Published: February 9th 2011February 9th 2011
Vang - Vieng .......... to go or not to go?!!
We deliberated so much over whether to visit Vang-Vieng or not, we were put off by horrific stories of crowds of tourists getting ridiculously drunk whilst tubing down a river and waking up with broken ankles but with some persuasion from fellow travelers we decided to go and make our minds up for ourselves as to whether we would like it or not! The journey there was a long one, we had the slowest driver ever! We got the early bus and our friends got the late bus and they ended up getting there over an hour before us! However the scenery was incredible as per usual in Laos, the road was a windy one through mountains and karsts and really cute little villages, it is so beautiful here! As for Vang - Vieng we loved it and hated it at the same time... the general premise of floating along a river with a beer in hand is amazing but Vang-Vieng is waaaayy beyond that. It is full of tourists getting drunk (or drugged) off their faces and the majority of them are absolute yobs or groups of "lads on
tour", in parts you feel like you have walked into Magaluf - not a tiny village in Laos! However, if you get passed the yobs you can have a great day floating along the river, stopping at a few bars and trying out the zip lines and rope swings! It has just got too out of hand and it was so weird seeing all these drunk screaming tourists whilst in the background there are families going about their daily lives, rounding up the chickens and cows. It can't be a nice place for the local families to raise their kids.
We only stuck around for 2 nights and then headed south to the capital, Vientiane. We spent a couple of days here, exploring the city and its temples and walked for miles trying to find a vegetarian restaurant that didn't exist (Rikki was not happy)! We enjoyed Vientiane but wouldn't stay for any longer, it's just a city really, busy but not really too great for relaxing!
There are more photos below