Travel Tips Laos
How to get to Laos
Most Laos visitors travel through major airport like Bangkok. Fly to either Luang Prabang, Pakse or Vientiane. There are also direct flights from Cambodia, Vietnam, Singapore and Korea to Vientiane. Bangkok airways and Laos Airline both service most routes and prices vary very little. A cheaper way to get into Laos is to fly to a border town like Udon thani and then make the crossing to Laos by the bus. Flight tickets from Bangkok to Udon Thani are a lot less and crossing the border close to Vientiane is not difficult. It usually take around two- three hours, start to finish.
Boat or bus
If you are keen on experiencing Lao nature and landscapes, an interesting way is to start Houayxay in the north for onward travels on the Mekong. A slow boat will take you to Pakbeng where you will spend one night and then continue to Luang Prabang.
Another itinerary that will allow you to see vast parts of Laos is to enter through the south and travel to Pakse and onwards. This could get you to Vientiane for onward travels. The section between Luang Prabang and Vientiane comprise of winding roads in tall mountains and can get even the most resilient stomachs nervous. Consider stopping in Vang Vieng to check out what has become of the former party town.
Entering Laos from Thailand
There are seven border crossings from Thailand into Laos and the most popular one is by the Friendship bridge outside of Vientiane. You grab a bus or a tuk tuk to the border in Nong Khai, Thailand, cross the border and continue on the bus or the tuk tuk into the city of Vientiane.
The crossing in Houayxay is accessed by boat. You check out from Thailand, grab the small passenger boat to the Lao side and enter Laos. You apply for visas there.
Entering Laos from Cambodia
The only border crossing to enter Lao from Cambodia is in the south of Laos. It is usually accessed by travellers going from Phnom Pehn, the Cambodian capital, to Laos. You will pass through Dong Kralor in Cambodia to Veung Kham in Laos.
Entering Laos from Vietnam
There are several border crossing from Vietnam to Laos and it is usually easiest to go through a travel agency when sorting that out. It can be done in most major cities like Hue, Hoi An, Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi.