Wednesday, November 21, 2012

"Tubing" in Vang Vieng after the shutdown

To travel 160km in a mini van in Laos is rather labourious. You see the roads in this country are so bad that a 2 hour journey is around 8 hours. There are plenty of things to see though and the villages you drive through show people enjoying their day to day lives, kids playing and people working.

Cows wandering around on the road on our way to Vang Vieng
In the mini van we met an awesome German couple, Lina and Benny, and hung out with them whilst we were in Vang Vieng.

We stayed in little bungalows across the river in Vang Vieng. At the Banana Bungalows Sonja and I paid 25,000 Kip (of $3.00 Australian) each a night for our private bungalow with our own bathroom and beautiful view of the mountains.

Our accomodation at Banana bungalows
Our first night in Vang Vieng was not too exciting. You can see what the city would have been like only a few months ago before the infamous incident when the Laos army marched into the town and burned down all the bars. We had a couple of drinks in the Monkey Bar, Gary's Irish Bar before watching a little bit of Friends at the Otherside Restaurant and going to bed.

Playing pool with Lina at the Monkey Bar on our first night
Sonja's breakfast overlooking the river
The next day we went sober tubing where we met a lovely girl, Johanna from Finland and Dylan from Canada.

Tubing was a bitter sweet experience as you can see how awesome the party scene on the river would have been with all the remnants of the bars. At the same time though on our 3 hour trip down the river we also experienced the locals finally being able to use their home and their environment. There were Laos men around a fire singing, people fishing, children singing and playing and people out on their boats. It was relaxed and peaceful. We could also understand how tubing could be dangerous whilst drunk as both Sonja and I scraped our backs on rocks in the rapids.

We had a really fun night our second night starting the night in the Otherside, moving onto Monkey bar where we made friends with some Kiwi dudes, Matt and Greigh, from Dunedin, moving onto Gary's before stocking up at the diary and going to drink with a bunch of backpackers on the bridge. It's like we were naughty teenagers again drinking on the bridge, haha good times!

This is the bridge where the party moves to after the bars close
Love to all,

Kim and Sonja


  1. Love that last photo of you Kimbo! You look so beautiful :)

  2. great read and love the photos. thanks :)