How When Where To Start Your 2024 Luxury Mekong River Cruies

I’m not just a travel writer but a travel writer who’s lived for years, 18 km upstream Mekong River from Vientiane, on the edge of a high plateau overlooking the Mekong River.

When?

When things to consider before booking to go on an Upper Mekong River Cruise

The two main seasons in northern Laos are the cool (for me cold) dry season around Christmas New Year holidays and the Green Season

DRY SEASON

You won’t experience hot, humid days. There’s very little rain, nor beautiful cascading waterfalls. Bring a warm jacket or hoodie for early mornings and nights. Pefect shorts and t-shirts wheather in the day.  September to March is mostly dry.

GREEN SEASON

These girls just before they threw bucket of water towards me during the March Water Festival.
These girls just before they threw bucket of water towards me during the March Water Festival.

The water festival in March heralds the start of 6 months Green Season. Humidity is high in April’s buildup to the Green Season. In the wet season, know as the Green Season, it rains more often but most days the rain does not last long and in the humid season, rain cools the air. It’s really nice to cool off under a waterfall in the Green Season. There is less dust. The sky is clearer which makes for better photography of the SPECTACULAR scenery you cruise past.

How and Where to Get Started On An Upper Mekong River Cruise?

  1. Start your Upper Mekong River Cruise with research and bookings depending on when and in which direction you want to cruise the mighty Mekong River. Upstream of downstream.
  2. VIENTIANE EMBARKATION:
    For cruising UP the Mekong River from Vientiane to Huay Xai.
    1. Fly into the Watty International Airport in the Vientiane CBD.
    2. Minibus 1 hour drive from Udon Thani airport in Northeast Thailand. Stay overnight in Nong Khai before crossing the Mekong River to Vientiane over the Friendship Bridge. I recommend an overnight stay in a Vientiane Hotel.
    3. To embark on your luxury river cruise ship, go down to the riverside dock near the Chinese, Russian and Australian embassies.
    4. Change from the Bangkok train at Nong Khai train station to a train driven by Lao train drivers from Nong Khai to the Khamsavath Vientiane Thai train station in Vientiane.

  3. HUAY XAI EMBARKATION
    For cruising DOWN the Mekong River from Huay Xai to Vientiane.
    1. Fly to Bokeo International Airport and drive little over an hour to Huay Xai.
    2. Drive from Chiang Rai to the number 4 Mekong River Bridge near Huay Xai.

  4. If you want to start/embark your luxury Upper Mekong River Cruise or end/disembark at another river port such as Luang Prabang where there is an international airport or Chiang Khan at the nothern end of many big tourist buses from Bangkok via Loei then contact me.