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Hanuman. Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam. Tailor-made travel and unique journeys
Local Knowledge, International Expertise. Est 1990
 

Introduction

Good Cause Laos    
7 Days / 6 Nights
   
Making a positive impact on the lives of local people is a key theme running through this 7-day journey in Laos. We begin in the Asia of old at the World Heritage city of Luang Prabang with its temples and museums whilst also enjoying a cooking class of authentic Lao food at a classy restaurant. Having fun with a Big Brother Mouse book party will support child literacy, whilst a Royal Ballet performance is a great introduction to Lao artistic culture. After getting close to nature with a mahout course at Elephant Village, who focus on the protection and rehabilitation of their animals, we head to the capital city of Vientiane, its unique Buddha Park and café culture and take the opportunity to find out more about a restaurant that provides hospitality training for homeless youths.
Good Cause Laos

In Brief

Good Cause Laos
7 Days / 6 Nights

Day 1: Arrive Luang Prabang. Museum and temples.

Day 2: Cooking class at Tamarind. Book party with Big Brother Mouse.

Day 3: Boat Trip to Pak Ou Caves. See a Royal Ballet Performance.

Day 4: Mahout for a Day Experience at Elephant Village.

Day 5: Fly to Vientiane. Afternoon City Sight Seeing.

Day 6: Buddha Park and Free Time.

Day 7: Time at leisure until Departure.

In Detail

Good Cause Laos
7 Days / 6 Nights

Day 1: Arrive Luang Prabang.
Afternoon Sightseeing including Museum and Temples.
We arrive in Luang Prabang and transfer to our accommodation. In the afternoon, we begin to explore the historic town of Luang Prabang. We walk along Sisavangvong St, the heart of the old quarter and explore the National Museum, set in the former Royal Palace. Built in 1904, the palace is a blend of Laotian and French influences and houses many royal treasures. The most important item is the solid gold Pha Bang Buddha, a gift from the Khmer King to his son-in-law, Fa Ngum, founder of the Lao Kingdom. We then continue into the centre of Luang Prabang, exploring the narrow alleys that criss-cross the town, stopping to enjoy some views over the mighty Mekong River. We wind up at the beautiful temple of Wat Saen, originally built in 1718 and under the guidance of Ajahn Khamjan, one of the most revered abbots in Laos. There is the option of climbing Mt Phousi to explore the small temple here and enjoy sunset over this charming town.

Day 2: Cooking class at Tamarind. Book party with Big Brother Mouse.
Pick-up at your hotel to meet up with the Chef at Tamarind restaurant at 0900am. Then take on a Tuk Tuk tour with Chef to the local food market for today main ingredients. After that, heading out to our stunning lake-side open air pavilions where you learn how to cook 6 Lao traditional dishes including sticky rice; varieties of 'Jeow'; lemongrass stuffed with chicken; fish steamed in banana leaves; Orlarm, a special local dish; and dessert. Enjoy your own cooked lunch and we will bring you back to town at around 0300pm. (Vegetarians are very easily accommodated). Later we head to the outskirts of Luang Prabang to participate in the book party with Big Brother Mouse (http://www.bigbrothermouse.com) at rural village. Most children in Laos have never seen a book, other than a textbook, and perhaps not even that. There's no system for getting books into rural villages, some of which involve a day or two of travel from the nearest road. That's why Big Brother Mouse invented book parties. Here's what we do at a typical 3-hour party you will see many activities while you are there such as talking about book, art lesson showing by letting children draw, game time the Big Brother Mouse’s staff will lead the children to play a game, a song about books, story time, choosing your first book, a mini-library using the books in school..etc back to Luang Prabang by later afternoon. Overnight at hotel in Luang Prabang.

Day 3: Boat Trip to Pak Ou Caves. See a Royal Ballet Performance.
This morning, we travel to Wat Xieng Thong, one of the most celebrated temples in Laos. We then take a boat up the Mekong River, passing abandoned riverside temples and isolated villages. Our destination is the Pak Ou Caves, a sacred spot where thousands upon thousands of Buddhas were hidden for safekeeping during earlier invasions. Pilgrims have since added their own offerings and the caves are literally overflowing with Buddhas. After exploring the caves, we cross the river and have a local lunch on the banks of the Nam Ou River. We dine in traditional thatch bungalows overlooking a dramatic cliff face. We then return by boat to Luang Prabang and leave the rest of the afternoon free to enjoy the town. In the Evening we visit the Royal Ballet at the Royal Palace.

Day 4: Mahout for a Day Experience at Elephant Village.
Today, we take an elephant ride through the beautiful Lao countryside to visit an elephant camp where Asian Elephants are protected. We travel to the impressive Tad Sae Waterfall where it is possible to swim. This trip helps the rural development of the Ban Xiem Lom area and helps to sustain these former logging and working elephants through a gentle retirement. The location of the Lao Spirit elephant camp is unique and offers stunning views of a breathtaking mountain chain and towering cliffs. The countryside around the camp is unspoiled and covered with forests, plantations and fields. We enjoy a local lunch at the elephant camp before returning to Luang Prabang in the afternoon.

Day 5: Fly to Vientiane. Afternoon City Sight Seeing.
We arrive in Vientiane and check into our hotel for the night. After lunch, we visit the historic temple of Wat Si Saket, the oldest surviving temple in Vientiane. Then its time to visit the striking golden stupa of Pha That Luang, the most sacred monument in the city. We continue to the 'Arc de Triomphe' of Vientiane, or Patuxai as it is known locally. Built in the 1960s, the US-supplied cement was originally earmarked for a runway extension at the airport, but the Laotians found a much more creative use for it. We ascend the monument for some refreshing breezes and great views over this low-rise garden city. We finish with a stroll along the Mekong riverfront.

Day 6: Buddha Park and Free Time.
Today we step outside the city boundaries and visit the incredible Buddha Park, a kitsch riverside garden brimming with garish religious statues. We see a famous reclining Buddha and can clamber inside some of the bigger sculptures to discover strange scenes from heaven and hell. There is a local café here where we can enjoy a local lunch with views over the Mekong. In the afternoon, we return to Vientiane and can enjoy some free time or take an optional visit to a well-known Textile Gallery, enjoy a Traditional Herbal Sauna or visit the COPE Centre to learn about the scourge of UXO in Laos.

Day 7: Time at Leisure until Departure.
After breakfast, free at leisure for shopping or packing. Transfer to the airport to catch the departure flight.

What's In

Good Cause Laos
7 Days / 6 Nights

What’s In:
   -  All sightseeing and transfer services as detailed in our itinerary
   -  Accommodation in confirmed room category and named hotels
   -  Meals: daily breakfast at hotel only or as specified (drinks not included)
   -  English-speaking local guides (or the relevant language requested)
   -  All entrance fees as detailed in our itinerary
   -  Private air-conditioned vehicle with drinking water during sightseeing
   -  Boat trips as specified
   -  Hanuman arrival and departure gifts
   -  Public liability insurance

What’s Not:
   -  Tour services not detailed in our itinerary
   -  All meals not specified and no drinks except complimentary water
   -  International departure taxes
   -  Visa fees
   -  All International flight tickets
   -  Overweight luggage
   -  Early Hotel check-in/ Late check-out
   -  Expenditure of a personal nature
   -  Tips and gratuities
   -  Other services not listed in ‘What’s In’
   -  Travel insurance (cover against all cancellation costs, medical expense, including repatriation in the event of accident or illness).

Service Charter
Many local companies promise a high level of service, but not all are able to reach this goal. Here at Hanuman, we are genuinely committed to delivering the highest level of service during all stages of your trip, including the planning. Should our standards drop below your expectations at any stage during the booking procedure, then please contact us immediately.

Price Promise
We don't claim to offer the cheapest trips in the Mekong region, as many of the cheap tours cut corners. We don't believe in cutting corners and strive to deliver the best experiences on offer during a visit to the Mekong region. We do claim to offer value for money and strongly believe that our original trips are an excellent deal. However, we are aware that we operate in a competitive environment, so please do contact us if you find a significantly better price elsewhere. There may be a reason for the discrepancy in the detail, but we will take it upon ourselves to review your quote and see if we can offer a better price.

Extra Touches
We pride ourselves on really looking after our guests. Travel with a personal touch isn't just an empty slogan, but a philosophy that has guided our company through almost two decades of friendship with international travellers from more than 150 countries around the world. Welcome gifts on arrival, departure gifts to remember Cambodia by, complimentary drinking water throughout, our team is always on hand to ensure you have a most memorable time in the Mekong region. Your satisfaction is our satisfaction. Rely on our experience to better your experience and enjoy an authentic journey to the Mekong region with Hanuman.

 
     
PATA
Hanuman is proud to be a member of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA). Hanuman is also a member of the
Cambodian Association of Travel Agents (CATA) and the Cambodian Community-based Ecotourism Network (CCBEN).
Hanuman's Temple Safari is featured on page 32 of ‘The Guide to Responsible Tourism in Cambodia, Laos & Vietnam'.
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