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Phou Asa and Elephant Rides

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Located close to the village of Khiet Ngong and Kingfisher Ecolodge, Phou Asa is one of the most curious sites of Laos along with the mysterious Plain of Jars.

Phou Asa is made up of a set of towers which remind one of a fortified castle. They stand around 2 m high and are made of flat stones piled on top of each other forming an enclosure around a keep.

Very nice and unique aerial view by drone over Phou Asa!

Posted by Kingfisher Ecolodge on Sunday, August 14, 2016

For the Lao people it is venerated as the ancient fortress of an Attapeu King, others have suggested they are some kind of ritual megaliths but as many others archeological sites in Laos the origins of the site remain an unsolved mystery.

There is now an interesting theory about Phou Asa history, you can read more here.

Close to the stone pillars it is also possible to see a Buddah footprint carved in a big rock.

Close to the village there is the biggest (700 ha) wetland area of the Xe Pian NBCA and most probably of Laos, even if your time is short it is worth paying a visit to this natural wonder.

It is possible to reach Phou Asa by foot (about 45 minutes walking) or to hire elephants from the villagers (two persons per elephant). You will travel along a road immersed in the forest. Once reached the top of the hill there is a beautiful view of the village and its rice fields. From here you can better embrace the expansiveness of this wetland area.

There are a couple of small, and very basic, private "guesthouses" in the village and it is still possible to arrange a home stay in of the village households, for home stay you should contact the people at the elephant center in the village.

To reach the village of Khiet Ngong from Pakse (about 60 km), take road 13 heading south to the island of Don Khong, at km 48 you reach the village of Ban Tang Baeng, then proceed in the direction of Attapeu turning left on route 18 and follow for about 8 km (from here onward it is a dirt road), there you have to turn right for another 2 km, passing through the village. There are indication to the lodge along the way.

At the moment there is only one daily transport (small truck with seats) going to Khiet Ngong, leaving the village at around 8.00am and stopping at km 8 (Lak Pet bus station, about 8 km from dowtown Pakse), from there it returns to Khiet Ngong at about 1:00-2:00pm, so if you are travelling alone the best option is to rent a motorcycle/car or to hire a tuk-tuk or a minibus (for larger groups).

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