Hi - her'e my plan to my Laos part of my trip,
need to be back in /BKK on Dec 7th for a flight but have about 7-8 days to spend in Laos. Planning to come from Chiang Rai - and exit from Vientiane . Can you pleas ehelp allocating days - and if anyone knows a bit more about train from Laos to BKK - or is over night train Laos (Nong Kha) to BKK the only option? I would prefer to not to fly if possible.
Also - not loving what i read about VV - but think it might be worth to break the long bus journey with quick stop....
Chinag Khong -> Huay Xai (Border Crossing)
Huay Xai -> Luang Prabang (by boat, with an overnight stay in Pak Beng)
Luang Prabang -> Vang Vieng
Vang Vieng -> Vientiane
Vientiane -> Bangkok (sleeper train www.seat61.com/Laos)
Not much choice in allocating days - in terms of travel time:
1. full day: Chiang Khong > Huay Xai > Pak Beng (assuming overnight in CK or HX)
2. full day: Pak Beng > LPB
3. 6.5+ hours: LPB > VV (buses leave every hour or so in daytime)
4. 3.5+ hours: VV > VTE
5. Vientiane > Nong Khai > Bangkok
that's about 4+ days spent just on transport to get from one place to the next...leaves you ~3+ days worth of time to allocate, & allocation depends on your specific interests...
Thanks for the quick response....In total I have full 19 days to visitBKK - Highlight of Central+North Thailand, Luang Prabang and Vientiane.not to keen on Vang Vieng - but seems liek good idea to break thejourney...
another option would be to fly BKK- Vientiane, then travel to LP, cross border and make my way south...
Flying to Vientiane is a much better idea. You can also fly to Udon Thani with Air Asia or Nok, and take a mini bus to the Friendship Bridge. This will save a bit of money. Udon is also worth a day or so, if you have the time.