Pakse is the capital of Champasak province and a city in Southern Laos. Its name means mouth of the river as it situated right next to Mekong and Xe Don rivers. Most backpackers use Pakse as a transit hub before heading off to different places such as Bolaven Plateau and 4000 islands. However, it is more than just a jumping-off point; Pakse is charming and serene, and if you want to enjoy laid back Lao culture, then it is the ideal place.
Vientiane is Laos’ fascinating capital situated on the banks of the Mekong River. It used to be a French trading post and many of the city’s historical influences has kept its original architecture undamaged. At present, Vientiane is a hub for temples, markets, spas and cafes. One of the best things to do here is walk along the riverside, relax with a cold Beer Lao and witness the sunset over the Mekong.
There are 2 options to travel the 670km journey from Pakse to Vientiane: by bus and by flight. Taking a bus is cheaper as it costs at least $26 compared to taking a flight which will cost you at least $57. However, a flight to Vientiane takes just under 2 hours while the bus takes between 9-12 hours.
If you opt for a bus, sleeper buses are the best option for going from Pakse to Vientiane. Traveling at night allows you to cross this distance while being asleep. However, overnight trips are less safe than day trips as roads are not well lit in Laos.
Naga Travel and Soutchai Travel offer good options for travelling through this route. See below their schedules.
Naga Travel generally has higher fares, but their buses are big and clean. One disadvantage of their schedule is the late departures and arrivals.
Departs from Chitpasong Bus Station within Pakse city center
Arrives at the Soutchai Vientiane Office in the city center
Soutchai Travel generally provides good service despite the occasional complaints of drivers driving too fast and departing late.
Note: Flatbeds are meant to fit two people, so if you are not a fan of sharing the space with a stranger, you can always book two tickets for the trip. Otherwise, prepare to make a new friend.
Pakse to Vientiane by Flight
Duration: 1.5 hours
Duration: 1.5 hours
From Pakse city center, you’ll need to catch a taxi to the airport. This journey should cost about $7, and it takes about 15 minutes to the airport.
A one-way plane ticket to Vientiane starts at $57. Lao Skyway offers the cheapest fares, and they operate 1 flight per day on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday. The plane departs Pakse at 17:15 and will arrive in Vientiane at 18:30. You can check the latest flight schedules of Lao Skyway through their website.
Lao Airlines offers more flights but they are more expensive and usually starts at $133. To check the schedule and book your flights, click the button below.
Set just slightly outside of downtown Vientiane, this hotel offers peace, quiet and a great night’s rest. The hotel is new with clean modern furnishings and extremely comfortable beds. They offer an outdoor swimming pool and bicycle rentals. Breakfast is included daily with your stay. There is a shuttle that runs guests to and from the downtown area.
An excellent location in central Vientiane, just a 5-minute walk from the Mekong River, you will find numerous restaurants, shops, bars, and amenities nearby. The hotel is clean, comfortable and the rooms are very spacious. Each room comes with a TV and refrigerator as well as a private bathroom. Shuttle and laundry services are available upon request and a delicious breakfast is included daily with your stay.
Located in the heart of Vientiane, this hotel is the perfect location. It is within walking distance to many sights, the night market, the Mekong River, and countless restaurants, shops, and amenities. There is an outdoor pool situated in a lovely garden setting which is a great place to cool off after exploring the city. Breakfast is included daily. The rooms are clean and the beds are very comfortable.