Nong Khiaw Viewpoint Hiking Guide Laos

Nong Khiaw viewpoint also known as the Phadeng peak should be on the must visit places if you are in Luang Prabang or Laos. And honestly, it should be on the list of everyone because it has the most breathtaking views from the top. It will give you an ‘I am in heaven’ feeling, especially after the steep hike.

Before I conquered the Phadeng peak, I realized that very few people know about this trek and very less has been written. Hence I am writing an in depth hiking guide with the hope that it will help you plan properly.


Nong Khiaw viewpoint is located in the town of Nong Khiaw, a small tranquil village on the banks of Nam Ou river in northern Laos. It is about 150 km – 3 hour drive from Luang Prabang. You need to hire a taxi to reach this place.

*Also read my previous article on sustainable cheese.

Nong khiaw hiking guide

When is the best time to trek?

Time wise, obviously in early morning so that you can avoid the heat and humidity. Season wise in cooler months – between October to February. I trekked in the month of July and it was slippery, humid and very difficult.

Planning the trek

I suggest that you dedicate 1 night and 2 days for the hike. Leave from Luang Prabang on day 1 in the afternoon and reach early evening to Nong Khiaw. Watch the sunset from the bridge and catch an early dinner. Rest well.

Start at 5:30 am towards Nong Khiaw viewpoint.

What to wear and carry?

Clothes: Comfortable hiking pants and sweat absorbing t-shirt. You can keep a spare t-shirt to change once you reach the top as you will be dripping wet. You’ll probably need a light jacket in the cooler months.

Shoes: Good grip hiking shoes and socks

Water and snacks: I drank 2 liters of water while climbing up, so plan accordingly. Light snacks like sandwiches, fruits, chocolates and nuts is what you should keep as you’ll need them to reward your body after the steep hike.

Camera: DSLR for still landscape shots, GoPro for the stunning timelapse and a Drone should do the trick. Divide the gadgets amongst your group, otherwise it will get really heavy to carry all this to the top. If you are going solo I suggest you to make a difficult decision and just take one of these.

Where to stay?

I stayed at the Nong Kiau Riverside and it had amazing views from the room.

The hike to Nong Khiaw Viewpoint

The starting point is near Nong Khiaw bridge – about 300m. Pay an entry fees of 20,000 kip per person and do not forget to ask for walking sticks from the starting point. Trust me you will need them.

We had a local guide with us who said we could finish the hike upwards in 45 – 50 minutes. But since it had poured the day before so the entire trek path was extremely muddy, messy and slippery. It took us almost 2 hours.

Muddy trail Nong khiaw hiking guide

Luckily there were bamboo rails and ropes to hold on to and pull yourself up where it was extremely steep and slippery.

Nong khiaw hiking guide
Ropes to balance

After reaching the top, the view was surreal. The clouds were playing peek-a-boo with the mountains showing a hint of Nong Khiaw village at the bottom. We spent some time having our breakfast and taking loads of photos and making videos.

Nong khiaw hiking guide
Clouds covering Nong Khiaw village

After almost an hour, the clouds starting clearing out and we could see the gorgeous Nam Ou river and Nong Khiaw bridge amongst the mountains. It was absolutely incredible.

Nong khiaw hiking guide
Nam Ou river as seen from Nong khiaw viewpoint

Tips for Sustainable Trek:

  • Carry a bag to store the wrappers, bottles, plastic packets. Ideally dispose it in waste bins after reaching back to Nong Khiaw.
  • Do not throw leftover food at the top of the peak. Just carry it back down.
  • Avoid carrying liquor – it harms your health while trekking
  • Be careful at the rocks above. The edges are sharp and make sure you don’t topple in order to get the perfect photo from the top.

Nong Khiaw viewpoint hiking guide

Disclosure: I was invited by Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) and Luang Prabang Tourism Board on a FAM trip. However all opinions are unbiased and of my own.

 Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. It means it adds no extra cost to you if you book through the link but I get a referral bonus which helps me earn a little to keep this website up and running.

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Nong Khiaw viewpoint #hiking guide #laos

Nong Khiaw viewpoint #hiking guide #laos

55 thoughts on “Nong Khiaw Viewpoint Hiking Guide Laos

    1. Do you not like it or haven’t had the opportunity to go yet? I find all hikes super strenuous but the views from top always take my breath away.

  1. These photos are so scenic! This definitely just made me add hiking to my “before summer ends to do list” thank you for sharing!

  2. I am not a great trekker but always want to do as trekking among nature must be fun. You have given complete details about hiking to Nong Khiaw view point. Thanks for sharing all useful details.

  3. Okay, this hike looks amazing and the view is beautiful! I really want to do this hike now! haha. I am definitely going to safe this post. Thanks! 🙂

  4. This is incredible. Hiking options is what I usually look for at all the places I travel to. Hiking in Laos seems mesmerising, though this trek is a tricky as I see, I would love to take all efforts just for that view. 😊

  5. Fantastic!! I love hiking, and certainly seek the trails wherever I go. I haven’t been to Laos, but didn’t know there was such a wonderful trail here. The views look incredible, and the climb looks really fun!

  6. We recently hiked somewhere where we were above the clouds and we could also see the mountains playing hide and seek with the clouds. It is a truly surreal experience to be that high and see something that beautiful. Truly incredible. We may have to go here some day

  7. Oooh this looks fantastic!!

    I loooove a good hike, especially if it finishes somewhere really high with a good view. I also really love views like this when you are above the clouds. To me, that is even more beautiful than if it was a clear day!

    I totally understand that ‘I am in heaven’ feeling, as this looks like a perfect day.

  8. I’ve never been to Laos, but this hiking trip sounds exciting. One more thing, is this Lake Palace Hotel of Udaipur at the background of your profile pic? Have you written a post about Udaipur also?

    1. Hi Charu thank you so much. Yes the profile pic is of Udaipur. I plan to write about it this weekend (it is long overdue). But if you’ve any questions you can email me and I can guide you. I’ve there about 4 times now.

  9. It’s funny, I have been to Laos like more than 5 times in my life but I have never trekked. Part of me wants to but part of me is actually scared. Let’s see, Laos is expanding it’s new airport. Perhaps, it’s time to trek! Thanks for sharing this post.

  10. Fantastic. I love hiking and I really want to do trekking. I wish I can visit Laos one of these days. Very nice place. Thanks for sharing

  11. Wow what a view! I am not sure whether I like it better with the clouds or without. The clouds look magical but then the river is amazing too. I would love to do this hike.

  12. Great post – I loved this hike when I was in Nong Khiaw – such a mazing views. I did it the same time of year as you, but last year and it was really slippery then too. Definitely need shoes with good grips.

  13. I don’t think I was finding information on any treks in Laos. I’ll add it to must do things list. This trek sounds amazing and looks so pretty in pictures!

  14. Wow, the view looks amazing with those mysterious clouds! If Laos ever happens this is SO on my must see list, even though the huke seemed challenging, I’ll try to time it on a less humid time😊

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