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Don Daeng Island

Don Daeng, litterally the ‘red island’ (Don= island, Daeng=red), offers a rare opportunity to retreat from the hectic rush of busy streets and tourist sites. In the quiet and peaceful streets of the island, the people of Don Daeng will welcome you with a warm smile and elegant “Sabaidee”. It is hard to find anywhere such sense of authentic rural Laos and its Buddhist-Animist spirituality.

The island shows many faces during the year. While immersed in lush green during the rainy season, its landscape in the summer has a nice Mediterranean feel. As soon as the rain gets heavier, the small sandy tracks get softened making cycling a little harder but no less fun. Both contrasting seasons have a different but very strong appeal, allowing you to choose Don Daeng as a destination for recreation all year round.

Map

The map of the island and Champasak is offered during the check-in.

Villages of Don Daeng

The island is roughly 11 km long and 3 km large in the middle. During the rainy season, the Mekong covers the beach and rises up to the gates of the Lodge.

The population of Don Daeng is approximately 3,200 inhabitants, living in 10 villages.

  • Ban Si Moung Khoun: The “merit” village (due to the forest temple known as “merit” temple);
  • Ban Hua Don Daeng: Village of the head of Don Daeng (Hua = head);
  • Ban Si Chanto: Named after its founder, a renowned  Shaman (150 years old village);
  • Ban Peuay Lao: The desert and wet village (desert on dry season, muddy on rainy season);
  • Ban Xieng Vang: Named after its founder, a renowned monk;
  • Ban Boung Kham: The golden pond village (famous pond to catch fish during the rainy season);
  • Ban Bangxay: The small village behind the white sand beach island. (Bang = to hide, xay = sand);
  • Ban Si Souk: The happy and wealthy village;
  • Ban Noy: The small village (noy = small);
  • Ban Tanthip : The village of the special palm trees;

Don Daeng island

Enjoy Don Daeng’s authenticity: unspoiled huge sand beaches crowded with fishermen and lazy buffaloes, wild forests and enchanting birds, plains of rice fields, local small villages with one floor typical wooden houses and numerous Buddhist temples.

But mainly meet with their charming and always smiling inhabitants and share their warm welcoming. This island was, at one time, part of the Wat Phou sanctuary, reminded by the brick Stupa hidden in the middle of the island. Other temple ruins and rock sculptures were discovered under the river at the end of the island.

Bicycle tour on the island

The lodge provides complimentary bicycles (children bicycles also available) for the guests to explore the local life and treasures of Don Daeng Island.

Three different itineraries are available, all boundary stoned. The staff will be happy to give you a map of the island with all the points of interest, from the antique temple to rice fields as well as main villages and community projects developed by the lodge with the help of its guests.

Depending on the season, you might even stop to help with rice planting or with the crop!

Fishing on the Mekong

Should you wish to discover the different Mekong fish species, and/or new fishing techniques, the lodge would be happy to organize a trip with local fishermen. Please let the staff know should you be interested.

Community projects

Since its opening in 2007, the lodge has been developing, with the help of its guests, community projects on the island.

It ranges from the renovation of schools to the opening of a new dispensary, as well as building small bridges and motorcycle paths to enhance the quality of life of Don Daeng inhabitants.

You are welcome to visit the past and current projects over the island.

Ceremonies

On special occasions or guest request, and depending on availability, we could arrange for various cultural activities in the Lodge, or in a traditional house at the neighboring village, such as a Baci ceremony for the blessings of good fortune.

We also can arrange a dinner performance by traditional Lao dancers and musicians from the island. Please get in touch with the staff should you be interested.