Kapono Cheruene

Travelled to 5 countries / regions

Written 24 briefs
I'm Laotian living in Vientiane but to go LP a lot



Asia > Laos > Luang Prabang > Useful Info
Updated on Jul 02, 2019 Useful Info

How to get around Luang Prabang

  • Luang Prabang is a very small city. Most of the historic part of the city is within an area that's 3km long by 1km wide

  • The best way to get around the city is walking. Almost everything is less than 10-20 minutes walk away from anywhere in the city. When I go to Luang Prabang, other than taking a taxi from the airport, I always walked around everywhere. Most tourists get around on foot as well
  • There are, however, some alternative transportation options:
  • Bicycle: another popular option to get around Luang Prabang
  • The average price is 20,000 LAK per day ( $2.5 USD) for a normal bicycle and 50,000 LAK per day ($6 USD) for a mountain bike. You can usually get discount if you rent more than 7 days. Always ask for discounts regardless!
  • Cycling in Luang Prabang is quite nice because there isn't a lot of car traffic. And if you go outside the central area, there aren't many pedestrians either.
  • You don't need to book ahead of time, there are many bicycle/mountain bike rental shops on the main street (Sisavangvong Road). Also many hotels offer bicycle rental so check with them too
  • You usually have to put down a deposit. I can't remember how much the deposit was though

  • Tuk tuks: for getting around the city not on foot
  • There is no traditional car taxis in Luang Prabang. Tuk tuks is basically the only taxi service available in the city
  • You can usually find tuk tuks to take you to anywhere in the city for 15,000-30,000 LAK ($1.7-$3.5 USD)
  • They are everywhere in the city center and you can just flag them down or approach a parked one
  • Agree on a price before you get on

  • Scooter / Motorbike: you can rent scooters in Luang Prabang
  • I don't really recommend it to for 3 reasons:
  1. The city is just too small to need scooters
  2. There has been no shortage of visitors getting scammed. In recent years I think it's gotten better, but still I think it's risky
  3. Unless you have a legitimate motorcycle license, technically you're riding illegally in Laos. Police know this and they usually milk foreigners on scooters for bribe money. If you rent a scooter, carry cash and be prepared to pay bribe of at least 50,000 LAK ($6USD) to 100,000 LAK ($12USD) each time you get stopped by the police. Even if you have a license, the police will make up some charges to get you to pay
  • Only consider scooter if you plan to get out of the city into the surrounding mountains (like to Kuang Si Falls). Even then, I think taking a tuk tuk is better
  • You can find scooter rental shops on the main street (Sisavangvong Road) in the center of Luang Prabang. These shops usually ask for your passport as the deposit
  • Prices are typically around $17-20 USD per day, and there's usually not much room to negotiate

  • Songthaew: For venturing outside the city into the surrounding countryside/mountains
  • There are many songthaews (a shared taxi) that take visitors from the city to visit attractions that in the surrounding mountains of Luang Prabang. These places (like Kuang Si Falls) are too far to travel on foot or bicycle
  • To find them, go to the western end of the main street of Sisavangvong Road (around here), and look for vehicles that look like this: User submitted photo of Luang Prabang
  • Fare is around 50,000 LAK per person ($6 USD) to get to attractions outside of town each way. The songthaew will wait until it's full before departing
  • If you have a small group, you can also charter one of these songthaews for an entire day for 200,000 LAK ($23 USD). If you charter them for an entire day, the driver will wait for you at whatever destination you're going to. It's not a bad option if you have a group of friends together