Bolaven Loop: Tad Champee

Tad Champee waterfall is not the highest and not the most impressive waterfall in this region. But it can offer something the others can – the largest pool to swim in and the chance to get into a little cove behind the crashing water.

From Road 16 turn left at the 38 km mark and follow the dirt road for a couple of km. At the end of the road you get to a larger ‘car park’, with a section to leave your bike. Cross the square and walk down the hill where you get to a house with a little shop to buy drinks. Here you get the first view of the first tier of the waterfall, where the water falls 10 – 15m down.
To get down to the main pool follow the little path along the slope and you find stairs going down. Careful here, the path and stairs can be slippery. At the bottom of the stairs pass the stream from the waterfall, and there are some nice spots to take a picture. Follow the path towards the pool and then cross the little bamboo bridge, which will lead you the ‘picnic’ area. This is a great place to sit down, relax and enjoy the scenery. The trees will provide some welcomed shade.

From here it is easy to enter the pool as the water is shallow at the start, and is not getting too deep too quickly. Careful though, there are plenty of rocks in the water, so having flip-flops will help. There might also a few fish who enjoy chewing off dead skins from your feet.

The pool itself is lovely to swim in, and you can try to get as close to the fall as possible, the current is obviously a little bit stronger closer to the falls.
If you prefer to float on the water there is a small wooden raft you can use. If you are brave try to paddle underneath the falls.


If you rather try to get behind the falls without being on the water you can follow a little path on the left and walk from rock to rock and you are suddenly on the other side of the falls, wich is actually quite nice.


Overall Tad Champee offers a lovely setting, and even though it is not the most impressive waterfall in the area it is the best place to sit down and having a picnic. So maybe get a baguette from Pakse to have it as lunch here.

(Visited November 2013)

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