Phongsaly, Laos

Phongsaly, Laos

Phongsaly, LaosSituated in north Laos, not too many people venture into the town of Phonsaly. However, those who do take the time and trouble will find an area rich in traditional culture and natural beauty. With more than twenty ethnic tribes living in the area, this is a good place to discover the diverse life styles, dress styles and religious practices that make these tribes unique.

Phongsaly, Laos
Phongsaly, Laos
Phongsaly, Laos

Situated in north Laos, not too many people venture into the town of Phonsaly. However, those who do take the time and trouble will find an area rich in traditional culture and natural beauty. With more than twenty ethnic tribes living in the area, this is a good place to discover the diverse life styles, dress styles and religious practices that make these tribes unique.

The most prominent tribes in Phongsaly are the Solo, Iko, Loma, Akha, Pusang, Thai Dam, Thai Deng, Lao Hoy, Yao, Thai Lu, Khamou, and Phai. There are a number of pretty villages scattered through the area where you can visit and watch the villagers practice traditional skills such as weaving, embroidery and making silver jewellery.

Stretching along the Lao-Vietnamese border, the Phu Den Din National Biodiversity Conservation Area is an area of intense beauty and home to a variety of endangered wildlife. Hire a guide and trek through this area for a chance to view the elusive animals and for great views of the countryside.

Also known as Sky Mountain, there are also spectacular views from the top of the mighty Phou Fa, and hiking to the top is a great way to pass a few hours as you explore the area. Wander through the Chinese Quarter, where you will find cobblestone streets lined with wooden houses carved in exquisite detail.

A great way to get to Phongsaly is to catch the bus from Oudomsay as far as Muangkhua and then travel by boat the rest of the way. You can also continue to Luang Prabang along the river after exploring the region for a day or two.

Although you won’t find large restaurants serving Western food and luxurious hotels here, this is a good place to try traditional Laos food and the warm welcome more than makes up for the hard mattress.

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