The Best Backpacker Hostels in Luang Prabang, Laos

Visit the Haw Pha Bang Temple while in Luang Prabang
Visit the Haw Pha Bang Temple while in Luang Prabang | © Travel Wild / Alamy Stock Photo
Culture Trip Travel Team

Taking in Laos’ temple-topped town on the banks of the Mekong River comes easy with these affordable homestays, sociable hostels and budget-friendly places to stay.

The sleepy town of Luang Prabang ranks highly on backpackers’ list of must-travel destinations in Southeast Asia. It’s hard not to see why – with its scenic valley setting at the confluence of the Mekong and Nam Khan rivers, and network of beautifully maintained ancient temples, this Unesco-listed town blends the best of city and country. For those on a shoestring budget, there’s a decent selection of hostels and affordable guest houses, too, bookable with Culture Trip.

1. Thavisouk Family Home


Thavisouk Family Home
© Regina Beach/Culture Trip
Located just five minutes from the Night Market and Ock Pop Tok Living Crafts Centre – a social enterprise that offers an insight into Laotian textiles – this humble accommodation is a great base for exploring the sights and sounds of Luang Prabang. While the interiors are pared back, each of the 14 rooms is clean and comfortable, and comes with its own en suite. Breakfast is included and can be enjoyed in the outdoor common room on the ground floor.

2. Moukdavan Guesthouse

Hotel, Guesthouse, Hostel

© Regina Beach/Culture Trip
With just seven guest rooms, this wooden bungalow offers a homestay experience at wallet-friendly prices. Some rooms even look out into the leafy garden through traditional wood-accented windows. Adventure-seekers will appreciate the hostel’s proximity to Mount Phousi – just 700m (2,296ft) away – while creative types can check out the nearby Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre. The city centre is also an easy stroll away for the Royal Palace, the Night Market and a variety of cafes and restaurants.

3. Sa Sa Lao


Sa Sa Lao
Courtesy of Sa Sa Lao /

This family-run hostel has an enviable location along the river, with outdoor deck chairs set out for guests to enjoy the jungly surrounds. Within a series of rustic bamboo houses, there are dorms and double rooms, the best with mosquito nets strung up around the four-poster beds. Friendly staff are ready to help with advice and arrangements to popular attractions, such as Kuang Si waterfalls, and full-day trips to the small town of Vang Vieng along the Nam Song River.

4. Mad Monkey Luang Prabang Hostel


Mad Monkey Luang Prabang Hostel
Courtesy of Mad Monkey Luang Prabang Hostel /

This stylish youth-centric hostel offers a mix of six-, eight- and 12-bed dorms, some female-only, others with views of the surrounding palm forests. There’s even an infinity pool and a lounge-style terrace where you can soak up the views while chatting with fellow travellers. Fun-loving staff can arrange day trips to nearby Pak Ou Caves.

5. Matata Garden Guest House

Guesthouse, Hostel

Matata Garden Guest House
Courtesy of Matata Garden Guest House /

You can expect a laidback and carefree experience at this traditional greenery-draped guest house as staff work hard to provide five-star service. Located in the heart of Luang Prabang, the inn features five bungalows built by local craftsmen, all using native building materials. Each is well-kept and comfortable, with dark-wood beds, plush linens and distinctive Laotian murals painted on the walls.

6. Muenna 1989 Guesthouse

Hostel, Guesthouse

Muenna 1989 Guesthouse
Courtesy of Muenna 1989 Guesthouse /

A homespun experience awaits at this cosy guest house, situated a short distance from Mount Phousi and the Old Quarter of Luang Prabang. Rooms are done up to resemble a typical Laotian home, with potted plants and woven textiles used to dress up the space. In the evenings, kick back with a beer (or two) with fellow travellers in the lush courtyard or take a walk to the Night Market, just 10 minutes away.

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