You’ll find short, easy treks around town, and multi-day journeys with overnight homestays further afield. More extreme adventures climb steep mountains to unrivalled views. Treks into the hinterland also await north of Luang Prabang for those travelling to Muang Ngoi and Nong Kiew.
Tiger Trail’s Treks in Luang Prabang
Time-strapped, active travellers can take a 1-day trek and visit places that feel much farther out of town than seems possible. You’ll encounter the Hmong and Khmu ethnic groups and get insight into their way of life, kayak down the Nam Khan River, and observe amazing landscapes along the way. (Tour TK-1)
“Wow, wow, wow…” exclaim travellers when returning from Tiger Trail’s famed, 1-day 100 Waterfalls Trek and boat ride in Nong Khiaw. The trek’s founder, Tiger Trail, takes you on a day of hiking and exploring the jungle and its hundreds of cascading waterfalls. The path continues to the top of the falls and a view of the river valley. Then, you’ll descend to the Nam Ou River and a boat ride back to Nong Khiaw. (Tour NK100W-1)
Head out on a 1-day FairTrek community-based hiking tour that wanders through the foothills of a jungle-covered limestone mountain to visit local Hmong and Khmu hill tribe villages. You’ll hop on a boat for a cruise on the Nam Khan River, and, during Green Season, a visit to the Tad Sae waterfall to swim and explore. Funds from this FairTrek help support the local community. Learn more about the FairTrek program here. (Tour FT-1AM)
Looking for the best way to see beautiful Kuang Si Waterfall? Take a trek on a lush forest trail that winds through local villages and offers views of Lao mountain landscapes. This 3-4-hour trek lands at the turquoise pools of the falls, where you can cool down, swim, and enjoy the Kuang Si Waterfall Nature Reserve and Bear Rescue Centre. On the return, visit the Lao Buffalo Dairy. (Tour KST-1)
Join this 2-day “FairTrek” community-based tourism adventure, and immerse yourself in unrivalled landscapes and local rural village life. The trek follows the slopes and hills of a huge mountain range along trails used by locals to reach distant Khmu and Hmong villages. Meet the villagers and spend the night in one of their small family homestays. You’ll get introduced to Lao Loum, Lao Theung, and Lao Sung people and their culture. Share life and get to know the real Lao countryside, while helping the communities through your contributions. The tour also includes a visit to the Tad Sae waterfalls (seasonal). Learn more about the FairTrek program here. (Tour FT-2)
Take a couple of days and get the real feel for Luang Prabang’s environs. You’ll trek into mountainous jungle just outside of town, and meet Hmong and Khmu ethnic groups, before a homestay at a Khmu village. The following morning (Nov-July), hike 90 minutes to Ban En for a 2.5-hour kayaking experience on the Nam Khan. During Green Season (Aug-Oct), you’ll trek to Tad Sae Waterfall and follow trails leading behind the torrent, before a boat ride to a kayak and a 3-4-hour paddle downriver. (Tour TK-2)
Step into a 3-day FairTrek combination tour with biking adventures, an elephant experience (no riding), homestays in remote villages, trekking, and kayaking in the beautiful mountains surrounding Luang Prabang. Discover the untouched nature and distinct cultures that Laos offers in an experience that mixes activities with relaxation. This adventure will stand as the highlight of your time in in the country. Learn more about the FairTrek program here. (Tour EBTK-3)
Venture deep into the mountains for three days, and trek through jungle and rice paddies to homestays in remote Hmong and Khmu villages. Along the way, you’ll see rice fields clinging to steep peaks, while immersing yourself in the people and cultures of those tending to these remote Lao landscapes. Get ready for adventure and step into the world of Lao mountain village tribes on this unforgettable trekking and homestay experience by Tiger Trail. (Tour TPX-3)
Get active, get out there, and explore the secrets of Luang Prabang and Lao nature on this exhilarating 3-day adventure trip into the countryside around the UNESCO World Heritage city. You’ll mountain bike, hike, and kayak through the Nam Khan River valley, while stopping to visit small ethnic villages and the people. Immerse yourself in Lao life and nature during this active, exciting, and fun tour. (Tour BTK-3)
Nestled in the Khmu and Hmong villages of Nong Khuay and Long Lao Mai, the Eco Bungalows present private retreats that combine adventure with cultural exchange. Trek through verdant mountains, take in the splendour of Kuang Si Waterfall, and learn about Laos’ fascinating diverse ethnic culture…and at the end of each day, relax in the privacy of your own bungalow. Learn more about the FairTrek program here. (FTBKS-3)
Journey around Nong Khiaw and nearby Muang Ngoi Village, two small but increasingly popular Nam Ou Riverside communities known for their undeveloped and stunning mountain scenery. This 3-day tour takes you on a hike through jungle and mountains to a traditional homestay at Hmong, Lao Leum, or Khmu villages. Spend Days 2 and 3 exploring village life by boat. You’ll cruise to a riverbank homestay, hike to local caves, and refresh yourself in waterfalls on this perfect Nong Khiaw trek and river explorer. (Tour NKT-3BM)
Take your time getting to know Northern Laos on this trip through some of the country’s most beautiful places. You’ll hike through rich jungle-covered mountains for which Nong Khiaw is famous, trek the famous 100 Waterfalls tour, homestay with traditional ethnic tribes, and take in the grandeur of the landscape from a riverboat up and down the Nam Ou River. (Tour NKA-4)
Easy to access from Luang Prabang, Nong Khiaw remains remote and features a stunning mountain landscape, and it’s all yours during a 6-day tour. You’ll trek along scenic trails, overnight at ethnic homestays, and cruise up and down the Nam Ou River by boat for a full-on immersive experience in Nong Khiaw. The tour mixes basic overnight homestays for incredible cultural experiences with accommodation at comfortable guesthouses. Here, you can refresh with modern comforts to re-energize for more jungle hikes well off the beaten path. (Tour NKMA-6)
Looking for that hidden paradise in a remote, mountainous landscape? Head to Nong Khiaw on a 7-day adventure. You’ll hike distant trails, sleep in ethnic-village homes, and cruise the Nam Ou River during this immersive experience in Nong Khiaw. Accommodation during the adventure bounces between basic homestays in remote villages to comfortable guesthouses. Here, you can refresh with some modern comforts to re-energize for the next stage of incredible jungle hikes and cultural homestays well off the beaten path. (Tour NKHP-7)
Optional Treks in Luang Prabang’s Environs
Cross the Nam Khan and walk to the ethnically diverse village of Ban Suan Dala, home to Lao Loum, Khmu, and Hmong. Continue for 3 hours through thick forest and rice paddies to a Khmu village. After lunch, walk 2 hours to Tad Sae and a cool dip in its natural pool, and visit the adjacent elephant village. For a thrill, take an optional ride on a zip line, before returning to Luang Prabang in the late afternoon.
Start your 1-day trek at the Elephant Village and a boat ride across the Nam Khan River and the mountain trail to Ban Theung (Khmu). After meeting the locals, continue into the jungle between limestone monoliths. The rocky path steepens for 350 metres on the climb to isolated Lao Sung village (Hmong) and its roaming livestock. You’ll have a close cultural encounter before descending to other small ethnic villages. Follow a stream to the Nam Khan and a boat back to Luang Prabang. You can combine this tour with a 1-day kayaking trip and a night in the Elephant Lodge or nearby resort.
Tackle a tough 2-day trek in Chomphet’s hills on the way to visit three ethnic groups. Start with a 30-minute boat ride from Luang Prabang Town up the Mekong to Ban Moungkham. Next, take a 2-hour walk along a forest trail to streamside Ban Houaypong (Khmu) for lunch. Continue on a vertical 2-hour climb with mountain and valley views to Ban Phou Luang Tai (Hmong). Enjoy a cultural experience with villagers and a night in their traditional guesthouse. Take a 1.5-hour, steep downhill trek the next morning to Ban Som, before a 30-minute uphill hike to Tham Nang Anh Cave and a swim at a small waterfall. A final, easy 3-hour trek back to Ban Moungkham and boat ride takes you back to Luang Prabang Town.
Climb aboard this challenging 2-day trek into the mountains for great views and cultural interactions. Cruise up the Mekong, and then trek for 2 hours to a Khmu village and learn about their culture. After lunch, embark on 3.5-hour steep march to a mountain peak and Hmong village for a homestay. You’ll tour the village and its school, and your guide can translate your questions. The next day, walk down the mountain to ethnically diverse villages, stop for lunch at Ban Hoi Tan (Khmu), and descend to the Mekong and a boat back to town.
Hop on a moderate 2-day trek to the top of Pha Pon Golden Mountain, beginning with a 90-minute drive to Ban Pak Chaek on the Nam Ou. A 5-hour trek wanders through the river valley and its rice fields to the Khmu villages of Ban Houay Thuom and Ban Yha Nang for an overnight stay. Awaken for a walk past Hmong panning for gold, before hiking up Pha Pon Golden Mountain to the summit and a spectacular view. Descend the mountain to Ban Hat Houa (Khmu) and ride back to town.
Embark on a 7-day trek topped with kayaking in Luang Prabang’s more remote corners. The excursion begins 40-km north of town in Ban Houay Lo (Khmu) and a trail climbing to a pair of Khmu villages and on to Ban Mok Chung (Hmong) for the night. In the morning, trek on rugged trails deeper into the densely forested mountains around the Nam Ou River Valley to a Ban Houay Kok (Khmu) homestay. Awaken to a 6-hour day on the path to Tad Ngai and Tad Noi Waterfalls, before reaching Ban Pak Chaek on the Nam Ou for the night.