DIRT ‘n’ SECRETS, it does what it says on the tin. This motorcycle tour of Northern Laos kicks off with a visit to…
The riding in Laos offers a great combination of both roads and dirt trails that allow our riders to experience life well beyond the regular tourist routes. Because of the varied terrain we cover we use lightweight dual-sport bikes for these tours, the trusty Honda CRF250L proving to be the perfect tool for the job.
The riding terrain in Laos varies from smooth winding dirt & tarmac roads to the occasional harsh rocky trails and forest singletrack. Generally, our off-road motorcycle tours in Laos are not too extreme and will be suitable for the less experienced off-road rider. As always, if you’re unsure of your ability, please just get in touch with our friendly team and we can talk you through it.
There are water crossings, suspended cable bridges and river crossings on small canoes or small ferries… all the good stuff!
The best months for a motorcycle tour in Laos are November – February. Average temperatures range from 15 – 30°c (although it can get much cooler in the evenings up in the hills) depending on your altitude and there’s little chance of rain.
June – October is the hot & wet season. The rain generally comes in short, sharp bursts, but these heavy downpours can create undesirable riding conditions on the steep dirt tracks!
While March – May is still the dry season, these months are not ideal for motorcycle touring in Laos. The dirt tracks get progressively dustier towards the end of the dry season. Not only does this affect your visibility, but the tracks get churned up into deep ‘bulldust’ making for some difficult riding conditions. These months are also the ‘slash & burn’ season, where the locals clear land on the hillsides to prepare it for farming. They ‘slash’ the grass, allow it to dry and set it on fire. This creates a smoky haze across the entire country, somewhat spoiling the view!
When most people think of the Vietnam War (otherwise known as the ‘Indochina War’), they think ‘Vietnam’. Few people realise just how much was happening in the neighbouring countries of Laos & Cambodia. Laos is the most heavily bombed country on the planet! 270 million tonnes of explosives were dropped on Laos between 1964 and 1973 by the Americans, even though the two countries were never officially at war. This was in an effort to stem the flow of arms & ammunitions down the infamous Ho Chi Minh Trail.
This is only a small part of Laos’ incredible history, but it’s certainly the most prominent. UXO still litter the countryside and clearance operations are still a common sight during our motorcycle tours in Laos.
Laos has certainly suffered a brutal history. While it is incredibly interesting to learn about this as we ride around the country, what’s even more amazing is how the local people can be so welcoming and friendly despite their troubled past with western foreigners.
The predominant religion in Laos is buddhism and there are 64 different ethnic communities across the country. These are generally segmented into three altitudinal groups: the ‘lowlands’, the ‘midlands’ and the ‘highlands’.
Our Laos motorcycle tours offer some truly spectacular riding through the hills. The road network in Laos is fast developing and there are some great tarmac roads that wind through the mountains. We ride some singletrack trails, but the majority of the dirt riding is on dirt ‘roads’ of varying quality. The dirt riding is fairly easy going (depending on your experience!), allowing you to take it easy and enjoy the spectacular views!
The Laos people are some of the most friendly we’ve ever met. Our motorcycle tours in Laos get far off the beaten track where few other tourists ever visit. Wherever we choose to stop for a break, we’ll be welcomed by the locals who are all just as interested in us as we are with them! Many of them have never seen foreigners, let alone foreigners dressed head to toe and strange looking riding kit!
Fresh chilli paste, sticky rice and frequent BBQs… we love the food in Laos. Its typically Asian style and shares similarities with Thai and Cambodian food, but with its own unique flavours. Our Laos motorcycle tours aim to give you the full culinary experience and we’ll even take you to some of the local food markets to shop for ingredients for that nights BBQ.