- Encounters with locals
- Hiking / Trekking
- Culture (paddy field, coffee, tea ...)
- Sustainable Tourism
- Off the beaten track
Once again, the town of Paksong isn't very interesting, what is interesting are the surroundings, particularly the magnificent waterfalls just a few kilometres from the town. In my opinion the most beautiful waterfalls in the area are Tad Alang, about 40 kilometres from Paksong.
The fall is tens of metres high and the amount of water is such that you feel the spray and the wind from it as soon as you start to get close. There are lots of small pink flowers and banana trees growing around the waterfall which make a beautiful frame and occasionally you will see a rainbow that completes the picture. If you enjoy sporty holidays, you should know that Tad Alang is not easy to get to, the path is steep and can be dangerous in the rainy season, but it's worth it once you get to the bottom.
When the time comes to sum up your holiday in Laos , you'll realise that the word 'waterfall' comes out a lot. One such will be the Katamkok waterfall, situated just before Paksong. It took us a while to find it and we were a bit disappointed that we couldn't get close or wash off the dirt that clung to us after a dusty trip on a road that was mid-construction.
But it was still lots of fun bumping along the sandy, dirt road! Even so, we found a river at the foot of the falls where we were able to swim. Yet again we had one of those beautiful, unexpected and beneficial experiences you so often get in this country! At the end of the day we stopped at Paksong for the night. The town is not particularly interesting but they do cook up delicious barbecues. As we'd not yet tried one, this gave us the perfect opportunity!
A region that was one of the most heavily bombarded during the Vietnam War; don't expect to see amazing ruins or cultural vestiges. Its ideal climate would have made it a major coffee-producing region, thanks to investment from a French project, but the war managed to put an end to that too. Today the Boloven Plateau produces some of the finest beans in the world - Pakxong is, therefore, the 'coffee capital'.
You can sip a cup when there, buy beans at the market to take home as a gift and, if you want to head out of town, take a tour of the plantations. You can get there by bus, as with many destinations during a trip to Laos. I decided to see Tat Fan, which has been described as the one the 'most spectacular waterfalls' in the country.
There are few visitors during the rainy season and hiking in the neighbouring natural reserve, which is home to monkeys, giant butterflies and tigers, proved impossible. But all the same, the landscape here is breathtaking!