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“Good, good, wet, slippery fun!”

Uncle Tom's Trails - Private Day Tours
Ranked #1 of 12 Tours in Vang Vieng
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: Uncle Toms is a dirt bike tour operator offering tours and riding tuition (for total beginners) in the Kasi region of Laos PDR. 125cc four stroke trail bikes. plus smaller for training,British operator. Always best to book in advance due to limited places each day. Training is limited to two persons at one time and open to anyone over 5 feet 5 inches(165cm)on the full sized bikes, but we now have smaller bikes for anyone who is a bit smaller. Due to the rapid changes recently in Vang Vieng town,we have moved location, now we are based in the amazing Kasi District which is 55 kilometers north of Vang Vieng town.
Reviewed 29 June 2014

After staying at Vang Vieng and doing the tubing, kayaking, rock-climbing we were ready for something more high-octane. My friend had been recommended Uncle Tom's Trails and after reading the excellent reviews we got in contact with Tom himself and booked a half day with of dirt-biking.

At first you need to get to the village of Ban Tha Heua where the place is located. It's about 30-40 minutes from Vang Vieng center and you need to catch a ride with the local transportation if you don't want to spend a fortune getting there with a Tuk-tuk. Tom will help you with this and you should not be paying more than 15,000 KIP (one way), try to get it down to 10,000 KIP.

Tom picked us up and after a short period of theory and try-outs we went to the playground. We learned the basics and when we felt ready, we left for the trials. Needless to say, Laos has some breathtaking views and the road that Tom takes you on shows a lot of hidden gems. After a while on asphalt we came to the dirt-roads and could put our newly learned skills to the test. AWESOME!

Then it started to rain and we took shelter for a while and ate the food we had brought. When the rain cleared a little we took the road again, now slippery as a naked mud-wrestler! It got much harder but also a lot more fun.

I think we rode for about four-five hours and both me and my friend enjoyed it very much. Tom is a great guy and the day will be fitted to match your skills, so don't worry. I would recommend it to everyone who likes a challenge and isn't afraid to get dirty. At the end of the day we payed 360,000 KIP, well worth it!

1  Thank MatiasAndresDotCom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"great teacher"
in 23 reviews
"great guy"
in 18 reviews
"off road"
in 14 reviews
"learn how"
in 13 reviews
"luang prabang"
in 19 reviews
"dirt bike"
in 12 reviews
"off the beaten track"
in 10 reviews
"tom jones"
in 8 reviews
"his friends"
in 6 reviews
"my girlfriend"
in 14 reviews
"rural laos"
in 7 reviews
"within an hour"
in 5 reviews
"highlight of our trip"
in 8 reviews
"an experienced rider"
in 4 reviews
"funny guy"
in 4 reviews
"experience riding"
in 4 reviews
"learning how"
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Reviewed 15 June 2014 via mobile

Whenever something on TA has only perfect reviews, it seems too good to be true. But after four months in Asia, I can't believe how much fun I had riding a motorbike somewhere through remote Lao landscape.

I had some experience on an automatic scooter, but had never been on a manual bike before. Anyway, it took Tom little over 10 Minutes to teach the basics and off we were. After some more practise on a dirt field he evaluates your skills and determines a safe trip. We went through really remote vilages that totally enhance and by far top any activity you can do in overcrowded Vang Vieng. We then went into some muddy terrain and I was a little nervous, but he kept the instructions simple and to the point (matter of fact, I fell once after EXACTLY doing what he told me not to do, but it wasnt serious at all). It was an unbelievable scenery, stuff u would never see without Tom. Also stoppes at a local shop-come-kitchen where he showed me many cool Lao snacks.

Anyway, maybe even cooler than the riding is Tom himself. He shares sooo many interesting stories about life in Laos and it really is like a ride with one of your old buddies. I have been around many nice tourism-people in Asia, but honestly he comes across so genuine and just really really laid-back (whereas others you can tell are only in it for $$$).

The price was 440k Kip for a half-day-single session and after considering the quality of bikes and the experience, it is totallz worth every dime.

Getting there is easy, he will give you really easy instructions from the Gas Station in Vang Vieng.

From all the reviews I thought 'Yeah right, there has to be some catch'. But there isn't. Go do it. Also, he makes a point about not growing too big and ruining the fun, and you can see it pays off because it is such a unique experience.

I know many people who had serious accidents in Germany on motorbikes and riding one is no walk in the park, especially in backcountry Laos, but this afternoon made me think that maybe Iwill look into this again.

Thanks Tom, and keep it real!!!!

Thank THammerBerlin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2014

Spent the full day with Tom last week where he taught me to ride an automatic and my wife the same, and she’d never been on a bike in her life! Tom’s very patient and a great teacher and had us riding round confidently after around an hour and a half, followed by a good stretch on the local roads. Highly recommended, great value for money and better than anything else you can do in Vang Vieng.

1  Thank diveboard_man
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
tjtrails, Owner at Uncle Tom's Trails - Private Day Tours, responded to this reviewResponded 2 June 2014

Thank you very much for the review,but i must just make a small correction.. You learned to ride 'manual' bikes,not 'automatics' im sure its just a typing error and thank you again.

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Reviewed 23 May 2014

For someone who has never been on a motorbike before this is a great experience. Tom is such a patient and caring instructor who makes sure you are comfortable at each level before he takes you to the next.

I felt extremely relaxed on the roads after a morning of tuition and Tom took us off the beaten track to an amazing lookout, meeting a few locals along the way.

I thoroughly enjoyed my day out with Tom and look forward to the next time I can get on a bike and explore the beautiful countryside of Laos.

Thank you to Tom for looking after me so diligently and patiently after a little tumble on the way back and for his words of encouragement.

If you want to do one thing in Vang Vieng make sure it is this - you won't be disappointed.

1  Thank lindahaughan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 15 May 2014 via mobile

If you don't do this, you won't appreciate why many, including myself think it was the best experience of their trip in this great country.

I was in Laos for a month, had a wonderful time and got off the beaten track on many occasions but the one of my lifetime memories will always be the time I spent at Uncle Tom's.

I'm an experienced motorcycle rider and have a motorcycle licence, but its been 25 years since I've owned a dirt bike and driven off road. Much more recently, I have biked in many countries and driven around SE Asia in particular but on always on semi auto or automatic bikes.

Tom has an uncanny way of assessing your ability and tailoring his coaching at the right level whilst giving confidence and passing on knowledge at exactly the right level.

I jumped on the bike, did exactly the right things, and I was told to go off and explore. For me this gave me confidence and I was ripping around dirt tracks like I was so many years ago. For Tom, this gave him time to spend teaching my wife who had always shirked at the chance to ride a scooter, never mind a full manual bike.

After 20 minutes of her practising on a rolling road, when I was doing my own thing, we moved to an off road location where he had my wife, a complete novice, changing gear with her left foot, breaking with her right foot in combination with the front brake and having good clutch control. This took me three days as a teenager btw.

Before long we were heading down quiet roads on three well maintained bikes, if I wanted to do some off road , he'd tell me where I needed to go and where to meet them afterwards.

Tom has a gift to teach and inspire confidence but at exactly the right level, he stays on the side of caution and maintains excellent safety but ensures you develop your skills and confidence, whatever your motorcycle ability.

He only takes two people per session, he has bikes to accommodate more but wants to ensure he offers a real quality experience, so two is the maximum, hence it really pays to book ahead or you maybe dissapointed.

Unfortunately I had a tight schedule, but as other reviews recommended, I regret not staying at the resort, its an amazing place with a completely different vibe than Vang Vieng and overlooks a huge lake. The resort has a fantastic restaurant which I sampled after my time with Tom. Decent bungalos right on the lake, plus you can hire a Jet ski or perhaps go on their boat to visit a secluded island and feed the monkeys, plus there's a good pool table too.

For what is on offer, I personally think its terrific value for money and having done this, I wish I could have spent much more time with Tom and he's probably underpriced for what I got from the experience.

I'm a month late in writing this review, but since then I've taken many more opportunities to rent bikes, get away from the main tourist route and do things at my own pace.

I'm currently in Vietnam, I biked through Saigon and now ine central highlands with my own bike. Although i do have a good deal of biking experience, without spending time with Tom, I'd not be doing the trip and adventuring further but I'm loving every minute of.

Also my wife now drives regularily, something she never wanted try before despite 4 years riding across the world as a pillion. She's actually very confident and frequently goes off on her own, unimaginable 4 weeks ago.



1  Thank IGavinAnks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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