Connecting many famous travel destinations in Yunnan Province, Laos and Thailand, the Kunming-Bangkok Highway is - despite cheap flight offers - a popular driving route among international travelllers. First it takes you along the hilly subtropical area in the south of Yunnan, Xishuangbanna before you cross the border to Laos and finally to Thailand.
The expressway is approximately 1900 km long. About 730 km of it is in Yunnan. It stretches south from Kunming to Xiaomenyang (soth of Jinghong) and crosses the Lao border at Mohan. This part of China is one of the most lively and beautiful areas with tropical landscapes, tea plantations and different ethnic customs.
The counterpart port on the other side of the border is Boten and for about 250 km the highway is being followed then through Laos. It traverses further through beautiful jungle and highlands. Road travelers can either choose going ahead along the Road No.13 to Laos’ UNESCO sites Luang Prabang and the Plain of Jars or head towards Chiang Khong in Thailand via the Houayxay Bridge. After this bridge at the Laos / Thailand border was completed in December 2012, the cross border tours have become easier and thus more popular.
The route continues furtheron south via Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, and finally ends in Bangkok It continues southward, mostly as Thailand Highway 1 (named Phahonyothin Road).
The UNESCO site, the Plain of Jars, Laos
A Buddhist temple in Chiang Mai, Thailand
The following maps is showing rough distances and also an alternative route via Myanmar. This border crossing is currently not doable. Via road, the Yunnan / Myanmar border is currently only crossable at Ruili/Muse though further in the north.
The route is of course also doable from south to north. For any travel support, please don't hesitate to contact us, we're always happy helping you out!