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Phongsaly, Laos

Phongsaly Province, top of northern Laos

Phongsaly is one of provinces,  located  farthest north of Laos, which shares  border with China and Vietnam. Most of Phongsaly is at high attitudes, and capital is located 1,400 m above sea level. The forests  of Phongsaly are the most remote and well preserved in northern Laos and scenery includes spectacular  limestone mountains and the Nam Ou river ( the biggest tributary of the Mekong ).  The population is make up of about 22 different ethnicities, with  being Phounoi, Tai Lu, Khmu, Akha, Haw, Yao,Oma, Poulee, Mouchee, Laoloum, Pala, Lolopho, Hmong, Cherpia, Laoseng, Laobith, Hayi, Tai Neua, Erpa..

The capital of Phongsaly province  is Phongsaly town,   which has complicated history. Having served as a  Chinese,  French   and  Vietnamese  outposts. The town  himself is surrounded by rolling hills and it built into the   side of Phoufa Mountain.

The town buildings have interesting architectural features, and the Museum of tribe is excellent way to see an afternoon, admiring various ethnic minority artifacts and handicrafts.

How to get to Phongsaly.
By bus
Daily Bus directly from Vientiane via Luang Prabang, and Udomxay. From Vientiane it takes 24 hours, from Luang Prabang it takes 15-16 hours, and from Udomxay it takes 8 – 9 hours.

By Boat
By boat from Luang Prabang via Nongkhiaw,Muang Khoua south of Phongsaly Province. it takes 2 days.

By bus via Udomxay to Muang Khoua in South Phongsaly Province. Further by boat to Hatsa, and then by bus 1,5 hour to Phongsaly town.

By Plane
Lao Aviation which provides the flight directly from Vientiane twice per week, it takes 1.5 hour