Stop at Ban Nam Dee where you can watch bamboo paper-making. Bamboo is one of the most versatile crops grown in Laos; besides a dietary staple, bamboo is also used to build houses and furniture, weave mats, make tools, water pipes, toys, and smoking pipes and much more.
Visit hill tribes such as the Black Tai, Red Tai, White Tai, Tai Lue, Khmu, Oo, Lao Bit, Lanten, Mien, Hmong, Akha, Lahu, and Phou Noi, whose lives are almost completely untouched by the outside world. They dwell in modest shelters they build themselves, eat unprocessed natural foods, and live lives generally uncomplicated by the trappings and technological complexities of modern society.
Visit the Luang Namtha Museum, which has a collection of artifacts by local minorities and also an important section on the Lao revolution, of which there is surprisingly little information available in the West.
Go kayaking on the Nam Tha River, the heart of the Nam Ha Protected Area. Start your kayaking at Ban Thai, a small village populated by the Black Tai people. The river meanders through several forests with different species of tree that appeal to a variety of local inhabitants: sun bear, tiger, barking deer and many birds. The class of rapids here is gentle, mostly grade 1 or 2.
Have dinner with a local village headman and his family. They will give you an informal Lao cooking demonstration and tasting before you sit down to a traditional Laotian meal of sticky rice that you roll into a ball in your hand, dip into chili paste and then eat together with vegetables and meats.