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Trip Report Laos for the backpacker

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With two and a half weeks off in December, I decided to pack my bag and go explore Laos. I heard so much about that place from my friends and other fellow travellers in the past, I just had to. You can read a detailed account on my blog but I wanted to list down some helpful tips and what you can expect to pay while there. www.asiaescapades.wordpress.com/2014/01/03/my-laos-experience

TIPS:
1 If travelling by land to Laos (e.g. through Nong Khai in Thailand), get your visa beforehand (where your passport usually leaves blank eyes at customs)
2 Land travel within Laos can be long and tiring. Choose your mode of transport (VIP coaches, vans, minivans) carefully.
3 Luang Prabang is cold in December so bring suitable wear
4 Book your hostel in Luang Prabang early during peak seasons to avoid staying in an expensive guesthouse
5 Luang Prabang is more expensive than Vang Vieng and Vientiane
6 Ride a bike to Kouang Si and Tad Sae waterfalls in Luang Prabang to enjoy some pretty nice landscapes along the way
7 Catch a sunset on Mount Phousi in Luang Prabang
8 The best place to try local food in Luang Prabang is at the night market
9 Enjoy a lunch along the Mekong in Luang Prabang
10 Sip a great mojito at Utopia in Luang Prabang
11 Rent a motorbike and ride to the lagoons and caves in Vang Vieng. Tubing is not everything
12 Drop by Gary’s bar in Vang Vieng
13 Grab a Philly cheese or a falafel burger at Ray’s Grill in Vientiane
14 Sihome Backpackers Hostel in Vientiane is a great place to meet fellow travellers
15 Explore Phoukham cave in Vang Vieng

Read more about Vang Vieng: www.asiaescapades.wordpress.com/2014/01/03/vang-vieng/
Read more about Luang Prabang: www.asiaescapades.wordpress.com/2014/01/03/luang-prabang/
Read more about Vientiane: www.asiaescapades.wordpress.com/2014/01/03/Vientiane/

TRAVEL BUDGET:
1. Train from Bangkok (Hualamphong station) to Nong Khai (Thai/Laos border) for an upper berth second sleeper class with fan (no a/c): THB488 (USD15)
2. Travel from train station to visa agency in Nong Khai: THB50
3. Service fee for visa application, facilitation, fee, transport to Vientiane from Nong Khai: THB600 to THB2000 (depending on nationality)
4. Dorm bed in 8 bunk-bed room at Sihome Backpackers Hostel in Vientiane : LAK50,000 (USD6)
5. Van from Vientiane to Vang Vieng: LAK50,000
6. Dorm bed in 3 bed room at EasyGo Hostel in Vang Vieng: LAK23,000
7. Van from Vang Vieng to Luang Prabang: LAK110,000
8. Dorm bed in 8 bunk-bed room at LPQ Backpackers Hostel in Luang Prabang: LAK50,000

Cheers,
Johahn
Asiaescapades.wordpress.com

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