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Published: October 21st 2012
Thai city of Nakhon Pathom across the river.
It had to happen sooner or later. Midway into my journey from Savannakhet to Tha Khaek, the minibus suffers a puncture. I believe this was the first time I'd encountered this since I started my little Southeast Asian adventure some five months ago. Not surprising at all though, considering the quality (or lack thereof) of the roads and vehicles that I've been travelling on all this while. The bigger surprise might have been that it hadn't occurred earlier!
But in the end it was just a relatively straightforward one hour wait as the driver got things fixed, and before long I had arrived in Tha Khaek, another *thriving* Laotian border town right by the Mekong, on a part of the river so narrow you can see the Thai city of Nakhon Pathom very clearly across.
Although there isn't actually that much special to see in the town itself, Tha Khaek is a popular stop for foreigners doing visa runs from Thailand, thanks to its proximity. It's also a much-used base for what is known as "The Loop", a 3-4 day counter-clockwise motorcycle journey of several hundred kilometres in the province, usually culminating in a visit to the (not-so) nearby
Downtown Tha Khaek
Quiet and almost deserted even during mid-day, like pretty much all the other cities/ towns I've seen so far in Laos!
Kong Lor Cave.
I do plan to see the Kong Lor Cave too, apparently 7.5 km long and navigable only by longtail boat (in the dark!), and considered embarking on "The Loop". But thinking about the logistics and potential hiccups due to wrong turns (not to mention accidents!), I decided I would perhaps instead try to make my way to the cave just using a less adventurous combination of bus and sawng thaew.
Updates to follow then!
Tot: 0.03s; Tpl: 0.018s; cc: 10; qc: 25; dbt: 0.0053s; 1; m:saturn w:www (22.214.171.124); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.2mb