The Vat Phou Mekong Cruise is a journey that starts and finishes in Pakse, with two separate itineraries. Both cruise itineraries visit the majestic UNESCO World Heritage Vat Phou ruins at Champassak, the mysterious Oum Muong ruins at Huei Thamo, the 4,000 Islands with its winding waterways, and the Pha Pheng waterfall on the Laos - Cambodia border.
From 1 Oct 2012 to 30 Apr 2013 and 1-31 Oct 2013
Departures every Saturday, Tuesday and Thursday on a cruise down or cruise up
From 1 May 2012 to 30 Sep 2012 and 1 May 2013 to 30 Sep 2013
Departures every Saturday for cruise down and Tuesday for cruise up
No operation in June for maintenance
CRUISE DOWN RIVER
Day 1: Pakse / Champassak / Vat Phou
After meeting at the Sinouk Coffee House in central Pakse at 9:30am, we transfer you to a longtail riverboat for your 2.5 hour journey to Champassak. Upon arrival at the Vat Phou boat, we help you to your cabins to unpack then serve lunch on deck. The highlight of the afternoon is the Vat Phou ruins - the majestic pre-Angkorian 10th century temple complex and boat's namesake. You have time to visit the museum at the ruins site, walk up to the highest temple and take as many photos as you would like. As dusk falls, we transfer you back to the Vat Phou boat for a chance to enjoy the tropical sunset on the deck. Dinner is served on board, while the boat docks for the night alongside a remote Laotian village.
Day 2: Huei Thamo / Oum Muong Temple / Khong Island
Breakfast is on board as we set sail for the village of Huei Thamo. This is a small village a few minutes walk away from the mysterious hidden forest temple of Oum Muong. Afterwards we rejoin the boat to continue our cruise southwards. Lunch is on the deck, while leisurely sailing closer to the wild paradise of the "4,000 Islands" Late afternoon we disembark from the boat to walk through Ban Deua Tia, a small Laotian Village where the traditional way of life has not changed in centuries. Our day's cruise finishes at the most northern tip of Don Khong, the largest inhabited island in the river archipelego. After dinner, the evening is yours to relax and enjoy.
Day 3: Don Khone / Pha Pheng Waterfall / Pakse
While you breakfast on the deck, the Vat Phou boat cruises the Mekong to the small village of Ban Veuthong, where you board a small boat to meander among the 4,000 Islands to Khone Island. You will visit the old French railway and walk across the bridge that links Khone and Det Islands. We continue on the boat back to the mainland for lunch at a local restaurant in a small fishing village, Xieng Di, on the banks of the Mekong. A bus transfers you to the historically significant Pha Pheng waterfall, "the Niagara of the East", close to the Cambodian border. We then bring you back to Pakse for the end of the cruise experience, arriving around 5.00-5.30 pm.
CRUISE UP RIVER (the same tour but in reverse):
Day 1: Pakse / Pha Pheng Waterfall / Khone Island
After meeting at the Sinouk Coffee House in central Pakse at 9:30am, you will board a bus to travel Route 13 to the historically significant Pha Pheng waterfalls, the "Niagara of the East". You will then be driven to the fishing village of Xieng Di for lunch at local restaurant. After lunch, you board small boats for a visit to Khone Island to see the old French railway and walk the bridge that links Khone and Det Islands. The boat drop you at the Khong Island village of Ban Veuthong, where you will board the waiting Vat Phou boat for a sunset cruise and dinner on the Mekong river, docking riverside for the night.
Day 2: Khong Island / Oum Muong Temple / Huei Thamo
Breakfast is on board the Vat Phou boat as we set sail to Ban Deua Tia. You willl walk through this small Village, seeing centuries old traditions still being used. The Vat Phou boat then continues to cruise north on the Mekong, past the island of Don Xai, and many other small islets in the river archipelego. After lunch, you visit the village of Huei Thamo and the mysterious Oum Muong forest temple, just a few minutes walk way. Dinner aboard Vat Phou then you have the rest of the evening to relax and enjoy the silence.
Day 3: Vat Phou / Champassak / Pakse
While enjoying breakfast on board, the Vat Phou continues its Mekong cruise to Champassak. The highlight this morning is the Vat Phou ruins - the majestic pre-Angkorian 10th century temple complex and boat's namesake. You have time to visit the museum at the ruins site, walk up to the highest temple and take as many photos as you would like. We return you to the boat for your final lunch on board. A small boat will then take you back to Pakse, arriving around 5.00-5.30 pm.