speed train to Muang Xai; – the perfect time to enjoy your first real look at Laos’ remote mountains and greenery. 

Once you arrive at the resort, it’s time for another first as you take a short afternoon walk to a Khmu Village. The Khmu are the largest minority ethnic group in a country that is one of the most diverse in the world. Today is your first encounter with the Khmu, but not the last. Getting to know their customs and participating in their everyday activities is one of the things you have to look forward to over the rest of your trip.

As this location is fairly remote, you’ll have dinner at the resort. Relax, rest, and reflect on your first full day in Laos.

Accommodation: Nam Kat Yorla Pa Resort or Similar
Included: Breakfast and Dinner

Day 4: Udom Xai – Trekking Tour to Tanongpor

Get breakfast early to prepare for your first day of what will be a three-day village-to-village trekking adventure that we have put together for this trip. 

Your walk begins along a dirt road, right in the heart of the village life of Laos. Farmers are out working in the rice paddies, their heads protected from the sun with rounded hats made from palm or bamboo leaves. The fields shine golden at this time of year as the rice yellows for the coming harvest.

During the trek, a vehicle has been arranged to carry your luggage. You’ll carry only a day pack, so ensure your camera is easily accessible to snap a few photos. 

The first day ends in the Khmu Village of Ban Tornongpor. Tonight your accommodations will be much simpler, as the group will be hosted by local families in a homestay. While this is certainly not a resort, during your homestay you’ll actively participate in local life. After all, you’re here for the authentic experience.

                                                  

Hike: 10 km, 5-6 hrs
Accommodation: Homestay
Included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 5: Trekking to Phavie Village

The second day of your trek begins by helping your homestay family prep for breakfast. Sharing in the act of preparing food is a common experience that transcends cultures and creates bonds. You’re now more than just a guest.

At 7.5 hours, today’s hike is a bit longer than the previous day and the landscape shifts around you from fields to the jungle as you walk, while your luggage once again hitches its own ride to your next homestay. This trek is moderately difficult, but it’ll be worth it. Don’t worry though, there’s a little waterfall along the way where you’ll stop to admire the view and catch your second wind before continuing on to your destination, Phavie Village.

In the evening several local families will be hosting our group. Your family homestay hosts will make dinner.

Trek: 11-12 km, 7-8 hours
Accommodation: Homestay
Included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 6: Phavie Village Trekking to Muang Xai

As you help set up breakfast, we recommend taking a moment to drink it all in – after only two nights of village homestays, you’ll already feel a strong emotional connection to these rural heartlands. First up this morning you’ll take a relaxed walk to a nearby waterfall, about an hour all up and definitely worth going out for! Return to the village and prepare for some sad goodbyes as you bid farewell to your overnight host family. 

Set off along the pathway of the river to the site where the driver is waiting to take you to the local temple Wat Pha Chao Sing Kham, it’ll take you roughly two hours (meanwhile, your luggage has gone ahead to the hotel where it patiently waits for you). According to legend, the Buddha statue here has extraordinary powers. You can make a wish, but in order to ensure your wish comes true, you have to come back to the temple the following year. Before the drive back to the hotel, it’s time to relax in the hot spring by the river. Hope you brought your bathing suit! 

 

Trek: 4 km, 2 hrs
Accommodation: Nam Kat Yorla Pa Resort or Similar
Included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 7: Udom Xai

The cultural exchange continues this morning. After meeting your guide and driver at the resort, you’ll head to Ban Lak ship, a Khmu farming community. The few Khmu words you’ve learnt over the last few days will help you make instant friends!

Over 100 years ago a man named Chuang and his friend discovered Tham Chom Ong Cave, a naturally formed cave inside a limestone mountain. Now, it’s your turn. Then, enjoy lunch nearby with one of the Khmu families at Ban Chom Ong Village.

 

Accommodation: Nam Kat Yorla Pa Resort or Similar
Included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 8: Nong Khiaw

Your days have been busy, full, and exciting so far, but today you’ll get a chance to slow the pace down.  We’ll kick off with a long scenic drive that offers eye-catching views on the way to Nong Khiaw, a small riverside town in northern Laos on the Nam Ou (River Ou). The limestone mountains are beautiful and you may find yourself running out of battery with all the photos you take. 

After check-in at the hotel, you can decide whether you want to lounge in the idyllic setting or take a stroll in the nearby town. The bridge in the village has a stunning view of the Nam Ou river framed by rocks, mountains, and hills. It’s up to you how you want to spend your free afternoon.

 

Accommodation: Maison de Nong Khiew Resort or Similar
Included: Breakfast and Dinner

Day 9: Muang Ngoi River Trip

Wake up for another peaceful relaxing day–this time on the Nam Ou River. Your boat will cruise under the shadow of the limestone cliffs alongside the river. Along the way, we’ll stop at rural villages and learn what life is like for many different ethnic groups here. Admire the handwoven silk or cotton textiles made in a traditional Lao weaving village, where you can find a beautiful souvenir to bring home with you.

Then, it’s time for a small trek through an area surrounded by rice paddy fields. Your destination? A historical cave used as a bomb shelter during the Indochina war. The sunset turns the landscape from a simple beauty into a postcard-worthy picture as the boat takes you back to Nong Khiaw. 

 

Accommodation: Maison de Nong Khiew Resort or Similar
Included: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Day 10: Mekong Sunset Cruise

Remember when we said, you’d be returning back to Luang Prabang? That’s today! This time to become fully immersed in the charm of the old capital city. Luang Prabang is located on a peninsula formed by the Nam Khan and Mekong River. Ornate Buddhist temples dot the city alongside wooden traditional Lao houses and brick colonial buildings.

It’s a 3 to 4 hour drive from Nong Khiew, but you’ll still have most of the afternoon to explore Luang Prabang. Meander around the markets, explore the temples, or climb up the 300 steps to enjoy the view from Mount Phousi, the highest hill in Luang Prabang.

Tonight dinner and drinks will come with a view. As your group cruises upstream along the Mekong River, you’ll pass villages and communities of Luang Prabang. This is your second to last full day on the trip, so take a moment to memorise the way the sky turns golden and hazy as the sun slips behind the mountains. Over the past few days, you’ve seen countless rice fields, been welcomed into local communities, and watched the brightly-clad monks go about their day in Luang Prabang. If you haven’t cracked open your drink yet, now is the time to do so!

 

Accommodation: The Capital Hotel or Similar
Included: Breakfast and Dinner

Day 11: Village Trek

It’s the final day of the trip and today you’ll head out on one last trek (sans luggage, you’ll meet up with it again at the hotel). First, a short transfer out of town, then a little river paddle before the walking begins through the quirky limestone terrain. Lots of small surprises await as you hike up and into the hills… chats with curious villagers, smiling children and a final chance to soak up moments like these into your memory bank.  

After 12 kilometres of trekking, the final stretch home to your farewell dinner is by boat – yay! (and then vehicle), but not before a waterfall pit-stop and maybe a bit of a soak! Take your time and enjoy this spectacle of nature. Over a meal at a local restaurant, it’s time to exchange contact info with your fellow travellers. Make sure to share all the awesome photos of the adventures you’ve had together in Laos!

 

Trek: 12 km, 4-5 hours
Accommodation: The Capital Hotel or Similar
Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 12: Vientiane

As the sun sets over the enchanting landscapes of Luang Prabang, it’s time to bid farewell to this captivating destination and embark on your journey back to Vientiane. Board the train, where memories of your time here will accompany you on your return journey.

Upon your mid-afternoon arrival in Vientiane, the remainder of the day beckons with boundless possibilities. Take a leisurely stroll through the bustling streets of this intriguing town, indulging in some last-minute shopping or simply basking in the tranquility of your hotel sanctuary.

Before parting ways with the charm of Laos and your fellow travelers, join us for a heartfelt farewell dinner. Gather together one last time, sharing stories and laughter as you reflect on the adventures that have woven unforgettable memories into the fabric of your journey.

Accommodation: Salana Boutique Hotel or similar
Included: Breakfast and Dinner

Day 13: Farewell Friends

What an adventure! The days went by too fast as you explored the Northern Laos countryside, stayed in locals’ homes overnight, trekked more than 40 kilometres, and took in the sights in Laos’ ancient capital. Your time here is coming to an end, but you’ll have plenty of memories and stories to tell with your friends and family at home.

Before your transfer to the airport, say farewell over one last breakfast. Until next time!

Included: Breakfast

FAQs


Prior to the payment of your full balance, the final price may change if there is significant variation in the AUD:USD exchange rate. Our trip pricing is determined by what the exchange rates are at the time of publishing the trip.

The pricing on these trips is based on the following exchange rates:

26 November 2023 departure: 1 AUD:0.67 USD

17 November 2024 departure: 1 AUD:0.67 USD

A deposit of $1,650 AUD is required to hold your spot. Payment can be made by credit card (fees apply) or bank deposit.

There is a cooling-off period of 2 weeks. (Applicable to all bookings made 110 days in advance.)

We have implemented a ‘lifetime deposit’ guarantee. Deposits are not refundable, but they are transferable at any time, right up until the first day of the trip.

The final balance of the trip is required 95 days in advance of the departure date. Our suppliers require upfront payment well in advance to guarantee availability.

There are no direct flights from Australia or New Zealand to Vientiane.

Wattay International Airport in Vientiane serves as a gateway to Laos with connecting flights from major cities such as Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, and Singapore.

For those traveling from other regional hubs like Bangkok or Hanoi, there are frequent connecting flights available to Vientiane.

An online eVisa service is available for tourists.

30-day tourist visas for Australian and New Zealand passport holders cost $50 USD, paid online through the official Laos government site.

We’ll be in touch closer to your departure with more information.

Most of our trips have a tip kitty because many cultures have interesting and diverse rules when it comes to tips. We’ve found it to be the easiest way to combat over-tipping, under-tipping or having the tip fall into the wrong hands. Our goal is for guests to relax and know that the complexities of tipping are taken care of, on their behalf. For your Laos adventure, we ask your contribution be:
  • 1,350,000 Laotian Kip your guide on Day 1. The kitty will be managed by your regional guide and distributed along the way at restaurants for included meals, hotel staff, drivers and all guides.
(Exchange Rate used – $1USD : 20,670 Laotian Kip 17th Oct 2023)

During the multi-day trek, your luggage will be transported by vehicle to your overnight stays. 

On trekking days, you’ll need to carry your day pack. You’ll be supplied with 1.5 litres of drinking water to carry for personal use. Extra water will be on hand if you need it.

You’ll spend 2 nights with your fellow travellers staying in hillside villages on a point-to-point trek in Northern Laos. This is a remote area not frequented by tourists. Genuine farming communities that have lived similarly for generations will be welcoming you into their homes.

To picture the overnight facilities, think bush camping, except inside a family’s hut. Each family will take in 2 or 3 of the group. There’s a mosquito net, a rollout mattress and a pillow for each. BYO Sleeping bag/sleeping sheet. Toilets are squat type. Washing facilities are basic (bird bath style) and cold water only.

Level 3 or Moderate Plus

A good amount of endurance and a slightly higher than average level of fitness are essential for our Level 3-rated trips. Anticipate walking between 4 and 7 hours per day, covering approximately 10 to 15 kilometers. It’s worth noting that we’ll maintain a moderate pace through undulating terrain to cover this distance. Some days will be dedicated solely to trekking through pristine wilderness, offering breathtaking scenery, while others will provide opportunities for relaxation and cultural experiences.

During the trekking days, be prepared for diverse terrains, including walking along rivers, navigating vines, encountering drop-offs, traversing steep tracks, and venturing through dense jungle. Your journey promises a mix of challenges and rewards, ensuring a well-rounded and memorable experience.

 

Have more questions? Check out our FAQ page!

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