Is it possible to rent a car in Vientiane and drop it off in Luang Prabang or vice versa.Q: Hello. Is it possible to rent a car in Vientiane and drop it off in Luang Prabang or vice versa. I'd like to do is to drive one way then fly back to Bangkok. Do you have any ideas about the prices with and without a driver? Many thanks, Jo
A: Yes, it is possible to hire a car one way, and with or without a driver. You will find a number of car rental agencies including Europcar, Asia Vehicle Rental and many more on the Internet. However, if you don't have any experience of driving in Asian countries, it would be safer to rent a car with a driver. As you may know, traffic in Asian countries tends to be a lot less organised so if you are intending to drive, make sure you have the appropriate insurance and drive with extra care.
Unlike in Thailand, traffic in Laos drives on the right. Many of the roads have been paved in recent years but only a few main roads are suitable for driving at night. Travelling from Vientiane to Luang Prabang, which is in the north of the country, takes more than nine hours. Highway 13 takes you all the way there and is sealed and in good condition. Many travellers prefer to make a stop at Vang Vieng for a night before continuing the journey to Luang Prabang. The scenery from Vang Vieng to Luang Prabang is stunning taking you through mountainous landscape and lush forest. Watch out for the hairpin bends in the mountains.
If you prefer to rent a car with a driver, which will allow you to explore wherever you want along the route with local guidance, expect to pay in excess of $100. You could consider hiring a van and finding more people to help split the cost of journey. If you have time, try to organise your car hire beforehand. If you are unable to do so, make a survey when you are there about prices and agreements with several agencies to make sure you get the best quote. Have a safe trip!
Q: Hi there. We have three days in Hua Hin over the Christmas weekend and wonder whether you can advise things to see and do there? I will be travelling with my parents, my husband and a 13-year-old boy and am looking for a special event for the whole family to enjoy, Thank you in advance for your suggestions, Sally
A: Hua Hin is a popular destination for international tourists and weekenders from Bangkok alike. Usually visitors spend their days chilling out on the beach, shopping and dining out. However, there are a variety of things to do there, especially during the festive season. Many hotels have their own celebrations by the beach with various entertainment for guests to enjoy.
Besides, there are palaces, temples, vineyards, waterfalls and even an elephant village to visit. Hua Hin is also the home of several world-class spas, so you could also enjoy a spa experience during your stay.
You will also be there during the Fringe Festival at the Vic Hua Hin. Under the guidance of artistic director Patravadi Mejudhon, the festival is supported by the Office of Contemporary Arts and Culture under the Ministry of Culture.
On Christmas Eve, the Vic is hosting a family friendly celebration party starting at 6pm featuring live music from Patravadi High School teachers and students, Christmas songs by the British Educational Children's Centre Choir, games, delicious herb salad, traditional turkey, wine and hot wine punch! Find out more at www.VicHuaHin.com.
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