Laos & China

Laos and China River Expeditions

Join a Laos and China River Expeditions river cruise on the mighty Mekong River from Laos to China with Pandaw Expeditions, see Jungle Villages and Yunnan Province.

Contact us for availability, latest offers, pre or post cruise touring options and flight detail.

Explore China & Laos

Tour TypeTrip NameNo. DaysTour DetailsPrices
CruiseThe Mekong - From Laos to China15ItineraryOn application
Cruise The Laos Mekong11ItineraryOn application

The Mekong: From Laos to China

See It All, From Laos To China, Yunnan Province

 

This cruise makes it possible for travellers to sail on the mighty Upper Mekong River, all the way from Vientiane to China (or vice versa). This is an incredible, pioneering 14-night river expedition discovering charming villages, stunning scenery, pristine jungle, the Golden Triangle and a very different emerald green Mekong in China’s Yunnan province.

Our journey also includes overnight stops in Vientiane, Luang Prabang, Chiang Saen and Jinghong.

Itinerary  
Day 1: VientianePLEASE NOTE: The itinerary for this expedition is indicative only and subject to reconnaissance. As we travel to remote areas, changes to the itinerary will inevitably occur. A flexible approach is required if you book this cruise.

Please note this cruise is not suitable for those with walking difficulties.

Low Water Itinerary: Passengers booking in the low water season months of December to March are advised that in the event that the ship's master decides that the water is too low, it will be necessary to stay at the four star InterContinental or similar for 2 nights in order to complete the Yunnan sightseeing (the last stretch into China would need to be done by speed boat).

Embarkation 11.30am, followed by lunch and afternoon explorations of the delightful French city including visits to Sisaket Temple, the President’s Hall, Wat Prakeo Temple and the Phatouxay monument. Set sail late afternoon, enjoy a welcome dinner on board and overnight near Vientiane.
Day 2: Cruising the MekongToday we cruise upstream on the Mekong, passing lush jungle scenery and tiny riverside villages. Morning presentation on the Lao language. Afternoon cooking demonstration on the upper deck. Arrive in Ban Xanakham where we more overnight.
Day 3: Pak LaiAfternoon visit to the French administrative town of Pak Lai with many colonial buildings and a bustling local market. This town boasts the largest elephant festival in South East Asia, usually in February. We return to the ship at Ban Muang where we overnight.
Day 4: Ban Park Bor VillageAfternoon visit and walking tour of Ban Park Bor (Kmu Tribal) Village, a typical village, set on the banks of the Mekong amidst lush jungle.
Day 5: Ban Mouang Khai VillageIn the morning we pass the newly constructed lock that forms part of the Xanyaburi Hydro Electric Power Plant. Continue upstream to the village of Ban Mouang Khai.
Day 6: Luang PrabangMorning sightseeing by mini coach to visit the jungle pools and dramatic Khaung Si waterfall. We also visit a butterfly garden and elephant camp. Arrive in the heart of the temple city of Luang Prabang. After lunch, explore by tuktuk this well-preserved and unique world heritage site with its many Buddhist temples, libraries and royal palace. There is a buzzing night market and many delightful cafes and some quite good restaurants ashore.
Day 7: Luang PrabangEarly morning walking tour to see the alms offering by the local people to hundreds of monks who walk around the city every morning. Passengers are invited to join in with offerings we provide for the alms giving. Morning walking tour visiting the National Museum and morning market. Afternoon free to enjoy the beauty and unique atmosphere of Luang Prabang on your own explorations ashore. Enjoy traditional Laos dancing on the upper deck late afternoon. We moor overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 8: Pak ou Buddha CavesMorning sightseeing by local boat exploring the unique Pak Ou Caves, a Buddhist sanctuary with spectacular limestone cliff faces. Sail upstream on the beautiful Mekong towards Ban Bo. After lunch, enjoy a cooking demonstration on the upper deck.
Day 9: Pak BengMorning walking tour of the market town of Pak Beng. After lunch, if time permits, we explore Ban Pak Sip, a traditional riverside village full of charm and life.
Day 10: Chiang KhongScenic cruising to the border between Laos and Thailand at Huay Say. Here we cross into Thailand where our waiting transport takes you to re-join the ship at the bustling and pretty Thai port town of Chiang Khong. Afternoon visit the Golden Triangle and Opium Museum. Enjoy farewell cocktails and dinner on board the Champa Pandaw tonight.
Day 11: Ban Dom MoonSailing on the dramatic upper Mekong arriving at Ban Pha Khao. Afternoon village walk up steep track up a hill with a small temple and stunning panoramic views of the surrounding jungle and valleys. Continue to Ban Don Moon where we overnight.
Day 12: Cruising the MekongContinue up the Mekong with Burma on our left and Laos on our right. Arrive at Ban Na Kor (Sob Luoy Port) for sail on to a remote sand bank where we moor for the night. Tonight experience sandbank canapés and cocktails followed by local Laos folklore stories and traditional floating fire lanterns.
Day 13: Guan LeiArrive in China at Guan Lei Port, take a walking tour and pass immigration. We are now in Yunnan Province, China - the only luxury ship to make this incredible journey. Continue on the Mekong in China past magnificent scenery of dramatic, scenic hillsides.
Day 14: Jinghong Arrive in Jinghong, founded in 1180 by Tai King Phanya Coeng. Its turbulent history has been influenced by Thai, Burmese and Chinese occupations, which can be seen in the building and the local language. Afternoon tour to local Tea Plantation. The history of tea drinking in Yunnan Providence goes back over 2100 years and the tea plantations contain trees up to 800 years old, regarded as living fossils. We also visit a local Dai Village. Dai people are the biggest ethnic group in Yunnan Providences accounting for over 30% of the population.

On our final evening in Jinghong, experience an evening cultural show at Maxmumbani, where dancers from 38 different ethnic groups display their traditions with acrobatics and fascinating story of China and its people.
Day 15: Jinghong Disembark after breakfast.
INCLUSIONS:
Entrance fees, guide services (English language), gratuities to crew, main meals, locally made soft drinks, local beer and local spirits, jugged coffee and selection of teas and tisanes, mineral water. Transfers from Vientiane or Udon Thani to ship in Vientiane or v.v. Transfers from Jinghong airport/hotel to ship in Jinghong.

The Laos Mekong

Vientiane, Luang Prabang, Jungle And Villages

SAVE UP TO 10% AND NO SINGLE SUPPLEMENT ON SELECTED DATES

Enjoy a three country expedition as we traverse Laos to touch Thailand and Burma at the once notorious Golden Triangle. From Vientiane (the old French capital) and so redolent as L’Indochine Pandaw will be the first river expedition since pre-war days to cross all Laos.

We stop two nights at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Luang Prabang with its dazzling wood carved monasteries. Then cruise on deep into the mountains, through rapids and gorges on our high powered little Pandaw. Visit tribal villages and explore into jungle and countryside. As the first year of operation, please anticipate some changes – but a great adventure!

 

Itinerary  
Day 1: VientianePLEASE NOTE: The itinerary for this expedition is indicative only and subject to reconnaissance. As we travel to remote areas, changes to the itinerary will inevitably occur. A flexible approach is required if you book this cruise.
Transfer from airports or hotel in Vientiane or from Udon Thani (1.5hrs) in Thailand just across the river. Embarkation 11.30am, followed by lunch and afternoon explorations of the delightful French city including visits to Sisaket Temple, the President’s Hall, Wat Prakeo Temple and the Phatouxay monument. Set sail late afternoon, enjoy a welcome dinner on board and overnight near Vientiane.
Day 2: Cruising the MekongToday we cruise upstream on the Mekong, passing lush jungle scenery and tiny riverside villages. Morning presentation on the Lao language. Afternoon cooking demonstration on the upper deck. Arrive in Ban Xanakham where we more overnight.
Day 3: Pak LaiAfternoon visit to the French administrative town of Pak Lai with many colonial buildings and a bustling local market. This town boasts the largest elephant festival in South East Asia, usually in February. We return to the ship at Ban Muang where we overnight.
Day 4: Ban Park Bor VillageAfternoon visit and walking tour of Ban Park Bor (Kmu Tribal) Village, a typical village, set on the banks of the Mekong amidst lush jungle.
Day 5: Ban Mouang Khai VillageIn the morning we pass the newly constructed lock that forms part of the Xanyaburi Hydro Electric Power Plant. Continue upstream to the village of Ban Mouang Khai.
Day 6: Luang PrabangMorning sightseeing by mini coach to visit the jungle pools and dramatic Khaung Si waterfall. We also visit a butterfly garden and elephant camp. Arrive in the heart of the temple city of Luang Prabang. After lunch, explore by tuktuk this well-preserved and unique world heritage site with its many Buddhist temples, libraries and royal palace. There is a buzzing night market and many delightful cafes and some quite good restaurants ashore.
Day 7: Luang PrabangEarly morning walking tour to see the alms offering by the local people to hundreds of monks who walk around the city every morning. Passengers are invited to join in with offerings we provide for the alms giving. Morning walking tour visiting the National Museum and morning market. Afternoon free to enjoy the beauty and unique atmosphere of Luang Prabang on your own explorations ashore. Enjoy traditional Laos dancing on the upper deck late afternoon. We moor overnight in Luang Prabang.
Day 8: Pak ou Buddha CavesMorning sightseeing by local boat exploring the unique Pak Ou Caves, a Buddhist sanctuary with spectacular limestone cliff faces. Sail upstream on the beautiful Mekong towards Ban Bo. After lunch, enjoy a cooking demonstration on the upper deck.
Day 9: Pak BengMorning walking tour of the market town of Pak Beng. After lunch, if time permits, we explore Ban Pak Sip, a traditional riverside village full of charm and life.
Day 10: Chiang KhongScenic cruising to the border between Laos and Thailand at Huay Say. Here we cross into Thailand where our waiting transport takes you to re-join the ship at the bustling and pretty Thai port town of Chiang Khong. Enjoy farewell cocktails and dinner on board the Laos Pandaw tonight.
Day 11: Golden TriangleDisembark by 8.30am in Chiang Sean and explore the Golden Triangle including a visit to the opium museum. Continue to airports or city hotels in Chiang Rai (3 hours) and Chiang Mai (6 hours).
INCLUSIONS:
Entrance fees, guide services (English language), gratuities to crew, main meals, locally made soft drinks, local beer and local spirits, jugged coffee and selection of teas and tisanes, mineral water. Transfers Chiang Rai / Chiang Mai to ship v.v. and ship to Vientiane / Udon Thani v.v.