It appears the law making it illegal for a Laotion and a foreigner to enter a “relationship” has helped prevent the country from becoming an overly westernised tourist destination, as well as limit sex tourism – a surprising difference from neighbouring Thailand. The people are much friendlier, and while there are no beaches due to it being a landlocked country, there are plenty of sources of water to keep you entertained. There are stunning waterfalls such as those found in Luang Prabang, mysterious streams running through an endless array of caves, and hidden springs scattered throughout the country that you’ll usually just share with the locals. Of course there is also the controversial tubing in Vang Vieng where alcohol (amongst other substances), care free tourists and the river mix with often fatal consequences. This type of activity has been isolated to just the one river, so if you grab a motorbike and explore the country on your own, you’ll have no trouble discovering the beauty of real Laos.