Nong Khiaw

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General information, recreation, infrastructure

Nong Khiaw (also spelled Nong Khuay, Nong Khiaw or Nongkyo) is a small town in northern Laos 140 kilometers from Luang Prabang on the banks of the U or Nam Ou River (Nong Khiaw on the map of Laos). The city has a population of only about 4,000, and for a long time it was just one of the transit points on the way from central Laos and Luang Prabang to the North and back, but now it has become an independent tourist destination.

In general, Nong Khiaw can hardly be called a city, it is rather a village of just a couple of streets. Nevertheless, the infrastructure for tourism here is well developed so that you can spend a few days and get acquainted with provincial Laos, not at all like Luang Prabang flooded with tourists. The city has a couple of banks (you can exchange money) and ATMs, a dozen hostels with simple accommodation, restaurants, cafes and bars, several small shops and even an electronics store, a market, a bus station and a marina.

Nong Khiaw Center, Main Street

Hotels in Nong Khiaw can be booked on the following websites:

Attractions and entertainment in Nong Khiaw

There is not much to do in Nong Khiaw, there are not many attractions either, but the atmosphere of a quiet Lao village and excellent views do their job. Many tourists say that there is no such view as from the local bridge over the Wu river anywhere else in Laos, and this is partly true, and you can stand on the bridge and admire for hours.:

No worse are the views of the mountainous surroundings of Nong Khiaw. Winding roads lead to little-known settlements, and on foot you can go on a real trekking adventure. Travel agencies offer trekking tours for several days along the routes along the river towards the tourist village of Muang Ngoi Neua (Muang Ngoi Neua) and even further to the city of Muang Khua; walking to Luang Prabang; walking along the trails to the nearest ethnic Hmong villages with an overnight stay in the village, and others. Unfortunately, since mass tourism is not very developed here, the cost of such individual excursions is quite high, and it is better to book them in advance. You can do this on the sites and, or on site at the Delilahs guesthouse, where tours from laos-adventure are sold.

You can also go around the neighborhood on a rented motorbike or bicycle, but be careful: the roads here are very winding and treacherous. Another type of entertainment and travel is kayaking. There are tours downriver, or downriver to Nong Khiaw from Mueang Ngoi Neua, where you will first be taken by motorboat.

There are several places in the town that you can visit yourself on foot:

  • On the North Bank of the river is a simple trekking trail with several viewing points and to the top of Mount Nang None. You can do it without problems yourself, you only need comfortable hiking shoes and water. The entire route can be done in 2 hours. The trail entrance is on Main Road 1C in the center of town opposite The Hive Bar (start of route on map), and is well marked with information boards. The entrance to the trail costs 15,000 Kip (0.68 USD, see Laos money and exchange rate). You can go up and go back the same way, or you can do a roundabout and get out a kilometer from the city on Road 1C and go back on foot.
  • Another Nong Khiaw Viewpoint is on the other side of the river (observation deck on the map). The views from there are even "steeper", but the climb is harder. It will take about an hour to go all the way up, and the same amount back. Entrance to the observation deck costs 20,000 Kip (0.91 USD), it is also easy to find it by the installed signs in front of the coconut Hill Garden Cafe (entrance on the map).
  • Two kilometers along the 1C road to the East is the Tham Pha Tok cave network, and a leisurely walk here can be reached from the center in 40 minutes (cave on the map). The caves are very close to the road, there is a sign. They are famous for the fact that during the US war with Vietnam, local residents and even the administration of the local government took refuge here from American bombing. The visit is paid-15,000 Kip (0.68 inside there is no lighting, but you can rent a lantern at the checkout for 5000 Kip.
  • Another cave Pha Kuang Cave is located two kilometers from the city on Route 1C to the West (cave on the map). The cave is large, but unfurnished and unlit. In principle, it will not surprise you with anything special, but if you love caves, you can visit it. Entrance fee 15,000 Kip (0.68 USD). It is also easy to find it, there are signs on the road to guide the cafe Pha kuang kham Restaurant.

How to get to Nong Khiaw

Nong Khiaw can be reached by boat on the Wu River from Mueang Hua and Muang Ngoi Nua Village as well as by bus from Luang Prabang, Oudomxayand Luang Namtha.

  • By boat

    The wharf at Nong Khiaw is in the center of the township (pier on the map), it is easy to get to any place on foot.

    The scheduled boat on the river U (Nam Ou) departs daily from the town of Muang Khua (Muang Khua) at 10:00, tickets cost from 110,000 Kip depending on the number of passengers, 6-7 hours on the way. There will be a boat change along the way due to the hydroelectric dam on the river. From Nong Khiaw to Muang Khua, a ticket costs from 150,000 Kip (6.83 USD). Departs at 10:30. It is possible to hire a private boat for a boat of 1,500,000 Kip.

    From the village of Muang Ngoi Neua (Muang Ngoi Neua), the boat leaves at 09:00 and at about 14:00 (this is passing from Muang Khua), it costs 25 00 Kip (1.14 USD), on the road a little more than an hour. Their Nong Khiaw this boat leaves at 10:30 and 14:30.

    On websites on the Internet and in guidebooks you can find information that there is a boat to Luang Prabang. As of November 2018, This is not true.

  • By bus

    The bus station is on the outskirts of the city (Station on the map). But if you arrive by boat at the pier, then by this time you will already be waiting for tuk-tuks with an offer to take you to the station for 10 000 Kip. walk to the station to go one and a half kilometers or 20-25 minutes.

    • Luang Prabang

      Buses from Nong Khiaw leave at 09:00, 11:00 and 12:30 to Luang Prabang North Bus Station for 40,000 Kip (1.82 USD). At 11:00 and 13:00 to Luang Prabang South Bus Station, cost 50,000. The journey is about 3 hours.

      From Luang Prabang, there are many more options to get there. You can get from the bus stations for the same 40 and 50 thousand Kip, departure from 09:00, 11:00 and 14:00. But for tourists it is sometimes more convenient to buy a ready-made transfer in hotels or travel agencies a little more expensive, but immediately from the door of the hotel, than to get to the bus station. Such tickets cost from 75 000 Kip.

    • Udomsai

      Buses from Nong Khiaw depart 11:00, cost 100,000 Kip (4.56 USD).

    • Luangnamtha

      Buses from Nong Khiaw to Luangnamtha depart 11:00, cost 100,000 Kip.

Map Of Nong Khiaw

You can download ⤓ points of interest, important transport points (bus stations, airports, etc.), districts and beaches from our map in KMZ/KML format. These files can be downloaded to the navigator or smartphone for use with offline or online Google Maps applications, Organic Maps and others that support this format, and use them to navigate and explore resorts.

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