April 12, 2023 in 

Vang Vieng is a small town in Laos located in the heart of the Vientiane Plain. It’s famous for its beautiful scenery and waterfalls, which are accessible by kayaking or tubing down the river. The nightlife here is also quite popular; you’ll find plenty of bars and clubs where you can dance until dawn!

Vang Vieng has become a popular destination among backpackers because it offers everything they need:

  • Fun activities during the day (like kayaking).
  • Places to party at night (there are lots).
  • Relaxation opportunities during off-hours (you can float down rivers on tubes).

In today’s blog, we will be specifically looking at Kayaking in Vang Vieng and what to expect from this activity.

What Is Kayaking

Kayaking is a sport that involves paddling a kayak. Kayaks are small, portable boats that can be transported on top of your car. Kayakers paddle their kayaks in rivers, lakes, or the ocean, depending on where they are kayaking.

There are many different types of kayaks available for purchase; some are better for beginners than others. When choosing the right kayak, it’s important to consider your skill level and what you plan on using it for (e.g., touring vs. racing).

If You Are in Vang Vieng – Go kayaking!

Kayaking in Vang Vieng is a one-of-a-kind adventure. There are plenty of tour operators offering day trips out on the water. The most popular route is along the Nam Song River and its tributaries, which run through some beautiful scenery you will ever encounter.

Depending on what kind of experience you’re looking for and how much time you have available, there are different options available:

  • A half-day trip will take around three hours and cost about $15 USD per person. This is a good option if you want to see great views without spending too long on the water or getting too tired from paddling around all day.
  • A full-day trip will last between five and six hours at up to $25-$30 USD per person. These generally include stops at various points along the way where kayakers can swim or relax by jumping off rocks into pools below; this allows them to take breaks from paddling without having to get back onto land first before continuing their journey downstream again afterward.

The Trip

The journey of kayaking in Vang Vieng begins with a short drive to the Nam Song River, where you’ll meet up with a paddling partner. The guide will provide a quick tutorial on kayaking basics (how to stay safe while paddling). You will also be provided with a life vest, which you are required to wear at all times.

The boats will be pushed into the river, and you’ll spend some time paddling around. You will see marvelous scenery in every direction. You will see massive karsts of limestone tower over the fields of rice. You’ll float by tiny villages where women are drying clothes and children are playing in the river.

Rapids of Class II difficulty will be encountered sometime along your Kayaking journey. Don’t worry if you’ve never kayaked in rapids before; there are no hidden rocks and no experience is necessary. 

If you aren’t an expert navigator, you will crash into a tree along the riverbank. The river will begin to fill with paddlers after around 90 minutes. A further 90 minutes of gorgeous landscape and a brief halt at a riverside bar will await your arrival as you travel alongside them.

Your limbs and back will be sore from paddling for three hours overall, but you’ll be back in the heart of Vang Vieng by five o’clock in the evening.

Kayaking Vs. River Tubing

River tubing is a recreational activity where participants float down a river on innertubes or inflated discs.

There is a lot of debate on whether Kayaking is better or river tubing. We thought we would give our two cents on the matter and what we think is a better activity to enjoy.

Having the ability to steer our kayak with the paddles was one of the things we enjoyed most about kayaking in Vang Vieng. Many people get swept away in a current while tubing because they lack the skills to stay upright. One feels more secure and in charge when paddling a kayak. You can also control the direction and speed of the kayak, where currents are slow.

Tubers can sometimes get stuck in their tubes and have to swim or walk out of the path. Kayaking also provides a better workout than floating on an innertube does.

Interact with Locals to Find the Best Kayaking Spots

If you’re looking for a new place to kayak, ask the locals about their favorite spots and trails. Some waterfalls are better than others. If you ask them where they go on vacation, they might even tell you some secret places that have yet to be discovered by tourists!

Ask your hotel or hostel staff where they eat in town; most travelers have great recommendations for good food at affordable prices. And don’t forget to ask them what they think of Vang Vieng – after all, it’s their hometown!

Tips For Beginners and Advice on Safety Precautions

Wear a life jacket. Life jackets are a must, especially in the water. They can keep your head above water in case of an accident and make it easier for others to pull you out if needed.

Pack sunscreen and sunglasses. If you are going to be outside, it’s important to protect yourself from the sun. Wear sunscreen and sunglasses to prevent sunburn and eye damage.

Bring a towel to dry off after the trip. You will get wet and need to dry off when you are done. Bring a towel with you so that you have something to dry off with.

Pack water bottles for yourself and your group. You should bring at least one water bottle for each person in your group. You will want to stay hydrated, so having plenty of water is important.

Bring extra clothes for each day if you’re going on an overnight kayaking trip. Also, consider packing snacks like granola bars or trail mix.


Kayaking in Vang Vieng is a great way to see the stunningly beautiful countryside, relax and get a sense of the local culture. Talk to locals about the best kayaking spots and trails. Make friends with other kayakers as you float down the river.


Our Tour

The one-day Kayaking – Caving tour of Vang Vieng is famous for paddling down the Nam Song river. It is the country’s largest river, and rises in the Annamite Range. Nam Song River flows through Laos for about 320 kilometres before it joins the Mekong River at Khon Khaen, Thailand. The Nam Song is one of the few rivers in Laos that never dries up, and its water level remains constant throughout the year. The river is also known as “Mother River” because it has nurtured generations of Lao people for centuries.

You can see beautiful rural scenery and explore limestone by tubing through a deeper cave.This tour is especially for those who wish to make a full day of kayaking and caving along Long River.

The Long River is a famous tourist attraction in Vietnam, where travelers can take a boat ride to see the beautiful landscapes and waterfalls. The river flows through the city of Hue and is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.

The Long River runs from north to south, from Thua Thien-Hue province to Quang Nam-Da Nang province. It’s about 100km long, with many scenic spots along the way. There are many natural attractions along the river that make it popular among visitors like Ba Giao Temple, Tam Coc Beach and Dai The Gioi Waterfall.

The Long River starts at Phu Vao Mountain in Huong Thuy District of Hue City, which is about 20km from the city center. It flows southward through Huong Thuy district, then Quang Ngai district before entering Da Nang City in Quang Nam Province.

In the morning you’ll travel by truck going 20km north of Vang Vieng, where your experienced guide will give you some basic instructions and an itinerary of your day. You will see beautiful woodlands and clear rivers.

Along the way we will stop at a local Lao village. Your guide will explain to you the Lao culture. From here you’ll walk to discover the mystic Elephant Cave which is surrounded by a vast, lush countryside. Inside the cave, you’ll see the large “Elephant Stone” — after which this cave is named — along with many Buddha statues that date back centuries. Afterwards, lunch will include BBQ and fresh fruit.

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