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Laos - Holidays, Flights and Hotels

Laos and The Far East

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Flight Time to Laos from the UK
Approx 17 hours including transit

Laos is a landlocked country in Southeast Asia and the thickly forested landscape consists mostly of rugged mountains, the highest of which is Phou Bia at 9,242 feet (2,817 m), with some plains and plateaus. The Mekong River forms a large part of the western boundary with Thailand, whereas the mountains of the Annamite Chain form most of the eastern border with Vietnam.

The climate is tropical and characterised by monsoons. There is a distinct rainy season from May to November, followed by a dry season from December to April. The capital and largest city of Laos is Vientiane, and other major cities include Luang Prabang, Savannakhet and Pakse.

In 1993, the government set aside 21% of the nation's land area as National Biodiversity Conservation Areas (NBCA), which may be developed into a national park system. If completed, it is expected to be the most comprehensive and one of the finest national park systems in Southeast Asia.

A number of animal species have been discovered or re-discovered in Laos in recent years. These include the striped or Annamite rabbit, the saola, and most recently the Laotian rock rat or kha-nyou.

Information provided by Wikipedia

Flights to Laos | Resorts and Hotels | Car Hire in Laos

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Luang Prabang is a small and friendly town that sits in a picturesque setting at the confluence of the Mekong and Nam Khan rivers. Delightful to explore, you will find a wide variety of architectural styles from historic temples and wonderful old French mansions.

Vientiane, the sleepy capital city, holds a host of delightful temples and combines gracefully with the colonially influenced architecture. The Plain of Jars is a fascinating area of rolling fields where hundreds of huge stone jars lay scattered across the landscape.

The limestone Pak ou Caves many of which are encased with images of Buddha.

The remote northern provinces of Laos lie close to the boarders of China, Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar and are home to many minority groups who still live their traditional ways of life from centuries past until present day.

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The lesser-known, land-locked neighbour of Thailand, Burma and Cambodia, Laos is establishing itself as an essential stop on the Southeast Asian trek. While there are strong signs of its French colonial past and more shadowy recent history in the quiet and sleepy capital Vientiane (Viangchan), much of the country remains fundamentally unchanged by the passing of time, and that's its appeal.

Singapore AirlinesSingapore Airlines -

Singapore Airlines is internationally recognised as one of the world's leading carriers. Our route network spans over 90 cities in almost 40 countries including the Far East, Australia and New Zealand.

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Public Holidays in Laos
Jan 1 - New Year's Day
Jan 6 - Pathet Lao Day
Jan 20 - Army Day
Jan 29 - Chinese New Year
Mar 8 - Women's Day
Mar 22 - People's Party Day
Apr 13 - Pi Mai (Laotian New Year) (3 days)
May 1 - Labour Day
May 13 - Buddha Day (Vesak)
Jun 1 - Children's Day
Jul 11 - Khao Pansa (Buddhist Fast Begins)
Aug 13 - Lao Issara (Free Laos Day)
Oct 2 - Bouk Khao Pansa (Buddhist Fast Ends)
Oct 12 - Liberation Day
Dec 2 - National Day

Visa Requirements for Laos
Entry requirements for UK nationals: British citizens must have a valid passport. A visa is also required.

Being in transit (by air, road or river) in Laos can be as rewarding as the destination itself - but allow plenty of leeway in your schedule for the near-inevitable delays, cancellations and breakdowns.

Crime levels are low in Laos, although petty theft is not unknown.

Lao judicial processes remain somewhat arbitrary and, while you are unlikely to be hassled, if accused your legal rights may be slim or non-existent. Two points in particular to beware of:

Sexual relations between a Lao national and a foreigner are illegal unless they are married, and marriage requires special permits. "Number One" condoms are available for 1000-5000 kip for a pack of 3. These are probably the cheapest condoms in the world (and their quality seems to be ok). Drug use in Laos will result in heavy fines and expulsion at best, and imprisonment or even execution at worst. In the eastern parts of the country near the Vietnamese border, unexploded ordnance are a risk factor. Be careful if you leave the roads in this area and never ever touch anything that may be a grenade or other explosive, even if it seems old and harmless.

One other note of caution: there has been some violence between Hmong rebel groups in the north against the main Laos government. This low-level insurgency has been brewing for years, and has been very sporadic. The main areas affected have been on Highway 13 (which runs from Luang Prabang to Cambodia, passing through Pakse and Vientiane). The last reported case was in 2003 around Kasi. Attacks have been on regular buses, not tourist buses. VIP and minibuses passing through these areas typically travel with an armed guard (with a machine gun!). If in doubt, ask fellow travelers in Luang Prabang about the current situation. Between 2003 and 2006 the primary forest in this area has disapeared - hiding would be difficult for snipers now.