- Natural beauty It may not have the sheer variety of Thailand, but Laos is a beautiful country. Take a multiday trek or bike ride, or enjoy the scenic bus ride from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng.
- Archaeological wonders The country's most unusual attraction is the Plain of Jars, which has 5-ton stone-and-clay jars of mysterious origin. Wat Phu, pre-Angkor Khmer ruins, is Laos's most recent UNESCO World Heritage Site.
- Buddhist customs Observing or participating in morning alms in Luang Prabang is a magical experience; so, too, is sitting in a temple to chat with a novice monk, surrounded by the sounds of chanting and chiming bells.
- The Mekong The Mekong is the lifeline of Laos. You can travel down the mighty river and stop at one of 4,000 islands for a chance to spot freshwater dolphins.
FODOR'S GO LIST 2015
The top 25 places we think should be on every traveler's radar this year.More