The 4,000 islands area is known locally as ‘Siphandon'. Here, the Mekong swells with adjoining tributaries and fans out over 14 kilometres as it passes into Cambodia.
When the river is in flood around half of the low-lying 4,000 Islands become submerged, although islands such as Don Khong, Don Deth and Don Khone are large enough to withstand the rising water level.
Local fishermen skillfully navigate eddies in their canoes and cast their nets among green islets, as rice farmers work in riverside paddy fields with buffalos for company.
The relaxed pace of life in these enchanting islands makes them a popular place to end a trip to Laos - somewhere to enjoy a good book in a gently swaying hammock in the shade of a coconut palm or flame tree, or to visit small villages of bamboo huts or scattered colonial ruins.