Laos has been one of our most favorite countries thus far. It was not on our original itinerary, but our tour guide in Egypt, and several other traveler's we met, insisted we had to visit this wonderful country. We flew from Bangkok to the small, sleepy capital of Vientiane and then took a local bus to Vang Vieng and got a flat tire on the way there. In Vang Vieng we participated in some unforgettable outdoor activities such as tubing down the river where you can stop at shoreside bars, have a beer and take a giant swing into the water or attempt the zip line which is intimidating but fun as hell, just hold on tight. We met a very cool couple from Canada and the four of us got caught up in talking and missed our exit from the river. It was beginning to get dark and we had to climb our way through two muddy cornfields and natures other obstacles before we finally made our way back to town. It was quite the adventure. After two days in Vang Vieng we took another bus to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Luang Prabang for a bit. Luang Prabang
is a great little city and we found a wonderful place to stay at Thong Bay. Check it out http://www.thongbay-guesthouses.com. We felt like family from the day we arrived. The staff here are so friendly and welcoming and the food is delicious. We were about a twenty minute walk from the town center. It was perfect. While here we visited one of our most favorite museums of the trip. We took a boat trip along the Mekong River and visited the Pak Ou caves filled with hundreds of different kinds of Buddha statues. We hiked to a beautiful waterfall and saw a black bear and tiger rehabilitation center which was quite fascinating. We woke up one morning at 5:15am to watch the monks walk the streets of the city center collecting offerings such as rice, bananas and flowers from the local people and family members. A truly spriritual event. We wanted to stay in Luang Prubang longer, but we had to get to Hanoi and explore some of Vietnam before we left for Bali.