We’ve just had two weeks in Luang Prabang – how the time has flown by! It’s so easy to lose days here; the pace of life is pretty slow. Paired with a lingering stomach bug and it doesn’t feel like we’ve done that much, but nonetheless I’ve really enjoyed it. I think we could have stayed less than two weeks and got a good idea, but as I said, no regrets, as it was nice to really get a feel for the place.
Some highlights were:
Kuang Si Waterfalls
Though a major tourist trap (especially getting into the afternoon) this was a beautiful spot and so worth the hour-long journey from Luang Prabang. We climbed the steep hill to the top and swam in the gorgeous blue pools.
Swimming pool, mini waterpark, bar with part-submerged seating, sun loungers, food, two for one cocktails… What’s not to love!?
Adventuring over the Mekong
I took the ferry and explored both on foot and on bikes, and saw some awesome old temples in the forest and endless dirt roads. We didn’t get as far as the waterfalls but still had a good time seeing a different side to Luang Prabang in a more rural setting, and a more realistic look at life in Laos. Dave and I also took a private boat trip up the river, which was a great experience – we saw so much farming going on, on land that is only visible for 5 months of the year! So much work and then it’s all underwater again until next year.
This is a great place to get cheap baguettes and fruit shakes in the day, and just about any kind of handicrafts you can imagine at night. The covered food section is also definitely an experience! You can get vegetarian buffet bowls for 1500 Kip (about £1.50), so this is a great place to get a good value dinner.
Mandalao Elephant Trip
After searching around to find a tour company that didn’t offer elephant riding (actually pretty difficult!) we found Mandalao and booked a half-day trip. We came away feeling completely in awe of these incredible animals. We got to feed them, bathe them, walk with them through the jungle, and even got a little kiss at the end! Mandalao are doing some incredible work to rehabilitate elephants rescued from the logging industry, and I want to write a longer post about their work at some point, so watch this space! For now take my word for it that we were very satisfied that we had given our money to a worthy cause, and managed to get some incredible photos and memories.
I met Rotem in Pai a few weeks ago and it’s taken me this long to look up her Soundcloud. Loving this tune so so much <3