Laos is one of the last bastions of communist ideology, which belies its uniquely gentle nature. Visitors cannot fail to be captivated by the magical tranquillity of this small, landlocked and mountainous nation.
The most rewarding way to arrive in Laos for your holiday is by slow-boat from the Thai border, soaking up the jungle sights and sounds as you drift down the Mekong to Luang Prabang. Once ensconced in Laos’ diminutive second city, you’ll find it hard to leave. Striking yet unimposing temples are scattered among its charming streets, testament to the country’s ubiquitous Buddhist heritage.
Further south you'll discover the workman-like city of Vientiane and the limestone scenery of Vang Vien. A rugged beauty awaits you in the southern 4,000 Islands region, where deserted temples can be explored from the comfort of an elegant guest house and the sweeping landscapes and coffee plantations of the Bolaven plateau await.