Vientiane to Huay Xai


Aug 7, 2008
Hello again! Will be back in KL from Dubai on a "visa-run". As I'm back for a month, I'm joining some mates on a trip to Cambodia (Siem Reap, Phnom Penh) from Dec, 19th on. As I will have a little time left at the end of that trip, I'm contemplating going home, err, via Laos. I reckon I only have about a week to 10 days for this. I've read and re-read this Laos forum for about a week but think I'm suffering from overload now and need help as follows:

1) weather - forecast is of cool and sunny days with little or no rain. Is this the case on the ground at this time?
2) route - in the time that I have (7-10 days or so), I was thinking of a mostly "reccy" trip on paved roads from Vientiane northwards to Vang Vieng-Louang Prabang-Huay Xai/Chiang Khong but also taking in the Plain of Jars. Is this realistic?
3) road conditions - related to the above, I read that just south of Vang Vieng, the roads are churned up on H13 but that Huay Xai to Louang Prabang is ok and so is northwards from Vientiane just before Vang Vieng. I'm on a Multistrada with touring tyres - doable?
4) lastly, any advice on riding solo here?

Many thanks!


Nov 2, 2005
I just came through yesterday from Huay Xai to Luang Prabang on my 998. Left Huay Xai at 1200 midday and was checked into to A Luang Prabang GH by 2030 hrs, so 8 hours for the 500 km trip. The roads are generally crap(many many potholes and broken up section esp. between Luang Nam tha and Oudom Xai) Luang Namtha to the border is pretty much ok, just a few places where the road is broken up and 3 or 4 landslides, but they are all clear.
Perfect weather and beautiful time to be riding. On the Multistrada it'll be a piece of p**s
Allow extra time for the ferry crossing as you'll be at the mercy of the operators since there are no fixed crossing times and they only go if the ferry in loaded, although I was quoted 3000 baht (Thai side to Laos) if I wanted to pay and leave immediately