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Laos forum

LAOS or NOT !!!

Posted by alfokat on 13/2/2016 at 04:53

Hi there, this is my dilemma (and obviously i'm dealing with time and itineraries) :

I will be in Bangkok on March 15th and need to be around Siem Reap to meet a friend on April 5/6.

In these 3 weeks I would like to quickly go up north to Chiang Mai, Pai, Chiang Rai, then slowly cross the border to Laos, head to Luang Prabang, and from there take a plane to Rep (just to be exactly on time), but i would really love to go down to Southern Laos and cross the border from there to Cambodia to Stung Treng and meet up with my friend even a few days later and not exactly in siem Reap.

What do you think??
Is two weeks enough to go all the way south?? I know transportation system i really slow over there
Do you think I could make it?

#1 alfokat has been a member since 13/2/2016. Posts: 3

Posted by Captain_Bob on 14/2/2016 at 08:25

Yes it's doable in two weeks, but only if you keep moving every couple days. Also depends how many stops along the way and if that makes it worthwhile vs. just feeling rushed half the time. Do you take a slow boat to Luang Prabang vs. overnight bus? Do you want a free day in Vang Vieng and Vientiane or anywhere between Vientiane and Pakse? And if the point is to see southern Laos at least allow a few days around Pakse, Champasak, Don Det, etc. Then to the border and Siem Reap same day is quite a stretch, so consider breaking the ride somewhere like Kratie which is worth a day as well. Have to keep track of your moves every day or two, but again it's doable.

#2 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,958

Posted by alfokat on 22/2/2016 at 11:25

Hi. Than you very much for your quick reply!
Which one is the quickest way to Luang Prabang? Or, is the slow boat trip worth? I would like to skip the tubing in Vang Vieng and Vientiane if advised or possible. I'd like to stop and spend sometime around what you said : Pakse , Champasak, Don Det and the 4000 islands, and the waterfalls in Bolaven Plateau. I was considering also on stopping at Kratie and Sen Monorom before heading to Siem Reap .

Is two weeks ok for this North to South of Laos?

Other option is to go straight to Siem Reap from Thailand and spend the three weeks in Battambang, Tonle Sap, around the Islands off of Sihanoukville, go up to Pnohm Penh, form there Kratie where I could meet my friend, and in the remaining two weeks go to southern laos and at some point cross the border from Pakse to Vietnam and go slowly to Ho Chi Minh from Huè after seeing Nha Trang, the sand dunes, other few things, and take a plane back to Bangkok. Is this other option doable in two weeks?

Thanks a lot for your help!

#3 alfokat has been a member since 13/2/2016. Posts: 3

Posted by Captain_Bob on 23/2/2016 at 01:09

The quickest way to Luang Prabang (from Chiang Mai) is of course the daily one-hour flight on Lao Airlines. Second fastest is minivan to the border then speedboat, next is bus/bus, slowest is slow boat. If Vang Vieng and Vientiane are of no interest you can fly from Luang Prabang to Pakse direct, then you have extra time for 4000 Islands, Bolaven plateau, Champasak, etc.

However, in your 2nd paragraph it seems you are still very undecided what you want to do. Bye.

#4 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,958

Posted by alfokat on 23/2/2016 at 04:13

Well, i think the plane solution in Laos is a little bit too expensive for me, so i think i'll go by bus or whatever takes me to Pakse . I've seen that the most time consuming is Northern Laos, and there's no way to go to Pakse quickly and by skipping Vientiane, cause i think the south is more enjoyable. Is still doable in this way in two weeks?
I'm sorry if i didn't explain myself clearly. This is a map of my plan B :

In this scenary I could go (this is skippable) to northern Thai for a few days and fly back down to Bangkok (for just 20$), and spend my two/three weeks in Cambodia. The second part of the trip is from Siem Reap (where i need to meet up with my friend) and in these two remaing weeks go up to Laos, cross the border to Vietnam and fly back to Bangkok from Ho CHi Minh.
Hope this is clever.
Is there any chance I could do this remainign part in two weeks?

Thank you again for your precious help

#5 alfokat has been a member since 13/2/2016. Posts: 3

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