Pakbeng goes upmarket
Our jaw dropped when we stepped into one of Luang Say Lodge’s bungalows.
That something so tasteful exists in Pakbeng, a rough-around-the-edges Mekong outpost, was a pleasant surprise. This lodge was built for the Luang Say Cruises’ wealthier travellers and while priority goes to their groups if rooms are available, outside guests can book. The solidly built bungalows are designed to feel like an early explorer’s lux base camp: bamboo thatch walls, colonial-style teak furniture and fittings, dark hardwood floors, dreamy mosquito-netted beds, ensuite bathroom and a sigh-worthy vista. This fantasia comes at a price and it doesn’t make sense to stay here just for a night unless you can afford it without regret. That said, compared to what you pay for hotels in Luang Prabang, the low season rate is good value. It’s a pity that the vast majority of people will only enjoy the lodge in the dark and in the early morning. The property is tranquil and serene, and makes a strong case for staying in Pakbeng for more than one night. Luang Say Lodge is 1.3 kilometres from Pakbeng town, accessible by river or via a hilly dirt road. Rates are half board, including buffet dinner, breakfast and pick-up from the pier, which you should organise with them in advance. Should you stay more than one night, note that the restaurant is not open during the day and you’d have to lunch in town.
Address: Pakbeng, 1.3 km from town
T: (071) 252 553; (020) 5644 9018;
Coordinates (for GPS): 101º7'6.99" E, 19º53'25.16" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: US$50 to 100
What we were quoted as a walk-in.
|Deluxe double room||US$55||US$73|
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.
Browse hotels on Agoda
Provided by Travelfish partner Agoda.
Our top 10 places to stay in and around Pakbeng