When the British winter has you wondering if the sun actually ever existed and you haven’t seen your own skin in weeks, you know it’s time to jet off in search of winter sun.You need somewhere exotic, somewhere sunny and warm, somewhere with beautiful flora, palm tree-lined beaches, smiling people and delicious food. Here are our best places to travel across this season:
Hidden in a landlocked region between China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Myanmar, Laos is one of the last hidden gems of Asia. To help you with inspiration for your trip to this mysterious country, we’re listing our top 10 experiences in the country that you can tailor to your itinerary. I hope you will be inspired.
Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos – collectively known as Indochina – offer history, culture and nature in abundance along with mysterious sights like the Angkor temples, colonial towns such as Hoi An and spiritual cities like Luang Prabang. 2016 brings some fantastic excuses to start planning your holiday to this beguiling region of the world. Here we feature the highlights.
James, with his in-depth knowledge of India, Borneo and Southeast Asia is the newest recruit to the ETG travel team. He’s joined us after a sensational demand for our holidays and we’re very pleased to welcome him as a travel specialist. Get to know James in his introductory blog.
The key to a good family holiday is making sure everyone is happy. It’s sometimes difficult to balance everyone’s interests and excite older kids wanting a bit more independence and exhilaration, so I’ve put together some of my favourite experiences that would work well for families with older children.
For three months Janis Brod, a German cinematographer, has travelled around Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand capturing the various ways of life. Here is the film of her experience.
Running 448km from the most northern province of Laos to Luang Prabang, the Nam Ou River is not only surrounded by some breath-taking scenery but is also a fantastic way to experience daily life for many of Indochina’s ethnic minorities
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.
The Alila Hotel and Resorts Group are opening a new hotel in Luang Prabang: the Alila Luang Prabang.
The last two posts about new eco lodges in Sri Lanka has got me thinking about the abundance of this sort of place in Asia now, coming under the somewhat subjective heading of an ‘Eco Lodge’.
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.