Half Day Trip to Kuang Si

The Kuang Si Waterfalls only 30 km away from Luang Prabang is a natural scenic attraction worth a half day trip or even a day trip if you like to swim longer in the incredible beautiful pools.
The waterfall exists of different cascades connecting the pools. There are pools where the stream of the water is so heavy that it’s forbidden to take a swim. However no worries there is enough space in the pools you do can swim in.
There is a walking path next to the waterfalls that goes up hill and once you arrive on top there is another pool with a swing above the water and a view over the jungle area where this magnificent places is situated. There are 3 levels of pools and I went swimming in the first pool when I came back from my hike to the third pool that is situated up hill.

Here I am at the Kuang Si Falls 50 meter drop

walking bridge

The Cascades

Cascades of the waterfall connecting the pools

the swing is at the 3rd pool up hill

walking path next to the 3rd pool

Go in the early morning as it opens already at 8 am, it will be less crowded, not that it was overcrowded when I was there in the afternoon, but in the morning you really can have one of the pools for yourself.
There are changing rooms and toilets and also a small restaurant, always convenient.

Swimming in the pool

 

Just outside the entrance gate of the waterfall park there is a Black moon bear rescue centre to save the Asian black moon bears, you can watch the bears playing or how they are sleeping in the hammocks. Feel free to donate to the rescue centre or buy souvenirs like t-shirts for example.
These bears have been rescued from horrible circumstances, people hunting them for their bile, or from bile farms where they were kept in tiny cages. In the Bear sanctuary they have been given shelter and food and more space to walk around.

 

Black moon bear scratching his chin on a wooden pillar

Welcome sign  at the Bear rescue centre entrance

Nicely carved wooden black moon bear

Selling t-shirts and caps

Bears playground

Bear sleeping in the back, this time not in a hammock 🙂

How to get there :

Simple by tuk tuk or minivan, taxi, bike etc,….

I went by minivan, got picked up at the hostel and the 30 km drive is over small dirty bumpy roads and takes almost 1 hour, so to long for me to sit in a tuk tuk, that’s why I preferred to go by minivan. It’s about 20.000 kip (Laos Money) = 2 Eur / 2 Usd

The entrance to the waterfalls is the same price. So it’s very cheap no reason not to go and see this for yourself.

Wandering in Luang Prabang

After my trip to Myanmar I headed for Laos, more precisely to the zen and tranquil town of Laung Prabang. This place is really a nice place to spend a couple of days, chillin and exploring at slow pace.
The first thing I did was watching the sunset and all the nice colors that came on the water surface of the Mekong River.
It is popular among backpackers but not so overcrowded as some other backpacker places in southeast Asia. The whole town is a Unesco heritage site, there are a lot of Temples to visit, and I did a few of them. I have to admit they do look all a bit the same and I wasn’t interested to go see all of them so I just sticked to the most important ones. In Luang Prabang it’s easy to get around by foot, or even to take a tuktuk as it’s very cheap. Laos is also cheaper than other countries in Southeast Asia and that’s why among budget backpackers it’s growing in popularity, especially the town of Luang Prabang.
Every day of the week there is an evening market with streetfood and also souvenirs are being sold on the main road that gets closed off from traffic. There is also day market  in the morning where the locals sell their food products like groceries and fish.

sunset Mekong River

sunset Mekong River

street food night market

street food nightmarket

the morning market

One of the first places I visited was the Royal Palace and museum with the Statue of Sisavong Vong, the former King of Laos. You have to leave your photography gear and personal belongings in a safe in another building before going inside the Palace, cause it was not allowed to take pictures, but I can say this, that the rooms look very nice, with walls decorated with glass mosaic and attributes and souvenirs that the Royal family got as gifts from foreign countries.

Royal Palace

Royal Palace Temple

Royal Palace Temple

Statue of Sisavong Vong

Across the street there is a stone stairway with 300 steps up hill that leaded me to Mounth Phousi from where I had a great view over Luang Prabang and the Mekong River. On top of this hill there is also a little temple and golden stupa.

A Temple complex that is worth visiting is the Wat Xieng Thong, it has several smaller buildings on the site and you can wander around and enjoy the beauty of these temples with the Buddha statues inside.

Golden Stupa on Mount Phousi

View over Luang Prabang

View over the Mekong River

Meditating Buddha Phousi Hill

Reclining Buddha at Phousi Hill

What Xieng Thong

smaller Temple at the Wat Xien Thong Complex

Another small decorated Temple

Wat Xien Thong

 

The last one that I visited was the Wat Visunarat Temple and the White Stupa the Wat That Phatum. One is standing across from the other and this Temple is the oldest one in Luang Prabang from what I’ve been told.

Wat Visunarat

What That Phatum Stupa