The best way to see the sights of Lao and Thailand along the Mekong River from Vientiane to Ubon Ratchathani is on the Mekong Explorer cruise. The custom-built teak and mahogany three-deck ship has well-appointed cabin each with a private bathroom with walk-in shower. Each day of the eight-day cruise includes sailing and a shore trip. Many of the short trips go to places seldom visited by foreigners.
Day trips include Phu Prabaht Historical Park, soon to be a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Buddhist Sculpture Park, a boat ride on a lotus lake, the one-time home of Ho Chi Minh, the rock monastery of Phu Tok, and several other Buddhist temples. One day trip includes a long-tail boat ride up the Khading River to the Lao village of Ban BagBang. Upon return to the Mekong Explorer guests are invited to a Lao cooking demonstration presented by the ship’s chefs. Many evenings there are informational programs so guests can have a better understanding of the area.
The service is excellent and so are the meals. One evening the Mekong Explorer ties up to a sandbar in the middle of the Mekong River and the staff prepares an excellent beach BBQ after which they entertain by singing Lao songs. The cruise is designed for those who love pampering without the glitz and want to explore areas off the usual tourist path. For more information check www.cruisemekong.com or call toll free in the US 855 702-4986.