The Best things to do in Vang Vieng in Laos
Vang Vieng is a busy tourist town to visit near the Laos capitol – Vientiane, situated in Laos. This one of my favourite places to visit in Laos. This is why have done this best things to do in Vang Vieng post. Backpackers will usually visit Vang Vieng whilst travelling through Laos. Just like I did.
Why is Vang Vieng a sweet place to visit? The Nam Song river flows through the heart of the Laos town, which is further fashioned with the scenic topography of its epic hills. The area is surrounded by limestone mountains and a lush green landscape. Over the years it has developed into adrenaline packed adventure destination for those who love the thrill in their lives. Vang Vieng activities are fun for example the tubing and the epic zip lining you can do.
I seen bad stuff in the media about drugs in Vang Vieng. But I didn’t see anything like this or hear of any stories. I think this is far from the truth of how cool and relaxed Vang Vieng is. And why it is a top place to visit in Laos. I spent 4 weeks in Laos, Vang Vieng and Luang Prabang was my favourite places to spend my time in Laos. At the end of the journey I got the slow-boat from Laos t Thailand, this was a cool experience.
Let’s have a look exactly what’s included in this post;
- How to travel around Vang Vieng
- The Vang Vieng itinerary
- Where to stay in Vang Vieng
How to get around Vang Vieng
Vang Vieng is a small enough place to stroll around, we spent our nights walking around the town watching the sun go down on this epic place.
You can rent a bicycle to do the Vang Vieng points of interest for (15,000K per day) or mountain bike (30,000K per day). Most shops and hotels in Vang Vieng offer the rental.
My favouriteo way to travel around Vang Vieng is with a scooter rental. You can rent a scooter for about 40,000K per day (automatics cost 80,000K).
Travellers also do the buggy rentals in Vang Vieng to get around.
Vang Vieng what to do
The Nam Song river provides you with multiple adrenaline instilling activities that are wholeheartedly enjoyed by the thrill seekers who participate in them. The river offers a adventures like:
The Nam Song river apart from its serene view is known for kayaking. The rapids get harsh in the monsoon season, which makes kayaking even more risky yet exciting. However, activities like kayaking and tubing In Vang Vieng are popular around the area and can cost as low as ($15). You are accompanied with a trained professional to guide you through this top activity.
Inflated tire tubing in Vang Vieng is very common among the younger tourists and backpackers. The high-water pressure and raging rapids make the experience amazing. The tubing has had some bad press with backpackers getting too drunk and being dangerous on the tubing in Vang Vieng.
You can sign up for tubing via your hostel and every day your hostel will drive the group to the river and give you your tube. The activity will involve floating slowly down the river and stopping off at a few bars. The last bar you visit is sweet, it has a zip line and serves great food.
Then you can get a lift back to your accommodation which is happy days. Don’t get too drunk and you’ll be fine.
These ziplines explore the thick jungles and vines of Vang Vieng. It is an adventurous activity that anyone can do. Vang Vieng also has zipline tours that take you across the different sceneries of the land. It will take you across the Nam Song river, the rice paddies and through the luscious jungles.
I absolutely loved the zip lining activity in Vang Vieng. The scenery is amazing. And you will get some pretty sweet photography.
All these activities (Kayaking, tubing and zip lining in Vang Vieng) can be done together, and there are multiple offers and tours that let you experience each, at your stay in Vang Vieng. The whole package costs somewhere around $30 – $40 per person.
#4 Exploring the caves
The caves of Vang Vieng are spectacular. After providing the entrance fee, you can visit extensive web of caves accompanied by a village local, who guides you through the dark and damp caves. These conditions can be dangerous for a traveler; hence a guide is essential for a tour of these caves.
Travelers usually take torches and water inside, since it’s easy to get lost in the darkness that looms on the insides of these caves. None the less, the mystic beauty of the caves is too captivating not to explore. Some of the popular ones are;
#5 Tham Phou Kham Cave
The Tham Phou Kham cave is known for its beautiful blue lagoons. A popular destination with tourists, the lagoon is open to travelers looking for some distressing
The epic green-blue waters are perfect for a dip after the stiff climb. The main cave chamber contains a Thai bronze reclining Buddha, and from here deeper galleries branch off into the vast Vang Vieng mountain.
#6 Tham Nam Cave
The Tham Nam cave is popular for the tubing experience. Everyone gets their tubes to sit and relax in, all while they explore the deep, damp caves.
The Tham change cave is accessible via a beautiful red bridge that runs over the Nam Song river. The cave is over less popular; hence the perk is to explore it all on your own!
- The Water Cave is often included in a popular full-day trip from Vang Vieng, with the cave followed by a picnic lunch then an afternoon of kayaking down the Nam Song.
- You should know that visiting the Water Cave is only possible in dry season.
- A tuk-tuk round-trip will cost: (160.000 to 180.000 kips (20.00 USD).
#7 Rock climbing
Vang Vieng is known for its limestone mountains and hillsides. During October till May, the climbing spots on these mountains find themselves busy. The sleeping cave is a famous spot that most travelers enjoy. All the rock-climbing spots have gears and equipment’s already placed for the people participating. The mountain ranges are also home to institutes that teach you rock climbing from a beginner’s level. They train you up to advanced level walls. Rock climbing in Vang Vieng will cost around an estimate of $30 per day.
We had a mega day doing the rock climbing and met some cool guys. There was even a photographer there that got some sweet photography of us climbing the mountains in Vang Vieng.
#8 Hot air balloon and Ultra-light flights
Hot air balloon rides are an experience of its own. These balloons float on top of the valleys and cliffs which allows you to witness the surreal beauty from a completely different perspective. You can appreciate the lush green landscape all while having the element of adventure during your day. These rides are 40 minutes long and cost around $90.
Really worth the money. You can do the sunrise trip and be in the air by 7 AM. The view is amazing and you will get to be in the air for about 30 minutes.
#9 Quad Bikes and Buggies
The beach buggy and quad bike tours in Vang Vieng town are quite popular activities among tourists. You can book your favorite ATV and roar it through the luscious landscape. The routes are dusty, so make sure to bring along your sunglasses and bandanas for protection.
The roads in Vang Vieng are wide in places, so it this makes a sweet place to do the quad biking and buggie tours.
#10 Paramotoring and Hand gliding
This activity is not for the faint of heart. This adrenaline-inducing trip allows you to have an aerial view of the beautiful topography while you parasail across the land. The 20-minute-long rides scary but give you an amazing experience which is completely worth it.
#11 Motorcycle tour
There are specially made trails for dirt bike tours. This activity consists of a two-day course by experienced professionals. Travelers ride through the beautiful countryside of Vang Vieng.
This is quite a popular activity. You will have to check the weather in Vang Vieng town though. If it’s raining this will be a tricky thing to do as a Vang Vieng activity.
#12 Visit the Vang Vieng elephant resort
Spent the day with one of nature’s largest, most lovable mammals; the elephant. The Vang Vieng elephant sanctuary allows the elephants to roam freely and interact with different people. You can feed them, walk with them also rub the elephants with mud. Quiet the light-hearted joyous experience.
I don’t agree with elephant riding. One of the best places I have been is the elephant sanctuary in Chiang Mai, Thailand. had an absolutely wicked time there.
#13 Kaeng Nyui Water Falls
The Kaeng Nyui waterfalls are just thirty minutes outside of town. You get to experience all the elements at this gorgeous spot. You witness the stunning landscape, from the waterfall to the ponds, which are surrounded by the green vines, the spot is open to tourists around 8 in the morning. Travelers can wander in the shallow pools, swim and take pictures near the waterfall.
Waterfalls in Asia is one of the most popular and coolest things to do. If you are backpacking around Asia, you will have probably seen 100’s of waterfalls by now. If you are just starting out on your backpacking tour around Asia, get ready to see plenty of epic waterfalls on your journeys.
#14 Pha Ngren Viewpoint
The Pha Nygren viewpoint is popular to view the beautiful sunset in Laos. The cost incurred per person is around $2 (10,000 Kips). The highest point gives you a breath-taking eagle eye view of the entire vicinity. Be sure to go well equipped with your trekking shoes and flashlights. These treks can last from anywhere around 30 minutes to an hour depending on the breaks you take. However, the stunning view is worth the effort.
#15 Wat Kang Temple
If you are keen to explore the heritage and culture of Vang Vieng tourist attractions even more, then you have the option of visiting the Wat Kang temple that is known for its big golden Buddha statue along with a school for monks, where they teach the study of sacred texts. There are not many temples in the area, but this one is definitely worth the visit.
Temples are another top thing to see whilst backpacking Asia. They are everywhere. But they never get boring, you will see some absolutely amazing temples in Laos and the rest of Southeast Asia.
#16 Luxury Spa and Yoga
After a long day or activities, it is essential to have a relaxing spa day. The riverside spas offer their special Lao massages. That includes a 40-minute scrub and a unique foot massage. The riverside spa overlooks the wondrous karst hills, which adds to the experience even more.
You also have the option to perform yoga in order to rejuvenate yourself. With a 360 view of the mountains, outdoor yoga classes are just the end you might need to your eventful journey in Vang Vieng Laos. The Yoga classes are led by qualified and helpful instructors that make your experience even more fulfilling.
#17 Laos Cuisine
The Vang Vieng dining doesn’t consist of fancy hotels and five-star eateries. Most restaurants are small operations run by locals, which makes the food even more gratifying. The cuisine consists of grilled river fish, stir-fried noodles and sticky rice. These delicacies are considered to travel friendly food and easy on the pocket for most tourists.
Food, food and more food. So cheap the meals in Southeast Asia.
#18 Night Life
Vang Vieng nightlife has cool bars the offer the unique drinks you have ever seen. Travellers tend to chill with drinks and beers after a long day. Bars offer many activities like darts and pool. You can do all this while enjoying your favourite episode Friends. The tv show is played in the bars all day long.
Vang Vieng is a destination worth your time and money. It an impressive mix of adventure, nature, culture, and heritage. An all in one spot to enrich your soul with wonderous memories.
Best restaurants Vang Vieng
- Happy Mango restaurant – Top restaurant with Thai food. The appetizers are very good here and the food is great. I would definitely recommend this place if you are in Vang Vieng The staff are also very good. Overall a a great place to eat in the town Vang Vieng.
- Gary’s Irish bar – A top place to eat in Vang Vieng. The staff here are very good with people. If you want a break from food in Laos, then this is it. You can get a good classic burger and have a sweet game of pool.
- Pizza Luka – This place is another great place to eat in Vang Vieng. The pizza and salad are both amazing. They also do a great dessert. The place is really down to earth and delicious. Overall if you fancy a great pizza, you should check this place out.
Where to stay in Vang Vieng
Vang Vieng Boutique Hotel you will be helped with things such as booking tours or activities, recommending restaurants and more things to do in Vang Vieng.The hotel itself is located in the Main Street and you can choose a balcony room on the top floor which has a mega mountain view. The rooms and hotel very kept very clean despite Vang Vieng being a very dusty place and the breakfasts were a combination of something of your choice cooked i.e. pancakes, scrambled eggs etc plus toast, cereal, fruits etc.
Book Room: Vang Vieng Boutique Hotel
Expect an amazing stay at Amari Vang Vieng. There is superior river rooms and the rooms are undeniable mesmerizing. There is also a sweet swimming pool with a mega view. Amari Vang Vieng is perfectly located in the middle of Vang Vieng. If you are into partying in Vang Vieng, Sakura Bar is just a walk away from the hotel. There are plenty of places to eat nearby.
Book Room: Amari Vang Vieng
By now you have all the information for things to do in Vang Vieng. This is a very cool place man and one you should definitely visit whilst in Laos. Laos is still a developing country and is nothing like Thailand or Vietnam. But it’s still a top place to visit in Southeast Asia.
Vang Vieng was the best place I visited in Laos, as well as Luang Prabang. These two are the two places that should be on your Laos itinerary.
Check out the best things to do in Vientiane