Photo: At the French port.

Historic Sights

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It’s bungalows and hammocks galore but over a century ago, Don Dhet and Don Khon were more than a lazy backpacker idyll. It was a battleground where ambition clashed with nature as the French tried to create a passage for their colonial empire through Indochina.

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Visit Khone Pha Pheng, Li Phi or Khone Pa Soi waterfalls and you’ll understand the tremendous obstacle to this dream, over ten kilometres of rocks and rapids. Spoiler alert: nature eventually won, but not before the French had a short period of success.

Wave to Cambodia. Photo taken in or around Historic Sights, Don Khon, Laos by Stuart McDonald.

Wave to Cambodia. Photo: Stuart McDonald

From their stronghold in southern Vietnam and Cambodia, the French wished to create a link to China as a way to move goods as well as help establish control over the region. In 1893, creating a passage became a matter of necessity as a dispute with Siam over the eastern banks of the Mekong had France scrambling to move gunboats above Khone falls to ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 500 words.)

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Popular attractions in Don Khon

A selection of some of our favourite sights and activities around Don Khon.

Best places to stay in Don Khon

A selection of some of our favourite places to stay in Don Khon.

What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Don Khon.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda or Booking
 Read up on where to eat on Don Khon.
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Don Khon.
 Read up on how to get to Don Khon.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Don Khon? Please read this.
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See below for more sights and activities in Don Khon that are listed on

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Don Khon? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Laos.

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