Sekong remains a mystery for many, but you can tap into unseen Southern Laos from your base at a room in town.
Stay where the locals do in Sekong Town on the Xe Kong River between Salavan and Attapeu. You’ll mostly find modest yet new accommodation geared for domestic travellers in a typical rural Lao community.
Rooms average around $10-20, and most have TVs and air conditioning, though Wi-Fi is scarce. The guesthouses look like large houses and are family run, giving them a homestay feel. Many have gardens for relaxing, and balconies with views of the surrounding mountains. Some have spacious lobbies and offer refreshments, and the few hotels have small restaurants. As Sekong is only about 1 km long, the entire town and river are within easy walking distance of all accommodation.
Formerly Tida Hotel, it’s a good choice for backpackers who want to stay on the river.
The small rooms have life yet with brightly painted walls, solid wood floors, windows, a table, box TV, minifridge, air-con, WiFi and a mirror. The tiled bathrooms are slightly mildewed but there’s a hot shower and western toilet.
The best part of the hotel (aside from the towel art) is the restaurant overlooking the chocolate brown Sekong River and the landscape beyond blanketed in greenery.
To find Hounephathay Hotel, travel along the river road. It’s towards the western end of town, less than two blocks from Vangxang Savanah Hotel and the ramp/ferry across the river. The building runs along the road, you can’t miss it.
Address: On the river, a block east of Vangxang Savanh Hotel
Room rates: Under US$10
On your right as you head into town from Thateng, Hongkham Hotel is a large Viet-style hotel and it’s one of the town’s best as the rooms are spacious, comfortable and generally uncontroversial.
Comfortable beds are topped with soft cotton linens. Amenities include a mini-fridge, dresser, wardrobe, vanity/desk, bedside table with a whopping eight sockets and a flatscreen TV (no English channels). The bathroom had a shower stall with hot water and excellent pressure, a sink with a plug. There are also multiple WiFi networks per floor. A slide lock for extra security and an in-room kettle seal the deal.
Address: Main Road (Road 16), Watluang Village, Sekong
Room rates: US$10 to 20
Vangxang Savanh Hotel
Follow the river road across to the western end of town, eventually a large sign heralds Vangxang Savanh Hotel.
They offer cheap fan guesthouse type rooms in a building block and air-con rooms, three per individual cottage. The air-con rooms of course are the best rooms and are fine for a night.
While it does have a riverside location, the big drawback is that it’s at the western edge of town.
Address: On the river at the boat landing, western edge of town, Sekong
Room rates: Under US$10