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Laos Explorer - 14 Days - Chiang Mai to Bangkok - Backpacker

Laos Explorer - 14 Days - Chiang Mai to Bangkok - Backpacker

From {{totalPrice}} EUR Extra expenses at the destination
Flight tickets are not included. Our travel advisors will gladly help you find the cheapest flights. The price above is based on 2 adults traveling together.
What's included?
From {{totalPrice}} EUR
Flight tickets are not included. Our travel advisors will gladly help you find the cheapest flights. The price above is based on 2 adults traveling together.
What's included?
Duration
14
Starts in
Chiang Mai
Ends in
Bangkok
Group size
Small Group Exploration – normally no more than 2 - 5 travellers. Being few brings you closer to local life and flexibility to go to places less travelled; to go beyond the ordinary. You can be min. 1 and max. 8 travellers on this tour. You can book 1 person, but we cannot guarantee more participants. WANT THIS ALL TO YOURSELF? For an additional 40 USD per person you can secure this as a Guaranteed Private Tour. Please contact us for further details and booking.
The wind gently grabs your hair. The sun shimmers in the water. Slowly you leave Thailand behind, and give in to the mother of Rivers, the Mekong. Flowing on her waters, you will be taken deep into the heart of Laos. Where the pace is still slow, life is charming and the nature is rough and incredibly breath-taking. Go ashore in laidback Luang Prabang with its colonial charm. Explore the outskirts, trek and bike through the local villages, past lush rice paddies and into the soul of the playing children and smiling farmers. Head South for some true adventure. Through rivers streams and waterfalls, across open valleys and down steep mountain slopes. Trek, zipline and abseil your way through Vang Vieng's rough surroundings, a treat for the adventurous. Then off you are towards great lakes and mountains high. To urban life in Vientiane. Bike through the rice fields. Kayak the rivers and let your senses fully take in the last bit of Laos. A land full of smiles, adventure and generosity. A land that truly gives you an experience beyond.
Included: Meals: 12 x Breakfasts, 6 x Lunch, 3 x Dinners

Accommodation: 1 Night at guesthouse in Chiang Khong, 1 Night at guesthouse in Pakbeng, 3 Nights at guesthouse in Luang Prabang, 1 Night at home stay in Luang Prabang outskirts, 3 Nights at guesthouse in Vang Vieng, 2 Nights at guesthouse in Vientiane, 1 Night on the mountain top in a bamboo hut during ‘Vang Vieng Challenge’ and 1 Night on sleeper train from Nong Khai to Bangkok

Transport: Bus from Chiang Mai to Huay Xai, public boat from Pak Beng to Luang Prabang, Songtheaw from Luang Prabang ferry port to accommodation in Luang Prabang. Bus from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng, Songtheaw from Vang Vieng bus station to accommodation, Private minibus from Vang Vieng to Vientiane (Via Nam Ngum lake) Boat on Nam Ngum Lake, Bicycle & Kayak in Vientiane, sleeper train from Nong Khai to Bangkok

English speaking tour guide: There is no overall tour guide on the tour. There will be guide during the trip as follows: English speaking guide during trip from Pak Beng to Luang Prabang. During weaving/dyeing course and during two days, one night trip in Luang Prabang. English speaking guide on the two day Vang Vieng Challenge, day trip from Vang Vieng to Vientiane (Via Nam Ngum) And during cycling and kayaking down the Mekong in Vientiane.
Not included: · Drinks
· Tips
· Any food not mentioned in tour proposal
· Tours and activities not mentioned in the itinerary
· Visa
· Travel Insurance (compulsory)
· Entrance fee and respectable clothes for the White Temple if you do not have already (covering shoulders and knees)

All other expenses not stated as included in the above
· Relax on the slow boat as you cruise down the mighty Mekong River
· Learn traditional weaving or dyeing techniques as you take part in a half day class
· Cycle and trek through the beautiful countryside
· Explore the UNESCO World heritage city of Luang Prabang
· Travel along a beautiful mountain road from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng
· Take part in the exhilarating Vang Vieng Challenge
· Enjoy lunch on board a boat cruising the largest lake in Laos, Nam Ngum
· Cycle along the river banks and Kayak down the Mighty Mekong River
· Nostalgic overnight train journey from Nong Khai to Bangkok
Itinerary

Laos Explorer - 14 Days - Chiang Mai to Bangkok - Backpacker

Day 1: Chiang Mai to Chiang Khong

You will be picked up at your accommodation between 09.30 - 10.00 hrs and a minivan will drive you to Chiang Khong. You will have a brief 20 minutes stop at the magical White Temple in Chiang Rai on the way. Expect to arrive in Chiang Khong around 15.00 hrs, where you can check into your accommodation and spend the rest of your evening exploring the sleepy border town of Chiang Khong.

Meals: Dinner
Accommodation: Overnight at guesthouse in Chiang Khong

Day 2: Amazing landscapes from Chiang Khong to Pak Beng by slowboat

Breakfast will be served today from 07.00 AM and is included. At 07:45 AM you will head towards the border crossing where you will exit Thailand and enter Laos (*please read our mini-guide below on crossing the border). Once on the other side, head to the pier where the slow boat departs at 10:30. Stock up on snacks and sweets beforehand and bring some games and get prepared for a joyable slowride - welcome to Laos. Expected arrival in Pak Beng is 17.00 hrs where you will be met by your guide (look for a sign with your names on) who has arranged accommodation for you in Pak Beng.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Overnight at Salika Guesthouse, or similar
Note: *Before crossing the Lao border, please remember to check up on the visa requirement for your nationality. We will not be held responsible if you cannot enter Laos. For most travellers, it is possible to obtain 30-days visa-on-arrival for a fee of USD 30 and 1-2 passport photos.
We recommend you to NOT exchange money at the border due to excessively high exchange rates (there will be ATMs in Luang Namta), and to bring a bit of patience.

Day 3: Tranquility on the slowboat flowing from Pak Beng to Luang Prabang

Today begins early as you leave Pak Beng on the slow boat and head downstream to Luang Prabang, a journey which takes around 8 Hours.

The boat will depart at around 08.30 hrs and cruise along the Mekong River passing through some beautiful countryside on your way to the beautiful UNESCO World heritage city of Luang Prabang, a journey which takes around 8 Hours leaving you plenty of time to relax and take in the sights at a serene pace.

You will arrive at the ferry port which is located just outside of Luang Prabang at around 16.30 hrs. Here transport awaits you for the transfer into town to your accommodation, the remainder of the day is left free for you to enjoy as you please.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Overnight at Thanaboun Guesthouse, or similar

Day 4: Luang Prabang – Slow day and afternoon learning traditional weaving or dyeing techniques Today the morning is free for you to do as you please.

Why not begin the day early watching the monks' procession through the city to collect offerings of food from the locals. It is colorful and peaceful and plays a big part of the local life.

Just after lunchtime you will be picked up from your hotel. Awaiting you are an afternoon where you will learn more on traditional weaving or dyeing techniques, which have been used for centuries. Passed down from generation to generation. Normally, you will try hands on the various dyeing techniques. You will use a selection of different plants to create various colors to dye the clothes - The natural way. A great experience, which is sure to fascinate you!
Alternatively, you can be introduced to the art of different weaving techniques used to make a variety of clothing. If you would like to substitute the dyeing experience with weaving, we need to be informed in advance, upon booking.

After your afternoon class you will be taken back to your accommodation where the evening is free for you to enjoy as you please. Why not sample some of the delicious food on offer in Luang Prabang. The city houses many fantastic restaurants serving food from all over the world.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Overnight at Thanaboun Guesthouse, or similar

Day 5: Luang Prabang – Cycle, trek and boat in the rural countryside and stay in local homestay Today you will begin a two-day outdoor activity trip, which combines cycling, trekking and boating in the rural outskirts of Luang Prabang and along the Mekong River.

Experience local daily life during a homestay and learn about the unique culture while interacting with friendly people of different ethnic minorities.
You will be met by your guide and head to the Green Discovery office in town. From here you will depart by bicycle and cross the Mekong River by boat to Ban Xieng Man village, where you continue by bicycle to Ban Na Kham. The village is known for its sugarcane production and Kaolam, which is sticky rice and coconut milk cooked in bamboo stems. Be sure to try some!

There is time to look around the village before continuing to Ban Houay Tan, an ethnic Khmu village. Here you have a short break before heading on to Somsisomphou village where you will enjoy lunch.
After lunch and a bit of time to relax and rest the legs, you will switch from biking to trekking. The route begins by passing through rice paddy fields before crossing a stream. You carry on trekking for around 2.5 hours uphill through Ban Mok Prai before arriving in Ban Phou Luang Tai, a Hmong village, which is where you will stay overnight with a local family in their home, a truly amazing experience!

The roughness of the day will depend on the season and conditions of the road/tracks. Expect in general that the bike trip is medium to hard with a bumpy road in the dry season. Expect the trekking to approx. 3 hours up the mountain on a dirt road.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Overnight in homestay

Day 6: Luang Prabang – Trek through the forest and pass ethnic villages producing local goods After enjoying breakfast you begin by trekking along a pass through the forest to the Khmu village of Ban Houay Pong.

Here you stop to relax and enjoy lunch. From the village it is time to head onwards to Muang Kham village, where Kaipan (a Luang Prabang speciality of fried dried riverweed) is produced, the weed is harvested from the river during dry season before being sun dried, seasoned and fried to make a delicious snack. From the village a short 20-minute boat ride bring you back to Luang Prabang where you can then return back to your accommodation.
The roughness of the day depends on season, but will generally be a moderate with downhill walking and partly dirt road, partly small dirt trails.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Overnight at Thanaboun Guesthouse, or similar

Day 7: Twisty mountain roads and beautiful views as you go from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng Wake up and grab some breakfast.

After you check out at 12.00 hrs noon you begin your trip by heading south from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng. Your bus will depart after lunchtime and head through some beautiful twisty mountain roads which are home to many incredible views.

The journey to Vang Vieng is around 7 Hours which means you will be arriving in Vang Vieng in the early evening. Upon arrival at the bus station you will be collected and transferred to your accommodation where the evening is left free for you to relax in anticipation of the next two days of adventure!

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Overnight at Villayvong Guesthouse, or similar

Day 8: Vang Vieng Challenge – ??Via Ferrata' and abseiling in waterfall.

Sleep at the mountain
The real adventure starts today! Go for a ??real' trek, descend steep mountain slopes using steel cables to safely hold you, rise to the challenge of a dare-devil ??abseiling' in a 30 m waterfall, and cross the mind-blowing ??via ferrata'! This adventurous climb will ultimately reward you with incredible views from the top of the limestone mountain.

You will be collected from your hotel and driven only a short distance from Vang Vieng by truck before starting the trek by heading through rice paddy fields to the bottom of the karsts range; from here we then begin climbing up the mountain. Along the way we'll take a rest for picnic lunch. After lunch it is time to continue onwards until arriving at the peak of the mountain where dinner is served at the camp on top of the mountain. Here you will stay overnight overlooking Vang Vieng and the beautiful surrounding scenery.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Overnight in bamboo hut

Day 9: Vang Vieng Challenge – abseiling in waterfall and zipline down the mountain Today begins with an early morning.

After enjoying breakfast on top of the mountain we continue onwards climbing further up for a short while to the top of the waterfall.... From here it's time to turn around and head down, we start off by abseiling down the waterfall. From the bottom of the waterfall it is time to continue onwards descending the mountain via a selection of exciting zip lines. A delicious packed lunch is enjoyed along the way after which it is time to carry on zip lining until arriving at the foot of the mountain. From here we trek the short distance back to the awaiting truck which will take us the short distance back to Vang Vieng where we will arrive between 16.00 to 17.00 hrs. Once back in town you will be taken back to your accommodation where the remainder of the day is left free for you to relax and refresh after the adventure!

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Overnight at Villayvong Guesthouse, or similar

Day 10: Free day in Vang Vieng – tube the river or soak in the Blue Lagoon

Enjoy a free day in Vang Vieng. Why not take a trip to the famous blue lagoon or perhaps spend the day floating down the Nam Song River in a tube, one of the activities which Vang Vieng is most famous for! You will be given a small map to help you navigate around the town but apart from that you are left free to do as you please.

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Overnight at Villayvong Guesthouse, or similar

Day 11: Vang Vieng to Vientiane – On the way boat cruise and lunch on Nam Ngum lake It is time to head south today and travel to the capital city, Vientiane.

After breakfast you will be collected from your accommodation and travel via private luxury minibus southwards towards Vientiane. The chosen route takes a de-tour and turns this boring journey in to an exciting yet relaxing day trip as you will begin by travelling to Nam Ngum which is the largest lake within the whole of Laos and stretches as far as the eye can see! The journey from Vang Vieng will see you arriving at Nam Ngum just in perfect time for lunch which will be enjoyed on board a boat as your cruise around the magnificent lake taking in the views as you go. A perfect contrast to the past two days of exertion and adventure.

After enjoying a relaxing cruise around the lake it is time to board your transport for the onwards journey to Vientiane. After a short while it is time to make another stop at a salt abstraction site in the town of Ban Keun. Here salt water is pumped up from the depths of the earth and boiled over charcoal to produce the finished product which is of course salt.

From Ban Keun we head south towards Vientiane. Just before arriving in the suburbs it is time to stop off at Dong Makkhai market which sells a massive selection of different produce including many insects for which the market is famous for. We will take some time to explore the market and perhaps buy a few souvenirs before carrying onwards to Vientiane itself. Upon arrival in Vientiane you will be taken to your accommodation where you will arrive around 17.00 hrs leaving the evening free for you to relax and do as you please.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Overnight at Mixai Paradise Hotel, or similar

Day 12: Vientiane Challenge – Cycle the countryside trails and kayak the mighty Mekong River Today it is time to take part in a unique and exciting trip which incorporates cycling and kayaking down the mighty Mekong River.

You will be collected from your accommodation at 9am and transferred to Ban Nonsavang village which is located just a short drive from the city centre. From here we begin cycling alongside a canal until arriving at the village of Ban Nong Ort, where we turn off and carry on cycling along a single trail which passes vast areas of rice paddy fields and numerous typical Lao lowland villages.

After passing through numerous villages we cycle through a bamboo forest to Tadmoun water fall which is very famous amongst the local people. Here is where we will have a break and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant.

After lunch we continue onwards for a short while to Ban Maivillage which is situated on the banks of the Mekong. Here you will be given some basic paddle instructions by your guide and of course a full safety briefing as well as a little practice before kayaking down the mighty Mekong River back towards Vientiane. Enjoy the afternoon paddling down the river and taking in the beautiful and changing scenery along the way. In the late afternoon you will arrive back at Ban Sikhai Tha village, where we will meet our truck which will transfer us back into the city and take you back to your accommodation.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodation: Overnight at Mixai Paradise Hotel, or similar

Day 13: Vientiane to Bangkok

Enjoy your breakfast in the morning and a free day to explore around Vientiane, why not visit some of the many beautiful temples such as That Luang Stupa and Ho Prekeo or alternatively spend the day relaxing next to the Mekong, there are many restaurants and coffee shops offer cuisine to suite all tastes.

At around 15:30 hrs it is time to meet at Nampou Fountain, here you will board your transportation for the transfer over the border in to Thailand to the city of Nong Khai where you will be taken to the train station where from you will take the overnight train travelling via 2nd Class sleeper carriage to Bangkok the capital of Thailand

Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: Second class sleeper train

Day 14: Bangkok

You will arrive at Hua Lamphong train station in Bangkok between 07.00 to 09.00 hrs; from here you are free to travel onwards as you please.

End of trip
Summary

What’s included?

Accommodation

Local guesthouse, village homestay, bamboo hut on the mountain top and overnight train to Bangkok

Local transport

Bus/Minibus: from Chiang Mai to Huay Xai

Boat: from Huay Xai to Luang Prabang

Songtheaw: from Luang Prabang ferry port to accommodation

Bicycle: during trip in to the countryside in Luang Prabang

Bus: from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng

Songtheaw: from Vang Vieng bus station to accommodation

Private minibus: from Vang Vieng to Vientiane (Via Nam Ngum lake)

Boat: on Nam Ngum Lake

Bicycle & Kayak: in Vientiane

Shared minibus: from Vientiane to Nong Khai train station

Overnight sleeper train: (2nd Class Air Conditioned carriage) From Nong Khai to Bangkok

Please be aware

Mosquito spray, sun block, long trousers, shirt, hat, warm jacket if travelling in the cool season, sturdy shoes/boots.

Laos Explorer - 14 Days - Chiang Mai to Bangkok - Backpacker

Price from {{totalPrice}} EUR
Flight tickets are not included. Our travel advisors will gladly help you find the cheapest flights. The price above is based on 2 adults traveling together.
What's included?