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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for LA21, Laos

Feb 27, 2005 - The real Laos

After three days of trekking 'Laos style' I was exhausted and in desperate need of both a shower and a meal without sticky rice! The trails of the trek reminded me of Nepal with dusty, narrow, footpaths along mountaintops with stunning scenery. Much like Nepal, the narrow paths were the only way to get from point A to point B. Roads, motorbikes and even bicycles were not an option. We shared the path with the villagers, water buffalos, cows, chickens, and a stray falang (foreigner) or two. But, mostly the paths were empty. Three weeks of...

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Trip Journal


The Journey

Feb 20, 2005 - LAOS - Vang Vieng

Vang Vieng is situated in an idyllic location. Fringed by soaring limestone cliffs and perched on the banks of the Nam Song river, buffalo wander freely through the lush fields and rice paddies, the silence only occasionally broken by the mellow sounding of a gong from the local Wat. Now well and truly established on the backpacker trail and situated approximately halfway between Luang Prabang and Vientiane, the main street of this small town has unfortunately been transformed into a minature version of Bangkok's Khao San Road - An...

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Feb 15, 2005 - Vang Vieng...un futur Kao San Road????

non, on ne veut pas de bus VIP, non on ne veut pas de mini van, nous voulons le bus local!!!!! et bien on l aura voulu! 4 touristes a 10h30 et des bouteilles de gaz sur le toit du bus. un beau paysage sur les 3h30 de trajet et un touriste un peu fou qui n arrete pas de nous saouler pendant tout le trajet a nous raconter de "droles ' d histoires. Mais finalement tant mieux car ca nous permet d oublier (enfin presque) les bruits etranges du bus... a chaque virage, le metal frotte sur la roue, ce qui fait un bruit pas tres agreable. le...

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Feb 13, 2005 - Vang Vieng, Queenstown of SE Asia

Vang Vieng, The Queenstown of SE Asia, this otherwise unremarkable town has been put on the tourist map by the huge limestone 'karsts' that surround it and are visible from everywhere looming over the town. These wonderful cliffs and cave systems, combined with excellent river action, means that there is action aplenty for those looking for it. The trip here was uneventful, but the Vang Vieng bus terminal is several square kilometers of disused bitumen airstrip built by the US in the 60's. Surreal. Nice little hotel called Malany's. Pop...

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Feb 13, 2005 - Vang Vieng, Laos

Sat 12/2 Hot Another early start, 8.30am bus to Vang Vieng - it's a good job we got here early, they had sold toomany tickets forthe bus, sosome people were turned away!! Uncomfortable journey - very little room, and hot bus - windy windy roads for most of the way..... Got toVang Vieng at 3.30pm, it doesn't look like much of a place, but only 2 nites here, so thats Ok. Spectacular scenery again on the way here, lots of limestone karsts (I think that's what they're called - big hilly things!)... Laos really does look more Lord of the Rings...

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Trip Journal


Pippa on Tour

Feb 2, 2005 - Vang Vieng

Well, we finally got to leave Vientiane because we got all of our Visa stuff done and over with...................so we got the first bus out of town to Vang Vieng. We caught a local bus for 15,000 kip each ($1.50 CAD), which was supposed to leave at 1:30pm, but instead left at 2:00pm. The bus was old, dilapitated, and in bad need of a crushing, but it got us there. I filmed as much as I could of the land scaping and the scenery along the way, but it's very difficult to capture the true essense of what we are looking at. At first, we were...

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Jan 31, 2005 - Vang Vieng

Vang Vieng gives off the impression of a place that has been developed for the sole purpose of a resort for hippy backpackers! You get dropped off by bus at an old American airport strip and then walk 100m to all the hotels and restuarants that are built just off the strip. The main attraction of Vang Vieng is the scenery, which is fantastic. It has 'karst' mountains similar to those we saw in Yangshou and Krabi, and is based on a river. We spoke to someone who had a Lonely Planet guide from 1999 and hardly anything was mentionned atall...

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Trip Journal


Stu and Liz On Tour

Jan 24, 2005 - Sabaidee from Laos!

Since our last entry we have been traveling aroung a lot. We had a one night stop off at a tiny place on the side of the Meekon river before carring on the Luang Prabang. This is by far the best place on our travels. We arrived in time for the night market and you all know how Alex likes to shop. Luang Prabang is Laos second town but town is a bit of an exageration! It is much friendlier than all the other places we had been, no pressure to look/buy/get in Tuk Tuk. We were able to wonder round and enjoy the market. It has none of the tat...

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Jan 16, 2005 - Vang Vieng - backpacker paradise

So I heard a lot of things about Vang Vieng - it should be THE PLACE to be in Laos, and that's why I got a little surprised arriving to a small dirty village like city with one main street. But getting stuck here for more than a week obviously proved them right. I stayed in a small bungalow by the river next to bars lined up next to one another. There is a remarkable calm atmosphere in the city - probably because most tourists are either tranquilized by the 5 seasons of "Friends" that runs in almost every restaurant in the city or they...

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Jan 15, 2005 - Vang Vieng

15/1 Zaterdag om 09.00 uur vertrokken uit Luang Prabang, maar niet nadat we nog een keer vroeger waren opgestaan om de bedelende monniken te zien. De reis met de minibus duurde zo'n 6 uur, maar was stukken beter en betrouwbaarder dan de reis met de speedboot. Nu konden we eindelijk genieten van het prachtige landschap. We reden door een erg mooi berglandschap en door zeer arme dorpen. Bijna alle mensen waren bezig met het verzamelen van riet en gras, om daar bezems van te maken. Je zag zelfs de kleinste kinderen (2-3 jaar) meehelpen met...

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Jan 14, 2005 - Trip to Vang Vieng

by bus 230 km and 8 hours on mini bus - there was an accident in the mountains and had to wait for the police to come. It was rainy, foggy and cold. But , we had interesting company in the mini bus For the first time we met a kid of the same age as Christoffer who was also backpacking with his mother. He was on a school break for three weeks discovering Laos and Vietnam. We also met a Belgian lady who was backpacking in Burma and crossing into Laos and Vietnam to get to Mongolia in May. She was well into her 70s

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Jan 6, 2005 - Going Tubing in Vang Vieng

We ended up leaving Vientiane by local bus, a nice break from all the tourist organized adventures we had done in Vietnam. We arrived in one piece at the airport in Vang Vieng, a bumpy airstrip that has never been used for planes and serves as a makeshift bus station. Vang Vieng is a town that is surrounded by dozens of bumps that are hills (it's called a karst scenery) and there is a river that runs through the town as well. It's relatively run down, but beautiful, and we found a really nice room, with hot water and a view of the hills and...

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