Saturday, May 17, 2008

Laos, Laos

I've spent almost a week in Laos now, but honestly the days are starting to blend together a bit - Laos is not so much about seeing and exploring the sights (even though there are a few), Laos is much more about relaxing, enjoying yourself (and enjoying some cheap, yet excellent Beer Lao), and, normally, floating down a river... in a tube or a kayak.

To wit, only spent a day in the capital, Vientiane, seeing some sights and getting my visa to Vietnam (an astonishingly straightforward process btw), met a couple of other guys traveling there - Jaap, from Holland, and Henrik, from Germany, and the three of us headed down to Vang Vieng in fairly short order, which is all about floating down (or jumping into) the river that flows lazily past the town. Tomorrow, catching a 'local bus' (not the VIP bus, so it's liable to be an experience) and heading up to Luang Prabang, that entire city (town?) has been deemed a World Heritage Site, so expect a little more culture/sight seeing there... In the mean time, the best of the lazy times in Vang Vieng:

Upon arrival in Vang Vieng, the three of us were able to secure an almost brand new, triple bungalow, for about $6 a night... not per person, total! And then moved on to enjoying some Beer Lao...

Next day, a short mini-bus ride to go kayaking down the river

The bridge across the Nam Song river - we'd float down under many a bridge like this

The mountains here are incredibly green... and the river slowly and effortlessly carries the kayaks by

Paddles, away!

The mountains, the river, some bungalows on the side, and the kayaks

By the 2nd day, we had dispensed with such formalities as kayaks and guides, and just went tubing down the river... sometimes stopping for a drink, sometimes just floating down the river with one (or, in this case, two)

And conveniently enough, whenever you stop at a river-side bar, they also have rope swings set up into the river - great fun. This one is me, flying into the great wide open! Havea few good videos from here as well, hopefully will get to upload those at some point

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