Tham Luang Cave
Luang means “Main or Significant” in Lao, and Phou Pha Daeng’s Tham Luang Cave, the district’s largest, certainly fits the mold. The 200-meter-long cavern’s rocky entrance stretches 50 meters wide and 30 meters high, and opens to a large cool, fresh-air grotto leading to five large chambers.
Location: Head 4km south of Khop District (Ban Phabong) to Ban Nam Phao Village and a further 2km to the Nam Phao River, and the challenging path up the mountain, which takes about 30 minutes to climb. A guide is required
Cave Clusters & Hot Springs
Several caves hide in Paklay’s more remote areas, though three of the caverns and hot springs are huddled in a 3km radius some 50km north of the district center. Prior to reaching the Tham Nam Lot wet cave near Ban Nachan, stop at nearby Ban Muong Pa to explore Tham Peo Pong Pha Cave (Sky Cave), with the sun peaking through a roof slit over the entrance chamber, and Tham Kok Ma, considered by locals as the Wind Cave for its natural air-con. A local hot spring that can reach a temperature of 30.c offers a soothing respite after inspecting the Caves.
Some 32km southwest of Paklay Town is Tham Pa Keo Cave, and a further 3km lands at Khun Lou Cave. Just 16km from the district center near Ban Phon, you can inspect Tham Nang Phom Hom Cave and the wide tunnel-like Tham Phabon Cave with a Buddha image in its alcove.