Our Northern Thailand and Laos Circuit
Visitng Thailand’s many islands is its own bundle of joy. But when that’s through, there’s a lovely circuit in the north, full of temples, animals, trekking and nature.
Week 1- Bangkok to Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai: There are many routes from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, with flying probably the easiest of them. Chiang Mai is a place to eat and explore. The street food and night markets are legendary, with incredibly delicious food, sold incredibly cheap. It’s a great place to take some cooking classes, explore the street stalls and markets, or take a scooter and explore temples and waterfalls along windy mountain roads.
Week 2 – Thailand into Laos; Luang Namtha
Transit to Laos: There are many transfers that connect northern Thailand to northern Laos—with private transfers and public buses making the route. Many will stop at Chiang Rai, a northern Thailand city known for its brilliant white temple. The border crossing is at Chiang Khong/Huay Xai.
Gibbon Experience: You may want to take a day to check out the Gibbon Experience (close by), where you can sleep in the treetops, and zipline through the forest.
Luang Namtha: From there, continue onto Luang Namtha, a small village in the jungle that does eco-tourism well. Stay for exploring the countryside on scooters and multi-day treks through the jungles and remote villages. Well worth the adventure.
Week 3 – Luang Prabang, Vang Vieng, Ventiane
Luang Prabang: From Luang Namtha, catch one of many buses to Luang Prabang (overnight possible), where monks walk the streets at dawn every morning, and the devoted offer alms. It is an ongoing and respected tradition—beautiful to witness. There are many temples to explore in the area.
Vang Vieng: From there, many travelers head to Vang Vieng—once known as a party paradise, where bars pulled tourists on river tubes into their establishments. That’s been over since 2012 (you can still river tube with a beer), and the town has reinvented itself as a hub of eco-tourism and adrenaline-fueled activities. From here, finish your Laos tour in the capital, Ventiane, before flying out.