Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand (24)
Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand (27)
Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand (25)
Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand (17)

Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand

from $3,073.00

Three neighboring nations, three written scripts, two and a half languages, two political systems, one major religion.

Not only is this tour a cycling odyssey through fascinating regions along a path less trodden, it is a journey of discovery through three lands that for all the world should be so alike, but in actuality are so very different. History, colonial powers, war, religion, extreme political struggles – all have left deep marks on these lands and their people. Even now these same forces are morphing and changing these countries as we cycle though, and it is passing through at a human pace, by bicycle, that allows us to meet the people, sample the food, smell the aromas, and hear the daily life exchanges that are what travels and exploration are all about.

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  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
      Join Group Cycling, Mountain Cycling, Multi-Country Cycling
    • Activity Level Tough
      6/8
    • Group Size Small Group
      16
    All about the Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand.

    Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand

    JOIN GROUP:
    2018:
    09 Nov – 24 Nov
    07 May – 22 May
    2019:
    12 Mar – 27 Mar
    29 Nov – 14 Dec

    Overview

    This is a wonderful tour that takes us three nations all with very distinct cultures, cuisine, peoples and traditions. As a way to experience the  richness and variety of Indochina this cycling holiday comes highly recommended.

    Highlights

    Hanoi’s characterful and bustling Old Quarter, the wonderful laid back Laotian town of Luang Prabang, and then the contrast of the more Westernised Thailand. Waving children in roadside villages, a boat journey on the mighty Mekong river, the peoples of three fascinating lands. But perhaps above all is the wonderful rural cycling through remote villages and across jungle covered hillsides. Riding on through fertile valleys of rice and grass where buffalo graze. And views of pastoral spender, with Buddhist temples all glitter and sparkle in the light of the tropical sun.

    Joining instructions

    You will be meet on arrival at Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport and driven to our joining hotel. The group will typically meet early evening for a pre-tour briefing. Full details will be sent with your final joining instructions.

    ESSENTIAL – PLEASE NOTE: This tour begins in Vietnam and ends in Thailand. For most people this will mean flying into Hanoi and home from Bangkok. From Chiang Rai to Bangkok there are many flights daily with ticket prices as low as about $35 for the one hour domestic flight. Please contact us if you need further information.

    Difficulty

    The tour has a little over 1000KMS of cycling spread across 11 riding days. With the longest day being 125KMS the distances are quite achievable by a reasonably fit cyclist. There are however plenty of long climbs on this tour, some of up to 20KMS in duration. On the final day in Lao, and on the Thai sections, there are some steep gradients well in excess of 10%, and at times nudging as much as 20%. Anyone considering this tour must therefor be a keen climber and happy in the hills. However, there is always a support vehicle to hand to carry both you and your bicycle if you feel the going is beyond what for you is enjoyable. This is, after all, a holiday. Please feel free to contact us if you wish to discuss the conditions of this tour.

    Accommodation

    The accommodation on this tour is a mixed bag. In the bigger towns we will stay in well appointed comfortable resorts. However in some more remote areas our accommodation may be more basic as we lodge in local guest-houses and eat in local restaurants. In these off the beaten track towns we use the best accommodation available, and generally this will include AC and ensuite hot shower bathrooms with a Western toilet. However, one must be prepared to occasionally stay in more basic accommodation.

    Most of our hotels come equipped with a roof and walls.

    Special offers :
    – Mineral water drinking.
    – Seasonal fruits.
    – Snacks
    – Fresh tissue and some fruits while touring !

    What to bring :
    Sun Block , Wide brim hat, Camera + Film, Comfortable shoes, Rain Gear , Warm clothes in winter, Original

    (meals key: B = breakfast; L = lunch; D = dinner; S= snacks)

    The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
    What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.

    – Accommodation based on twin sharing occupancy at hotel, guesthouse and Home stay.etc…
    – Meals as indicated in program,B=Breakfast , L=Lunches ,D=Dinner
    – Professional English speaking guide cum biking
    – Support van or bus , truck for group
    – Boat trip mention in itinerary
    – Pump, bike tools, spares tubes, Spare bike , Helmet ,Mountain Bicycle
    – Cold water box, small fresh towel ,snacks and fruits
    – All entrance fees for sightseeing as indicated in the program
    – Service charges, rooms tax and handling fees

    Whats not included in this tour.Items that are not included in the cost of tour price.

    – Visa stamping fee
    – Travel assurance
    – Alcoholic beverages and soft drinks
    – Additional transport required due to any emergency situation
    – Tips and gratuities
    – Personal expenses and other services which are not mentioned in the program.
    – International air tickets and airport departure taxes
    – Meals and drinks not mentioned in the program
    – Optional excursions

    1. Day 1 Arrival: Hanoi.

      You will be met on arrival at Hanoi’s International Airport and transferred to our hotel in the cities’s charismatic Old Quarter where you will be met by your tour leader. Your day is free to relax and rest after a long flight or explore this intriguing city. The group will meet early this evening for drinks, a briefing, and our first dinner together.

      Cycling: 0KMS.

      Meals:

    2. Day 2 Transfer to Sapa.

      Today we take care of necessary preparations with our bicycles before boarding our AC minibus for the journey to the old French hill station of Sapa. Home to mix of different ethnic groups Sapa always has plenty to stimulated the imagination as one wanders past markets where groups of mountain tribe people trade their wares.

      Cycling: 0KMS.

      Meals: BLD

    3. Day 3 Sapa to Than Uyen.

      And so it begins. After breakfast we mount up and begin what is to be an epic journey of discovery. The day begins with 13kms of gentle climbing before a final stiff 3 kilometre climb takes us to the highest pass in Vietnam at 2000 metres. From here we begin a wonderful 25km descent, sweeping though curves on a well sealed road with stunning mountain views. From the bottom of this descent we turn south into a broad valley with ever widening views as we head through an area of tea plantations. Here ladies in traditional conical hats work, and the aroma that always companies tea crops lends a distinct character to a beautiful first day’s ride.

      Cycling: 100KMS

      Meals: BLD

    4. Day 4 Than Uyen to Quynh Nhai

      A beautiful and challenging day of adventure cycling lays ahead as we saddle up this morning. Soon we are following a small and little used byway with much beauty all around us. At around 15kms we reach the formidable Ban Chat Dam where a stiff climb leads us to the beautiful Ban Chat Lake. From here an undulating rural road provides stunning views, showing off fairytale vistas before the Black River looms dramatically into view. We now skirt this huge lake like river to our home for the night in the new town of Quynh Nhai.

      Cycling: 90KMS.

      Meals: BLDS

    5. Day 5 Quynh Nhai to Dien Bien Phu

      Events at Dien Bien Phu over 60 years ago ago had one of the most dramatic effects on Indo China in recent history when Vietnam’s Viet Minh forces defeated the French. This bloody defeat bought an end to colonial rule across the region and, ultimately, gave rise to circumstance that would lead to the American War.

      Happily our journey here takes place in far more peaceful times, and our experience with the Vietnamese as we cycle through a scene of beautiful rural tranquility today will be one of peace, friendship and harmony.

      Cycling: 120KMS.

      Meals: BLDS.

    6. Day 6 Dien Bien Phu to Muang Khua.

      We start early this morning, for an eventful day lays ahead. First we must transfer the 40KMS to the remote international border with Laos where we bid our Vietnamese crew farewell and meet our Laotian guide and driver. From this hill top border we enter a different world where all is quiet and still, and even in this remote wilderness the laid back nature of Lao is evident as we cycle the hills and valleys on a beautiful, empty, and newly surfaced road leading us to the small riverside town of Muang Khua.

      Cycling: 70KMS.

      Meals: BLDS

    7. Day 7 Muang Khua to Oudomxai.

      Our first full day’s ride in Laos sees us on on an undulating valley ride following two rivers. This leads to a final 30 kms where the undulations grow a little harsher as we climb from 450 metres to 750 metres before the final drop into the dusty bustling streets of Oudomxai town.

      Cycling: 100KMS

      Meals: BLDs

    8. Day 8 Oudomxai to Namtuam.

      Forty five challenging kilometres will occupy us this morning as we undertake two significant climbs. The scenery is oh so typically Laotian, mountainous, forested for much of the way, and omni beautiful. With the morning’s challenge out of the way we can enjoy a wonderful 1100 metre descent over 20 splendid and exciting kilometres en route to the little community of Pak Mong, which gives a great feel for middle of nowhere towns in Lao.

      Cycling: 95KMS

      Meals: BLDS

    9. Day 9 Namtuam to Luang Prabang.

      Today’s ride is described by the locals as ‘Lao flat’, which translates to ‘free of long mountain climbs, but never short of undulations and the odd cheeky little climb to keep your legs warm’. The Nam Ou river leads us south for most of the day’s ride, but it is one of the word’s most celebrated rivers, the mighty Mekong that we follow for the final twenty kilometres to our teak wood guesthouse in the delightful town of Luang Prabang.

      Cycling: 110KMS.

      Meals: BLDS

    10. Day 10 Luang Prabang - Rest Day.

      It is difficult to imagine a nicer town in which to while away a lazy rest day than the splendid World Heritage site of Luang Prabang. Beautifully preserved colonial architecture and delightful old temples and monasteries sit on a small strip of land between the Mekong and Nam Khan rivers. While away some pleasant hours wandering the streets and alleys, visiting the temples and meeting the monks. And once your legs are tired take a seat and an espresso in one of the many charming little cafés – and how better to finishing a wonderful day that a glass of wine as the sun sets beyond the fast flowing water of the Mekong? Your only regret will be that you have to leave.

      Cycling: 0KMS.

      Meals: B

    11. Day 11 Luang Prabang to Pak Beng.

      A relaxing day afloat today as we take a classic Asian river journey aboard our private boat on the mighty Mekong river. Cruising to our overnight destination of Pak Beng we see Laos from a different perspective as we watch river side life passing by. We spend the evening over looking the Mekong as we look forward to recommencing our cycling on the morrow.

      Cycling: 0.

      Meals: BLDS

    12. Day 12 Pak Benk to Muang Ngeun.

      It is hoped that you have rested well over the past two days and that your legs are keen for some action, for today you are introduced to hills Thai style. Although still a day’s ride from the Thailand border this road has all the hallmarks of how Thai road builders cross hills, and the evidence suggests they are not cyclists.. As we mount up we have 55kms of beautiful rolling countryside ahead of us and three short but stiff climbs, the most challenging of which gains 350 metres in a little over 4KMS, with a maximum gradient of nearly 20%! remember, we have a support bus.

      Cycling: 55KMS.

      Meals BLDS

    13. Day 13 Muang Ngeun to Tha Wang Pha.

      With a border crossing and some thirty kilometres of unmercifully steep gradients ahead of us we have a prudent start to the day with an early transfer in our support vehicle. With most of the day’s climbs and the border crossing behind us we mount our machines and set out to ride the byways of our third country – Thailand.

      For much of the ride we will be following the valley of the Nan river, sometimes we are sheltered from the sun by high hedgerows of tropical trees, and sometimes we are treated to wide open vistas of bright green fields, speckled with glinting buddhist temples. By the time we reach our lodgings for the night there will be little doubt that Thailand is a land of grace and beauty.

      Cycling: 75KMS.

      Meals BLDS

    14. Day 14 Tha Wang Pha to Chiang Kham.

      With arguably the toughest day of the tour ahead of us an early start to beat the heat is a wise move. The road today is well surfaced, and the vistas of rolling hills leading of into the distances are beautiful. With the majority of the climbing behind us after eighty kilometres we can relax a little for the latter part of the tour’s longest day as we cruise towards the the little town of Chiang Kham.

      Cycling: 125KMS.

      Meals B

    15. Day 15 Chiang Kham to Chiang Rai.

      The last day of the tour is far from the least as we explore a delightful region of Northern Thailand crossing hills and valleys via roads, tracks and trails. We pass fields of rice and plantations of rubber trees, water buffalo wallowing and monks wandering the byways as we head to the tours finale, the provincial capital town of Chiang Rai.

      Relaxing with a much deserved beer beside our resort’s pool we can reflect on a journey that has taken us from the hectic and colourful communist capital of Vietnam, through laid back Laos with its lovely relaxing rest day town of Luang Prabang, and finally to the Westernised trappings of 21st century Thailand. From this odyssey we are now rich with a multitude of exciting and enticing experiences, born from a multitude of wonderful scenery, enchanting people, and enough adventurous cycling to fuel your imagination and provide precious memories of a monumental journey for years to come.

      Cycling: 95KMS.

      Meals: BLDS

    16. Day 16 Finish.

      The tour official finishes today after breakfast. For those heading home or further afield we will provide transport to Chiang Rai international airport, or to the bus terminal.

    Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand (21)
    Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand (25)
    Brilliant Cycling Holiday Through Laos Vietnam Thailand (24)
    Our Accommodations

    Our Accommodations:
    When cycling we stay in friendly hotel, guesthouse or homestays. Some are more basic than others! Bear in mind that some of the places we overnight in are not on the standard tourist trail.In larger cities and towns, our hotels are generally more western style and are three or four hotels or resort. Please do not expect the same standard as you would your home.

    Our Homestays:
    Homestay in the villages is simple interm of bedding condition and ementies. We will sleep on beds or floor with mattress, clean sheet, pillow and mosquito nets. Toilet is usually western style.

    The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance.
    Our Accommodations

    Our Homestays

    Bicycle Advice

    Suitable Bicycle. MTB, Touring Bike, Cyclocross/Gravel bike.

    At JET we hold firmly to the opinion that using your own bike, the bike on which you feel at home and comfortable is the finest way to enjoy a cycling adventure.

    Most kinds of bicycle, except light-weight racing bikes are suitable for this tour: touring bikes, mountain bikes, hybrids or cyclocross bikes are all fine. Road conditions vary from asphalt to gravel and some hard packed dirt tracks. Tyre’s from 35mm in width upwards will be fine but we recommend 40mm on 700c and 2” on 26” wheels as a minimum.

    South East Asia is generally a warm place so the ability to carry one or two water bottles is essential (either on your bike or in a backpack). Our back-up vehicle carries water and tools although for those competent with tools bringing your own pump, puncture kit, and multi took is recommended as it would speed up repairs and minor adjustments. If bringing your own bike please bring along a few spare spokes that fit your wheels (please note that different wheels have different size spokes). If your bike has disk brakes or hub gears please bring any components that you feel may be necessary. We carry some spares for our hire bikes but we cannot guarantee that we will have any tubes other than 26” car type valves. Tyres and tubes other than 26” can be difficult to come by in many parts of the world so please make sure you have spares. If in doubt please ask at your local bike shop. A means of carrying your camera, sunblock etc is also useful – either an on-bike bag, handlebar or saddlebag for example, or a lightweight day-pack.

    Recommendation: Although our hire bikes come equipped with a saddle if you have a saddle you use and are happy with it is strongly recommended that you use it on tour. If you use SPD type shoes please bring your own matching pedals. We are happy to fit these for you. You may also like to bring bar ends if you use them at home.

    ESSENTIAL! Please be sure that your bicycle is in perfect condition before you leave home. Again, if in doubt please consult your local bike shop.

    Rental Bicycles

    If you wish to hire a bicycle for the duration of your holiday with us we can arrange for the hire of good quality cycles from our in-country agent. Typically these bikes are mountain bikes, often Trek 4 series or similar. Please request a hire bike at the time of booking, fields to do so are on the booking form. Payment for hire bikes can be made with the balance of the tour payment or in cash on arrival.

    Rental Bicycle Recommendation. Although our hire bikes come equipped with a saddle if you have a saddle you use and are happy with it is strongly recommended that you use it on tour. If you use SPD type shoes please bring your own matching pedals. We are happy to fit these for you. You may also like to bring bar ends if you use them at home.

    Our Accommodations:

    When cycling we stay in friendly hotel, guesthouse or homestays. Some are more basic than others! Bear in mind that some of the places we overnight in are not on the standard tourist trail.In larger cities and towns, our hotels are generally more western style and are three or four hotels or resort. Please do not expect the same standard as you would your home.
    Our Homestays:
    Homestay in the villages is simple interm of bedding condition and ementies. We will sleep on beds or floor with mattress, clean sheet, pillow and mosquito nets. Toilet is usually western style.

    An experienced English speaking, local leader will host you on this trip who is well spoken, very well informed, and charming. Our leaders are often cited as being the main highlight of the tour. We use local leaders who have a passion for their country and are always well informed on topics ranging from history, politics, cuisine and importantly local customs and cultures. Our leaders will take pride in introducing you to every aspect of their country and will help you to connect with the villagers you meet along the way.

    For groups of 5+ people a bike mechanic will join the group. Whilst not a master of linguistics, our technical team always make an effort to form a bond with the group and provide not just mechanical support, but additional encouragement to those who may find themselves at the back of the group. Our drivers support the group by ensuring that the freshest fruit and tastiest snacks are picked up along the way.

    Our support team:
    Our support team carry your luggages and provide a nice place for tea and coffee break on the route ( 20 – 25 km for each stage). Our staff will make any running repairs on your bikes. Once riding we keep you stop with water, fruits, soft drinks and snacks, energy bars, and we make sure you get a nice cold towle drink with cold towel as well. Prepare picnic lunch enroute for cyclis,.at the end of cycling day, we make sure you will enjoy good meal, clean and prepare bike for next days.

    An air conditioned backup support vehicle is always available in case you want a break from riding, and to carry your luggage.

    The international profile of Local Traditional food has increased over the last two decades with very good reason. A cuisine that has evolved with the culture and landscape of Vietnam provides for an astounding level of variety from south to north. Each town and city has its own subtle twist on iconic dishes and some of their own creations. Our leaders are passionate about their food and look forward to taking you on a culinary adventure in unison with your cycling adventure. Included meals are listed in the day by day itinerary, and drinking water is always included with meals. Any soft or alcoholic drinks are not included and will be at your own expense.

    Energy bars and local snacks are provided to keep your energy levels up for the riding, and clean water and electrolyte drinks are always available to keep you well hydrated.

    This tour is guaranteed for a minimum of just 2 travellers. And we limit the group size to only 16 travellers so that you get all the attention you want in an intimate group.

    There is no surcharge for single travellers – we will match you with another same sex single traveller. If you want a single room there is a an optional upgrade that you can book.

    This tour is 100% operated by Journey Expedition Travel. The guides are our full time employees, the hotels booked by our local office staff, and the bikes are part of our fleet of over 300 bikes. We are not outsourcing any element of this tour so you can be assured of 100% Journey Expedition Travel quality.

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