Ban Hatkai Homestay
Not great value
What we say:
With assistance from donors, Ban Hatkai has developed a village homestay scheme offering an insight into rural Laos and a start point for treks to the nearby Tad Xay waterfall. Hatkai is a quiet, spacious village with open, grassy pastures and riverside temple. The community-based project offers accommodation in villagers' homes, as well as a range of guided expeditions around the village territory and into the national park proper. The homestay is an interesting option, in open-plan traditional Lao houses with clean bedding provided. Food consists of delicious local home-cooking and the villagers are intent on giving their guests a good feed. At 30,000 kip per meal for each person, it's not the cheapest option, so if you're a light eater, opt out of paying for a few meals and bring some snacks and coffee instead. Food can be prepared, but ingredients are limited at the local shop. The villagers themselves are friendly and welcoming, but speak little English. Expect to be confused by the English language leaflet's explanation of what's on offer in terms of excursions and the costs of guides, admission, contributions and permits. It's also a good idea to inspect the guided camping expedition equipment and food before you set off for a cold night in the forest. The trips work out as poor value because of the surcharges involved. The main tenet of eco-tourism is that tourists pay extra to subsidise the cost of living for the subsistence farmers in the area, so that they can experience economic growth without cutting down the forest for logging and commercial agriculture. The extra charges are essentially paying to maintain the natural beauty that visitors come to see. Overall compares unfavourably to Tiger Lilly.
Contact details:Ban Hatkai, Thaphabat district, Bolikhamsai T: (020) 224 0303
What we were quoted
|Type of room||Low season||High season||Notes|
|Family room||7 USD||7 USD||Homestay|
Added to Travelfish on: 20th February, 2007
Last visited or updated on: 23rd November, 2013
Read Ban Hatkai Homestay reviews
Rated 4 out of 5
Based on 1 ratings and 1 reviews
Discover laidback Lao village life
I came to Ban Hat Khai through Thai-based NGO Open Mind Projects, to stay in the village and teach English for a few weeks. Even though the accommodation is very basic, it's clean and comfortable and you adjust very quickly. The meals are simple but hearty, and the people are just amazing. There had been a tragedy in the village shortly before I arrived, but you wouldn't have known it from the hospitality and generosity shown towards their guest. The daily routine consisted of: 8am Wake up 8:30am Breakfast (sticky rice and omelette, sometimes bamboo soup) 9am go for shower (bucket shower, very refreshing!) The rest of the morning would often be spent wandering around the village with about 15 kids in tow, playing with them and throwing sticks into trees to knock down super-sour fruit! I would then head over to the 'Tourist Office' for lessons at 4pm, and teach until 8pm, after which I would head back for dinner and settle down to chat with my hosts or read. There are also lots of daytrips that can be taken from the village into the jungle, and boat rides can be taken to nearby waterfalls. English levels in the village are very basic, but people are very friendly and it isn't difficult to communicate. Look for Bountieng if you have a complex request, he has the best English in the village! Overall, highly recommended for a chance to see what rural life in Lao is like, and I learned something that we in the west should definitely take note of - slow down!
Ban Hatkai Homestay reviewed by JaiYen88 (Total reviews: 2) on
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