How to Go to Vang Vieng from Udon Thani

I have passed through Vang Vieng in the past on my way to Vientiane from Luang Prabang but I have never been to nor stayed even for a day in Vang Vieng. And in my recent trip to Laos last July 2013, I decided to spend a couple of weeks in this infamous town.

Since we’re already in the Northeast of Thailand, we have decided to go to Udon Thani to take a DIRECT bus to Vang Vieng. While researching for this trip online, I saw in some forums that there was a direct bus but most of the posts were already year or two years old and I didn’t see any other updates. So me and my friend have decided to find it out ourselves. We though that if it doesn’t exist anymore then we’ll just take a bus to Vientiane instead and a local bus to Vang Vieng afterwards.

From Dan Sai we took a bus to Udon Thani (cost 115 Baht) which dropped us to Bus Station 2 in Udon Thani. The trip took almost 4 hours. From the bus station we saw some songthaew going to the city proper but not sure which one goes to the other bus station. We have decided to take a tuktuk instead going to our hostel and it cost 120 Baht after haggling from the original price of 160 Baht with the old tuktuk driver.

Luckily, the hostel that we booked was within walking distance to the new bus station where the buses going to Laos are located. After checking in, we left our bags and immediately walked towards the bus station to buy tickets to Vang Vieng. Unfortunately when we arrived there the ticket counter was already closed. We asked around and the locals that we talked to said that we just buy tickets on the day of our trip.

So we did buy the tickets on the following day and it costed 320 Baht per person.

There were no other passengers on the bus instead me and my friend and a solo Thai traveler. The bus left a few minutes past 8:30AM and stopped at Nong Khai to pick up more passengers (waited for around 30 minutes). It was the low season and no other passengers joined us at Nong Khai.

We had the whole bus for just the three of us!

How to Go to Vang Vieng from Udon Thani - Direct Bus

Our next stop was the Thai Immigration for the exit stamp and then we boarded the bus again to cross the Friendship Bridge en route to the Laos Immigration Post.

In the Laos immigration post, we changed some money since there was a booth there were we need to pay 1000 Kip for something that looks like an MRT ticket (we honestly didn’t know what it was for).

We also changed some money which unlike other borders gave a very good rate. Better than the rate of the BCEL Money Exchange booth near the immigration officer’s booth.

We got the entry stamp and saw an MRT entrance looking thingy where you had to put the card in (so that’s what the 1000 Kip card is for!).

We then boarded the bus again and the journey from the border to Vang Vieng took around 3 hours including a short stop in a small restaurant.

By 4PM we are already in Vang Vieng and walked towards the area where our guesthouse is located.

This is by far one of the easiest and most comfortableoverland crossing that I have ever done in my travels.

How to Go to Vang Vieng from Udon Thani - Direct Bus

Have you ever crossed this border? Feel free to share some tips and recommendations.


  1. Some of the buses I’ve seen in Malaysia and Singapore had super quality interiors, luxury category, even. Reclining seats (almost fully). But still… they’re buses.


  1. […] After a few weeks in Thailand, Vang Vieng was the next destination. It was my first time in Vang Vieng and I enjoyed it so much. I spent three weeks just lounging around. The hostel that I got was situated near the river and has fast wifi. It was so relaxing. All my next door neighbors were also backpackers and we just spent the night chatting about a variety of stuff. Vang Vieng is so picturesque especially when you venture outside the town proper, don’t forget to visit the Blue Lagoon. […]

  2. […] my second visit to Laos last year, I have decided to drop by to Vang Vieng to check it out. I traveled to Vang Vieng via a direct bus from Udon Thani which cost me 320 Baht (bus station near Central […]

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