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Chiang Mai to Luan Prabang - Bus or speed boat? (or..)

Posted by ale1teixeira on 13/1/2013 at 07:20

Hi guys,

This is my first post, but, as many, I've been using travelfish as one of the main information sources for planning my trip.

Anyway, I'm in Chiang Mai and my next stop is Luan Prabang, I want to be there on the 16th, so I don't have that much time in hand.

My question: is the speed boat - go to chiang kong, spend the night and take the speed boat 3000 bht - worth the experience (as is the slow boat) or am I better of just taking the bus - one day one night 1500 - and having an extra day here (or there...)? Are there any other good alternatives?

I'm a 24 years old and travelling solo. Money isn't a big restriction.

Thank you very much!

#1 ale1teixeira has been a member since 13/1/2013. Posts: 2

Posted by SoloHobo on 13/1/2013 at 09:43

The bus would be more comfy, thats for sure, and I think the slow boat is more enjoyable if going to LPB.

#2 SoloHobo has been a member since 12/1/2013. Posts: 10

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Posted by RooX on 13/1/2013 at 13:34

Loved the slowboat, took it on the reverse trip, was a bit slower, but super relaxing and amazing views. Met a lot of cool travelers and locals.

Did not have a great experience taking the bus to L.P.. was very crowded full of still drunk backpackers coming down off an extended stay in V.V, and we took almost 14 hours from V.V to L.P due to mechanicals and a pretty bad accident that we came across. these issues are all of course situational!

#3 RooX has been a member since 3/3/2012. Posts: 9
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Posted by fondo on 13/1/2013 at 18:36

If money is no problem, fly - great views from up there too!

#4 fondo has been a member since 23/6/2006. Posts: 175
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Posted by ale1teixeira on 14/1/2013 at 04:11

Thank you all!

I think I was hoping for someone to take the speedboat side, which never happens, it must be really bad.

After considering the bus a bit more I finally decided to fly, chiang mai is so nice... USD 120 + taxes.

Hope I won't regret it!

Best regards,


#5 ale1teixeira has been a member since 13/1/2013. Posts: 2

Posted by Captain_Bob on 14/1/2013 at 05:38

Lao Airlines flight $120+taxes($43)=$163, pretty good price for high season. If you had another couple days I would have said go by slow boat to Pakbeng then speedboat to Luang Prabang. That way you get both experiences and pay a balance of both prices (slow boat Huay Xai to Pakbeng about $13 + speedboat Pakbeng to LP about $25, that is if you have a full boat) plus you get into LP before the slow boat arrives, giving you an advantage on finding a room.

#6 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,947

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