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Houay Xai

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<small>Geographical position: 20° 16' N 100° 24' E</small>
 
<small>Geographical position: 20° 16' N 100° 24' E</small>
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[[Image:Houay1.jpg|thumb|240px|View over the Mekong to Houay Xay]]
  
 
==General Information==
 
==General Information==
 
Immigration: the immigration office is just a few metres from the ferry on the right and issues 15day-visa-on-arrvial(30US$ and a passport-sized photo needed)
 
Immigration: the immigration office is just a few metres from the ferry on the right and issues 15day-visa-on-arrvial(30US$ and a passport-sized photo needed)
 
Money: there`s a small bank office offering change for cash and traveller`s cheques just right of the immigration.
 
Money: there`s a small bank office offering change for cash and traveller`s cheques just right of the immigration.
 
[[Image:Houay1.jpg|thumb|240px|View over the Mekong to Houay Xay]]
 
  
 
==Get in==
 
==Get in==

Revision as of 20:00, 12 December 2005

Huay Xai (also Houayxay) is the capital of the Laos province of Bokèo. It lies on the banks of the Mekong river, which forms the border to Thailand. More or less a transport stop-over, there is not much to see in the small town.

Geographical position: 20° 16' N 100° 24' E

View over the Mekong to Houay Xay

General Information

Immigration: the immigration office is just a few metres from the ferry on the right and issues 15day-visa-on-arrvial(30US$ and a passport-sized photo needed) Money: there`s a small bank office offering change for cash and traveller`s cheques just right of the immigration.

Get in

By Boat

Ferry

Ferries cross between Huay Xay and Chiang Khong for 20Baht and arrive at the town centre. In Chiang Khong, ther ferry pier is at the northern end of town.

Slow Boat

The slow boat pier is a little north of town. Slow boats to Luang Prabang leave each morning when full, normally between 9 and 10am. If booked ahead in Thailand, your transport will be normally organised. Touts for the boat will approach as soon as you`ve left the immigration Fares depend on where you book: -in Chiang Khong: 850 Baht incl. transport to the ferry pier, ferry to Houay Xay and transport to the slow boat pier -near the ferry pier in Houay Xay: 800 Baht -at the slow boat pier: 760Baht (depending on your bargaining skills)

Speed Boat

Read the warning about speedboats first.

The speed boat landing is some 5 km south of town, so you might want to use one of the taxis waiting at the landing to get there.

From Thailand

Public transport will get you to the Thailand border town of Chiang Khong. From there, you can take the ferry boat to enter Laos. The Laotian side of the border closes at 5 pm.

Get around

You can visit the town on foot or take a taxi for longer distances.

See

Do

  • Pay a visit to the market. Best time is early morning. To get there, follow the main road south along the Mekong. After passing a hill, there is a turn-off to the left, which you should follow until you reach the place.
  • On main street, there is the booking office of The Gibbon Experience. It's a forest conservation project that raises part of its funds through taking tourist into the Bokeo Bokèo Nature Reserve. Every other day there is a bus covering the 2.5 hors to the jungle village where you start your one hour hike to the place. Accommodation is provided in terrific treehouses which are constructed on jungle giants over 40m high. To access the houses, you will have to glide on a cable from the surrounding hill range. There is an extensive cable network being set up to explore the canopy providing breathtaking views of the scenery.

Contact

Internet

(Information as of March 2005)

The only internet cafe in town closed down because of exaggerating rates by Lao Telekom. It's said to open up again when rates reach normal level.

Buy

Eat

Most of the guesthouses also provide simple meals. There is a restaurant next door to the Gibbon Experience office.

Drink

There is not much nightlife in town. To have a beer, simply visit a restaurant or get your own stocks of Beerlao at on of the shops.

Sleep

Budget

  • There are about five hotels in town, with room rates varying. Not all of them are good value, so check out the rooms and facilities meticulously.
  • The BAP Guesthouse has wound up to be somewhat of an travellers hangout. Unfortunately the rates are not the cheapest in town and staff is unfriendly and has a reputation for overcharging.
(Information as of March 2005)

Stay safe

Get out

External links

http://www.gibbonexp.org

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