10 Best things to do in Vang Vieng

Vang Vieng sits at the center of Laos, merely a two-hour drive north of the capital, Vientiane. Nestled within this small town are awe-inspiring landscapes featuring magnificent limestone mountains, verdant rice fields, and the picturesque Nam Song River. However, it's the diverse array of adventurous activities and the town's relaxed vibe that draw the majority of visitors here. In this article, I will cover the 10 Best things to do in Vang Vieng. So let's dive in.

10 Best things to do in Vang Vieng

1. Swim In The Blue Lagoons

One of the most popular things to do in Vang Vieng is to swim at one of the many Blue Lagoons. Blue Lagoon 1 is the easiest to reach and not too far from Vang Vieng. It's breathtaking and also has a nice cave that you can visit, but it's also the most crowded one. 

If you want to have a more seculded experience, you can drive further to Blue Lagoon 20 or 3. I visited Blue Lagoon 3, which had tubes, a swing, and a mini zipline above the water. All the lagoons look similar with a large body of emerald-colored water, seating areas, and a place to put your gear while you swim. 

2. Hike To A Viewpoint

As Vang Vieng is surrounded by steep limestone mountains, it's no surprise that there are a number of beautiful hiking trails. The most popular hike takes you to the Nam Xay Viewpoint, where you'll be rewarded with an incredible panorama of the countryside. The trail is steep from start to finish and takes about 30 minutes to get to the top. Keep in mind that this viewpoint gets really busy during sunset, so it's best to come earlier in the day if you want to avoid the crowds. 

3. Go Tipsy Tubing Or Kayaking

River tubing used to be the most popular thing to do in Laos. You would stop off at the many that line the river and combine your drinking with dicey water activities. But after some serious incidents over the year, things changed and more safety protocols were implemented. Today, tipsy tubing in Vang Vieng is still a thing, but it's more subdued. 

You can book this activity through your accommodation which includes transportation to the starting point. Alternatively, you can rent a kayak and head downstream. The landscape along the river bank is absolutely breathtaking. 

4. Fly In A Hot Air Balloon

If you haven't flown in a hot air balloon before, Vang Vieng is a great place to do it. Flying at sunrise is a peaceful and magical experience. The gentle breeze carries the balloon high above the landscapes of Vang Vieng, revealing stunning limestone cliffs, lush green fields, and the winding river below. Rides last between 35 minutes to over an hour, depending in weather conditions and the company you choose.

Every flight is an adventure since the balloon cannot be steered, so you never know exactly where you'll land. There are a few balloon companies that operate here, varying in price and service. Above Laos is the most reputable one, offering the highest standard of safety quality and the best experience. 

5. Go Cave Tubing In Than None

Another exciting thing to do is Tubing inside Than None Cave. This long submerged cave system is located on the banks of the Nam Song River, about 15 km from Vang Vieng. You can only enter this water cave by tube, as you pull yourself through a system of ropes attached to the walls. 

Once you reach the end of the ropes, you continue deeper inside the cave by walking or sometimes even swimming. Other than the water cave, this is also home to an extensive zipline platform and another beautiful cave that you can walk through, called the Angel Cave. 

6. Ride Through Nathong Valley

If you want to explore the countryside, then we suggest renting a motorbike and heading into the Nathong Valley that lies to the west of Vang Vieng. Here, you'll find lush green rice paddies, jagged limestone cliffs, and authentic local villages. But keep in mind that the road conditions are a little rough, with loose gravel, dirt, and potholes. So if you're not comfortable on a motorbike, opt for a buggy or bicycle instead. The valley is also home to a number of blue lagoons and mesmerizing viewpoints. 

7. Watch The Sunset 

A peaceful thing to do in Vang Vieng is relax on the banks of the river during sunset. Many hotels, restaurants, and located along the Nam Song River's edge, offering stunning evening views. A nice place by the river to have a drink is the Inthira Hotel. But if you're looking for a more elevated view of the surrounding mountains, you can head to one of the few rooftop in town instead. 

8. Explore The Tham Chang Cave

At the edge of town, you can find the beautiful Tham Chang Cave. To get there, you need to cross the river by taking a small ferry. Small tips are appreciated by the locals who run this service. There actually used to be a footbridge here, but it was destroyed in a flood in 2021. Once inside, you'll find yourself in a well-lit cavern that you can explore at your own pace. It takes about 30 minutes to see everything inside the cave and enjoy several viewpoints.

9. See Vang Vieng Night Market

The night market is the perfect place to end the day. Also referred to as the Vang Vieng walking street, this market opens its stores every evening from 6:00 to 10:00 PM. The shops line the road on both sides and sell all kinds of goods, from clothes to trinkets and food. If you want to buy some souvenirs, this is definitely the best place to be. 

10. Walk Around The Town

The charming town of Vang Vieng is a great place to start you visit. Stroll around its charismatic streets lined with coffee shops and restaurants. From traditional Lao cuisine to international delights, Vang Veing offers a diverse culinary experience. 


Vang Vieng offers a perfect blend of natural beauty and exciting adventures. From swimming in the Blue Lagoons to exploring caves and hiking viewpoints, there's something for everyone. The town's relaxed vibe, stunning sunsets, and bustling night markets add to its charm, making it an unforgettable destination in Laos.

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