Ban Pak Beng Travel Guide

  • The boat
    The boat
    by akkipaa
  • Flowers in top of the boat
    Flowers in top of the boat
    by akkipaa
  • Thai Customs
    Thai Customs
    by akkipaa

Ban Pak Beng Things to Do

  • Wat Kok Khor

    This small temple, I later found out, is one of two in the village. It was closed when I was walking around the village before the slowboat departed but there is another one called Wat Si Chome Chaeng that's higher up the hill. This one is located on your right, past the market as you walk out the village on the main road.

  • Market

    There's a small market in the village which you'll find on the left hand side as you walk out of the village. It's pretty basic and messy with chickens running around and a steam running through it. You may stumble upon some of the local tribal women shopping here dressed in traditional tribal clothes with baskets on their backs, like I did.

  • River in the morning

    As the slowboat leaves at around 9-9.30 in the morning, you'll need to be up and about fairly early. Pak Beng is fairly high up which means you get some good views of the river below and these shots were taken in the early morning with the sun rising over the river in the distance.

  • Slowboat to Luang Prabang

    The main reason for coming to Pak Beng is that it serves as an overnight stop during the slowboat to Luang Prabang trip along the Mekong River. The trip takes two days and originates from the small town of Huay Xai on the Thai border. It's very popular with western tourists but also caters for local people who ride between various villages that the...

  • Wat Sin Jong Jaeng

    After visiting the local market there isn't much to do. At the top of the hill is this modest wat. The monks are friendly,and the views are spectacular. The chedi is said to contain sacred buddha images.

  • Mekong Whisky with a family

    One of my most cherished memories in Pak Beng was walking around late at night and having a family invite me into thier hut for some mekong wisky. Although their english was very poor i felt great warmth and hospitality coming from them and thier kindness i will never forget.

  • Morning in Pak Beng

    When going down to the port early in the morning to catch my slow boat, i was greeted with one of the most beautiful sites ive seen in my life. The look of the early morning fog and the sun glistening on the mekong river is something ill truly never forget.

  • MOrning Market

    I think this is the busliest part in this town. Good place for breakfast and buy some more for lunch in boat

  • People

    There is have nothing to see.There is just a tiny town I just walked along the road , looked around and also stopped talking with local a liltte they was look so shy


Ban Pak Beng Restaurants

  • Buffee on Mekong

    Take a buffee in Hotel restaurant, you get tasteful Lao food (chicken, pork, vegetables, rice (always sticky)) with reasonable price and in extremely facinating environment. Take a look to Mekong (if the moon is shining) and just enjoy your meal.And take a beer or two, it's Lao here.

  • The best view restraurant (better than...

    This place has the best view to Mekong. You can spend whole day drinking Lao and local food (try sticky rice, but my recommendation is that don't use hands as locals) just thinking the world and enjoying from scenery.

  • Music and atmosphere is very laid back

    I ate here for dinner when I arrived in Pak Beng and had a good sweet and sour pork, rice, spring rolls and beer before some friends turned up. Music and atmosphere is very laid back but then so is the village with Bob Marley on the stereo.

  • My lunch

    I dont remember what it call in Loas But i think it must be a kind of sandwish.Its taste was not bad and i liked to put more cheese it was better

  • PHO

    You shouldnt miss to try Pho it's a king of nooddle It was good but you have to be careful dont let then add too much MSG on you soup and be careful when you will add some salt , suger and also MSG coz there alway put it close togetther

  • a terrace on the Mekong

    The location: a terrace on the Mekong -the river flowing peacefully below you.The staff: 4 children - the eldest being about 12 years old, they do everything, including the cooking. And the are really sweet and polite Fried rice with vegetables and peanuts: one of the best I've ever had. They also make sandwiches in the morning to bring on the...


Ban Pak Beng Transportation

  • Mekong River slow boat

    If you plan to visit here, slow boats are the best choice. You can come from Luang Prapang or use nice down stream and start from North Thailand. Travel first to Chiang Rai and go to Thai counterpart to the Lao border in Chiang Khong, then with boat (10 000Kip; 6am to 6pm) to opposite side of Mekong were is Lao custom clearance in Huay Xai. Huay...

  • Slow boat

    95000 kips from Hoay Xai to Pak Beng and another 95000 kips from Pak Beng to Luang Prabang, with each took 6-8 hours. The boat carry some 100 passengers, mostly backpackers. Some tourists gathered at the back of the boat to enjoy 'grass' and Beerlao 15000 kips per bottle, for the entire 6 hours, an international grass-beer party. Some seat-less...

  • Boat from PakBeng to Huay Xai

    We took a boat from LP to Huay Xai, stopping overnight at Pak Beng. The Day 2 boat was of concern from the moment of sighting - and we were all openly unimpressed by the size, unstable seating and general condition.etc. Very early in the trip, the boat broke down - and drifted into rocks - but was restarted. We were hours overdue, when the boat...


Ban Pak Beng Shopping

  • Valuable building materials

    There are many small shops on the main (and only :) street and additionally you can find mobile shops and shop tables. Fruits, water and for some peculiar reason CHIPS are sold almost in every shops. Chips must be one of the newest item in these markets. On the other hand Laos (persons living in Laos, singular Lao) are so small and thin that chips...

  • Meet the meat on market

    If you are lucky you can check how the cows are cut up and sold by local way. Of course we have to remember that all our cows are handled on the same way, but probably we have forgotten the basis. If you buy some meat from Prisma or Tesco those are always so hygienically packed and you never see what has happened earlier.There was a head on the...

  • Local Grill

    As you can see, the interior is smoky and primitive, but the taste and smell are good. Prices are reasonable and service is smiley and warm.


Ban Pak Beng Local Customs

  • Stilt villages along river

    The slowboat to Luang Prabang passes by many bamboo stilt villages which you can see perched on the slopes that lead up from the river. The boat stops at a few of these villages along the way to drop off goods and food plus people and even live chickens in cages which were on the roof of the boat. At one stop several 50kg bags of rice were...

  • Working elephants

    The second day is better than the first as you see more life on the river. We stopped at one place and saw some working elephants drag tree trunks down a hill to a waiting boat. Practically everybody on the boat rushed to the front in order to get some photos as this is a rare sight to see.

  • Local people on the river

    The slowboat trip between Pak Beng and Luang Prabang on the second day is better than the first day as you'll see far more life both along and on the river. We stopped at one village and there were a few families with young children in longtail boats leaving and setting off upstream. The Mekong is a mighty river and serves as a main highway for...


Ban Pak Beng Warnings and Dangers

  • Electricity

    Electricity runs from a hydroelectric dam in the Beng River (which joins the Mekong at Pak Beng), so when there is no water in the dry season, electricity may be scarce, but during the wet season it runs for 24 hours. Most guest houses and restaurants have generators running in the evening, and these are usually switched off at 22:00.

  • no electricity in town after midnight

    Pak Beng has no electricity in the town yet, except of one that is produced by generator in the evening. As each place has more or less its own generator, some will shut electricity around 11 pm and most of them at midnight. It's therefore not bad idea to bring your own torch or ask for candle in your guesthouse... finidng a toilet in the dark...

  • Boat food vendors can be nasty!

    A girl came onto our boat when we stopped (not breaking down), presumably at the driver's village, as it was unscheduled, and did not coincide with a meal break at all. She was comically aggressive - best sales pitch! "You buy my bananas - they make your skin beautiful - you very nice"....................Why you not buy my bananas?


Ban Pak Beng Tourist Traps

  • using children to carry your backpack

    There are plenty of children near the port when there are boats landing for overnight stay. I've seen some people will use children to carry huge backpacks or bags upstairs and giving them 1 or 2 baht for the 'service'. I don't think that's really fair paid, but many travelers or tourists who just came from Thailand believe they have to pay less...

  • Public boat - it's not private

    We had a bad experience with s group of foreign 'tourists' sitting on the boat's floor in the front who didn't let other people to the same public boat in LPB direction. They had obviously decided there is no more place for others and by no way they would let anyone board by loudly 'singing/screaming' NO and GO AWAY to people who even tried to get...

  • Ban Pak Beng Hotels

    0 Hotels in Ban Pak Beng

Ban Pak Beng Off The Beaten Path

  • Hmong people

    If you wander down the Mekong you can stop and find Hmong People.The Hmong are an Asian ethnic group from the mountainous regions of China, Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand. A number of Hmong people fought against the communist Pathet Lao during the Laotian Civil War. Hmong people were singled out for retribution when the Pathet Lao took over the...

  • doesn't take much walking...

    It doesn't take much walking to get off the beaten path - especially due the fact that most tourists come to Pak Beng in late afternoon by boat, hungry and looking for accomodation as soon as they put feet on the ground. Most visitors never go beyond the cluster of guesthouses and restaurants in the main street but if you bother to stay a day...

  • Don't Forget Insurance

    If your current health insurance doesn't cover you while your abroad, you should consider getting international travel insurance just in case something should go wrong.

Ban Pak Beng Favorites

  • Mixed with currencies

    The most difficult issue to me in Laos was the currencies. At home I spend euros, Laos has kip as currency, but mostly prices are in US dollars and they accept (in every place I was) Thai Bahts also. So I need to think in four currencies. And the system goes so the if you pay out for example in bahts, you can get back dollars, kips and bahts.Think...

  • if this is your first stop in Laos

    Pak Beng is expensive little town comparing to other Lao places and the prices can compete those in central Vientiane and Luang Prabang. There are probably few reasons for it: its remoteness and steady influx of foreign tourist on slow boat from Huay Xay who have to spend a night here before they continue towards Luang Prabang as it's not possible...

  • Rural life

    Dont expect to much comfort because this place is all about simplicity. It basically gives you a good indication as to how many laotians live. The infrastructure is basically non existant but if this stuff doesnt bother you then it might be an interesting experience.


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Explore Deeper into Ban Pak Beng
Slowboat for local people
Local Customs
The local market
Local Customs
Warnings and Dangers
Warnings and Dangers
The Mekong River
visit the shops and market
Things to Do
sleepy, sleepy town
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