General information, recreation, infrastructure
Louang Namtha (Luang Namtha, and Luang Namtha and Luangnamtha) is a small town in the North of Laos and one of the most popular tourist destinations in this part of the country. Louang Namtha is located just 20 kilometers from the border with China, 300 kilometers from Luang Prabang and 650 kilometers from Vientiane (Louang Namtha on the map. The town is small, its population, including surrounding villages, is slightly more than 21 thousand people.
Generally Luangnamtha – a bit unconventional city. In fact, it is a collection of interconnected villages with two centers: the old and new town. At the same two centers separated by 7 kilometres (a New city on the map, the Old town on the map). The New town appeared only in 1976, due to frequent floods, covering the old part of the city. It is in the New town holds much of the tourist infrastructure and accommodation options.
Louang Namtha is the main center of ecotourism in Northern Laos. It is much more tourist developed than another Northern city Phongsali. Here it is much easier to purchase local tours or national Park, find a hotel or other accommodation. Prices are lower, transportation is better developed. Tourism is developing, with government support, and operates a tourist information center where you can get free maps and attractions trails tours. There is also a useful site of information centre with a lot of useful information in English http://luangnamthatourism.org/.
Also Louang Namtha is a point to stop on the way from China to Laos or Vice versa, and from Northern Thailand (province of Chiang Rai).
Worth coming here for a few days to visit one of the many ethnic villages that still preserve their identity and have not yet become a tourist, like some places in Central Laos. But most importantly – what's next is one of the most visited and interesting National parks, Nam Ha NPA. For the sake of visiting this National Park here directs the majority of tourists, although even without it you can visit here with interest to spend a few days sightseeing the city or visiting ethnic villages.
The tourist infrastructure in Louang Namtha is well developed. There are agencies, rent a motorbike and Bicycle, airport, bus station, banks and currency exchange, ATMs.
Accommodation options are not very many, but the place is almost always, so booking in advance is not required. However, it's much easier to pre-book a hotel in order not to waste time looking in place because a single concentration of places of hotels there. If you still come here without pre-booked accommodation, it is better just to go to a new city. Of course, hotels here only the basic level with a minimum of amenities just to sleep. Also popular accommodation type homestay (in the homes of local residents). To find this type of accommodation not only in the center, but almost every village, including in the ethnic villages popular with tourists.
Search for and book accommodation in Louang Namtha the best sites or search form from Agoda:
- Search for hotels in Luang Namtha on Agoda.com
- Search for hotels in Luang Namtha on Booking.com
- Search for hotels in Luang Namtha on Hotellook.com
Weather, tourist seasons in Louang Namtha
In Louang Namtha warm all year round, but there is a rainy season from June to October, during which to make a trekking Hiking or Bicycle - motorcycle tours and not as comfortable as the rest of the year.
Tourist seasons to Luang Prabang by months*
* best time to visit;
appropriate time to visit;
not a recommended time to visit
Current weather in Luang Prabang and the forecast for the near future:
How to get to Louang Namtha
Almost in the center of the city is the airport, where are daily flights from Vientiane (airport map). The flight lasts just under an hour, the cost of the flight from $ 150 to both sides. From the airport to the hotel can be reached by tuk-tuk for 20,000 Kip.
But it is much cheaper to get to Louang Namtha by bus, including from neighbouring countries. There is a local bus service at least from Vientiane, Luang Prabang, Oudomsay, Vang Vieng, Muang khua, Nong Hau. The international bus flights from Chiang Rai in Thailand, the cities of Dien bien Phu and Sapa in Vietnam, from China through the border crossing in the town of Boten. See more, how to get from Sapa and Dien bien Phu in Laos here...
- Vientiane-depart 08:30 and 14:30, in the path of 18 hours, the cost from 180,000 Kip (1585.59 RUB, see currency of Laos and the exchange rate).
- From Luang Prabang depart at 08:00, price 130 000 Kip, 7 hours.
- From Nong Hao go 11:00, cost 100 000 Kip, on the road 6 hours.
- From Oudomsai go to 08:30, 11:30, 12:30, the cost of 40,000 Kip, 3 hours.
You can buy tickets at the departure station and major tourist cities are also hotels and travel agencies on the street. Here flights that you can book tickets online:
In town buses arrive/recover one of the two stations. Pages of buses in the province is located in the centre of the new town, but the bus station long distance bus directions located 10 kilometers away from the city center, and she will have to get a tuk tuk around 20 00 Kip per person, but will have to wait until it fills up, or to pay for the entire tuk-tuk.
Also in Louang Namtha can be reached by boat their Houeisay (Huay Xai). It is a city on the border with Thailand at Chiang Rai province, and it can be accessed from Thailand by boat across the Mekong river, there's an official border crossing. But regular flights from Hayashi there, and have to hire a boat that will cost at least US $ 120 per person or 400 for the boat for four. The journey takes two days and includes an overnight stay on the way to one of the villages.
Transport, to move around Louang Namtha and the surrounding area
The city is quite big, and to move between the two centres (the old and new town), the airport and the bus station, will have to use tuk-tuks, which travel is starts from 10 000 Kip per person, but tourists should rely more on 20 000 (176.18 RUB).
You can also rent a Bicycle (from 20 000 Kip) or motorbike from 50,000 Kip per day. On own transport you can see not only the city but also to drive around the neighborhood. For bikes even developed a special tourist route map which you can get for free at local travel agencies and tourist information center. It includes visits to 13 sites, including villages, and is 35 kilometers, which can be overcome for 2-4 hours.
Still Dean kind of transportation is by boats or kayaks on the river. To make it a part of tours to the nearest villages down the river, where you will be transferred back to the city already on the ground.
Louang Namtha attractions, what to see
The sights of the city, and it is a Museum and some temples, you can see in one day. But for all that nearby, you could spend a week. Louang Namtha is the main gate to visit the National Park and the many ethnic villages that you can go on a trekking tour multi-day trips that are offered in local tourist agencies. You can also go trekking on your own, or visit the village on a rented Bicycle or motorbike. But visit the National Park of independent tourists is impossible, access is allowed unless accompanied by certified guides.
Note, however, that the acquisition of the tour at a local travel Agency does not guarantee you a bunch of positive emotions from Hiking trip. Unfortunately, not all travel agencies and guides to implement during tracking of the promised program, shortening the route and missing interesting sights. Therefore, it is best to buy these tours with one of the proven local operators, whose offices are represented in the city. This Is The Nam Ha Ecoguide Service And Green Discovery, Jungle Eco-Guide Service, Forest Retreat Laos, Namtha River Experience. Almost all companies have websites, so it is possible to specify in advance the Matchday programme and cost, and book. Rates usually are available upon requests.
Here is a description of the most popular attractions of Luang Namtha with the time of operation, cost, and ways to reach them:
Museum Of Luang Nam Tha Museum
A small Museum with a modest collection of clothes, musical instruments, objects of everyday life of ethnic tribes inhabiting the area.
🕐 Work time: Monday to Friday from 08:30-15:30.
💵 Entrance fee / ticket price: 5000 Kip.
🚶 How to get there: located in the centre of the New town (Museum map).
Cycling route Luang Namtha Valley Route
It developed the bike trail around the city with a visit to 13 interesting places, including temples and villages. Its length is 35 miles (2-4 hours). There is also a shorter route of 8 miles and two hours.
🕐 Working time: to make the route better than the day in clear weather.
💵 Entrance fee / ticket price: free, Bicycle rental 20 00 Kip.
🚶 How to geta free map and detailed route information can be obtained at the office of the information centre or on the website http://luangnamthatourism.org/luangnamtha/activities/biking-luang-namtha-valley-route/.
There are several developed routes, although you can compose and your. Developed routes have a duration of 2-5 days and include overnight stays in villages and visits to other major towns in the province. Overnight stay will take place mainly in the accommodation type homestay.
🕐 Time of work: round the clock.
💵 Entrance fee / ticket price: free, motorbike rent from 50,000 Kip/day
🚶 How to get: to do the route in the tour group, and independently. Free map and detailed route information can be obtained at the office of the information centre or on the website http://luangnamthatourism.org/luangnamtha/activities/motorbiking/.
The national Park of Nam Ha NPA
Nam Ha NPA or completely Nam Ha National Biodiversity Conservation Area is home to more than 300 species of rare plants and animals, including wild elephants, leopards, pangolin, bears, Boas. Also the Park is home to several ethnic groups, visiting villages which are included in the program visit the Park.
To visit the national Park only in a group or individually, accompanied by official guides, their own Smoking. Tours are available lasting from 1 to 5 days, sometimes Hiking, kayaking, and mixed. Overnights can be camping and ethnic villages. To participate in the tour need a change of clothes, trekking shoes, things for personal hygiene (including insect repellent and sun protection), camera. Equipment and meals provided by organizers.
🕐 Time of work: round the clock.
💵 Entrance fee / tickets price: prices for tours to the national Park depend on the number of days and the number of tourists in the campaign (the more, the cheaper), and start at an average of $ 25 for one day if the group tour.
🚶 How to get: to do the route only with the sightseeing tours that are sold through travel agencies in town.
Around Louang Namtha is home to many ethnic villages of the Hmong ethnic groups (H'mong), Lantana Lanten), tai Dam (Dam Tai), tai Lu (Tai Lue), the Akha (Akha) and others. Unlike the tourist villages in the North of Vietnam or Thailand, are people still preserve their traditional way of life, engaged in agriculture and livestock, are almost a subsistence economy, although becoming more modern. Almost every village are happy to take tourists, for accommodation type homestay with basic facilities.
Here are the most famous villages that you can visit on your own: Hat Yao, Nam Dee, Thong Jai Tai, Nam Thoung, Phieng Ngam, Nam Ngaen, Nammat Mai, Vieng Neua, Khone Kham.
🕐 Time of work: round the clock.
💵 Entrance fee / ticket price: free.
🚶 How to get: visit the village is during organized trichinopoly or molitorov, but you can do this yourself by renting a motorbike or Bicycle, or if you have experience, even on foot.