Tha Khaek Loop

Where to stay: Tha Khaek Loop

Accommodation here is ordered if doing the loop anti-clockwise: Mahaxay, Nakai, Thalang, Lak Xao, Na Hin, Konglor village (Ban Konglor) and Vieng Kham. For Tha Khaek accommodation including Green Climbers Home, see our Tha Khaek destination guide. Thakek Travel Lodge and the attached Mr Ku’s motorbike rental helped put the loop on the map and for years the lodge has been the hub, with those who have completed the loop sharing wisdom with other travellers. Be warned, while still a great place to meet others, the value for accommodation has declined.

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We have 20 places to stay in and around Tha Khaek Loop.

Mahaxay

The tiny town of Mahaxay is 40 km east of Tha Khaek on Route 12. Though the distance from Tha Khaek is not great, you may find yourself needing to overnight here if you’ve filled the day visiting all the stops along Route 12 (“cave alley”) or are returning from the remote Xe Bang Fai cave.

Nakai

Nakai has the best places to stay on Route 1E, and there are several options, all of a good standard. Many travellers who are pressed for time choose not to stay in Nakai and push on to Thalang for a night at the extremely popular Sabaidee Guesthouse.

Thalang

Just 22 km north of Nakai, Thalang is a tiny village on the edge of the lake and wetlands formed by the Nam Theun 2 Dam. There are only two guesthouses, with backpacker friendly Sabaidee and its happy proprietor achieving legendary status. Homestays are available in the village just before Sabaidee and Phosy Thalang Guesthouse. Look for the blue tourism sign “Tha Lang Hamlet Homestay” with arrow pointing into the village, then look for signs on homes marked for homestay. It’s simply a room in a local’s home as well as a meal. Expect basic facilities and no English spoken.

Lak Xao

Located in Bolikhamsai Province, Lak Xao is no more than a bustling junction between north-south running 1E and Road 8 connecting to the Vietnam border. As a busy transit point and last major pit stop before the border, Lak Xao is chock full of decent cheap places to stay—find them along both roads. There are two styles to choose from: Lao-style guesthouse or utilitarian Vietnamese hotel, “khach san” in Vietnamese.

Na Hin

Located on Route 8 in Khammuan Province, Na Hin is a fair spot to rest before making the 40 km journey to Konglor. The small town has pretty surrounds and a wealth of good inexpensive accommodation. Find them along the road which you come into town on and on the bus station and market road (runs south off of Route 8).

Konglor village

Konglor village (Ban Konglor), the gateway to Konglor Cave, is situated a kilometre before the cave entrance. Almost all the accommodation is found along the single road leading in. The guesthouses uphold a good standard and despite being a tourist village, we found a relaxed welcome at all the places we’ve reviewed. We had previously reviewed places to stay in Ban Phou Ngeng, a village 7 km before Konglor. We removed this location as both accommodation were worn down when we inspected in 2016.

Vieng Kham

Located in Bolikhamsai Province, Vieng Kham is a small village sprung up at the junction where Route 8 meets the major highway Route 13. There’s nothing of interest in Vieng Kham and it has as much charm as a highway pit stop. If you find yourself in need of an overnight, a handful of accommodation options can be found along Route 8; Khamphone Keokhamphan Guesthouse, 200 metres east of the junction, is a good one.

Wang Wang’s, the most popular motorbike shop in Tha Khaek, warns on their free map that Bobbie’s Guesthouse is dangerous. When we asked why, they allege that one of their motorbikes was stolen from there in 2015.