Despite Laos being an unbelievably beautiful country with plenty to see and explore, take a minute to discover other countries near Laos and some useful Lao words to complement your trip!
Ah, Laos! The land of ancient temples, stunning landscapes, and delectable cuisine. I’m so glad I got to spend six whole months there in 2020, exploring every nook and cranny and taking in all its beauty. But, as much as I loved Laos, I also took some time to venture beyond its borders and see what other wonders its neighbors had to offer. And boy, was I in for a treat!
For those who don’t know, Laos is a landlocked country in Southeast Asia. It’s bordered by Cambodia to the south, Vietnam to the east, China to the north, and Myanmar and Thailand to the west. With a population of just over 7 million people, Laos is a small but mighty country, full of vibrant culture and breathtaking scenery. It’s often referred to as the “Land of a Million Elephants,” and its capital, Vientiane, is home to some of the most beautiful temples in the world.
But as much as I loved Laos, I also wanted to see what other countries were in the area, and I wasn’t disappointed. From the lush green hills of Vietnam to the bustling cities of China, I was constantly amazed by the diversity and beauty of the region. And I want to share those experiences with you!
So, if you’re planning a trip to Southeast Asia and you’ve already explored the beauty of Laos, it’s time to take the next leg of your journey and explore its neighboring countries. In this article, we’re going to list and describe four countries that are well worth a visit, whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a first-timer. So pack your bags, grab your passport, and let’s go!
The Four Countries Near Laos
Thailand – The Land Of Smiles
Thailand is probably one of the most popular destinations for travelers in Southeast Asia (I’m one to tell you as I’m writing this article to you in the great city of Bangkok after spending around 1 year exploring every corner of the Land of Smiles – yes I’m a Thailand addict), and for a good reason! This beautiful country that shares Laos’ Eastern border is known for its stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife, and delicious (yet spicy) food. But did you know that it also shares a long and rich history with Laos? In fact, many Laotians and Thais share similar cultural and linguistic roots, and there’s even a Laotian community in northern Thailand.
The similarities between the two languages are great, and a simple example is the way people greet in the two countries: while in Thailand, it is used สวัสดี (S̄wạs̄dī), in Lao, the word used is ສະບາຍດີ (sabaidi).
Vietnam – The Land Of Rice Paddies
Vietnam is another country that shares a long history with Laos, and its southern region is only a short flight away. This lush, green country is home to some of the most beautiful scenery in Southeast Asia, including terraced rice paddies, soaring mountain ranges, and stunning coastlines.
Vietnamese cuisine is also not to be missed, with delicious dishes like pho, banh mi, and spring rolls being popular among both locals and visitors. The country is known for its delicious coffee and traditional tea, making it the perfect place to take a break from all the exploring and relax with a hot drink.
China – The Land Of Dragons
China may be a bit further afield from Laos, but it’s definitely worth the journey. This massive country borders Northern Laos, full of ancient history, vibrant cities, and breathtaking landscapes. And while the culture and language may seem quite different from Laos, there are still many similarities, such as the use of rice as a staple food and the importance of family and community.
Cambodia – The Land Of Temples
Last but not least, bordering Southern Laos, we have Cambodia, a country that’s rich in history and home to some of the most stunning temples in the world. From the iconic Angkor Wat to the lesser-known Banteay Srei, Cambodia is a must-visit for anyone who loves ancient architecture and rich cultural heritage.
And did you know that Cambodia shares a long and rich history with Laos? In fact, many of the temples in Cambodia were built by Laotian kings, and there’s even a Laotian community in the northern part of the country. So if you’re a fan of temples, be sure to add Cambodia to your list!
Other Southeast Asian Countries
There are many more surrounding countries that are rich in culture, food, and landscapes that are worth the visit:
- Myanmar (Burma) – A country known for its ancient temples, stunning landscapes, and rich cultural heritage.
- Malaysia – A melting pot of cultures and cuisines, with bustling cities, lush rainforests, and stunning beaches.
- Indonesia – A vast archipelago with thousands of islands, diverse cultures, and breathtaking landscapes, from volcanic mountains to tropical beaches.
- Philippines – An archipelago of 7,000+ islands, known for its stunning beaches, friendly locals, and unique cultural heritage, with a mix of Spanish and indigenous influences.
- Singapore – A city-state and island country are known for its clean streets, modern architecture, and diverse food scene, with a mix of Chinese, Malay, Indian, and Western cultures.
- India – A vast country with a rich history, diverse cultures, and breathtaking landscapes, from the Himalayan mountains to the tropical beaches of the south.
Lao Words Related To Countries
Over To You
So there you have it, folks! Four countries, each with its own unique culture, history, and attractions. Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a first-timer, these countries will surely leave you with memories that will last a lifetime. So grab your backpack and passport, and let’s explore!
But wait! Don’t jump onto the airplane just yet! Before hopping onto a trip of a lifetime, why don’t you take a little bit of time to learn a few words and phrases in the local language to help you during your endeavors? I can only tell you from my traveling experience how important it is to have some words and expressions in your quiver to use in times of desperation (yes, there will be times of frustration and desperation when plans don’t go accordingly and when knowing a few words in the local language can be a life-saver!). If you want to follow my advice, go straight to the next chapter and follow my instructions!
Learn More Lao With Ling App
When are you going to use it, you ask? Oh boy, better ask when you are NOT going to use it!
- Want to go to the bathroom and don’t know how to ask in Lao? Do we have lessons that will teach you simple but useful expressions like ຫ້ອງນໍາ້ຢູ່ໃສ? (hong noa yu sai)!
- You’re trying to bargain and don’t know how to ask for the price in Khmer? Here’s a free one for you: តើវាមានតម្លៃប៉ុន្មាន? (tae vea meanotamlei bonman?). This is something else we teach in our Khmer lessons!
- You’re standing in the great wall of China and want to express to your Chinese friend how beautiful it is. Shout from the top of your lungs 美丽的! (Měilì de!) and all the other expressions you’ll learn in our Cantonese lessons!
Anyway, we’re wasting time here! Choose your language now and come learn with Ling!