Kuang Si Falls is a beautiful multi-layered waterfall, cascading down onto perfectly shaped rocks in a shimmering turquoise color. Kuang Si Falls is a perfect getaway from Luang Prabang and a great spot to cool off on a sunny day. We spent half a day walking, swimming and taking pictures here and it is the perfect break from the busier tourist towns! In this guide, you’ll be able to read about everything you need to know before and during your visit.
1. Kuang Si Falls Entrance Fee
The entrance fee to Kuang Si Falls is 20.000kip ($2.30 USD) and after paying your fee you will start your walk towards the falls, an easy 10-minute stroll before you reach the first part. If you’re feeling hot you can take a dip here – they closed off the falls towards the top so bear that in mind if you wanted to jump in as soon as possible. Bonus for swimming here? If you’re into fish spas, you’ll definitely get treatment here – best in Laos.
2. How to get to Kuang Si Falls
Kuang Si Falls is easily accessible from Luang Prabang with a shared or private tuk-tuk. The ride there is about 45 minutes long and it’s not the most comfortable one to do on a motorbike. I’d recommend the option we went for – private tuk-tuk. The price to get to and from Luang Prabang to Kuang Si Falls was 150.000kip ($17 USD) for two people.
We negotiated the price with a few drivers and there was no one willing to go lower than that. This option suited us perfectly because we didn’t want to wait around on other people and because we wanted to leave at 7 am and make it to the falls at their opening time, at 8.00 am.
WARNING: do not rent a motorbike in Luang Prabang. They will demand you leave your passport and scams happen (too) often to tourists. How? They steal/damage their own motorbike and if you don’t pay the price you won’t get your passport back. Hence the tuk-tuk prices being higher here – besides cycling and walking, it’s the safest thing to do.
3. Swimming and activities at Kuang Si Falls
Besides swimming, which is a very popular activity among locals and tourists, you can take this opportunity to hike to the top of the falls, pack a picnic bag and relax by one of the pools, try and find the other animals hiding in the forest (like the huge spider we saw!) or just walk around and snap as many photos as you can. Tripod is a good idea here, to get those epic waterfall shots. I forgot mine that day so I tried balancing my camera on the fence.
4. Best time to visit
The best months to visit Kuang Si falls are from December to May. This is also the peak season for the falls, so if you want to avoid crowds, make sure you plan for early arrival. If you visit outside these months you might not be as lucky to see the emerald color of the water here since it turns muddy brown in the monsoon season from July to October.
5. Don’t forget to see the bear rescue centre
You’ll notice a few minutes into your walk that there is also a bear rescue center located just before the Kuang Si Falls. At first, we were a little doubtful of their ethics (how are they saved if they are in chains?), but we decided to approach the women selling the t-shirts and learned quite the opposite. Animal poaching and general abuse are unfortunately quite common in Laos, and these bears were saved from human predators. We decided to donate some money for the rescued bears. I mean, look at this sleeping cutie!