Zen Namkhan Boutique Resort

Zen Namkhan Boutique Resort

Jungle-lite and au naturel

More on Luang Prabang

If you want to experience a little of Laos’ wilderness and nature without having to travel far from Luang Prabang, a getaway to Zen Namkhan Boutique Resort is a great choice. Just 13 kilometres from the town centre, the resort is surrounded by forest and overlooks a stunning mountain landscape.

Travelfish says:

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The natural ecological pool.

This resort is a place to find peace, quiet and nature. It really is not for everyone. If you’re uncomfortable with wilderness, geckos, no TV or WiFi in your room and being alone with your own thoughts, this place isn’t for you.

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Bungalow villas.

The bungalow villas are the best. They’re spacious, private and have a huge balcony that looks out onto the river and mountains. You can sit, listen to the silence and watch fishermen drift by (and maybe even the odd elephant). The entire front of the villa can be opened up so you can soak up the view from the inside – or from the outdoor shower. All the basic hotel amenities are included: tea/coffee, toiletries, air-con and minibar.

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Stunning view of the mountains and Nam Khan River.

Superior rooms feel more rustic than the bungalows and are smaller. They still have a balcony but no river view. The tile floors and the natural wood walls make the interiors darker. The bathrooms are quite small.

Superior Rooms are small and more rustic.

Superior Rooms are small and more rustic.

Two of the superiors are fan-only but you’ll find the temperatures much cooler here up in the mountains so all you need is to open the windows and use the mosquito net. Remember to bring warm clothes for December and January, when nighttime temperatures to drop to single digits.

The central dining area and lobby with a small lounge on top.

The central dining area and lobby with a small lounge on top.

There’s a restaurant dining area with WiFi and comfortable chairs overlooking the pool, some loungers and a second floor living area. The naturally-cleaned infinity pool overlooks beautiful mountains that resemble two elephants facing each other. There’s also a very zen-looking Japanese bath beside a pond in a secluded part of the property. Order it in advance and they can fill and heat it up for you.

Feeling Zen at the Japanese Bath.

Feeling zen at the Japanese bath.

Zen Namkhan is located on the Nam Khan River, on the same stretch as Lao Spirit Resort. Tad Se Waterfall is only a short boat ride away. Hikes and village visits can be arranged and the resort has a kayak. Kayaking the Nam Khan is an amazing experience, and not to be missed if you’re a confident paddler. Or be content to just sit still, relax and enjoy a more natural side to Luang Prabang.

Zen Namkhan should complement a stay in town – an easy escape to tack on to the end of your holiday. It should not be your base for exploring if it’s your first time to Luang Prabang. In that case, stay close to the centre.

The resort will include free shuttle from airport/town with a minimum two-night stay and direct booking. It’s a 20-minute bumpy ride. Otherwise, you’ll need to hire a minivan transfer. Catching a tuk tuk is not advisable as the private dirt track leading up to the resort is steep and narrow and when wet, very muddy.

Contact details for Zen Namkhan Boutique Resort

Address: Ban Xieng Lom Village, Luang Prabang
T: (030) 514 2411;  
Web: http://www.zennamkhanresort.com
Coordinates (for GPS): 102º13'32.91" E, 19º51'31.53" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: US$50 to 100

Room rates

What we were quoted as a walk-in.

Superior double room
High season October to April
US$69 US$79
Bungalow air-con private bathroom
High season October to April
US$119 US$139

Reviewed by

Cindy Fan is a Canadian writer/photographer and author of So Many Miles, a website that chronicles the love of adventure, food and culture. After falling in love with sticky rice and Mekong sunsets, in 2011 she uprooted her life in Toronto to live la vida Laos. She’s travelled to over 40 countries and harbours a deep affection for Africa and Southeast Asia. In between jaunts around the world, she calls Laos and Vietnam home where you'll find her traipsing through rice paddies, standing beside broken-down buses and in villages laughing with the locals.

From US$73


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