Luang Prabang, Vientiane and Vang Vieng are popular tourist destinations in Laos. In fact, traveling between these cities is now a very well-trodden backpacker path. Luang Namtha is opening up as an eco-tourism destination. Many travelers we met were on their way to Savannakhet and the 4,000 islands area. We, on the other hand decided to head North, or rather North-East on an extended history lesson.