Laos Express!

by Bngrtw June. 11, 2013 2320 views

We were running out of time…

Our flight to London from Mumbai was only 5 weeks ahead, and we still had Laos, Thailand and India in our itinerary. We thought about it, and coldly decided to skip Laos, hoping to maybe get another chance to visit it in the future.

What is the point in visiting Laos? We won't be able to spend much time anyway, and the visa costs $35. It's a no-brainer, just take a plane from Hanoi to Bangkok, problem solved…

… Except for the fact that taking a plane would have been even more expensive than crossing Laos overland. We also found out that we could take a nice, 2-day boat trip on the (guess) Mekong!!! This boat would take us to the border with Thailand.

So it's a no-brainer: Let's cross Laos!

From Sa Pa, we took a bus all the way to the border between Vietnam and Laos. Then the same bus took us to the small village of Muang Khua. This was for an extra fee that had not been discussed originally, so, suspecting a rip-off in the making, we declined their offer to take us all the way to the city of Udomxai, where we would be spending the night. We reached the city in a local bus instead.

In the morning, we took a new bus to our final (road) destination: the World Heritage City of Luang Prabang []!

Our time budget allowed for a short stay in this beautiful place, where today's first picture is taken. Unfortunately, we discovered that its World Heritage status meant the city was completely focused on tendering to high end tourists, driving the prices of everything way above what we had been used to during the previous 2 months.

We spent there a couple of nights, then boarded the long boat that would take us on our last tour of the Mekong. The pictures of black and albino water buffaloes and the fisherman were taken during this trip.

The trip lasts 2 days. The boat stops in a very small village mid-way, where everyone stays for the night, then everyone wakes up early the next day and takes the boat again.

… But we thought the village was very nice (and also overslept, ehem…), so we stayed an extra day. It was very relaxing, especially because the village is completely dead during the day, and no one does anything. The village only comes to life in the evening, when the tourist boats arrive. The people, of course, thought we were a bit strange, but we enjoyed the break.

Then, the next day, we carried on, and already in the evening we reached the border. Today's last picture is taken from Laos, but what you can see on the opposite side of the Mekong is Thailand.

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Alicja 7 years ago

Beautiful set! I like #2 and 4. Great done :)

7 years ago Edited