I Cheated Death
Trip Start Jul 02, 2006
85Trip End Mar 02, 2007
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
There are three ways to get from Huay Xia to Luang Prabang, a slow boat along the Mekkong (2 days, apparently really uncomfortable), 36 hours on a bumpy bus (obviously shit) and the easier sounding 6 hours on a speed boat down the Mekkong. Now the Lonely Planet does seem to mention on three seperate times that these speed boats are dangerous, should be avoided, that they have multiple fatalities especially in the wet season when the boats tend to hit debris.
So I have been kicking around with a bloke called Marco, an Austrian Formula 3 driver so theres no guesses which option we chose. I first started to worry when the taxi driver individually shook each of the peoples hands he dropped at the speed boat docks and wished us 'good luck'
The first two and a half hours was the worst of my life. It was so cramped my heals were touching my bum and I couldnt even shuffle my but or feet. It was raining and I have never been so cold. We were hammering down the river at 80kmph+ missing logs by inches and there was a real chance of dying. After the break half way things were on the way up - the weather fined up, I ditched my helmet and lifejacket (if this thing crashed I was dead with or without them), swapped my ear plugs for my i-pod. Luckily the person infront was removed from the boat because they were worried it was too heavy meaning more leg room. Although there was a moment when the driver kicked us all out and left us, without bags or money or anything on a deserted bank of the Mekkong for 10 minutes!
My words of advice for anyone who wants to do this trip... Prey for good weather, prey u have a good driver. Seriously think about buying two seats, one infront for your legs. Get some good tunes, bugger the helmet and have a good smoke half way!!!