Vang Vieng Trekking and Cave Explorer
Vang Vieng Trekking
and Cave Explorer
The magical karst topography surrounding Vang Vieng is riddled with limestone caves.
Explore dark caverns, venture down eerie rock corridors, immerse yourself in
clear springs, and hear the stories and legends behind these ancient caves.
WHY THIS TOUR?
Inside Vang Vieng’s dramatic mountains lie otherworldly caves and mysterious caverns just waiting to be explored. Many contain strangely-shaped stalactites and stalagmites that resemble objects or animals. Tham Xang Cave means ‘elephant cave’ as it is named after a stalactite resembling a jumbo, while Tham Hai Cave is nicknamed ‘snail cave’ due to a snail-shaped stalactite.
Throughout history these caves have been used by the locals as hideouts from travelling marauders, and more recently as a refuge during the Laotian Civil War. They are full of fascinating stories and legends. Embark on a thrilling exploration through the eerie darkness of these natural, undeveloped caves. Pass by strange formations that glow in the torchlight and listen to the water dripping from the stalactites.
09:00 - 16:00
Travelling 14 km north of Vang Vieng, you will start your exploration at Tham Xang, the ‘elephant cave’. Situated on the banks of the Nam Song River, this highly revered cave is an important Buddhist temple containing a remarkable elephant formation and many Buddhist statues including a golden, reclining Buddha. Pilgrims often visit the cave to sprinkle water on the elephant’s head and pray for good health.
Continue to Tham Hoi Cave to see the snail-shaped formation. This cave winds its way deep into the mountain side and contains an underground lake. Enter into the dark cave passing a Buddha image and then venture down the numerous meandering corridors that contain wonderful limestone formations.
Back out in the daylight, you can cool off with a dip in a refreshing pool of spring water that lies at the mouth of Tham Nam Cave. After a picnic lunch, trek through lush green rice paddies and vegetable fields to the Hmong village of Phathao that lies at the foot of a mountain.
The return journey to Vang Vieng will vary according to the water level of the river. One option is by kayak, paddling along the tranquil waters passing by scenes of riverside life backed by the dramatic mountains.