Five years ago a handful of simple bamboo bars catered to tubers stopping for a drink or a light meal, but these bars have since flourished and become an attraction in themselves, with free shots of lao-lao whiskey to lure in the punters and thumping music. The newest additions are the rope swing and slides that crisscross the upper reaches of the Nam Song, where the water is deeper. The "rides" are free to customers, who spend the afternoon launching themselves into the river.


Inner tubes and Tuk tuk transport upstream to the launching place is a part of a co-operative Village Development Group arrangement and they have a building in town near the river.
Tube rental costs 55,000 kip plus a 60,000 kip deposit. You'll get the full deposit back if you return the tube before 18:00, otherwise they'll keep a 20,000 kip fee. If you plan on visiting the bars you will need some money, and dry bags for your wallet and camera can be rented for 10,000 kip. Life jackets are also available.

Without any pit stops, it takes two hours during the dry season to float down the river. During the rainy season the river really speeds up and there are deep patches and a current. Make sure you're a confident swimmer and remember to tell your friends where you're going .

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