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11-Day Mekong River Cruise Through Laos and Thailand from Chiang Rai to Vientiane

Golden Triangle – Huay Xay – Pak Tha – Pak Ou – Luang Prabang – Kuang Si Falls – Xayabouri Dam – Salakham – Vientiane

Join us on this memorable Mekong cruise journey to sail through the magnificent scenery of Laos, visit colorful markets and temples in Vientiane and UNESCO World Heritage town of Luang Prabang, and experience firsthand the Laotian people's traditional way of life. Together we will travel to the formerly inaccessible stretches of Southeast Asia's most exciting river, relax aboard our exclusive boutique river vessel and enjoy the unspoiled nature of the Upper Mekong River. 

Relax aboard your boutique luxury vessel of RV Mekong Pearl and enjoy unspoiled nature along the mighty upper Mekong—one of the most difficult rivers in the world to navigate, with fluctuating water levels, tight gorges, labyrinths of sandbanks and churning rapids.​ Brace yourself with unspoiled vistas of jungle-like landscapes, impressive rock formations, and secluded villages offering you an authentic experience and a warm welcome.

This luxury Mekong River cruise embarks in Thailand at Chiang Saen. Ahead lie 10 nights of Mekong river cruising through Laos with three nights spent moored at Luang Prabang and one night at Vientiane, the capital of Laos. On the way, we will visit riversides villages and local tribes to experience the local tradition and lifestyles. Also visit Kuang Si Waterfalls - one of the most impressive falls in Laos.

Trip code : RVLALT11DS

Duration : 11 days

Destination : Laos-Thailand

Travel Dates :2021/2022

  • Discover the hidden side of the Mekong through Laos and Thailand
  • Sail in an German Laotian Ship 
  • Visit small villages
  • Watch farmers and elephants work side by side alogn the river 
  • Watch local villages and amazing landscapes
  • Explore the beautiful waterfalls of Kuang Si 
  • Sample local dishes 
  • Witness traditional dancing and music onboard 
  • Explore the ancient capital of Luang Prabang 

Between 8 and 9 pm you transfer from Chiang Rai Airport or a local hotel to the famous Golden Triangle region. You enjoy a sightseeing city tour, which includes the Golden Buddha of Sop Ruak and the Hall of Opium Museum. The Hall of Opium, sponsored by the royal family of Thailand, provides an in-depth look at the history and politics of the opium trade and health impact of opium use.

Later you board the Mekong Pearl, a boutique German–Laotian river ship, and settle into your comfortable cabin and unpack for an 11-day cruise. In the evening, you enjoy the ship’s spacious decks and lounge before attending a welcome dinner and reception.

Overnight on board.

This morning your exciting voyage on the mighty Mekong River really gets underway, with your departure from the Golden Triangle region, where Myanmar, Laos and Thailand meet. Today’s destination is the nearby Laotian town of Huay Xay on the Laos–Thailand border.

Your ship then takes you through the stunning scenery of northern Laos to the small village of Pak Tha. From there you take a long-tail boat excursion on the Namtha River to visit a Khmu village. You then continue downstream until your cruise ship anchors at a sandbank for the night.

Overnight on board.

The river traffic increases as you pass through a densely populated region accessible only by water. Here you discover some of the wild Mekong’s most beautiful landscapes: hills covered with tropical vegetation, dramatic rock formations, and a fascinating mixture of rapid currents and slow rivulets.

The power of the mighty Mekong gives your cruise the feeling of a real expedition. Relax on deck, in your cabin, or in the lounge as you enjoy the otherworldly atmosphere of these spectacular surroundings. A short while later you arrive in Oudomxay Province.

Overnight on board.

After a relaxing morning on board, your boutique ship stops at a small riverside village to visit the famous Pak Ou Caves, where thousands of small Buddha statues dwell within. From there, you can go on a short jungle trek through the forest to a local village to see their traditional distillery. Alternatively, you can reach the village comfortably by boat.

Nearby you can see elephants working, unless they are employed elsewhere at the time of your visit. You enjoy your dinner on board surrounded by impressive limestone mountains.

Overnight on board.

Today you reach Luang Prabang, the former royal capital of Laos, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your day begin with a city walk to the famous Wat Xieng Thong temple with its gold-trimmed tile roofs, which leave you in awe. Later you explore other highlights during this full-day excursion through Luang Prabang. In the evening, you walk up Mount Phou Si, which offers a spectacular view of the Mekong and Khan Rivers and the surrounding mountains. You enjoy a stroll along the Mekong promenade or visit the colorful Hmong night market.

Luang Prabang offers many opportunities for fine dining, and tonight you are free to choose from the numerous offerings in town or along the Mekong River.

Overnight on board.

In the early morning, you can observe the traditional giving of alms in the streets of Luang Prabang and explore the traditional morning market. After your breakfast on board, you join our guided city tour, which includes the National Museum of Luang Prabang, situated in the former royal palace, and a local handicraft village. After exploring the city center, the afternoon is yours to enjoy. You can choose from dozens of local restaurants and eateries. Before dinner on board, you attend a celebration featuring a traditional Lao dance performance and a Baci friendship ceremony.

Overnight on board.

After breakfast on board, you enjoy the beautiful views and possibly spot local fishermen onshore as you cruise further downstream. After a few hours of cruising downriver, you stop and continue by tuk-tuks to visit the famous Kuang Si Falls, some of Laos’ most remarkable waterfalls.

In the afternoon, don’t miss the Xayabouri Dam, the biggest hydroelectric power plant in Laos. That evening you enjoy our famous Mekong River Cruises barbecue dinner in a beautiful riverside location.

Overnight on board.

Today you visit a hidden cave and experience nature on some easy hiking trails. In the afternoon, you take in the beautiful views on the sun deck or attend presentations on the history and culture of Laos.

Later you relax on board, enjoying the easy comfort and expert service of your boutique ship in an exclusive, yet casual atmosphere.

Overnight on board.

Downstream you discover some of the most remarkable, impressive landscapes of the wild Mekong. The scenery becomes more and more spectacular: hills covered with tropical vegetation, awe-inspiring rock formations along the riverbanks, and a diverse array of rapid currents and slow rivulets.

Later you visit the dreamy town of Salakham. The power of the mighty Mekong gives your cruise the feeling of a real expedition. You enjoy the beautiful views and watch nature’s wonders along the riverbanks before your ship heads further downriver and stops for the night.

Overnight on board.

You continue downstream on the Mekong, known locally as the “Mother of All Waters”. Today’s destination is the Laotian capital, Vientiane, where you see the Pha That Luang stupa—an architectural symbol of Laos—as well as the Patuxai, also known as the Arc de Triomphe of Vientiane.

You celebrate the last evening of your cruise with a farewell dinner on board, together with your friendly crew, cruise director, and captain.

Overnight on board.

After breakfast you say goodbye to your Laotian crew, check out and disembark your boutique river ship. Your unforgettable journey comes to an end as you transfer to the airport or to your local hotel.

NOTE: Every river cruise on the upper Mekong is a pioneering experience and is subject to constantly changing river conditions, including floodwaters and shallows. Therefore, please understand that we must reserve the right to alter the itinerary of this tour due to the logistical complexities involved. Small deviations in the tour program are sometimes necessary, depending on weather and river conditions. For safety reasons and according to navigating conditions, these programs may be amended without previous notice.

This journey is generally not for guests with limited mobility or who depend on CPAP machines. Please contact us for more information about your specific requirements before booking.

This Cruise is not recommended for persons with reduced mobility.

All of our cruises/excursion require a reasonable level of fitness. Every traveller on our cruises is required the ability to walk around sights on uneven surfaces in both urban and rural / mountainous areas unaided. You will be getting on and off cruises, coaches and boats, walking around the sights and climbing some steps.

Please read our cruise itinerary carefully for outline of activities to help you select the right holiday for you.

Important notes:
• All persons must be fit and physically able to partake unaided in their chosen activities/packages/tours /cruise etc. as outlined in the itinerary.

• All parties acknowledge the physical demands and hazards involved in the tour or cruise they will be undertaking and have chosen to participate at their own risk.
We provide a wealth of dining experiences and venues. Most meals during the cruises are onboard or at famous restaurants during excursion, with the menus handpicked and planned to highlight a perfect mix of Local and Western cuisines.

• Meals onboard are a cultural culinary experience: Continental breakfast buffets with a rich menu are offered daily, while lunch and dinner are set menus.

• Gala evening: The gala evening is a long-awaited tradition in the world of cruising. This is the night we like to dress up, although no dress code is imposed. The crew all in their dress uniform, are presented to the passengers who are invited have a pre-dinner drink with the captain in the company of the purser, and the head chef.

Note: It is your responsibility to notify us of any dietary requests/requirements. We will do our best to meet your request/requirements, however, cannot guarantee that it can always be accommodated.
The currency accepted on board is the local currency or US dollar. You can pay in dollars or using an international credit/debit card (Visa and MasterCard) at the end of the cruise. It is recommended to have some local currency or US dollars in cash with you during your cruises.
A range of activities and entertainment are provided on board:

• Before dinner, games and quizzes are hosted by our entertainers in the lounge bar

• On the sun deck, where you can stroll alone, be with family or friends or sit comfortably in the sun loungers, gymnastics sessions are organised in the morning whilst enjoying the magnificent views of the landscapes that pass by.

• The panoramic lounge bar, the library and the "piano bar"
• Depend on the destination, lectures on subjects related to the history and geography of the places visited, are offered in the lounge bar.

• Some evenings, the dance floor of the lounge bar comes to life with musical evenings, folk groups or singers

• Some cruises have variety evenings where the crew members reveal their hidden talents are also provided.
All cabins are air-conditioned and double-occupancy cabin with shower in bathroom

• Triple Share: Available upon request
• Bedding Configuration: Double or twin bedding (subject to availability).
• Adjoining / Interconnecting Rooms: Not Available
• Laundry service: Not Available
• Wi-Fi: All the cruise is equipped with free Wi-Fi available in all lounges / bars and receptions. For some destination it is available in the cabin.
After purchase, you will receive a Booking Confirmation and Passenger Information Form by email. Within 24 hours of purchase you need to send us a copy of your passport together with your Passenger Information Form.

After purchase, you are required to make a deposit or full payment for your order. Please note most of our deposit is non-refundable. Please check your booking and your invoice for the Terms and Conditions which apply specifically to your booking.

If you would like to cancel your booking, please refer to our cancellation terms.

Please note:
• Any special requests, preferences MUST be clearly stated in your Passenger Information Form
• Any change requested after submitting your Passenger Information Form cannot be guaranteed, is strictly subject to availability and will incur surcharges
Safety Net Protection is not included in our tour/cruise packages. If you wish to purchase safety net protection, an additional fee of $105 per person will be incurred. This is only valid for a one-time use (claim).

Safety Net Protection enables passengers to amend their tour and/or river cruise 15 days prior to departure, to another tour/cruise to the same destination, departing in the same year (once only) without any applicable cancellation charges or penalties.

The new tour/cruise must be at the same cost or higher but cannot be at lower cost than the initial cruise/ tour booked. If the passenger chooses the higher cost option, then the additional difference amount must be paid. However, no modifications shall be accepted less than 15 days prior to departure.

Important notes:
• Safety Net Protection is payable immediately at the time of making the deposit payment. Once purchased, Safety Net Protection is not refundable
• Safety Net Protection does not apply for airfares or third-party fees and charges.
• Safety Net Protection allows for amendment ONLY, not cancellation.
• You will be responsible for all your personal belongings while on the tours. It is your responsibility to make sure your room is secure.
Tipping is not compulsory and is not included in this cruise. We believe that if you choose to tip, you should only pay for the service you receive.

In general, tipping is widely accepted as a way to show your appreciation of good service but is not compulsory. Tipping is expected and often makes up a large part of people's wages.

• If travel on a river cruises and happy with the services provided by your crews and service onboard. Recommended tips - For the crew members on board the ship - $10US per day per passenger.

• If you are happy with services provided by your tour guides and drivers, a tip is appreciated. Recommended tips - For the guides and drivers - $6US per day per passenger.
You must carry your own luggage from/to the coach and to/from the hotel or cruise. The driver/crews and his assistance will assist with the uploading/off-loading of your luggage.

Please note:

• You will be responsible for all your personal belongings while on the tours/cruises. It is your responsibility to make sure your room/cabin is secure.

• Tweet World Travel will not be liable for any loss or damage to your luggage or other personal belongings.
Our products DO NOT include Travel Insurance. Travel insurance is not included in our cruises and shore excursions.

For your protection, we strongly recommend that you purchase comprehensive travel insurance for your travel arrangements (without limitation) that include coverage for medical expenses, loss of luggage, cruise, land content and airfare charges that may occur.

You need to provide us your Travel Insurance details upon booking, or at least before 30 days prior to your departure.

If you do not have travel insurance prior to your departure, we retain the rights to refuse boarding/joining our tours or cruises. We might refund / provide travel credits for you, less any unrecoverable fees including but not limited to admin fees, visas fees, other suppliers’ cancellation fees. We won’t be held liable for any costs associated with this matter.
FAQ & Travel Blog
  • 10 nights in selected cabin type aboard your boutique river cruise ship
  • Local English-speaking guides
  • Entrance fees for sightseeing according to itinerary
  • Excursions according to itinerary
  • Tours and transfers according to itinerary
  • Drinking water in vehicles and on the ship
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary (B= Breakfast, =Lunch, and D=Dinner)
  • Complimentary coffee, tea, and water on board your boutique river cruise ship
  • Presentations and lectures on board by the cruise director
  • Transfers between airports and hotels within city limits (only guaranteed if information was correctly provided four weeks prior to departure at the latest)

Please note:  this cruise doesn’t include the entry visa for the country it travels to. Make sure you have acquired a valid visa before travelling and joining the cruise. Check whether a single entry or multiple entry visa is required/ available.

When assisting with an international travel booking, we assume that all travellers in the booking have a valid Passport and Visas to enter to the country it travels to. Passports must be valid for the countries through which a ship or tour passes. It is the responsibility of each passenger to ensure the validity and conformity of their passport/Visas.

It is the customer’s responsibility to make sure that the travellers have the valid visas and/or correct visa type to enter the destination country they are travelling to. Travellers might need to present the visas at multiple checkpoints and may be refused to fly out of their countries, if the visa documents cannot be presented. If such an event occurs, we won’t be liable and the travellers will be deemed as “no-show”. Please check our Terms & Conditions for penalty for “no-show”.

Visa and other entry and exit conditions (such as currency, customs and quarantine regulations) change regularly. Contact the nearest Embassy or Consulate for up-to-date information.

Important Note:

  • All travellers must have a valid passport for international travel and most countries require at least 6 months validity from the date of return and some countries require a machine‐readable passport.
  • Some countries require visas and re‐entry permits which meet the requirements of immigration and other government authorities.
  • It is your sole responsibility if any fines, penalties, payments or expenditures incurred as a result of such documents not satisfying the requirements of those authorities.