Planning and update for the Great HCMTrail Ride

The planning (dreamin’ n schemin’) for the Ho Chi Minh Trail Ride is continuing. Here’s the latest update.

The ride will start out of Vientiane the first full week of November 2024. The exact day is still TBD, but the 5th or 6th are likely. This gives everyone a chance to get to Bangkok and then Vientiane a few days earlier to get over jet lag. (I will probably leave a few days before then and explore a little of Bangkok before flying to Vientiane.

Our “HCMTrail Ride” will cover most of what the original plan, but will be shortened to 10 days. On day 9, instead of heading to Mouang Nong, we will head to and through Mouang Phin. (I’ll write about Mouang Pin in an upcoming post.) From Mouang Phin we will continue on and on day 10 we will spend our last night in Laos in Thakhek. The next morning we’ll cross over to Nakhom Phanom where we’ll fly back to Bangkok. You can check out the original plan with descriptions here:

Here’s a pic of the original itinerary with the changed part shown in green.

As for the dreamin’ n schemin’ part… I intend to spend a little extra time in Thailand. For the first part of the trip, I’m thinking about spending a couple of extra days in Bangkok. I’m also thinking about making a “side trip” to Chiang Mai. It only costs about $120 to fly roundtrip Bangkok to-from Chaing Mai. Chaing Mai is an amazing place and it would seem a shame to pass up on one more visit. I’ll put together a “sidebar” on Chiang Mai in a future post.

There’s so much to see in Bangkok that even two or three days may not be enough. Here’s a pic of the nightlife in the Sukhumvit district of Bangkok. This was in 2014. It will be interesting to go there again.

“SOI 2 nightlife in 2014

Here’s a pic of Chiang Mai I took in 2014. This is just inside the ancient wall and moat.

On our return… after crossing from Laos back into Thailand… I’ll probably spend a couple of days at Nakhon Phanom: AKA NKP… AKA Naked Fanny. If anyone is interested, I can give the grand tour and history as I spent a “little time” in this garden spot.

Here’s a pic of the famous (infamous) Ho Chi Minh Clock tower in NKP. Anyone who spent a little time at NKP knows this landmark. This is a pic I took in 2014

The Ho Chi Minh clock tower in beautiful downtown NKP