Laos borders - Which countries border Laos?
Located in Southeast Asia at the center of the Indochinese peninsula, Laos is a mountainous and landlocked country (officially known as the Lao People's Democratic Republic). Laos has borders with 5 neighboring nations: Thailand (southwest), Cambodia (southwest), China (northwest), Vietnam (east), and Myanmar (northwest)
1. Laos-Cambodia Border
This border is formed by two rivers, Se Kong and the Mekong River. The Se Kong River originates from Thua Thien - Hue province in Vietnam before linking up with the Mekong River near Cambodia’s Stung Treng.
Visa on arrival in Laos is now available (since February 2010) when entering from Cambodia overland (previously unavailable) with an official “Visa on arrival” office incorporated into the checkpoint.
Laos - Cambodia border
The nearest Cambodia town is Stung Treng and the border is a 90-minute speedboat or bus ride away. Note that the border is little used, almost no public transport is available at the border (currently both Cambodian and Laos border require 1 USD stamp fee per country).
2. Laos - China Border
This border is about 262 miles separating the provinces of Laos (Oudomxai, Luang Namtha and Phongsali) from Yunnan province of China. In some parts, it acts as a triple border with Vietnam and Myanmar.
3. Laos - Myanmar border
This border is primarily formed by the Mekong River, which flows into at least three countries: China, Laos, and Myanmar.
In addition to the border between Laos and Myanmar, the river is also part of the border between Laos and Thailand.
The relationship between the two countries has improved recently as shown by things like opening a friendship bridge linking the two countries. The bridge, acting as a link between Tachileik in Myanmar and Luang Namtha province of Laos, was opened by presidents from the two countries to mark 60 years of diplomatic relations. The bridge also serves as a symbol of the desire for the two countries to increase cooperation in domain such as tourism, investment and trade.
4. Laos – Thailand Border
Laos - Thailand border
From north to south, there are 8 border crossings open to all between Thailand and Laos: Huay Xai/Chiang Khong, Muang Ngeun/Huay Kon, Nam Hueng/Tha Li, Vientiane/Nong Khai, Paksan/Bueng Kan, Tha Khaek/Nakhon Phanom, Savannakhet/Mukdahan, Vang Tao/Chong Mek.
For visiting Laos, tourist often comes across the borders below:
- Huay Xai / Chiang Khong: The 4th Friendship Bridge completed in December 2013. Boat crossing is no longer available for foreigners. The regular route to/from Luang Prabang, offers easy bus connections to Chiang Rai and points beyond on the Thai side.
- Vientiane / Nong Khai: The 1st Friendship Bridge and direct trains from Bangkok are now available.
- Tha Khaek / Nakhon Phanom: The 3rd Bridge is completed.
- Savannakhet / Mukdahan: The 2nd Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge.
- Vang Tao / Chong Mek: On the route from Pakse to Ubon Ratchathani
5. Laos-Vietnam Border
Laos - Vienam border
You can get a Visa in Hanoi at the easy-going Visa department, that is located at 40 Quang Trung street (a few meters from the consulate). Opening hours are 8h30 - 11h30 and 13h30 - 16h00. Prices depend on the country you are living in and there is a 3-day processing time unless you pay an additional 5 USD (pick it up in the afternoon) or 2 USD (ready the next day). If you add the 5 USD, the prices seem similar to those for Visa on arrival (not confirmed).
There are at least 6 border crossings that can be used by foreigners. Including:
- Sop Hun (Phongsali province) / Tay Trang (Dien Bien province)
- Nam Soy (Houaphan province) / Na Meo (Thanh hao province)
- Nam Phao (Xieng Khouang province) / Nam Can (Nghe An province))
- Na Phao (Khammouan province) / Cha Lo (Quang Binh province)
- Dean Savanh (Savannakhet province) / Lao Bao (Quang Tri province)
- Phou Keua (Attapeu province) / Bo y (Kon Tum provinve)