Passage into Laos, and portraits

Laos' flag
Asia » Laos
October 31st 2008
Published: October 31st 2008EDIT THIS ENTRY

Laos ChildrenLaos ChildrenLaos Children

Absolutly amazing people here, the children are just so adorable!
The passage into Laos has been the most interesting border crossing I have ever been through. The crossing is at Chaing Kong, at the other end of the town from the bus station. To exit Thailand, we stood in a line on the side of the street to get our passports stamped, very easily missed! Then the wait on the very muddy slippery bank for a longtail boat to take us across the Mekong river into Lao. There is a small village on the other side, and another little hut to get the visa into Laos. The pricing is fairly expensive, Canadians have to pay the most at 45$ USD and all others are less than that. So we paid our money and got a stamp and carried into Laos. The village only has one ATM, and its a credit card version. We caught a tuktuk to the slow boat port....well the muddy bank where the slow boat leaves from. There are also buses that leave from this village down south and north, but the roads are very close to non-exsistant. The slow boat is about 979$TB (30$USD), and takes two days. The long boat was about 70 feet long and
Pak BangPak BangPak Bang

The slow boats waiting at Pak Bang, the night spent here from the two day slow boat ride
8 feet wide. Snacks and drinks avaliable onboard, but just pop, chips, and beer, so come prepared with some snacks. The first day took six hours, where we landed in Pak Bang, a very small village full of guest houses and resturants, but pretty much cut off. The headed out early the next morning, only to find that three boats had come into Pak Bang the night before, now that we were stuck there, they told us that there would only be one boat leaving, so we all smushed on Laos stlye. After counting 8 dead bloating, hoof/paws up straight things floating down the river (a dog-paws up, three pigs, a duck, a cow, and two unidentified large decomposing mammals) we arrived in Luang Prabang. This is one of the historic towns, and full of old french style buildings. The prices of accomadation are very high, but cheap ones can be found! But has the best night market I have been to yet though. There is one road south, and it should take four hours, but takes eight hours, due to very curvy, and half the road missing most of the time. Absolutly amazing senery though, winding through tiny villages.
Pak BangPak BangPak Bang

There may be a few similar pictures, but I just love them!
The people here are very sweet and excited to see tourists. Here are a few pics from the week or so.

Additional photos below
Photos: 41, Displayed: 23


Deliveries to Pak BangDeliveries to Pak Bang
Deliveries to Pak Bang

Everything is delivered by boat because of the high incidence of theif on buses.
Truck DelieveryTruck Delievery
Truck Delievery

Two boats where attached and delivering a vehical down stream
Inside the slow boatInside the slow boat
Inside the slow boat

There were hard wooden benches, so most people pushed those aside by the end of the trip and sat on the floor, my group and I sat in the very back, a little privete room wide open to outdoors, definetly the best seat in the house!
Elephant hard at workElephant hard at work
Elephant hard at work

This elephant was pulling massive logs down the bank to the boat.
Kaz and I chillingKaz and I chilling
Kaz and I chilling

Chilling on the back of the boat...switching between the floor and the railing
Slow BoatsSlow Boats
Slow Boats

The families that run the slow boat, also live on the slow boat, so there were many just parked along the bank, going about their daily business
Slow BoatSlow Boat
Slow Boat

The benches were the worst I have seen, so by the middle of the trip most had folded them up and sat on the floor
Day marketDay market
Day market

Lady selling soup for breakfest
Biking in Luang PrabangBiking in Luang Prabang
Biking in Luang Prabang

There were about six of us in our group, and we all rented these one speed, no breaks bikes to head up to a waterfall, 35km one way through was very interesting! Got tons of laughts out of it at least!

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