Muang Khua

Muang Khua is a small town in Phongsali Province of northern Laos. Most people use it as a transit town (the halfway point between several other places), but it has its own charm.

A simple map of Muang Khua

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Muang Khua can be reached from four directions: the Nam Ou river crosses through it from north to south, while the roads head east and west.

To the west, lies the transit hub of Muang Xay. In the east, the road connects Muang Khua to the northernmost border crossing with Vietnam, near the Vietnamese city of Dien Bien Phu. Buses leave daily from Dien Bien Phu’s bus station early in the morning. Travel time is around 5 hours, including customs.

Buses from Muang Xay stop 2km away on the west side (35,000 kip for the bus and 5,000 kip for a collective tuk-tuk to the town centre).

Muang Khua is about halfway between Phongsali in the north and the backpacker-popular village of Muang Ngoi Neua, with connections further south to Luang Prabang.

Tickets can be bought from the boat dock, half an hour before the boat leaves. From the visitors centre, with the market in front of you, turn left and take the first street right. It is at the end of this road (you will have walked past three guesthouses and be on a downward slope). The boat to Muang Ngoi Neua and Nong Khiaw leaves at 09:30. Tickets to Muang Ngoi Neua (written Muang Ngoy on the boat dock sign) are 100,000 kip. Tickets to Nong Khiaw (an hour south of Muang Ngoy) are 120,000 kip. Boats may not leave if there are not enough people (~12 people per boat) (Oct 2013) unless they are chartered. Do not expect the boats to operate more often than once in a few days.

Due to the Ou River 3 Hydro Power Station you have to change the boats and go with a songthaew around the dam/power plant. The songthaew transfer is included in the ticket price (Jun. 2018)

Map of Muang Khua

Muang Khua can be covered by foot.

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