From Phnom Phen to 4000 islands (it's 12 hours by bus, you can make a stop in Kratie which is half-way, people told me is nice, I took the 12 hours ride and it was really long, but I saved money and time)
3 days in 4000 islands (it's a wonderful place, I stayed in Don Khon which I really liked, you can choose Don Det if you want to find night-life)
From Pakse to Tha Khaek (7 hours by bus, 1 or 2 days, wonderful nature to explore)
From Tha Khaek to Vientiane (5 hours by bus, I'd spend 2 days in the capital, it's really a nice city)
From Vientiane you can take a sleeping bus to Phonsavan to see the plain of Jars, 1 full days is enough I think, then the following day you can take a bus to Luang Prabang (7 hours) and spend there 2 days or more. Maybe from there you can fly to Siem Reap, see Angkor Wat and then back to Phnom Phen.
I know it's a lot for 3 weeks, you can choose to skip one or two of the destinations (for example, there's a night bus that brings you comfortably from Pakse to Vientiane, then you skip central Laos but you save a lot of time)
If you need any advice feel free to ask me!
if you are already planning to visit Angor Wat I would not bother visitng Wat Phu (near Champasak) as well, unless you have a real interest in ancient sites. Also, it is very hard going walking up the steep stairs to the top. The Bolaven Plateau is worth a visit , lots of waterfalls, some ethnic villages , lovely scenery, coffee plantations etc.
The Plain of Jars is also worth a visit but I am not sure on how you would find the journey, the roads are VERY winding and I think it may take in the region of 10 hours. We went by road from Vientiane to Vang Vieng (very beatiful) which took 5 hours, then VV to Phonsavan for the Jars which took 7 hours . From there we went to LP by road which took 7 hours. If I was to go again I would consider flying Vientiane to Phonsavan at least one way if your budget allows ..
-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-
This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.
To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html
We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.