The P O S H Guide to Laos
Tiny Laos is a bit off the tourist trail. It gets just a trickle of visitors compared to its larger neighbors. With no beaches, some may think the landlocked country may not have much to offer. But years of relative isolation have left Laos with a great "inventory" of natural and historic sights. The infrastructure is still a bit basic at this point, but it is improving year by year. There's already a good selection of hotels and restaurants in the main tourist centers, and a national airline that's probably much better than its old reputation may lead you to think.
For now at least, the jewel in the crown is Luang Prabang, the ancient Lao capital, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The tiny city has a wealth of ancient temples, standing side-by-side with colonial-era buildings, along with some very nice small hotels and restaurants.
Although it hasn't got much to wow you, the nation's capital of Vientiane is still worth a visit, with some interesting architecture and rather nice restaurants. Those looking to get truly off the tourist trail will want to check out the deep south, around the cities of Pakse and Champasak.