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Vang Vieng: Reformed And Ripe For Exploring

Discover Vang Vieng Attractions, For a Different Adventure

Vang Vieng made a reputation for itself as an outrageous party town in the 1990s. Today, Vang Vieng attractions are drastically different.

Tham chang cave vang vieng

Once a party hotspot, Vang Vieng, a riverside town that lies in between Luang Prabang and Vientiane, is today an eco-adventure paradise with activities catering to an ever-increasing audience of adventurers and affluent travellers looking for a unique Asia experience.

So whether you fancy exploring the Nam Song River or watching the sun rise from a hot air balloon, here are some of  the best things to do in Vang Vieng.

What to do in Van Vieng: Adventures Abound

One of the top things to do in Viang Vieng is tubing. Simply hop on a donut-shaped rubber float and gently drift your way downstream, stopping off at one of the many bars that line the river. We recommend Smile Beach Bar for a refreshing Beerlao (a local beer) and a bite, preferably while relaxing on one of its many riverside hammocks. Tubes can be rented in the city centre (just ask the friendly locals for directions!) and rental includes a ride to the starting point of your adventure.
Another perfect way to beat the Laos heat is with a dip in the Blue Lagoon, one of the top Vang Vieng attractions. Half an hour away from the centre of Vang Vieng by car or tuk-tuk, the route leading to the Blue Lagoon is scenic, with extensive views of rice fields set against the backdrop of striking limestone mountains.
Life jackets are available to rent for children and less confident swimmers while food stalls line the lagoon to cater for hungry swimmers. After cooling off in the clear waters of the Blue Lagoon, head over to the famous Tham Phu Kham (the “Cave of the Golden Crab”) for a glimpse of the iconic reclined Buddha.
One of the best things to do in Vang Vieng will undoubtedly be a ride in a hot-air balloon — possibly the most magical way to take in views of the limestone mountains, city and rivers of Vang Vieng. VLT Natural Tours  is a highly recommended operator, and also offers balloon rides at sundown if you are not an early riser. While a sundown balloon ride lets you witness the charm of Vang Vieng as it comes alive at night, a sunrise flight lets you admire the beauty of daybreak from over 250 metres in the air; but pack an extra layer as it may get chilly in the early morning.
Adventurers who enjoy the thrill of exploring caves should lace up their hiking boots and check out the limestone formations of Tham Chang, considered to be the most popular cave in Vang Vieng. During the Laotian Civil War, an entire village sought refuge in this large cave complex. Also highly recommended are Tham Nam, a 500-metre-long water cave that is accessible only by boat or tube, and the magnificent stalactites of Tham Loup.

Top Things to Do in Vang Vieng: Food

For a local farm-to-table experience, check out Organic Farm Vang Vieng, a restaurant/farm that serves authentic Laotian cuisine, with all of the produce sourced and prepared on site. The farm also offers tours and cooking lessons for those keen on immersing themselves in local culture.

Want to have a no-frills Korean barbecue meal with friends? Then fire up the grill and savour the wide selection of tantalising meats and seafood at Peeping Som’s Bar and Restauarant, located on the main road in Vang Vieng. Proceed with caution when applying the chilli paste dipping sauce — the kick is fiery!

Meanwhile, Viman Vang Vieng stands out amongst the other restaurants in the city thanks to its unlikely combination of Thai and German food. Here you can find dishes like Thai curry and pad thai on the same menu as classic German foods like bratwurst.

Best Things to Do in Vang Vieng: Fun After Sundown

Nights in Vang Vieng bring out the city’s playful charm. While it is no longer the party town it used to be, Vang Vieng is still home to lively venues like the popular Sakura Bar Vang Vieng, which tends to get crowded early. For a slower pace head to Gary’s Irish Bar instead, where you can feast on televised sport and comfort food.

Whether you are looking for outdoor adventure or simply want a break, there is bound to be something to appeal in Vang Vieng.

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