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Jamie's Global Adventures

Vang Vieng - Laos' Party Town

LAOS | Friday, 6 February 2009 | Views [6513] | Comments [1]

Vang Vieng is a fun, but conflicted town. On one side of the river you have beautiful limestone mountains, endless caves, and slow village life. On the other side of the river you have backpacker party central. Some would call it backpacker hell, but it’s really whatever you make of it. There are plenty of sights that don’t involve drinking buckets of alcohol and gorging yourself on western food/culture. We managed to find a nice balance between the two which made for an enjoyable stay.

Highlights

  • Tubing – According to our guidebook, tubing the Nam Song is a backpacker right of passage. I’d call it a giant frat party. Don’t get me wrong, I had a blast, but it’s not something I could do for more than one day. You start drinking at noon and floating the river all day, being pulled into one riverside bar after another. The rope swings, zip lines, and slides are huge and the alcohol makes them seem somewhat safe. Check out this video to get a better idea of the madness: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MKNP82uxyOc&feature=related
  • Caves – We only managed to find one good cave (Poukham), but there are tons in the region. Poukham had two massive chambers and an emerald lagoon you could dive into from a high tree branch.
  • Friends – After a long day of tubing or caving, there are tons of restaurants to stop at for a meal. Each restaurant has comfy seating and TV’s steadily repeating a standard set of shows. You can choose from Friends, Family Guy, The Simpson’s, or their vast collection of pirated movies. I hate to admit it, but I watched enough Friends to last me a lifetime.
  • River Bars – The nightlife is centered around a bunch of bars on a river island. It reminded me of Full Moon Party and Ko Phi Phi combined. We spent most of the night people-watching from nearby hammocks.
  • Rain – On our second to last day, we woke up to rain. It had been well over a month since we’d seen rain and it was coming down hard. Luckily it didn’t cause any flooding or mudslides on the roads north.

Tags: caves, friends, tubing

 

Comments

1

you can party at my place
Just send me an e-mail
[email protected]
I am located 40km north of Melbourne Victoria Australia

  sonya batrouney Mar 11, 2012 7:48 PM

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