We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Save
Review Highlights
A must do

Firstly, we have to thanks our tour operator and guide Cham for all the hard work he put into... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
johnbV7950ES
,
Chiang Mai, Thailand
via mobile
Wonderful introduction to Laos

We were picked up from Chang Rai exactly when promised, and helped across the border into Laos... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
Chris A
Read all 174 reviews
  
Reviews (174)
Filter reviews
174 results
Traveler rating
138
21
8
1
6
Traveler type
Time of year
LanguageAll languages
More languages
138
21
8
1
6
Show reviews that mention
All reviews pak beng pak ou caves chiang rai slow boat relaxing trip public boat two days thai border border crossing boat captain beautiful boat hill tribe village english speaking guide visa process dropped off low season great trip
Filter
Updating list...
119 - 124 of 174 reviews
Reviewed February 10, 2016 via mobile

We enjoyed crushing down the Mekong. It was in every way relaxing and enjoyable all the way from pick up to drop off. The stops on the way made it very interesting.

We didn't want a crowded public slow boat and we didn't want a dangerous and uncomfortable speedboat. We also didn't want to pay the blue for a high end cruise. That made this choice perfect for us! Highly recommend.

Date of experience: January 2016
Thank mogensydemann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 9, 2016

Every aspect of this river boat cruise was wonderful. All details and logistics are pre-planned so you need only to relax and enjoy the scenery. You will certainly find cheaper means of getting between the countries but if you want a non-crowded boat with excellent tour guides and the ability to really enjoy your experience, opt for a trip with Mekong Smile Cruise. They assist with obtaining visas, offer private drivers between Chiang Rai and Huay Xai (included in the cost), and ensure you arrive to your hotel in Luang Prabang. Highly recommended tour company!

Date of experience: February 2016
2  Thank sletchwo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 8, 2016

The unusual cold spell in Lao end of January beginning of February was paramount in changing our travel dates and it became necessary to carry on our journey on Chinese New Year. Not our preferred choice but we got on to the internet and Mekong Smile cruises offered a slow boat trip von Luang Prabang to Huay Xai. We booked and then quite a few things did not proceed as initially foreseen; payment via internet was not possible, the Hotel in Pak Beng was fully booked, and communication via the net was cumbersome. We initially expected the worst, but then everything worked like a charm. We were picked up at our Guesthouse in Luang Prabang spot on time, and amazingly we were the only guests on the boat. We assume this is due to the fact that: a.) Most travelers are going downstream, b.) Chinese new year and c.) the boats have to go upstream to Huay Xai to pick up the next load. But who is to complain, we had the guide all to ourselves, plenty of space to feel really comfortable, a competent skipper and his wife as a very attentive cook. To report about the Mekong, the people living next on it and the wonderful scenery would take much more time and space, but should be done by every serious traveller.
There is no doubt that not all Slow Boat Trips are like this but it was an experience and we can recommend Mekong Smile Cruises anytime.

Date of experience: February 2016
1  Thank Herbert S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 8, 2016

We booked a trip down the Mekong River through Mekong Smile to facilitate our journey from Thailand into Laos. We were picked up from our accommodations in Chiang Rai, Thailand and driven to the border. Once in Laos, we were greeted by another representative from Mekong Smile, who guided us through the visa process.

The cruise itself was relaxing. There were only five guests, including myself, on the boat, which gave us ample room to move about. This was a stark contrast to some of the other slowboats we saw, which were packed.

Kit, our tour guide, was very friendly and knowledgeable about our stops. Additionally, the food served on the boat (lunch on both days) was some of the best Lao food we had.

Date of experience: February 2016
Thank paharris11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2016 via mobile

A 2 day cruise on the Mekong River. Our peregrine guide and local tour guide Mr Tui accompanied us from Laos border to Luang Prabang. Our overnight stop was in Pakbeng. We were lucky enough to see the working elephants going for a swim in the river at 6.30am

Tip : sunhat, sunscreen, water, warm clothes cold wind on river, include lunch to be provided by boat owner

Date of experience: January 2016
1  Thank Janr20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
View more reviews