After Buddha Park we hopped into a minibus to take us to Vang Vieng. They said it’s about 3 hours. Definitely speaking Lao time. It took over an hour to pick everyone up all over town (and by this I mean a 7 block radius). We were the first ones on, which means we had the best choice of seats. So maybe the extra time was worth it. Thought we did circle back around to our guesthouse at the end of the hour (this happens to us again a few days later).We set ourselves up in the front row behind the driver. Which meant being frozen out by the AC. Luckily we were prepared with jackets, jumpers and scarves! The ride wasn’t so bad. We stopped for a break about halfway. Luckily I fell asleep during the second half because it was raining hard and the roads were a bit scary. But our driver seemed very safe and professional.
We arrived almost 5 hours later and grabbed a tuktuk to our bungalow at Magic Monkey. It was pouring so we just wandered around a bit buying luxury rain ponchos, pink of course. We decided to do an excursion for the next day, which we booked right at our accommodation. Super easy and pay at the end! Zip line. Tubing. Blue Lagoon. This was the first time I’d been ziplining. I’ve been wanting to do it for awhile. Carmen had been before so she was ready. Our tour, TCK, was extremely organized. We had to take a tuktuk, a boat, an off-road truck (up a crazy steep hill) and walk a bit but it was all worth it.
Ziplining in the middle of the vast, green jungle was incredible. Once I got the hang of it, and pushed my fear of heights aside, I was just staring out in the beautiful scenery before me. WOW! Between the landscape and the Adrenalin rush from flying through the air, I was in Paradise! We got to 2 foot bridges (however many meters off the ground). Everyone was taking the one in the right which was way scarier than the one on the left. I asked our guide why we were using the left. His answer, “because that one not funny!” Then he bounces me while I walked on the log bridge (in flip flops!). Again, pushing aside my fear. All in all it was a great experience and my favore part of the day!
Tubing was cool but not what I expected. There were 3 of us, Carmen and me, and a Japanese girl Norito. We all held each other’s hands tightly as we tried not to drift into trees or away from each other. Sometimes our guide was there to rescue us and sometimes we had to rescue ourselves.
Last was the Blue Lagoon. Apparently there are 5 and the furthest ones re more beautiful, obviously. We went to BL1, which wasn’t so blue and packed with people, mostly Korean. But they were cheering each other on as they jumped one by one off the tree into the pool. It was really cute when some scared souls finally found the courage to jump and everyone clapped. I jumped twice then was ready to be dry.
Once back to our bungalow and clean and dry, we divided to head out for dinner. But as fate would have it, our place was having a party! Free Lao food and Lao whisky! Turns out it was one of the guy’s birthdays. We hung out with the staff and other guests, drinking BeerLao and whisky.
After awhile the ordered a tuktuk and took us to Sakur, the hot bar in town. We danced the night away on a stage surrounded by a mix of people, many holding balloons that I’d guess weren’t filled with helium. The music was also a mix but when Gangnam Style came on..oh boy! The crowd went nuts!
We eventually grabbed out friends and headed home. The next day Carmen, Jane (a new bungalow friend from the night the before) and I set out for a trek to a viewpoint we heard was amazing. Jane’s travel buddy didn’t make it with us as he had a bit too much Lao whiskey! It was finally sunny, but also hot. We had to walk up to town, through it and down a long, paved road where we passed 7-8 villages.
When we saw the sign for the viewpoint it said 500 meters. We read about it and most people said about 30-40 minutes. Nope. Took us over an hour as we stepped on tottering stones, slipped on mud, and climbed “steps” using ropes on either side.
And did I mention it was hot? My shirt was so saturated I couldn’t even swipe my face dry. We made it to the top where they had cold drinks and a shelter. We sat taking everything in and relaxing. The climb down wasn’t as bad but there were some tough spots. All in all, definitely worth it!
Couldn’t head home without grabbing some street food. Peanut butter and Nutella crepes.
After a good scrub, we relaxed with some BeerLao watching the gorgeous scenery in front of us fade to black.