Blogs from Pakbeng, West, Laos, Asia

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Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng June 13th 2014

So we have now left Komg Lor and headed for Tha Kek on the mini bus. The journey took about 5 hours pretty much none stop apart from a comfort break so,a rather boring journey sad to say. Near the outskirts of the town we stopped to see the 'great wall' which used to surround the city to protect it. There isn't much left now but in one or two places you can see how high the wall was. I'm a bit sceptical that it was built rather than carved out of rock as it looked more like it was a natural formation rather than man made, but who am I to argue, they know their own history. We arrived at our hotel and dumped our bags and headed off for food. As luck would have ... read more
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Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng May 25th 2014

evening! Yesterday was the day we left Thailand and headed for Laos. Breakfast was at 7 and then we left about 0745. We drove through the village in our large tuk tuk,, stopped off at the 7/11 for water and scooby snax and then headed for the border. Silly me had mislaid my exit paper work for leaving Thailand, but they gave me a new exit form to complete so I could leave the country. Once through the Thai side of the border we had to pile in a bus complete with purple curtains and accessories lol. It was a bus for everyone crossing from Thailand to Laos. There were various groups of travellers some young and some older and some local crossing the boarder. We then had to fill in the visa application form and ... read more
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Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng December 29th 2013

We were taken from our hotel by the Mekong river down to the Thai border at Chiang Khong. It then took nearly two hours for all twenty something of us to clear immigration at Laos. Depending on our passports we all had to pay different amounts for the visa. EU citizens, Australians and Canadians pay $5 less than British passport holders and Swiss get in for free. We had to fill out a lot of paperwork and many people were confused by the system or didn’t have the right paperwork. This morning at breakfast at the hostel I met a lovely Australian couple in their sixties from Queensland. As the three of us were taking the same boat and were on the same tour I spent a lot of time talking to them whilst queueing for ... read more
lunch on the boat
water melon and papaya
our boat cruising down the Mekong

Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng July 11th 2013

So there it was… the time has come to leave Thailand… I just couldn’t believe how fast the month flew by! It felt as if we only arrived in Bangkok and we were leaving the country already? But then looking back at the pictures, we have actually been to quite a few places since then so it shouldn’t really be a surprise that the visa was running short and that it was time to go… As sad as it was to leave Thailand it sure was exciting to be heading to Laos! I was very curious about what this supposedly laid-back country had to offer and was really looking forward to exploring it … There sure were many ways to get to Luang Prabang from Chiang Mai – 2 or 3 days by slowboat on the ... read more
on the Mekong
on the Mekong
Wat Rong Khun in Chiang Rai

Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng January 28th 2013

A red-eye start - far too early for breakfast - and a one and a half hour bus trip to Laos Border. Or should we say Chaos Border. As you know we Brits love order and getting into queues - this was more like a 'foule francaise' .... However after two hours of papers, passports, forms, documents we finally got our visas and boarded a dug out canoe to cross the Mekong.... then mounted a water based tuk-tuk to a point further up river (or should it be down river) where we alighted our wooden longboat. Our two day trip started this morning in Houei Xai and finishes tonight in Pak Beng. Approximately 160 kilometres and 7 hours journey today - no doubt some little person should be able to work out how many miles per ... read more
keep on Trucking
Quiz 2
Ferry cross the Mekong

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Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng January 15th 2013

Once we had managed to drag ourselves away from lovely Pai, we set our minds on leaving Thailand and heading overland into Laos, but first we had to get to the border. It worked out easiest for us to go back to Chiang Mai for one night, where we ate our way around the Sunday market and met up with a guy for drinks who we first met months ago in China, then leave the next morning for Chiang Rai and stay there for one night so we wouldn't have such a long journey to the border the next day. The bus to Chiang Rai took about 3 hours and we bumped into our Japanese friend Kayzo on the way, but the minute we arrived we didn't like the feel of the place. Massage shops and ... read more
Stunning scenery along the way
Bye Bye Thailand, Hello Laos!
Great river views

Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng June 8th 2012

Laos. 8th June- 16th June. So part of our excursion was a well anticipated trip to Laos. I had the image of tubing every day for a week in my mind and was very excited about this leg back in the UK. Having just left our friends at Chiang Mai (to be explained in a later blog - like I said I do things arse backwards) we embarked on the worst journey of my entire life to Laos. Maybe it was the fact that I'd been taking my very expensive and useless malaria tablets for a week, or maybe it was because I was missing my friends and being forced to now "travel", ironically, I don't know. What I do know is that it was a very hard trip. We left for Chiang Rai via minibus. ... read more

Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng November 3rd 2011

Finally seated on the boat in some ripped out commuter bus seats, nailed into the floor, we were on our way down the Makoun River heading for Luang Prabeng. This was called the slow boat trip, which is generally thought of one of the best adventures South East Asia has to offer. Brushing the quality of boat/seats aside you could see instantly why this is so popular with great views of wildlife, the surrounding villages at the waters edge & huge mountains. Our first stop was Pakbeng where I had heard that the village is run on a generator after 11pm, so all lights will suddenly go out for a split second at this time. I had also heard that the village was patrolled by people with machines guns, these people being young children...crazy!? Needless to ... read more

Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng October 28th 2011

Getting back into Thailand I wanted to take the spectacular boat trip up the Mekong river. Two days to Huay Xai with a stopover in Pak Beng for the night. After buying my ticket from the boat ticket desk (all of the tour operators were charging commission) I quickly stopped by the morning market to buy some snacks for the journey. The boat is literally someones house boat, but it is very long with wooden benches and tables in the middle of the boat with open side's so you can take in the amazing view and at the front of the boat there are some, more comfortable chairs. They give you cushions to sit on but your bum definitely goes numb sitting on a wooden bench for two long days straight. We left Luang Prabang at ... read more
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Asia » Laos » West » Pakbeng April 29th 2011

Up for breakfast and back on the boat for the day! I spent a lot of my time sitting on the front of the boat taking in the scenery! It was overcast all morning but it got sunny in the afternoon. Most people played cards all day on the boat. Ate another full lunch and I tried everything (which I later regretted). Had a stop at a Cave that was cut out of a limestone cliff. Walked up the stairs to the cave and inside there were a bunch of Buddhist statues. It was so hot in this cave with no air movement so I found it hard to enjoy this as I thought I was gonna pass out. I quickly went back down the stairs and onto the boat where I thought for a second ... read more




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