Laos/Holiday in Laos
My husband and I want to go to Laos for 2weeks in October then fly to Cambodia.where are places we can visit that you can recommend?
Do we need to book hotel or guesthouse in advance or can we walk in? how much does it cost?
looking forwards to hearing from you soon,
That sounds fantastic! I'm quite jealous that you'll be visiting SE Asia this year as I currently don't have plans to do so :)
I can only recommend based on my experience and from what I've heard. Vientiane is the main city of course, so there are a few things to do there. The central market you might find interesting and find some good gifts and local items among many other things. There are a few temples in the city that you also might find interesting. One of the most memorable experiences for me was just sitting along the Mekong River at a local cafe/restaurant and eating the freshest and most delicious fried rice you will ever find!
We headed up to Vang Vien for a few days. It is a small village that has become a place of interest to backpackers so there are guesthouses and cafes there although it is indeed a small village in the middle of the country. We rented motorbikes and drove up the main road but we heard that some of the local attractions include caves and tubing down the river. Good place to relax and enjoy the local atmosphere.
I, personally, didn't make it up to Luang Prabang but I've heard it's a fantastic place to see more of the cultural/historical side of Laos. It's definitely on my list for the next trip.
In terms of guesthouses and hotels, it all depends on the level of quality you want. We did things on the cheap so we were able to get rooms at US$5-10 a night. Better places will run you US$20-75 a night. We were able to just walk in without reservations as I've done virtually at every place I've visited in SE Asia. I wouldn't worry about reservations unless you're super concerned or it will cause you to feel anxious the whole time. If you want the peace of mind, go ahead and book in advance. I'm not sure if this is your first time to SE Asia but almost everything is negotiable. The advantage of coming without reservations is that you can possibly haggle on price and get a better deal. But just as a general note, you can negotiate on just about anything and it's part of the fun I've found. Most transactions can be done in US dollars but for small items (bottles of water, t-shirts, etc.) it might be worth having some local currency (kip). Here's a link from the Lonely Planet website about money and prices:
Anyway, I hope this has been helpful. Please let me know if I can help in any other way and have a wonderful trip!