Photo: Classic scenery surrounds Vang Vieng.

Laos forum

Bus from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng with 2 kids - need advice

Posted by alainj on 2/7/2010 at 17:52

I am planning to travel from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng by bus with 2 kids (8 year olds).

Because of the two kids, I would like to find a way to make sure the trip (5+ hours) is reasonably pleasant.
So after reading many threads on this forum, I am debating between a VIP bus and renting a mini-van. The VIP bus would be fine but I keep reading stories about A/C not working, sitting on plastic chairs, etc.

Would anyone be able to recommend a good travel agency in LP where I could either book a mini-van with driver, or reserve some decent seats in a decent VIP bus (assuming this is even possible)?

I am flying into LP, so obviously I could fly to VT, but, from what I read, the journey is breathtaking, so I was trying find a middle ground, even if it will cost a bit more than the traditional bus or mini-van fare.

Any advice will be welcome.


#1 alainj has been a member since 2/7/2010. Posts: 1

Posted by Nokka on 2/7/2010 at 19:11

I travelled this route last December on the VIP bus. It took about 6 hours, though the bus was comfortable enough. The scenery on that route is quite breathtaking it is true. The road, though, is very twisty with hardly a straight bit for the entire journey. We stopped once for some lunch. The VIP bus was very nice.

The trip was fine (and cheap), but with 2 young kids and a bigger budget I would consider the minivan. I seem to remember speaking with a Canadian guy there who was taking a private minibus for him and his family and I'm sure he said it was gonna cost $70. I think. Your Guesthouse will give information, plus there are lots of travel agencies in town. It won't be a problem arranging it. Certainly, if I were to do the trip again I would go the minibus route. Don't get me wrong, the bus was fine; but the extra flexibility the minivan will give, including stopping when you wish to look out over those incredible views would make the extra cost worthwhile.

Interestingly, from Vang Vieng we caught another 'VIP' bus to Vientiane , which was terrible. This bus was completely knackered, no suspension, one guy refused to sit on a broken seat provided, no proper aircon. I think the cost from Luang Prabang to VV was 100,000 kip; from VV to Vientiane 50,000 kip. We did some shopping around in VV to make sure we got on a proper VIP bus. All the agents were selling the same bus for the same price and all assured us it was VIP. Passengers were taken to a place outside town to wait for the bus by songthaow. When our old crock arrived all 50 of us couldn't quite believe it. What a scam ....only in Vang Vieng, huh.

#2 Nokka has been a member since 6/4/2009. Location: United Kingdom. Posts: 259
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