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Laos Travel Survival Guide

nong khiauw laos, getting to nong khiauw

Articles:
5 Top Reasons to visit Laos
What can your kip get you in Laos budget hostels and guesthouses?
Rural Laos
Trekking in Beautiful Laos
Fear factor Laos
Vientiane  (1) (2) (3) (4)
Luang Prabang
Muong Ngoi
Nong Khieuw 
How to get around Laos

VIENTIANE

Where to stay in Vientiane:


Mixay Guesthouse
50,000kp/night ($5)
Dorm style room- 4 beds/room. Clean and maintained. Sheets are changed. Good location. Book buses from hotel. Free and good breakfast and wifi.

What to Do and See in Vientiene

wat Si Sasket, river bank, arc le triomphe, Lalit Sao market, night market, massage Bus to Xieng Kuhan (Buddha Park)

Getting to Vientiane

Bus from Ventiane to LP
Vientiane to Luang Prabang the bus ride takes up to 11 hoursBooked through Mixay Guesthouse.
Buses leave at 6:00am- 10:00am.

  • Vientiane – Luang Prabang by air-con bus, 10 hours, 2 morning departures, about 120,000-130,000 Kip one-way.
    Vientiane – Luang Prabang by ordinary bus, 11 hours, 5 daily departures, about 70,000 Kip one-way..

map of luang prabang, travel guides on laos luang prabang

 

LUANG PRABANG

Where to stay in Luang Prabang:


Phousi 2 Guesthouse 70,000 kp/night ($7) Pros: great location in town near river but closely parallel to main walking street. Balcony room with great view. Cons: shared bath is a bit dingy and paid computers shut down at 11P.

Channune Guesthouse 300,000kp  The outside looks like a charming palace, the inside a little more homey, with an attempt to be elegant in a lao way. Pros: free wifi, personal outdoor patio or balcony, hot showers, bath/shower, free fruits.

What to do  and see in Luang Prabang:

Mt. Phousi–view at the top overlooks entire city, rivers and mountains.
Night Market – locals sell handicrafts and other goods meant for tourists.
Morning alms w/ Monks
$6 Massages

Take 1 day tour from Luang Prabang $25:
boat ride on Mekong, Kuang Si Waterfalls
Hmong & Whiskey Village.

Park Ou Caves
The spectacular Pak Ou caves are justifiably lauded for their striking setting carved into a limestone cliff facing the river. The caves are crammed with Buddha images of all styles and sizes, but most represent the classic Luang Prabang standing Buddha. Trips can be arranged through guesthouses and tour operators.

Getting There to Luang Prabang:

Bus to and from Luang Prabang
• from Muang Ngoi Neua (32,000 kip) returning at 11A.
• from Nong Khiaw (8a from postoffice by bridge)- – 3 hr bus from L.P


NONG KHIAUW (read my post)

Where to Stay in Nong Khiauw::

Bamboo Paradise Guesthouse 60,000kip.  If you can’t get Sunrise Guesthouse (prices have jumped to 130,000kp since Lonely Planet’s review, this is your next best bet! Neighboring each other, Bamboo Paradise gets the prime views that Sunrise leaves as left over and it’s still pretty good.
Pro: Bungalows with own outdoor deck and a great view of the mountains and river. Hot water showers, mosquito net. Con: on a cold night, this kind of board may not be your best choice. Being a bamboo bungalow/hut, the cold passes in freely. Otherwise, it’s one of the next new but down-to-earth gems in Nong Kheiuw.

Getting to Nong Khiauw:

Bus to and from Luang Prabang
• from Muang Ngoi Neua (32,000 kip) returning at 11A.
• from Nong Khiaw (8a from postoffice by bridge)- – 3 hr bus from L.P

MUONG NGOI (read post)

Where to Stay in Muong Ngoi:


Rainbow Guesthouse
50,000kp/night for a double.
A literal steal! Muong Ngoi is a beautiful cove of a village and Rainbow Guesthouse, is one of the many jewels for weary travelers. It’s a standard and solid guesthouse and rooms are clean. Pros: Well maintained, clean, close to the boat docks, restaurant and trekking/guide services. Cons: no hot showers (*however,not many guesthouses in MN have hot showers if they don’t have a generator)

What To Do and See in Muong Ngoi:

View karsts, hike, stay at a small riverside village, do a trekking trip, stay at an herbal sauna)

TREKKING (read post)

1 day trekking- Lao, Hmong, Khmu Villages, boat

Getting to Muong Ngoi

• Take the boat from Nong Khiauw (3 hour ride)
• Take Boat from Luang Prabang to Muang Ngoi Neua  (6 hours +)
*** most dramatic (boats at 11am & 1:30P- 15,000kip);

 


Transportation & Overland crossing to Laos

(through Nong Khai/Friendship Border):

Bangkok to Vientiane

Train from Bangkok/Hua Lamphong station to Nong Khai, Thailand.

overnight trains from Bangkok to Nong Khai:
69 northbound
70 southbound

Train number: 133 77 69
Classes: 2,3 DRC 1,S
0 Bangkok (Hualamphong) depart: 20:45 18:30 20:00
22 Don Muang depart: 21:31 19:13 20:50
71 Ayutthaya depart: 22:17 19:47 21:41
624 Nong Khai arrive: 09:45 05:05 08:25
624 Nong Khai (Thailand) depart: 09:00
630 Thanaleng (Laos) arrive: 09:15

Take connecting local train from Nong Khai to Thanaleng, Laos, some 13 km outside Vientiane.

Road transport across the Friendship Bridge into Laos like this:
(1)
Take a local tuk-tuk taxi from Nong Khai railway station to the Nong Khai bus station.
(2) A shuttle bus runs from the bus station across the Friendship Bridge to Laos every 20 minutes, fare about 30 baht.  It stops at Thai immigration 5 mins after leaving the bus station then crosses the Friendship Bridge to arrive at Lao customs & immigration some 10 mins later (a 30-day visa on arrival available for Laos at this border point).

Buy tickets :  www.thailandtrainticket.com.
See the How to Buy Tickets section on the Thailand page.
Nong Khai to Thanaleng ticket for 20 baht.  The train has a 2 hour layover in Nong Khai before the connecting train heads to Thanaleng.

 

How to get a Laos Visa on Arrival:

Get a visa on arrival in Laos. Have two passport-size photographs and pay $35 at the following ports of entry:   Vientiane; Pakse, Savannakhet and Luang Prabang Airports.  You can also get a visa on arrival at the Tha Naleng train station in Vientiane.

 

 

 

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