A Mekong Meander - A Savannakhet Visa Run & Return


Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
Nong Khai - Chiang Khan - Ban Khok.
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One night in Chiang Khan before a night in the boonies @ Ban Khok & what a difference between Chiang Khan & Ban Khok

Chiang Khan: Google Maps

Ban Khok: Google Maps

Nong Khai to Chiang Khan is a leisurely ride 202 kms ride along the Khong, but I'm awestruck now by the lack of water in the river.
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This has already been detailed here

Chiang Khan where to stay: Chiang Khan Accommodation

Chiang Khan where to eat: Chiang Khan Restaurants

Chiang Khan to Ban Khok is roughly 429 kms, first along along the Khong, then the Nam Heung, then through the mountains near the Laos border.
I stopped in as many riverside villages as I could along the way, plus a remote Thai - Laos border crossing I "stumbled on"

Pottering along R2195 from Chiang Khan the Mekong sand dunes beside the road were impressive. Its amazing how much sand is being dredged from the river & there's no doubt there's big money in sand for construction all over S E Asia.

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In Vietnam & Cambodia sand dredging has become a serious issue.
Check out some of these links

The Environmental Costs of Sand Mining on the Mekong

Dramatic Photos Show How Sand Mining Threatens a Way of Life in Southeast Asia

Illegal sand mining in Vietnam reaches 'epidemic' proportions

The Connection Between Sand Mining and Poverty in Cambodia | The Borgen Project

Cambodia bans sand exports to Singapore after pressure from environmental groups

The Hidden Environmental Toll of Mining the World’s Sand

There was a deserted magnificent sandy beach Had Hae, just 13 kms upstream from Chiang Khan.
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The google maps location: Google Maps

Another 11 kms upstream is the sleepy hamlet of Tha Di Mi.
Tha Di Mi is known for the confluence of the Nam Heuang & The Mekong rivers.

Going upstream from here the Mekong goes away from the border & does not come back to be the border between Thailand & Laos until Kaeng Pha Dai at Wiang Kaen, near Chiang Khong.

You can ride through the village & head out to the big new Buddha & skywalk being built directly above the confluence.
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The Big Buddha & a Skywalk is still under construction.
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The views however are still stupendous without the skywalk.

Looking upstream
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The confluence of the two rivers
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You can check in at the oficial kms marker too
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To be continued ..

The Skywalk at the Big Buddha - official opening 1st October 2020??





Perhaps operating now if you are lucky