Our volunteering trip to Laos incorporates authentic culture and service. This school tour allows students to explore the history, rich culture and impressive architecture of Luang Prabang, before heading to a developing village deep in the province for a community service project. Here’s our volunteering trip to South East Asia at a glance:
- Days 1-3 in Luang Prabang: Old Quarter walking tour, Heritage House, hike Phousi Mountain, Traditional Art & Ethnology Centre, Mine Advisor Group Centre, Living Craft Centre, National Museum, former Royal Palace, Wat Mai & Wat Xiengthong temple sketching, ritual alms-giving ceremony, traditional cooking lesson, cycle the outskirts of Luang Prabang
- Days 4-8 in Pakxeng District: village tour, learn a traditional dance with villagers, community service project, teach children about hygiene & sanitation, lecture on environment & economy, service activities, reflection session
- Day 9 in Ban Chan village: boat across Mekong River, pottery industry lecture, pottery workshop
Like what you see? Discover the futuristic world of Chinese tech in our detailed itinerary below! But remember, all our school trips are completely customisable.
*Prices based on 20 students and 2 free teachers.
✓ All accommodation costs
✓ Full board meals for the entire trip
✓ All transportation costs, including airport pick-up and drop-off
✓ All activities listed in the itinerary
✓ 1 free teacher per 10 paying students
✓ 24-hour emergency contact support during the trip
✓ Detailed pre-departure summary & briefing
✓ Full financial failure protection
✓ Public liability insurance
✓ Our trips are fully risk-assessed
Day 1: The Old Quarter
Arrive at Luang Prabang International Airport, then head to your accommodation to check in.
Once you’re settled, embark on a walking tour of Luang Prabang’s Old Quarter to discover the history of the kingdom of Lan Xang. From the 14th to 18th century, this was one of the largest kingdoms in South East Asia, and its capital was Luang Prabang for over 200 years. Visit Heritage House, which dates back over 100 years, to find out about the traditional Luang Prabang way of life.
Then, hike up Phousi Mountain for stunning views.
Day 2: Diversity, War, Textiles, Palaces, Temples
Visit the Traditional Art and Ethnology Centre to learn about the diversity of ethnicity in Laos from the founder and ethnological expert.
Then, head for the Mine Advisor Group Centre, where you’ll learn about Laos’ civil war and how it is still affecting people’s lives today.
Finish the morning off with a visit to OCK POP TOK, the Living Craft Centre, to discover Laotian textiles.
Visit the National Museum and the former Royal Palace to appreciate the pre-communist extravagance. Afterwards, make your way to Wat Mai, the newest temple in Luang Prabang, followed by Wat Xiengthong. You will be sketching while we walk through the temples. Listen up to your Adventure Leader as they tell you about the temples’ histories. You will examine how the temples’ artwork reflects Laos’ transitions: from dynasty to dynasty and from seasons of plenty to seasons of drought.
Day 3: Cooking Lesson
It’s an early start today. Participate in the daily morning ritual alms-giving ceremony, in which the locals offer food to saffron-clad monks.
After breakfast, head to the morning market, where you can see diverse offerings such as dried buffalo skin, local tea, vegetables and hill-tribe weavings. Pick out some ingredients with the help of your Adventure Leader to use during a cooking class. Once you’ve got everything you need, learn to cook some local delicacies and enjoy eating your creations.
Hop on a bike and explore the outskirts of Luang Prabang. You’ll cycle to a number of villages, stopping to explore the local rural lifestyle.
Day 4: Pakxeng District
Venture out into the countryside to Pakxeng District. You’ll be greeted by the local authority and project manager.
The local authority and Mr Chipseng, the rural expertise project manager, will give you a tour of the village and explain the projects currently underway in the area. Next, receive a briefing of the service projects you will be taking part in over the next few days.
Make friends with the locals over dinner and learn a traditional dance with them.
Day 5-6: Community Service Project
It’s time for your community service project. Projects include but are not limited to renovating buildings and schoolhouses, creating a system for recycling plastics and other materials in a sustainable way, demarking zones for landslide prevention, establishing firebreaks in the jungle to prevent wildfires, assisting the local community with farm work and general restoration of lands. We pride ourselves on all our community service projects being ethical, which is why the work you’ll be doing will be decided by the community, dependent on what they need.
Teach the local children the basics of hygiene and sanitation, important information as the village is very remote and doesn’t have access to high standards of education.
Day 8: Environmental Lecture
Receive a lecture from local experts about how the environment has been negatively impacted from economic growth.
Get involved with more service activities, like school ground cleaning, village ground clean, plastic collection and re-plantation.
The project manager and local authority will lead a reflection section to conclude the contribution you have made to the community. Share what you have learned from your service projects, too.
Now you’ve finished up, make your way back to Luang Prabang. Listen to a lecture about the laid-back lifestyle of the community and the challenges that they face with the new economic changes.
Day 9: Pottery Making
Hop on board a boat to cross the Mekong River. You’ll disembark at a 400-year-old Laotian village. Start off with a lecture from a family in the pottery industry. They’ll tell you about the history of the village, what materials they use, as well as the skills and technical processes need to create each item of pottery. Learn about the production of terracotta roof tiles, jars, lamps, pots, bowls, vases and teapots. Then, try making pottery for yourself.
Make your way back to Luang Prabang.
Day 10: Home Time
It might be home time, but it’s not over. The incredible creative, active and service opportunities in Laos will follow you back to the classroom…and beyond!
Creative: Examine, via the medium of art, how the temple’s artwork reflects Laos’ transitions. Design and create pottery products.
Activity: Challenge yourself as you hike Phousi Mountain, cycle the outskirts of Luang Prabang and learn a traditional dance.
Service: Engage with the local team to learn and build what the community need, teach local kids basic hygiene knowledge and participate in an alms-giving ritual.
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