Located about 25 miles to the northeast of the city of Vientiane, the Phou Khao Khounay National Park is a spectacular park that provides tourists and indigenous persons a fantastic location to become greater attached to the natural beauty of the country of Laos. The spectacular area has a large array of diverse wildlife, as well as a dense jungle area, waterfalls, rivers, and forest area that make it an absolutely spectacular place to visit.
This is a beautiful park area which sadly has found itself not reaching the same appeal that it once had for tourists visiting the country. While the closest national park to Vientiane, it can be a little difficult to get to, especially considering that it is spread out over quite a large area. At one point this was one of the most visited sites for those coming to the city, now it has fallen into a tragic demise as a decreased tourist population has meant decreased interest in caring for the National Park.
Because of how spread out the park is, it makes perfect sense to ensure that you spend at least a day here. The park stretches for over 50 miles from east to west and more than 25 from north to south, meaning it is can it take some time to find and view all of the spectacular locations of this natural preserve.
While many tourists have found that this is not a location they want to spend time in, you don’t want to let others dictate where you go. This is a beautiful preserve which gives you a great opportunity to see some of the most spectacular wildlife and ecosystems you will ever see. You will find several forest types here, including deciduous and dry evergreen. A spectacular plateau surrounded by three different rivers add to the beauty of this area, as well as the sandstone mountain ranges of Phou Ho and Phou Sang which both rise to more than a mile above sea level.
One of the things that people really like to do when visiting this park is go to the Ban Na Elephant Watch Tower and Homestay which was created in 2005 is a place where tourists can stay overnight. This also affords visitors the great opportunity to spot wild elephants as they travel through the park area. There also does spectacular displays about these elephants that tell the story of how they are cared for and how they have thrived in this preserve.
One area that visitors love to go to are the Tad Leuk and Tad Xay waterfalls. It takes about 2-½ hours one way to reach this from Vientiane, but it is well worth it. This is an area that is perfect for families as it provides spectacular swimming areas as well as great expense. In the hot temperatures of Laos this is a great place to cool off while you are viewing the spectacular wildlife around the waters. You are also welcome to stay overnight here, but be sure to inform the park checkpoints of your location.