Bangkok to Laos

Travel Forums Asia Bangkok to Laos

1. Posted by kitty horsman (Budding Member 3 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!


I am flying into Bangkok in October and travelling north to Loas. I really don't have stops picked out yet, because seems to be so many!. I know this is a large ask, but does anybody have suggestions on where to stop on route to Loas. I want to spend approx two weeks in thailand, any suggestions will be most welcome and also any body thinking of doing the same!.

Thank you!


2. Posted by UliS (Travel Guru 154 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

You can go by train or bus to Chiang Mai (maybe some excursions from there), then by bus via Chiang Rai to Houayxay (visa you get at the border bridge, the bus will wait,, but you might need a passport picture), Laos and by boat to Luang Prabang. Take the slow boat, you will have a overnight stay in Pak Beng, the fast boats are unbearable noisy. In case you are there around the Chinese New Year there is a big Elephant festival in Sayabury about 100 km southeast of Luang Prabang.

3. Posted by Andrew Mack (Travel Guru 1037 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

Ulis makes some good suggestions.
I'd also suggest you get a 'Lonely Planet' or Rough Guide' backpackers travel book for the area.
It's just a guide and gets out-of-date quickly so don't take everything that written as 'gospel truth' but they are very useful. Have a long read and decide what bits interest you.

4. Posted by pfsmalo (Budding Member 10 posts) 5y 1 Star this if you like it!

The way up to Laos from Bangkok, to my mind depends also on what you are planning to do In Laos. Not much point in going through Huayxai if you are going to be doing the S-E of Laos (unfortunately where the dam burst) or even Vientiane and the plain of Jars. You can get a night train also from Hua Lamphong to Nong Khai on the Mekong and cross over there (only 20 kms from Vientiane). A stop off in Udom Thani is worth a day or two. Of course crossing by Huayxai via Chiang Khong gives you the possibility of stopping off in Chiang Mai and then Chiang Rai (don't miss the White Temple). Renting a scooter in Chiang Rai for a couple of days is not expensive and allows you easy travel up into the ethnic minority areas and the aforementioned White Temple. More time would allow you to bus up to Pai.
Here is a site that has great resources on Laos inc. time-tables of buses with prices and maps of regions.
For time-tables of trains have a look at

5. Posted by UliS (Travel Guru 154 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

Quoting pfsmalo

Good map!

6. Posted by pfsmalo (Budding Member 10 posts) 5y Star this if you like it!

Yes the whole site is pretty good, I used it once again this past February and it's still quite accurate (times, prices etc). Pity it doesn't cover the south of Lao.