Don Khong or Khong Island is the largest island in the Si Phan Don region, commonly known as the 4,000 islands in the Mekong River. The name 4,000 islands comes from the Mekong River spreading itself out through many routes and therefore forming an area of river islands.
There are 3 main large islands to visit and they are called Don Khong, Don Det and Don Khon (confused?). Don Det and Don Khon are joined by a footbridge but Don Khong is out on its own as the largest island and is known as the extremely laid back and friendly island – hence why I chose to spend some time here.
The size of Don Khong makes it a great place to get a rented motorbike and get away from the normal route to explore the hidden areas and ancient rice farms. There is a main strip on Don Khong which has many peaceful and quiet guesthouses as well as lovely restaurants overlooking the Mekong.
Coming here is like stepping back in time but in a great way – the serenity is amazing, all the worries of the world seem to fall away as you meander around this peaceful and delightful part of the world. It is an amazing spot to relax and unwind. It’s the kind of place where you extend your stay as you get swept away by the gentle pace of life.
From Don Khong it is possible to see the rare Irrawaddy dolphins who now exist only in small isolated populations around SE Asia. You could also spend time trekking up to the Khonephapheng waterfall which is one of the largest waterfalls in South East Asia. There are also a variety of boats for hire so you can take one of these out for the day and visit the surrounding villages and chat to the friendly locals.
Evenings on Khong Island can be spent by the river watching the sun set or you can meander down the night market for a chat and some good food.
As part of your Laos Holiday I highly recommend visiting the 4,000 islands and spending time relaxing, chilling out and just getting lost in the laid back, peaceful lifestyle that is Don Khong. You will leave there feeling 10 years younger and with lower blood pressure! It is a truly amazing part of the world and my only regret is that I could not stay longer.