There are several places in Vientiane where tourists can work on
their strokes or simply take a cooling dip, such as Sokpaluang
Swimming Pool, on Thanon Sok Pa Luang. It costs about US$ 0.50
per day. In south-eastern Vientiane, Sokpaluang has a large pool
with marked swimming lanes, a shallow children’s pool, a snack
bar with Lao and falang (Western) food, and lockers and changing
Opening hours: 9.00 am - 8.00 pm daily.
Not far from the south-eastern corner of the National Stadium is
a public pool. The 23-metre pool has lanes and diving board, but
cleanliness is not always up to par; most of the girls who swim
here where their street clothes rather than bathing suits. Here
the cost is about US$ 0.20.
Opening hours: Tuesday-Sunday
The simple, clean pool at the Royal Dokmaideng Hotel, on
Thanon Lan Xang, is open to the public. The cost here is about US$
Other available hotel pools open to non-guests can be found at Lane
Xang Hotel, Novotel and Lao Plaza Hotel.
Squash & Exercise
The Vientiane Tennis Club, just next to the National Stadium
off Thanon Samsenthai, has three decent illuminated courts available
to members only. Membership cost less than US$ 1 per month, plus
US$ 0.30 for 45 minutes of playing time. Foreigners may apply but
memberships are limited.
The AERC maintains an air-conditioned squash court, which
is open to members only. The AERC also holds step, water
and regular aerobics classes for members.
Aerobics classes are also held at Lao Plaza Hotel and at
Sokpaluang Swimming Pool.
Non-guests can use the sauna and fitness at the Tai-Pan Hotel,
on Thanon Francois Nginn. Costs US$ 4 per visit.
Laos's pristine landscape is home to a good range of flora and fauna, which include birds mammals and rare primates. Freshwater
dolphins are found in the Mekong River. Unexploded ordinance still exists in the countryside, and official advice should be sought concerning which areas to avoid.
Tourists can travel towards the hills themselves or participate in locally organized guided tours.
The lack of automobiles makes cycling an enjoyable proposition. Terrain can be rough; however, there are not many roads. Tourists are advised to travel with their own bicycles, although there are some for rent in the bigger towns