Photo: Classic scenery surrounds Vang Vieng.

Laos forum

Travelling the length of Laos

Posted by sketchinbawlz on 7/5/2016 at 23:28

Hi,
First time post. Website is great resource.

Heading for the first time in Asia, from Thailand into Laos in June 2016, doing Luang Prubang, V.V, Vientiane and than want to do Don Det - I know opposite end of the country. Is their anyway to get down there without means of airport. Save me having to go back and around to Cambodia and up to Don Det of which I'd have to pay another visa fee. Open to any ideas, don't mind long hauls.
Thank you in advance.

#1 sketchinbawlz has been a member since 28/4/2016. Posts: 2


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Posted by exacto on 8/5/2016 at 08:34

Sure. You can take the bus. A popular option is the overnight bus from Vientiane to Pakse , then continuing from Pakse to the islands, including Don Det. That is one long haul.

If you have the time, you might consider breaking up the trip with a series of shorter bus trips with overnights in Thakhek, Savannakhet, and Pakse, before continuing on to Don Det.

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Posted by sketchinbawlz on 8/5/2016 at 14:35

Thanks Exacto!
Is this route the bus takes safe? As I have read about bandits on the roads and than urban legends about people being drugged and robbed on the buses.
I also accept the roads won't be in the best condition but that's part of the experience.

#3 sketchinbawlz has been a member since 28/4/2016. Posts: 2

Posted by exacto on 8/5/2016 at 15:51

I've traveled portions of this route before and had no issues. There have been fairly recent reports of bandits, but those are up along the road to Phon Savanh, which is not along this route.

As far as being drugged and robbed goes, don't eat or drink anything handed to you by someone else. If you are really worried about such things, then take your supply of food and drink with you for the trip so you don't have to worry about buying tainted items at rest stops. As suggested above, breaking up your trip with quick overnights would help prevent that too.

If you prefer not to take the route through Laos, you could always cross into Thailand at Nong Khai (near Vientiane), then make your way to Ubon Ratchathani and take the international bus to Pakse from there and on to Don Det. No need to go all the way south through Cambodia. But that would require a new Lao visa, which seems silly, unless the one you have is about to expire.

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