Vang Vieng town itself can be an eyesore but it only takes 10 minutes on a bicycle to get out and find yourself surrounded by rice paddies, karsts and people planting rice by hand. In Vang Vieng, the line between the have and have nots is clear, with many living a rural way of life in very basic conditions. The town continues to prosper from tourism yet roads remain unpaved.
Bicycle daily rentals start at 10,000 kip for street bikes or from 20,000 kip for mountain bikes. You will definitely want a decent mountain bike with gears if you are hitting a dirt road, which essentially means anywhere outside of town.
Renting a motorbike for a full day starts around 50,000 kip, an automatic for 70,000 kip and up. The gas station closest to town where everyone fills up are ripping tourists off with an old scam: ensure the attendant resets the pump before filling your tank or you end up paying a lot more than you should. A basic motorbike should cost no more than 25,000 kip to fill.