Photo: Classic scenery surrounds Vang Vieng.

Laos forum

Laos Itinerary

Posted by yozza2009 on 30/6/2009 at 22:09

Hello all.

I shall be spending 21 days in Laos from the final week of August. My itinerary is pretty vague at present. I would like to visit the Plain of Jars, perhaps cross the border into China for a few days.
Two of my friends travelled around the country last year, one recommends spending most of my time in the South, one recommends the North. Therefore despite browsing the LP guide, i'm torn.
I'm considering hiring a bike as to avoid public transport, is this a wise move?
I'm sorry for being everso vague, but I'd appreciate some advice from one who has spent a great deal of time in the country, so that I can build on this vague, vague itinerary.
I'd appreciate any replies!


#1 yozza2009 has been a member since 30/6/2009. Posts: 16

Posted by BruceMoon on 1/7/2009 at 07:51


I could answer you in great detail, but why should I spend MY time helping you if you can't even help yourself?

Best suggestion is for you to put together 3 different (possible) itineraries:

1. traversing Laos but focussing on the south,

2. traversing Laos but focussing on the north, and

3. traversing Laos but focussing on both the north AND Yunnan (China).

In so doing, you'd be listing the places you want to visit, the number of days for each, your method of transport.

Once you've done something for yourself, post it here on Travelfish and I'm sure you'll get feedback to assist.

There are several posts regarding bike here. Go to the 'Search Travelfish' box in the left of the grey panel above, and type in 'bike hire Laos' or similar. Also use the 'box' for other queries.

Cheers (from grumpybum).

#2 BruceMoon has been a member since 27/12/2008. Location: Australia. Posts: 1,941

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Posted by exacto on 1/7/2009 at 12:02

hi yozza,

i'd guess that three weeks should be enough for the north to south (or reverse) journey through the country. definitely check out the suggested itineraries for laos listed in the before you leave section at the top of the page. from what you've said so far, it looks like a combination of the laos in one week and laos south itineraries, with a side trip to the plain of jars, might work for you, and even allow for a few extra days in places you particularly like.

personally, i'd go with public transport rather than try to hire a motor bike for the time you are there, largely because of logistics.

by the way, will you be arriving in laos from thailand or somewhere else? that would definitely influence my starting point too. regards.

#3 exacto has been a member since 12/2/2006. Location: United States. Posts: 2,759
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Posted by yozza2009 on 1/7/2009 at 14:23

Hi Bruce, sorry for being so vague in my initial post.

I'm arriving in Vientiane, from there i'm quite interested in making my way northwards, stopping in Luang Prabang for two/three days, before then making my way to Nong Khiaw, from here, my vague plan is to follow the route 1 to an extent before turning southwards.

I do apologise for being a 'newbie', i'm currently reading a quite dated travel guide. The real aim of my trip is to avoid the backpacker trail to an extent, I'm not one for wasting my trip drinking beer, and being disrepectful. One of my main interests is history and photography, so therefore, i'd be going out my way to visit sites of historical importance, or to just visit charming towns and villages.

Again, apologies.

#4 yozza2009 has been a member since 30/6/2009. Posts: 16

Posted by yozza2009 on 1/7/2009 at 16:03

amongst the above, the following are places I would like the opportunity of visiting. Phonsavan, Luang Prabang, Nong Khiaw, Champassak and the Bolaven Plateau.

#5 yozza2009 has been a member since 30/6/2009. Posts: 16

Posted by somtam2000 on 2/7/2009 at 08:24 admin

Hi yozza2009 -- no need for apologies!

In three weeks you could cover those destinations -- something like:
Vientiane -> Phonsavan -> Luang Prabang -> Nong Kiaow ->Luang Prabang -> Vientiane -> Pakse -> Bolaven -> Champasak . It's a lot of ground to cover in three weeks, but it is certainly doable. You could stick in a flight here of there also to save a little time.

#6 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,941
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Posted by BruceMoon on 2/7/2009 at 10:06


Despite the words of Somtam, I still believe you would be wise to try and nut out an itinerary (as suggested above). That way you could observe whether you'd be actually doing what YOU want, and color=green]NOT just holed up in some bus/boat/etc.


#7 BruceMoon has been a member since 27/12/2008. Location: Australia. Posts: 1,941

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