Kuang Si Waterfall and the sunset view from the top of Mount Phousi

Luang Prabang Travel Blog

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Kuang Si waterfall
One of the sights I was told to check out is the Kuang Si Falls. I booked a spot on a "jumbo", along with nine other people. By 1:30pm we departed for the 29km drive south of the town.

Near the entrance to the waterfall, there is a refuge for black asian bears to protect them from poachers. There enclosure was quite big with various things to play on, although the bears didn't do a lot of moving. One bear was holding a stick on top of a platform until he dropped it and watched it fall and went back to napping.

There is a main waterfall, of about 180 feet, and several pools below where you can cool off in the very chilly, but very clear water. At one of the pools there is a rope swing several people were swinging from as well as a 3-ish metre high waterfall, some people were using as a makeshift diving / belly flopping board.
View from the top of the waterfall


I chose to hike up the side of the main waterfall to see the view from above. I had only seen a staircase along the right hand side so I climbed up from there. The path consisted of a make shift staircase made of dirt and rocks, which was slippery and I climbed barefoot, using my flip flops on my hands to help with the climbing. At the top, there was a submerged rock "bridge" to cross over to the other side. I descended the left hand side (when facing the waterfall from below) that consisted of about 80% actual stairs. This side ran along some smaller waterfalls which would probably be flooded in the rainy season but at this time of the year, there was no problem. I saw a couple monks enjoying the small waterfall. They seem to be everywhere around this town :)

We were told to be back at the tuk tuk parking lot for 4:15, giving up 2 hours at the park, so I had an hour or so to kill.
On the way down to the base
I spent it lounging in one of the "pools" and reading along side a more vacant pool, listening to the sounds of the water flowing by next to me. Ahhh so blissfully relaxing.

During the drive back to Luang Prabang, we made a stop in a small village. The pathway lead around the village, where villagers stood with tiny tables trying to sell their wares. Most employed small children who only seemed to know the English phrase "2,000 kip" or "5,000 kip". They sounded a bit like minature zombies and freaked me out a bit. I don't think anyone on the jumbo purchased anything.

We arrived back in the town in time to climb up to the top of Phou Si to watch the sunset. I wasn't sure how to get to the top, but I found a staircase leading up from the other side of the mountain from the main road (there's an entrance from the main road behind the street market). I was worried I would miss the sun set so I have ran up the 350ish steps to the top. Once up there, I realized how popular a spot it is in the evening, but for a good reason. The sun sets behind a group of mountains, with the Mekong River in the foreground. It was one of the most spectacular sunsets I've ever seen.
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Kuang Si waterfall
Kuang Si waterfall
View from the top of the waterfall
View from the top of the waterfall
On the way down to the base
On the way down to the base
Kuang Si waterfall
Kuang Si waterfall
One of the swimming areas
One of the swimming areas
Bears near the entrance
Bears near the entrance
kids playing in a nearby village
kids playing in a nearby village
inside the temple at the top of Ph…
inside the temple at the top of P…
View from the top of Phou Si
View from the top of Phou Si
View from the top of Phou Si
View from the top of Phou Si
Luang Prabang Hostels review
Budget accommodation near the main street
I stayed here for three nights from February 10 - 13th. The gueshouse is located down an alleyway adjacent to Joma Cafe, a five minute walk to the mai… read entire review
Luang Prabang
photo by: oxangu2