Laos

  • Last month, Alice Bayly, aged 9, visited Laos with her family, parents Alice & Roger and younger brother Felix. Anna offered to keep a diary for us in order to show other children (and their parents) what might happen on one of our family holidays in Laos.

  • After spending a day and a night in the fairly depressing border town (Laos:Thailand) of Houay Xai we were really keen to start our 3 day “Gibbon Experience” trip. It had been recommended to us throughout Laos so we were keen to see what all the fuss was about. The trip involved spending 3 days in the dense northern Laos jungle, living in tree houses high in the forest canopy. The tree houses are connected to the jungle by large zip wires! Apart from having a lot of fun, one of the objectives is to try and see one of the black Gibbons which were up to a few years ago thought to be extinct in this part of Laos. The people that run the company put some of their money back into the local village and pay for the only park rangers in Laos.

  • The journey from Vang Vieng to Luang Prabang was a painful one. The air conditioning on the bus decided to break down and the wheel sprung a puncture. Not unusual occurrences in Laos, but it did make for a long, extremely hot and sweaty day. The pain was, however, alleviated by the extraordinarily beautiful views surrounding us as we wound our way through central Laos. They were simply breathtaking!

  • Now Vang Vieng is pretty much all about tubing as the numerous tee shirts you see worn in South East Asia advertise. But Vang Vieng does offer some other great excursions. The town itself has been shaped with a young western audience in mind and has numerous bars playing Friends on loop. However its surroundings are quite amazing. There are rolling hills carpeted with lush jungle dissected by the Nam Song river and a few spectacular caves.

  • One of the aims of the trip down to the islands was to try and spot the illusive and rare Irrawaddi Dolphins. They are a fresh water species of Dolphins that was once common to the Mekong delta throughout Cambodia and Laos.

  • For years intrepid backpackers (our co-founder Tom Armstrong among them) have raved about the quality of Beer Lao, the locally brewed beer served throughout Loas but rarely found elsewhere.

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