One of the most beautiful waterfalls I have seen was in Laos at Kuang Si Waterfalls and just a 30 minute Tuk-Tuk or motorbike ride from Luang Prabang. These waterfalls were amazing! Crazy blue, tiered and just beautiful. There’s 4 different sections you can go to so you can spread out from the crowds.
The first one you run into has a tree branch you can jump off into the pool of blue water. I jumped off and was immediately taken back to when I used to quarry jump as a kid, but this was so much prettier. 🙂
The second section has a bunch of different pools and is the biggest. It’s where most of the people go. It’s big enough to swim and there’s plenty of ledges to lay out on, which is what most people do. The 3rd is the one you see in most of the pictures online if you google Kuang Si. It’s the most photographed of all the waterfalls here. There’s signs stating this section is off limits, but you’ll see many people ignoring the sign and going in. It’s a great photo-op and no one’s patrolling the area.
The last section has the biggest waterfall and is designated no swimming, which surprisingly everyone adheres to. Picnic tables are at the bottom where you’ll see buses dropping off tours to eat their lunch and enjoy the view. You can also hike up to the top of this waterfall. The steps are steep, but it’s worth the hike. At the top, there’s another natural pool to swim in and park benches where you can eat lunch or relax from the hike up.
There are a few options to get here. We booked a Tuk-Tuk from our guesthouse and got there at 10 am. When we walked in we noticed the waterfalls were already starting to get crowded. The drivers gave us 4 hours to see the falls before taking us back, but we could have easily stayed all day. My suggestion? Rent a motorbike, pack a picnic lunch, grab your GoPro and go early (they open at 8:30am). If you get there right when they open, you’ll get to enjoy the falls an hour before anyone else gets there. Entrance fee was 20,000 Kip (as of September 2015). Well worth the trip and not to be missed if you find yourself headed to Luang Prabang!