The landlocked nation of Laos is considered by many savvy travelers to be the jewel in Indochina's crown. After years of isolation, Laos is slowly opening to the outside world, but it retains its own quiet rhythm and charm. The United Nations has recently declared Luang Prabang, the ancient northern capital, a protected World Heritage Site. We recommend spending time both in Luang Prabang and the capital city, Vientiane. Private touring with our expert local guides is the best way to experience this former royal capital set along the Mekong River. Our expert guides provide insight into Lao culture and history during touring of traditional Buddhist wats (temples), French colonial architecture, local markets, silk weaving villages and more. Travelers with more time should consider visiting Vientiane, the laidback capital of Laos, to see Pha That Luang, a gilded Buddhist stupa that’s the most important monument in the country, and other attractions.