Page 6 of Beata and Tomek Travel Blog Posts

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Hsipaw May 2nd 2012

Decisions, decisions, decisions. Where to go and what to do next... We were already half way down of our stay in Burma when we had to decide if we wanted to make a stopover in Mandalay or head straight to Hsipaw. We heard that trekking in Hsipaw is much more picturesque than the one from Kalaw to Inle Lake so we opted for this place. Yet before that we spent two days in Mandalay just to see what this place is about. People don’t say anything great about it but we were really surprised how much we liked it. It is big but rather small, had good local transport to see the neighborhood and some very interesting old cities around. We loved the very impressive Mahamuni Paya and old Amarapura City with famous U Bein’s Bridge(longest ... read more
love the way they look;-)
man paying his respects to golden Buddha statue
wow, that is a big group;-)

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Bagan April 27th 2012

Arriving at a new place in the middle of a night is never nice. For one thing you are still half asleep and for another you feel much disoriented about where you are and what you are doing there. It is also a time when your common sense may be switched off for a while and you are more likely to agree on some room or rickshaw or simply any other fare that normally you would not. We had no choice though if we wanted to save some time and not to overnight in Yangon. We really, really did not want to take a night bus (not a sleeper bus) but that way we could save some money on accommodation and some time on getting into Bagan. We were rushed out of a bus and some ... read more
smaller but beautiful
Shwezigon Paya
beautiful sunset

Asia » Burma » Southern Burma » Mawlamyine April 22nd 2012

We were in such great moods when leaving Kinpun to continue our journey more south to Mawlamyine or Moulmeine as known to George Orwell during his work time over there. Back in Siem Reap, Cambodia we were told by a couple of German travelers that if we wanted to do one boat ride in Burma this should be the place. Well, this epic boat ride supposedly only starts in this place and then continues on to a small town of Hpa-An through a jungle and limestone karsts. This was exactly the reason why we went there. Surprisingly this 3rd largest city in Burma has a very small town feel. I would never say it was a big city. It has some stunning colonial architecture (by the river front) and big market to stroll along but life ... read more
on the way to the Paya
tea with monks
colonial street of Malwamyine

Asia » Burma » Southern Burma » Kyaiktiyo Pagoda April 20th 2012

We entered the country that is still buried somewhere in the 80s Ah Burma...finally...after so many months on the road we were finally about to experience it. We must admit that the beginning of our tour around Burma has come in exactly the right time. As much as we loved those a few past months in Cambodia, Laos and northern Thailand, we also found them...well, quite similar. It is true that we did not find Vietnam amazing at first because of many things that happened during our stay there but at least it was different to its neighbouring countries. Now we can appreciate this fact. Yet Burma, we were more than certain would have been quite something extraordinary hence our big excitement. Of course there is this problematic issue of money when you travel to Myanmar ... read more
beautiful sunset upon Mt. Kyaiktiyo
custom made prayers

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Sukhothai April 16th 2012

Thai New Year - Songkran Festival (12-15th April)*, well known to 'falangs' as Water Festival met us already in Pai and together with hundreds of other tourist we went to Chang Mai which apparently is THE place to be for these celebrations. But we don't like to be like everybody else so we decided to continue our journey more south to Sukhothai to experience Songkran between temple ruins of its historical park. Again we achieved our everlasting goal of being ones of only a few westerners in town and we enjoyed this selfish felling a lot. On the way to Sukhothai we could observe water being splashed everywhere around. We felt lucky that we were arriving late in the afternoon as this 3 day long water fight ceases before dusk. There is no fun in being ... read more
Khmer influenced temple
tourist monk
finally joining the water party

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai April 12th 2012

It took us around two days and 3 changes of a bus to get to Chang Mai from Nong Khiaw in Laos but we did not have time to stop on the way for longer. We had only 10 days to get to Bangkok for our flight to Burma so we had to distribute our time wisely. We met some nice Ukrainian guys on a bus to Chang Rai and we had a blast talking about our neighbouring countries and other visited places. Shame that they were staying in Chang Rai and we were just swapping buses there. Buses in Thailand are a luxury when compared with Laos and actually cost the same price. Everything seemed so modern straight away. 7Eleven on every corner, western brands everywhere, highways etc. We even got cookies and water from ... read more
Pat Thai noodles
emerald Buddha
dragon fly

Asia » Laos » West » Luang Prabang April 6th 2012

I think night buses in Vietnam must have put us off as by no means we wanted to get on a night bus in Laos, even though it meant a waste of time. In this case we took a morning 9 am bus to Luang Prabang knowing that it might take the whole day;-( It was quite costly to get there but at least we did not have to break the journey in Laos's 'sin city' of VanVieng (taxi-bus-taxi 340,000kip/40$ for two) hahah Maybe we missed some great views (which we saw on the way) and parties but we knew for sure that the view of drunk and/or stoned teenagers pissing into the river (or as we heard their own drink) is not why we came to Laos;-) Luang Prabang on the other hand was what ... read more
Luang Prabang's waterfalls
beautiful lanterns
pictures at night market

Asia » Laos » South » Tham Lot Kong Lo April 1st 2012

* hundreds of kilometres of dirty roads in central Laos, done usually by motorbike within 3-4 days are commonly called 'The Loop' You probably know situations when you feel that you ought to do something just because a lot of people do it or/and just because you are already in some particular place so why not? Well this was one of those times I guess when we struggled with a decision whether to do some journey or not. From Pakse we headed to Takheak where we hoped to get more information about how to get to Kong Lo village – place where famous 7.5 km long cave is located. It was a very long journey (11h) by painstakingly slow buses operating on Lao time. The bus was a funny thing we must admit. It looked like ... read more
Kong Lo village
too big for him...
Kong Lo cave

Asia » Laos » South » Bolaven Plateau March 23rd 2012

From Don Det our plan was to go to Champasak and that was exactly the destination written on our tickets (45,000Kip/5,5$ each and same price as ticket to Pakse). After few hours in a small and crammed bus we were dropped at the crossroad and shown the direction where Champasak was. When we asked how far, they said that it was a few kilometres. 'Are you kidding me? We paid to get to Champasak!!!' We only got some head nodding and hand waving and that was it. We were lucky there were two English girls at this crossroad that just arrived from Champasak and they told us that it was a few kilometres by taxi and then few minutes on a boat to cross the river and that there was no ATM in town. Unfortunately ATM ... read more
flowers near waterfalls
on top of Tat Fan waterfall

Asia » Laos » South » Don Det March 19th 2012

Entering into the country where time goes a lot slower!!! We had to overnight in Kratie again when on the way to Laos and this time we opted for a very cheap 4$ per night room. It was basic but clean so no complains. Seems that Kratie offers cheapest food as well as rooms in Cambodia. We could have gone the same day to Laos but afternoon buses arrive late in the evening at the border and we did not want to pay even higher 'stamping fee' for our crossing. To be honest this whole fee process is a joke. Everybody knows it is illegal payment/bribe for doing nothing but yet no-one complains. People just pay and the worst thing is that last year it was 1$ on each side (from what I have read on ... read more
Don Det village
beautiful Mekong
sunset in Don Det

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