The Gibbon Experience

The Gibbon Experience

in Huay Xai, Laos

Embark on an enthralling adventure amidst the towering trees of Laos' Nam Kan National Park with The Gibbon Experience, where the allure of the wild melds seamlessly with a noble conservation ethos. Here, your childhood whims of tree-top living spring to life in the world's loftiest tree houses perched over a hundred feet above the verdant forest floor. As you glide through a network of ziplines threading through the leafy canopy, you're not just weaving through a jungle; you're weaving into a remarkable narrative of community, conservation, and co-existence.

The Gibbon Experience isn't a mere dalliance with nature; it's a socially driven enterprise, rooted in the heart of a community that once knew the forest only as a resource to be tapped. Transitioning from a realm with no tourism in 1997 to a flourishing conservation initiative, this project transformed local hunters into guardians, with a vigilant patrol team dedicated to combating illegal logging, hunting, and other threats to this pristine wilderness.

As you traverse the lush expanses and settle into the tranquil nights amidst the treetops, you become part of a larger narrative, one where over 120 families have been ushered into sustainable farming practices, reducing the strain of slash-and-burn agriculture. Your adventure contributes to a vigilant patrol guarding the forest, to land being tenderly reshaped for sustainable farming, and to the yearly nurturing of 100,000 saplings that reach skyward to rejuvenate the canopy overhead.

With every glide through the canopy, every dawn greeted with the melodic calls of gibbons, and every interaction with the committed local staff, you're not just a visitor; you're an ally in a profound journey of community transformation and environmental stewardship. The Gibbon Experience transcends the thrill of exploration, encapsulating a living testament to the harmonious potential of humanity intertwined with the wilderness. Your sojourn here is more than an adventure; it's an ode to the symbiotic resonance between man, wildlife, and the untouched serenity of Nam Kan National Park.

Right for You?



Active Adventure, Connect with Nature, Off the Beaten Path and Roughing it


$225-350 /person
Approximate price. Rates vary based on tour chosen (Classic 3D/2N vs. Express 2D/1N).



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Locally Owned Social Enterprise
The Gibbon Experience
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Speaks: English

Why Lokal Recommends The Gibbon Experience


Social Enterprise | Locally Owned with 100% local staff

A Unique Story

The Gibbon Experience, established in 1997, marked a significant transformation in the landscape of Laos' tourism and environmental conservation efforts. Initially, the area was untouched by tourism, devoid of attractions like tree houses or ziplines. A pioneering step in this transformation was the formation of a specialized team of forest guards. Comprising five of the most skilled tribal hunters, these individuals were native to the forest and deeply familiar with its terrain and ecology. This initial team, funded through sporadic donations, was a groundbreaking initiative in the Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), setting a precedent for conservation efforts in the region.

By 2014, the project had evolved substantially. The patrol team expanded to include 15 local villagers, dedicated to working full-time under the guidance of five staff members from the Provincial Department of Natural Resources. Oversight of their activities was provided by the Provincial Department of Forest Inspection, ensuring adherence to environmental regulations and conservation standards.

The team's primary objectives include combating illegal logging and hunting, preventing destructive practices like bomb fishing, and overseeing sustainable land use. These efforts are crucial in preserving the region's delicate ecosystem and promoting biodiversity.

The Gibbon Experience operates in close collaboration with the Lao Government, playing a pivotal role in the project's funding and logistical support. This includes covering substantial expenses such as salaries, food, transportation, and equipment for the patrol team. The project also invests in environmental awareness campaigns and special law enforcement operations, demonstrating a commitment to both environmental protection and community engagement.

This initiative has not only contributed to the conservation of Laos' natural resources but also played a significant role in shaping the region's tourism landscape. Through the Gibbon Experience, visitors now have the unique opportunity to explore the lush forests of Laos in an eco-friendly manner, while contributing to the preservation of its natural heritage and the livelihoods of local communities.

Deep Community Connections

Since inception, the project has helped over 120 families switch to more sustainable farming practices and maintain their land. With an increasing population, local have felt pressure to increase traditional slash-and-burn agriculture. The Gibbon Experience project has offered free or low-cost land flattening and irrigation services to farmers willing to switch to irrigated paddy rice cultivation, which helps them sustain their land into the future.

Active Environmental Stewardship

The Gibbon Experience has been managing two reforestation projects since 2009:

The first happens on the farmers' land that surrounds the National Park, helping them to foster sensible logging practices and earn extra income from valuable, fast growing trees, such as teak.

The second project occurs in the National Park's degraded areas, planting diversified species to support canopy reconstitution. They consider reforestation in and around the Nam Kan National Park a strategic long-term tool to complement day-to-day conservation activities. Each year, 100 000 young trees come out of their dedicated tree nursery.


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