Eight more minutes, the sign indicates. “If I am fast it might be only 5”, I tell myself when I eagerly hike up the last few steep metres before reaching the viewpoint overlooking the rural town of Nong Khiaw in Northern Laos. Reaching the top after a one-hour hike, the 360-degree view on Nong Khiaw does not fail to impress: the terraces of light green rice paddies contrast with the dark green of the treetops ; the Nam Ou River on which we have been floating down for two days reflects the sky, and wraps itself around the only patch of flat land where Nong Khiaw is settled at the steep base of the limestone formations; the sun is setting behind the mountains.
Nong Khiaw is an excellent base to discover the remote Northern Laos and enjoy its mountainous and evergreen landscapes.
- Quiet Nong Khiaw in its stunning setting is an transportation hub if traveling North (by boat to Phongsaly or Muang Khua, one of the gateways to Vietnam) or South (by road to Luang Prabang). Due to new dams being built, traveling by river is becoming more challenging: go fast!
- Check out this interactive map to experience other great activities in Luang Prabang, and more articles and photos (zoom out) about the area!