Cooling off at Kuang Si Waterfall, Laos

If you’re in Luang Prabang, Laos, and looking for a good day trip outside of town, Kuang Si Waterfall is probably the go to place. You’ll no doubt get asked about a hundred times if you want to go and see the waterfall when you’re walking along the streets in town, so you definitely won’t have any trouble getting there. It’s also a very popular place these days, so finding someone to share the cost of the ride is fairly easy as well.

After a very picturesque drive through the countryside surrounding Luang Prabang, you arrive at a parking area with plenty of restaurants and food stalls. Once you’ve paid your entry fee, it’s only a short walk through the jungle to reach the falls; but don’t rush straight to the falls. Make sure to stop in at the bear sanctuary on the way to check out the rescued Sun Bears, and if you can, make a donation to help them out. The sanctuary does a great job and the bears look really happy.

Sun bear at Kuang Si, Laos

A Sun Bear at the bear sanctuary at Kuang Si

I first visited Kuang Si when I visited Luang Prabang back in 2011, but I returned with my wife during my recent return to Laos. Back in 2011, there were probably about ten other tourists there with me. This time around the place was packed. Still, the crowds can’t really take away the beauty of the place.

Jungle stream at Kuang Si, Laos

The best way to experience Kuang Si is to follow the stream along from the bear sanctuary where the water flows over a series of beautiful cascades, resulting in lots of cool refreshing swimming holes to take a dip in. The most popular swimming hole has a pretty awesome rope swing that’s worth a go.

From there, continue walking along the jungle path upstream to Kuang Si Waterfall itself. It’s pretty spectacular, particularly in the wet season when there is a lot of water coming down the stream.

Cascade at Kuang Si, Laos

One of the many cascades below the falls

Jungle path at Kuang Si, Laos

Following the jungle path

Jungle stream at Kuang Si, Laos

Standing on a cascade at Kuang Si, Laos

That’s one way to cool off on one of the cascades

Beautiful flower at Kuang Si Waterfall, Laos

A vibrant flower

Pool at the base of Kuang Si Waterfall, Laos

The pool at the base of Kuang Si Waterfall

Kuang Si Waterfall, Laos

Kuang Si Waterfall

Most tours to Kuang Si allow you to stay for about three hours, which is more than enough time, but if you wanted to stay and cool off in the crystal clear water all day, you could easily do it. Just get your own driver for the day in Luang Prabang and you can stay for as long as you want, cooling off in paradise. Not a bad way to spend the day.

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11 comments… add one
  • Jen Seligmann Feb 23, 2014

    Great photos Dean. The water looks so mystical and cool and refreshing, I want to dive in right now.

  • Cheryl Howard Feb 24, 2014

    So pretty! I could totally spend a day relaxing here.

    • Dean Wickham Mar 18, 2014

      Hi Cheryl. It is a relaxing place. I could float around in those cascades all day I think 🙂

  • Carmen Feb 24, 2014

    Looks gorgeous! Will have to visit when we´re in Asia next year

    • Dean Wickham Mar 18, 2014

      Hi Carmen. It’s well worth the visit if you’re in the area.

  • Dan Feb 25, 2014

    These photos are amazing

  • Kuang Si Waterfall was my favorite place in Luang Prabang. I especially enjoyed the rope swing!

    • Dean Wickham Mar 18, 2014

      Hey Travis. I enjoyed the rope swing the first time I went, but this time I couldn’t be bothered lining up for a go. It was way too packed. Still an awesome place though. Cheers

  • An May 12, 2014

    Stunning photos, Dean!
    I’ve been in Luang Prabang 2 years ago and I absolutely fell in Love with this place. I love the way from Luang to Kuangsi where I can see the line of butterflies along the path and beautiful landscape. I love swim in the clear cascade and all activities in there.

    • Dean Wickham May 17, 2014

      Hi An. Good to hear that you made the trip to Luang Prabang and enjoyed it as much as I did. It is a wonderful place isn’t it? 🙂

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