Hi everyone. I've been reading this forum for around a month now and I've got to say a HUGE thanks to everyone for their really invaluable information. However, I'm getting really confused with some information I need. My husband and I travelling from Luang Prabang to Hanoi (via bus - yes I know we are masochists!) and although there's been heaps written (and I know cos my eyes are bleeding from reading it all) about the various routes, my main concern is the times (eg how many buses a day, length of trips etc).
We hope to travel from Luang Prabang on 26 December to Sam Neua/Vieng Xay and then cross the border and go on to Mai Chau and then Hanoi. Anyone got any up to date information to share regarding bus timetables (yes I know it's SEA but a guestimation will do). Also need to ask if the buses run every day as we have limited time to get to Hanoi and we don't want to waste time getting somewhere and finding no way out.
This kind of thing was never a problem to us 20odd years ago when we were travelling as we always took around six months to a year and plans were always changed at the last minute, but when we've got five weeks to take in Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia, time is of the essence! Unfortunately age and jobs has put an end to our year long travels but the desire to travel still remains.
Any help you can give would be fantastic
#1 scottyheather has been a member since 30/3/2008. Posts: 89
there's one daily ~8:30++AM departure from LPB northern bus station to Sam Neua. in the reverse direction it took about 16h for someone who did the trip a few months ago. cost was in region of 120,000kip as of early Sept 2009...though in Jan 2009, the cost was stated as 150,000kip at the tourist info ctr in Sam Neua.
for Sam Nuea > Vietnam:
see reply #1 here
guess you've already seen tf_geckozy's post :)
anyway for future reference:
Hanoi to Sam Neua via Mai Chau - Na Meo-Nam Xoi border
(for others who may see this thread while searching for similar info)
I have now :)
Thanks again. That was the only part of the trip we were really stuck on so your advice was great.
#5 scottyheather has been a member since 30/3/2008. Posts: 89
Hi again. Just one more question (and hope it doesn't sound stupid) but given that we are short of time and don't want to fly, we were thinking that we could perhaps hire a taxi/driver to do the LP to Hanoi trip. I know we might have to change taxis given that they are different countries, but does anyone have any experience of doing this? If so, any idea of how long it took and how much overall? I'm just thinking of the 15 hour trip from LP to Sam Neua by bus.......
#6 scottyheather has been a member since 30/3/2008. Posts: 89
I can't think of any reason why you couldn't do that -- no idea what it would cost. Would be a great way to do it tho -- stop when you want etc.
Yes you will need to change cars at the border, but your driver may be able to arrange onwards transport at the border -- discuss that before you get going...
Report back on how you go!