Asia > Laos: Weather, Map, Costs and Travel Guide
Laos : When and where to go?
Click on a city for complete climate and weather tables
Laos: Climate & Weather
There is a dry season and a rainy season in Laos.
17°C - 63°F
Vientiane, updated 01:00 GMT
What to do in Laos
Genuine and enchanting, Laos is however one of the poorest countries in the world and is only now slowly opening up to tourism.
The capital, Vientiane, on the banks of the Mekong River, has an old village, temples and markets with an atmosphere both provincial and peaceful. Do not miss the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Luang Prabang with its 66 temples dominated by Mount Phu Si, it has a great traditional market and the caves of Pak Ou are only a little further north.
Later you could visit the Plain of Jars, where there are over a hundred jars of unknown origin that date back over 2000 years; these are dispersed in the desert.
Visiting the Bolaven plateau allows you to meet the different ethnic groups of Khmer origin, some of who still live in a traditional way with rituals going back thousands of years. This plain is very fertile and here Arabica coffee is still grown in the traditional way. In Saravane, you will be surprised to discover a market of chameleons and lizards. If you go to the Mekong Delta near the Cambodian border you can see river dolphins.
Especially, take your time and leave your western influences at home in order to appreciate the true value of the kind and friendly Laotians.
Laos : The basics
There are no direct flights to Laos: You will have to go through Bangkok where Thai Airlines have a daily charter flight to Vientiane.
You will need a visa which is valid for a month.
The Laotian currency is the Kip.
Laos is a very accessible country for westerners although the high growth in tourism is causing a rise in prices.
However, you can eat in a reasonable restaurant for €8 and find a double room for less than €20. You'll have no trouble finding small restaurants that will serve you a traditional Laotian meal, both delicious and varied. For accommodation, it is easy to find a decent hotel in the city. On the other hand, it will probably be fairly plain, sometimes without hot water and electricity available for only a few hours per day, often you will have to stay with residents though which can be a fantastic cultural experience.
Regarding health issues, take a first aid kit with basic medicines and drink bottled water. Malaria exists in a particularly virulent form in Laos and it is resistant to conventional antimalarial medication so take all necessary precautions before you travel. Also, be aware of scorpions and snakes.
If you want to take home some souvenirs from Laos, you will find beautiful cotton or silk fabrics, carvings, silver jewelry, clay pitchers and basketwork.
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