Welcome to Laos
Trip Start Jun 01, 2005
51Trip End Aug 04, 2006
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What a refreshing change of pace from the chaos of Bangkok. So, I left off in Chiang Mai --
From Chiang Mai we traveled by mini-bus to Chiang Khong, a small border town on the Mekong River. Not too much to be done here, but we did stay in a fantastic rustic wooden guesthouse overlooking the river. The next morning, we made an early morning journey to cross the border into Laos (by boat!) Apparently, the border is right in the middle of the Mekong river, with Thailand on one side and Laos on the other. Arrived in Laos, went through passport formalities, and then boarded our long-tailed boat, basically our home for the next 2 days!
Over the next two days we took the classic 'slow boat' trip down the Mekong to (eventually) get to the city of Luang Prabang
Yesterday was the first full day here and we spent the morning on a local handicrafts tour. Saw villages of blacksmiths, weavers, papermakers, silversmiths and a local rice wine 'lao lao' distillery. After the tour, we took a Songthaew (pick-up truck with benches) out to some beautiful waterfalls. Got to take a swim in the pools at the bottom, and also saw (and pet!) a tiger that has been recovered from poachers in the area.
I am enjoying the slower pace here in Laos, and I don't think I'll be ready to leave it in a few days. I think I may be coming back when I travel in a couple months...we'll see!
Tomorrow's a morning flight a bit to the south, to Vientiane. Off to enjoy another day in Laos!