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Mark's World Tour 2007-08

Day 119: A very enjoyable day in Luang Prabang

LAOS | Monday, 3 March 2008 | Views [1033]

Monday 3rd March

Once again, I had a list of tasks to accomplish, the primary aim being to sort out a flight from LP to Siem Reap in Cambodia, where I am due to meet Maria & Simon in the middle of the month. Although many buses and trains travel between the major regional cities in SE Asia, there is no obvious – or straightforward – route between the parts of Laos and Cambodia that I want to get to and from. One option would be to go via Bangkok and then cut across to Cambodia from the west, but this would take about three or four days; although the flight was always going to be more expensive, it would instead take about three or four hours, and save me an awful lot of hassle.

I headed out into town, had some breakfast and bought a ticket for $200, pretty steep but it was a well reasoned decision. I spent the rest of the afternoon in a quiet cafe, making use of their wi-fi and doing some emailing before I set off into the countryside again for a few days. I had bought a ticket for a boat trip up to the town of Nong Khiaw, about six or seven hours by river north of LP. The bus is quicker, but the views from the river are apparently worth the extra time (and cost).

In the afternoon, I took a walk about town and enjoyed the calmness of the place. Although there are many tourists, concentrated along one main street, there are some parts that are particularly peaceful, and I even came across a sandy beach along the banks of the Mekong. Some of the locals swim and fish in and around this area, and I earmarked it for a place to take a dip myself when I return to LP after a few days.

The town really made a good impression on me. Even the quality of shops and the souvenirs that were on sale around town took my interest. They seemed a lot more attractive than the usual tourist tat the you find in the average tourist centre. I didn't get up to a whole lot else during the evening, apart from getting myself organised for the early start the next morning.

Tags: relaxation


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