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The Best Waterfalls In Laos You Should Visit

Find out the best waterfalls in Laos that you need to visit at least once. Learn about how to get there, what to do, entry fees and more at each of these amazing falls.


In the landlocked country of Laos, you don’t really plan to spend your days splashing about in the water. Though, this country is home to hundreds of waterfalls providing great places to cool down from the heat.

Whether you are into the ever-popular Kuang Si Falls, wanting to explore some of the many waterfalls along the Bolaven Plateau or just exploring some lesser-known beauties. There is no doubt this country is home to some impressive flowing beasts!

That’s why I have put together this list of the best waterfalls in Laos. This way you can know where exactly you should head to, to explore some of the best sights and swim in some crazy beautiful turquoise waters!


The Best Waterfalls In Laos You Need To Visit


How I Book Cheap Transport In Laos: 12Go Asia


rushing waters at tad sae waterfall


Kuang Si Falls, Luang Prabang

We have got to start this list with one of the most popular waterfalls in Laos, which is Kuang Si Falls. This beautiful tiered waterfall is a tourist hot spot, an Instagrammers dream and one of the best waterfalls in Laos.

It is relatively easy to get to with plenty of tourist minivans providing the 40-minute ride there for around $5.76 / 50,000 kip return. Prepared to be squished in with other travelers. It is a cheap way to get there, though the downside is they generally only stay for 3 hours. If you want a bit more freedom then definitely hire your own tuk-tuk which costs around $23.00 / 200,000 kip.

Once at the falls you can enjoy the turquoise waters and check out the bear sanctuary. There are plenty of pools which you can swim in. Though, check around for signs as you can only swim in certain ones. Please don’t be disrespectful and ignore these rules as many tourists do.

If you have a little extra time to spare then you can hike up to the top of the waterfall. Though, I definitely don’t recommend this if you only have three hours. The hike itself will take around 1 hour and honestly, the landscapes on the ground are a lot better than what they are from above.

blue waters at kuang si falls waterfall


Tad Sae Waterfall, Luang Prabang

Visitors to Luang Prabang often leave Tad Sae Waterfalls off their itineraries, but this is a huge mistake! A trip to Tad Sae is an ideal way to spend an afternoon for groups and solo travelers alike. Tad Sae sees fewer tourists, so it’s often less crowded, and the on-site treehouse café gives you the perfect spot to enjoy a fresh fruit juice above the flowing water. All you need is some cash for admission, sunscreen, and a sense of adventure!

From the city center, the best way to get to Tad Sae Waterfalls is to take a tuk-tuk. Make sure you negotiate with the driver before you get inside the tuk-tuk. You can also rent a motorbike, but I would only recommend this if you’re an experienced driver since road conditions vary depending on what season you’re visiting. Motorbike riders should make sure they are equipped with a navigation app like Google Maps or Maps.Me. There is a $0.60 / 5,000kip fee for parking your bike. Those with more money to spend can splash out on a private driver. More drivers can be booked through guesthouses or hotels. 

Once you’ve made it to the parking lot, whether by tuk-tuk, motorbike, or car, you’ll see someone manning a bamboo hut– this is where you’ll buy your ticket for a boat ride across the river for $1.15 / 10,000kip. The boat takes you across to the entrance of the Tad Sae. Here, you’ll buy your final ticket as admission to the waterfalls for $1.70 / 15,000kip. Hold onto your boat and parking tickets so you only have to pay once!

After you’ve made the journey to Tad Sae, you’re free to wander around and take photos. The main waterfalls sit a little further back from the entrance, but you’ll know when you see them. The large falls are often where local children will be found jumping into the stunning pools below. There are plenty of awesome abandoned waterfalls in Luang Prabang, so be sure to research others as well!

Tara: Silly Little Kiwi 

tad sae waterfall jumping into water at luang prabang


Tad Tayicusa, Pakse

The Bolaven Plateau motorbike loop (also called the Pakse loop) in the south of Laos is renowned for its coffee plantations producing high-quality beans due to the volcanic soil. But the plateau is also home to some of the country’s most stunning waterfalls.

There are two options to complete the loop, the short loop which takes 2-3 days or the long loop taking 3-4 days, I can highly recommend the long loop if you have time.

At the furthest end of the long loop lies Tad Tayicusa, where you’ll find no less than 7 waterfalls. There is also a wonderful homestay and restaurant where you can spend the night with views across the jungle for just $2.85 / 25,000 kip per night in a dorm.

The biggest of the waterfalls, Tad Tayicusa, can be seen from a viewing deck near the homestay, but the others require a short trek into the jungle. My favorite was Jarou Halang (pictured here), as we approached it we could hear the water thundering over the 100m cliff and feel the mist it was created in the air. At the foot of the waterfall was a large opening with beautiful green grass, a perfect place to appreciate this might of nature.

Other great falls at Tad Tayicusa include JaRou ThaLaLeui which a series of river rapids perfect for relaxing in and JarRou ManDreun where you can sit with your feet hanging over the edge whilst the water soars beneath. The lovely family at the homestay and restaurant are always happy to help out with more information.

Kieren: Got My Backpack

tad tayicusa in pakse


Tad Fane, Pakse

For me, the Tad Fane Waterfall is the most beautiful on the Bolaven Plateau and one of the best waterfalls in Laos.  It’s a double waterfall in the middle of the jungle, visible from a distance.  But Tad Fane is huge.  And glorious.  The twin falls thunder down through the jungle across the other side of the gorge from the Tad Fane resort and it is stunning.

The Tad Fane Waterfalls are 120 meters high and are located in the Dong Hua Sao National Park, which is atop the Bolaven Plateau.  You can visit from the Tad Fane Resort, which is easily reached from Pakse on a motorbike tour of the Bolaven Plateau:  Take route 16e from Pakse towards Paksong and turn off at kilometer 38.  You can also trek to the falls with a local guide.

The entrance fee is 10,000 kip is you visit via the resort.  One day tours of the falls, combined with coffee and local farm tours are also available from Pakse from around $40.00.  You can also visit from Paksong, (easily reached by bus from Pakse) where a tuk-tuk and a half-day hike can cost as little as $12.00.

Sarah: A Social Nomad

double waterfall of tad fane pakse


Tad Yuang, Pakse

This is another gorgeous double waterfall located on the Bolaven Plateau outside of Pakse. The impressive Tad Yuang Waterfall is the perfect place to have a delicious picnic and take a refreshing swim.

The entry fee is $1.10 / 10,000kip to enter Tad Yuang Waterfall and it is open 8am-5pm from Monday to Sunday. The easiest way to get here is no doubt hiring a motorbike. There are plenty of rental stores in Pakse, so you will have no problem finding one. If you are going to hire a motorbike for one day you can expect to pay around $9.10 – $11.40 / 80,000 – 100,000kip.

Depending on the time of year you visit it can be safe to swim in the pool below the waterfall. We visited in March and a highlight was swimming underneath the two waterfalls and climbing onto the rocks underneath them. I do recommend having water shoes for this if you are wanting to do it as the rocks can be extremely slippery.

This double fall is a lot quieter than the majority on this list and still equally as impressive. That is why Tad Yuang has made this list of the best waterfalls in Laos.


How I Book Cheap Transport In Laos: 12Go Asia


tad yuang waterfall in pakse


Khon Pa Soi Falls, 4000 Islands

Khon Pa Soi Falls is often missed by visitors to Laos’ 4000 Islands. Reaching Khon Pa Soi (also Soy) requires extra effort on top of the tedious journey it takes to reach 4000 Islands to begin with. The falls are about a 25-minute bike ride from the Don Det-Don Khon Bridge.

Khon Pa Soi Falls is located on the east side of Don Khon. After riding on a very bumpy dirt road that winds through the middle of the island, small signs direct visitors toward a suspension bridge. The bridge is safe, but likely to stoke fears of those who don’t care for dangling over rocks and a rushing river. Leaving bikes behind, the falls are about a 5-minute walk from the bridge. There is no entrance fee to cross the bridge and see Khon Pa Soi Falls.

During the rainy season, it may be difficult to see much of the falls. The dry season, however, reveals rocks that can be navigated to venture out into the middle of Khon Pa Soi Falls. The best views aren’t easy to reach, so prepare to get wet!

The more popular Li Phi falls (also known as Tat Somphamit) receives more attention and visitors, as it is larger and easier to access. For travelers looking to explore more of Laos’ 400 Islands, Khon Pa Soi Falls is well worth the trip.

John: Hangry Backpacker

khon pa soi waterfalls in the 4000 islands laos


Khone Phapheng Falls, 4000 Islands

Here’s something fresh for you today. Did you know that the largest waterfall in Southeast Asia is in Laos? No? Then it’s time to shine the spotlight on Khone Phapheng Falls.

Located at Champasak Province, right next to 4000 Islands, the visitor center for Khone Phapheng Falls is one of the most well-maintained facilities in Laos. The parks are nice, restaurants have good menus, signboards are new, and the observation decks are of top-notch.

When we talk about the largest waterfall, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the highest. Note that there’s a difference. This waterfall spans tens of kilometers and ranks number 3 in the world on annual flow rate. This makes it one of the best waterfalls in Laos and one certainly to add to your list!

At the visitor center, you’ll also find Manikhoth Temple, a temple built to hold Manikhoth tree. The sacred tree has been standing in the middle of the waterfall for more than 2000 years before it’s death in 2012. Every January, Buddhist monks across Laos travel to this very temple to pay tribute to Manikhoth.

To get there, you’ll have to first get to Nakasong if you’re staying in Don Det or Don Khon. From there, simply ask a motorcycle tuk-tuk to get there. It typically costs around $9.20 / 80,000kip for a return trip, the driver will wait for you at the entrance of the waterfall.

However, the entrance fee would be one of the most expensive tickets you’ve seen in Laos, which comes at $6.30 / 55,000kip per person. You could literally spend hours in there if you’re doing a backpacking trip!

Yen: Swing Abroad

khonephapheng waterfall laos


How I Book Cheap Transport In Laos: 12Go Asia


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Find out the best waterfalls in Laos that you need to visit at least once. Learn about how to get there, what to do, entry fees and more at each of these amazing falls.

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Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. So, if you click on it and purchase something, I get a small percentage at no extra cost to you. As always all opinions are my own and your support is much appreciated.

2019-08-07T17:44:34+12:00

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Your typical New Zealander, now discovering the world one country at a time. With a high-end backpacking style I prefer to glampack across the globe by embracing the best of each destination. All of which I share right here on Backpackers Wanderlust. 

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