Getting there & away
Rte 1 crosses the river here via a steel bridge. Rte 13 north from Luang Prabang meets Rte 1 about 33km west of town at Pak Mong.
Sǎwngthǎew going to Udomxai (US$2.50, three hours, three daily) leave from the west end of the bridge. You can also take one of the more frequent sǎwngthǎew southwest to Pak Mong (US$1.80, two hours), then change to another sǎwngthǎew to Udomxai (US$2, two to three hours from Pak Mong). Sǎwngthǎew and buses to Luang Prabang (US$3.20, four hours, two daily) depart between 8am and 11am; the earliest is usually a public bus.
If you’re heading east towards Hua Phan or Xieng Khuang, you can get a bus to Sam Neua (US$7, 12 hours, one daily).
Boat travel along the Nam Ou south of Nong Khiaw has largely been eclipsed by travel along the improved Rte 13, but it’s still possible. In high season boats heading to Muang Ngoi Neua (US$1.80, one hour) leave regularly until about 3pm. In low season they’re less regular, but boats usually tout for business between noon and 2pm, when buses arrive from Luang Prabang. Tickets are bought at an office at the bus station. These boats infrequently continue on to Muang Khua (US$10, seven hours).