Laos is in Southeast Asia. It has mountainous terrain with several Buddhist monasteries. The language here is French. Some people are wondering whether or not it is safe to visit this place. It is generally safe to visit here for independent travel.
There are, however, reports of petty theft. But this is common to many countries in Southeast Asia.
You can avoid it by being careful with your bags and belongings. Do not bring your expensive jewelry and watches when visiting here.
There is no need to bring your laptop here because you can always use computers in many Internet shops.
And while you tour the place, do not leave your cash in your hotel room. It is also the same when you visit other countries.
How to Get Around Laos
There are many modes of transportation in this country. One of them is to travel on a bus. It is a common mode of transportation. With just a few dollars, you can already travel to various parts of the country.
It is time-consuming, though, especially if you travel long distances. And if you are limited for time, you should consider flying. By night, though, you can take the bed bus. It is a comfortable way to travel.
If you want a more comfortable ride than a bus, you might want to take a mini-van. You can rent one.
To have a more fun experience in this country, consider the sangtheaw. It is how locals get around. It is a truck with some benches in the back. Or you can ride tuk-tuks. They are common here.
You can also rent motorcycles, bicycles and mountain bikes. They are a great way to explore the sights.
But do not rent a motor if you do not know how to ride it. And make sure that you have insurance that will cover any accidents when you are abroad.
While you travel on bicycles, do not put your stuff in the bicycle basket. Some travelers reported of their bag being snatched.
What to Do in Laos
As mentioned earlier, this country is known for its mountainous landscapes. It has ancient cultural attractions. When you visit this place, make sure to stop by in these tourist attractions:
It is a UNESCO World Heritage site. This place is a must-visit if you are in Laos. You can see former royal palaces. Not only that but you can also see over 30 temples. Then, you can spot some old French architecture and other natural sites.
When you stay here, make sure to wake up early. In that way, you can participate in the ritual of providing alms to the monks.
After that, you can enjoy your breakfast in a cafe in town. Once you have your morning meal, you can stroll and explore its ancient architecture.
When you visit Laos, do not forget to visit Vang Vieng. It has attracted millions of world travelers per year. It is popular among backpackers who want to enjoy its rugged beauty. If you are not used to backpacking, though, you might not enjoy visiting here.
The place is surrounded by rivers, caves, rice fields, and great mountains. It has a wide array of tourist attractions. If you like to experience a tubing ride, then make sure to go to Nam Song River. Tubing is a popular activity here. It is not surprising considering how much fun you get during your ride.
It is in southern Laos. The scenery is breathtaking. It has ethnic villages with unexplored corners. It is known for its spectacular waterfalls. And if you are familiar with Tad Fane, this is where you can find it. The elevation is from 1,000 to 1,350 meters above sea level.
The place also offers trekking and biking trails. You can set up a day trip from Pakse city. The best way to explore it is to tour by motorbike.
If you are into monuments, then you must go to the Great Stupa. It is a sacred monument in the country. When you look at it from the outside, it appears to be a fortress with high walls. It has two temples and impressive stupa.
It is in a rural province of Laos. This is perfect if you want to explore natural resources with tropical forest. It has farmland and hilly mountains. You will also find ethnic groups here who preserve their traditional culture. Its capital province is on the Mekong River. Plus, you get to explore a lot of temples here.
Before Visiting Laos
If you wish to spend a few weeks here, consider getting hepatitis A and B vaccines. You should also update your tetanus shot. If you plan to go to rural areas and work with livestock, consider getting a Japanese encephalitis vaccine first.
The food here in Laos is simple. It is like in the Philippines. People here love to eat rice. Then, they consume a lot of pungent papaya salad with fish sauce and chilies. Its national dish is known as laap. It is ground meat with vegetables and chilies.
A lot of people here eat noodle soup. And if you like drinking coffee, you can try its Lao coffee. It is not your typical hot coffee, though. Lao coffee is served with lots of ice and sweetened condensed milk. You must mix it using a spoon before drinking.
When you visit Laos, do not be surprised to see a lot of monks. They are everywhere in this country where there is a temple. And Laos is known to have many temples all over the country.
But the most popular place to visit if you want to see a lot of monks is the Luang Prabang. The morning food-collection that they make are attracting hundreds of visitors.
If you need to snap a photo of the monks, avoid approaching them just to get a picture in front of them. Instead, just stand across the street and capture a photo with them going about their business.