How to Get from Luang Prabang to Thailand

When traveling abroad, beside concerns about things to prepare or accommodation during the trip, how to move from one place to another one is a common question of all tourists. 

If you are wondering how to get to Thailand from Luang Prabang, the information about means of transportation between thedestinations below may support you to find out which one is the most suitable.

1. By Slow Boat

Traveling by a slow boat from Luang Prabang to Thailand is an ideal way to explore Mekong River, the life blood of Southeast Asia. It is for sure that you will have chances to contemplate stunning landscapes along the river such as intact valleys, virgin jungle, and sometimes small villages with fishermen popping up. Another advantage over a bus ride is that it is easy to hang out with other travelers and local people since you can walk along the boat, sit by the table, play games and do things which are impossible on a bus.

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If you choose this option, you need to know that the docks for the slow boat are not in LuangPrabangcenter but around 10 kilometers outside the town. It is possible to book a boat at one of travel agencies in Luang Prabang and it costs about $20.Otherwise, you can get the tickets at the docks as long as you arrive there an hour before the departure time that is at 8 am.

On the first day, you will travel from Luang Prabang to Pak Beng in around 8 hours. It is quite a long journey but you will see every changing mountainous scenery, small villages, and lush jungles along the river. When arriving in Pak Beng, you can book accommodation very easily and eating is also very cheap despite a few options. 

The next day, the boat leaves at 8.30 am and it takes again 7 – 8hours to get to HuayXai where you take a tuk-tuk to the border. Passing through Laos immigration, you have to take the shuttle bus to across the friendship bridge. After passing Thai immigration, you will enter the outskirts of Chiang Khong town.

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2. Airplanes

This is the fastest mean of transport to get to Thailand from Luang Prabang as it only takes you 1 – 2 hours. You can take a flight from LuongPrabang to cities in Thailand including Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, KohSamui, Krabi, UdonThani, and Trat, which depends on the destination you will visit first in Thailand. 

Also,the price is various and can be changed at different times. You can book the ticket online and there are some airlines for you to choose such as Laos Airlines, Thai Air Asian, Centurion Cargo, and Bangkok (in case you fly to Bangkok). The visa is required but you can get it on arrival at the airport or you can get it a head of time at Thai embassy in your home country.

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3. Bus

Traveling by bus may make you tired because the time taken is quite long. However, if it is suitable with you, then take it.

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There is two routes. First, the bus from Luang Prabang to Chiang Mai departs at 6 pm and it takes up to 20 hours since the distance is 842 kilometers. You have to spend about US $37 if choosing this option. However, the second one has shorter distance, about 400 kilometers, from LuangPrabang to Loei. In addition, its departure time is at 7 am and you will reach Loei after 10 hours. The fare is also cheaper than that of the first one, just about US $22.

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For most travelers, visa is required because riding buses is involved in crossing from one country to another. You can obtain a Thai tourist visa in advance at the Thai embassy in your country or on arrival at the border checkpoints. 

In conclusion, each way of transportation that you select will be an interesting experience for your life since you will have opportunity to pass through many beautiful landscapes along the road and see various things of this world that you may have not seen before.


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Brian Vu

Working for a travel company is a big chance for me to feel love with travel. Specially, leisure is not my style, riding motorbike to discover everywhere is really great for my trips. On each miles I reach, I get opportunity to learn more about the local culture, to see ... [View Details...]