Luang Prabang

Back in time in beautiful Luang Prabang

Back in time in beautiful Luang Prabang

The beauty about Laos is unique & it appears as if time stood still.  It already starts when flying to Laos with an old Lao airlines propeller plane.   Beautiful experience that was spoiled right at arrival when I was cheated for getting my Visum.  The price for a Visum On Arrival for European citizens is 35$.  Being an european I didn’t have dollars so I asked how much it was in euro.  32 he said… that’s about 41,6$ ! So i asked him to give me the price in KIP, the local currency.  The officer ticked on his calculator and showed me the price of 330000 KIP, what also corresponds to approx 41$.  Welcome to Laos! I had no other choice than pay the fee…

Nam Khan river

Nam Khan river

Luckily I forgot that incident quite quickly when entering the town of Luang Prabang.  This town is nothing like all the other towns & cities in Asia!  It had such a beauty!  Situated on a landtongue between the Mekong river & the Nam Khan river, surrounded by mountains & tropical vegetation, sheltering many temples.  The houses had also a very particular architecture and the whole city was really clean and well maintained.  I decided right on the spot to spend more days here than initially planned to soak up the atmosphere & live a genuine experience in this authentic town.

Xayana guesthouse dorms

Xayana guesthouse dorms

I stayed in Xayana guesthouse and took a dorm for the first time in my life.  It looked really nice, with 4 very large wooden beds on each side of the wall, superposed like in sleeper busses or trains, creating a really nice & cosy atmosphere.  Each bed had it’s own storage room, light, plugs, …  And 2 nice bathrooms.  I met several nice people during my stay there such as Ho Duong, a very friendly guy from Da Nang, Vietnam, Costanza, a lovely girl from Santiago de Chile & so many others.  Meeting fellow travellers is a nice advantage when staying in dorms or guesthouses.

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Kuang Xi waterfalls

The following day I rented a motorbike with a=Alessandra & we hit the road to drive all the way to the famous Kuang Xi waterfalls, 30 km out of town.  Beautiful scenic area with many villages on the way.  The waterfall & the lagoons where emeraude blue and the whole area gave us a really nice spectacle.  The area sheltered also some bears.  On our way back we stopped at a Hmong village, like in Sapa (Vietnam) & instantly there were dozens of children running towards us with unfortunqtely only one purpose… trying to sell us things such as bracelets, necklaces, etc.  The smaller kids were still innocent & didn’t participate in the hassle.  They were just playing & had fun without any worries whatsoever!

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Cocktailbar in Luang Prabang

During one of the evenings, we discovered a small, cosy restaurant right across the bamboo bridge.  It was an adventure on itself to cross that bridge but once we made it, we found an fantastic place!  Dyen Sabai was run by a French couple & they recommened us the Lao BBQ fondue. We enjoyed a fantastic dinner with Line & Maksie, respectively from Canada & UK.  After dinner Luis & Yves, 2 men Victoria got to know in the hotel, joined us for a drink in the cocktailbar.

On my last morning in Luang Prabang, I was lucky enough to witness a daily ritual in Asia where the Bhuddist monks walk in the streets with baskets & receive their food from the people.  That’s the only food they are allowed to consume on that day.

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