Laos

Vang Vieng countryside Laos

Rural countryside of Vang Vieng

Posts on Laos by Kyle the Vagabond:

Overview:

Southeast Asia’s only landlocked nation, after decades of brutal struggle and warfare, Laos is currently content to simply sit back and relax. The people, the atmosphere, the monks, the markets, they all operate at a level of calm that is a breath of fresh air from the sometimes frenetic pace of its neighbors. The landscape is a pretty nice feature as well. Chock full of dramatic mountains, limestone cliffs, deep caves, wide rivers and raging waterfalls, Laos is a little country that warrants a lot of exploring. Currently my personal Southeast Asian favorite.

Currency:

Kip; Exchange Rate: $1= 8,210 Kip (August 6, 2010). For more currency conversion info visit xe.com

When To Go:

The rainy season in most of Laos is from March-October, with November-February bringing the driest weather–and the crowds. Rains in the rainy season can be light and sporadic, though it can make map_laosbackroad travel a nightmare. Low-lying valleys plains maintain moderate temperatures throughout the year, heating up considerably in the wetter summer months, and the northern mountains can potentially drop to freezing in the winter

Travel Tip:

Bus rides in Northern Laos are on mountainous, winding roads, making bus travel a slow, brutal battle. But, it’s really the only form of transport, so pack some patience and a strong stomach for the ride.

The Vagabond’s Personal Favorites:

1. Explore Vang Vieng

Gert lost in deep caves down country dirt roads, or simply float the shallow, bar-lined river in awe of the stunning scenery. One of the most beautiful places I have ever seen.

2. Peruse the red tents of the Night Market,  Luang Prabang

It’s easy to relax in this misty northern town on the Mekong River full of monks, markets, and monasteries. Or get out of town on a daytrip and explore waterfalls and caves.

3. People watch at Patuxai, Vientiane.

The social hub of this sleepy capital city is the Patuxai monument, a mini-Arc de Triomphe that also has fountains, cafes, and great people-watching

Posts on Laos by Kyle the Vagabond

Chilling out in Luang Prabang (2009)

Relaxation and Adventure in Scenic Vang Vieng (2009)

Vientiane (2009)

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