It’s time for a Lao update! And there’s much to share. Let me start by saying that I spent a wonderful time there and I will definitely go back, maybe even sooner than later;)
I started my journey in Vientiane where I joined forces with Beata and Andrea who came from Singapore for a week. It was a nice change for a solo traveller like myself:)
Vientiane isn’t like any other capital city. It’s rather small and laid back with not that many exciting things to do. That being said, I still enjoyed my time there, maybe because of the company?;)
Laos has been a French colony for many years, it still remains one of the few communist countries and the main religion is Buddhism. You can see the influences of all three everywhere in the city. Isn’t that a strange mix?:)
Our next stop was Vang Vieng, a small town with stunning views of the river and the mountains. Because its location, Vang Vieng has a lot of outdoor activities to offer however the main attraction is tubing. If you haven’t heard of tubing, imagine an inner tractor tube, big enough to sit comfortably in it and then floating on the river with a cold beer in your hand. Sounds perfect right? And it really is:)
These days it’s a rather safe activity however few years back it was a major party scene – water, alcohol and drugs are never a good combination. They’ve closed most of the bars by the river and cut down the drugs after 27 people died while tubing in 2011.
Few things about Laos:
It’s one of the poorest and the most remote countries in the world. Some locals live on just a dollar a day! They stay with 10 people in bamboo huts, with no water or electricity, grow their own food, rarely eat meat, drink only water and lao lao – rice whisky, bathe and do laundry in the river. Ironically, when you travel, everything seems more expensive than the neighboring countries. The only things made in Laos are basic farm crops, handcrafts, textiles, wood products, cement, electricity, cigarettes, beer and soft drinks. Everything else must be imported, hence the high price….
It certainly puts out lives into perspective, doesn’t it? What are we looking for when we already have everything we need?
Anyway, enjoy the pictures from Vientiane and Vang Vieng!