Arrivals & Departures Laos ready to welcome visitors

Photo of Grace Millimaci

Opportunity to visit the "Land of a Million Elephants".

Scoot’s new route to landlocked Laos (near countries including Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia and China) is set to introduce travellers to what the airline describes as a must-see destination. 

The route’s April launch is being celebrated with a sale that ends at 11.59pm on January 22. 

Fly from Perth, via Singapore, to Luang Prabang and Vientiane from $189 each way. 

It’s Fly fare, so bags and food cost extra, but the fare includes taxes. You’ll need to visit before October 26. 

Scoot’s flights to Laos on an A320 leave Singapore at 9am on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays. They arrive in Luang Prabang at 11.10am, and then on to Vientiane by 1pm. 

SpiceRoads says Laos, once known as the Land of a Million Elephants, is welcoming tourists after years of civil war and isolation. 

It’s like stepping back in time, with locals retaining their innocence and charm. 

SpiceRoads’ seven-night southern Laos tour by bike travels 262km and includes the Mekong River, the coffee-growing Bolevan Plateau, waterfalls, rare Irrawaddy dolphins and temples. 

The next trip starts on February 3 and costs from $2527. The price includes accommodation but bike hire and a single supplement cost extra. 

Celebrate Pi Mai — Lao New Year — from April 14 to 16. 

The celebration is one of the most important dates in the country’s calendar. 

Laos’ official tourism website says the northern heritage city of Luang Prabang has some of the best ancient traditions and colourful pageantry. 

It’s a festival of blessings and renewal — the symbol of which is water — so Buddhas are washed, temples are repainted and homes are cleaned. 

Expect to get soaked; these days people have fun with hoses and water pistols or throw water from buckets and pans to create an “enormous water fight that’s impossible to avoid”. 

So the advice is to keep your passport, phone and valuables in a waterproof container, or leave them somewhere safe.

(Top image: Kuang Si Waterfalls in Laos. Picture: Scoot)

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