Lao province dreams tree tourism


SAYABOURY, 8 March 2017: Sayaboury’s Information, Culture and Tourism Department aims to open one of the country’s largest surveyed forests to tourism once roads are constructed.

Vientiane Times quoted the department director, Chanthi Simanichan, saying the provincial authorities had surveyed the forest in Phieng district, which is 80 km from the provincial capital.

After surveying the forest, authorities are considering how to open it up to tourism.

“The area is of great interest for nature lovers due to the sheer size and variety of trees. It’s the great outdoors, excellent for field trips for students wanting to study tree species in Laos.”

However, there is no road access at present, the director noted.

The massive trees are close to Somsavath and Natoum villages, about a 1 km walk in the forest. Travel from Phieng district to the two villages is also not easy.

Road construction will start this year and then district authorities will officially open the forest area as a tourist site, he added.

Practically, it will not have much of a future in tourism except for specialists interested in studying a forest environment. Provinces clamour to identify potential tourist sites in the hope it will improve the local economy and attract bigger development budgets, usually funded by foreign aid.

Located in the northwest region of the country, the province borders Bokeo province and Oudomxai province to the north, Luang Prabang province and Vientiane province to the east.