I'm hoping to get an overnight bus from Chiang Mai to Vientiane in October. Does anyone know if this bus is still running - I know things like this chop and change all the time.
Also, I've heard it's about 12hrs for about £24, is this about right?
Can anyone give me anymore details, like where to get the bus from or buy tickets from?
Hi, anyone have any info on this one? Thanks Em
I don't know about that bus, but from what I have heard busing it into Laos is not such a good idea. I often hear of horror tales of people being crammed into small leaky buses with no room for your legs let alone your bags, and being driven for what they say will be 12hrs but ends up being double that.
Thats just what i have heard tho, it may just be hokum.
If you have the time I would recommend catching a bus to Houei Xai and catching a slow boat down the Mekong. That or fly.
you may find this forum helpful.
I haven't heard of anyone getting the bus all the way on this route as virtually everyone entering Laos from Northern Thailand gets the slow boat down the Mekong. It's worth doing! After that you can get a bus from Luang Prabang down to Vientiane via Vang Vieng. That's a stunning drive and I'd highly recommend it.
Thanks for the replies guys,
I found these two blog/forum posts, both posted in 2010 - so hopefully we can do this journey:
Yes you can do this trip by bus. The trip you're looking at travels east across Thailand from Chiang mai to Udon Thani in Thailand and then north across the border to Vientiene. Whether you do this trip or not depends on what route you want to take across Laos and whether you plan to re enter Thailand afterwards or cross the border from Laos to Cambodia.
Most people enter laos at Houaxai from Chiang mai. I should look at a map and decide what route is best for you, but perhaps you have allready done this?
Further to my earlier post. According to other forums the trip takes 12 hours and costs 700 baht or £14. I believe the bus leaves from the Arcade bus station and tickets can be booked from there. It is recommended that you book well in advance. There is a normal bus and a VIP bus. The VIP bus leaves between 7pm and 8pm.
Alternatively, if you happen to have loadsa money then you can fly from Chiang mai to Udon thani for 5000baht or £100 and you can fly Chiang Mai to Vientiane for 14000baht or £285. Both can be booked on line with thaiair
Thats my blog entry for when i went from Chiang Mai via Chiang Khong to Laung Prabang in Laos.
I stayed in a place called Julies Guesthouse in Chiang Mai an they booked the bus to Chiang Khong which had
air con, also the two day slow boat to Laung Prabang.
Hope that helps,