Loading Map...

Four Thousand Islands, Laos

Written on: Monday February 20th, 2012

A journal entry from: S.E. Asia 2012


What a difference 24 hours of traveling can make? I know that by air this is pretty obvious but when you are talking about ferries, Thai trains, buses and finally Tuk tuks the going can be fairly slow. Nevertheless at about 800kms from Koh Tao the area of Laos we are now in seems to be from a previous decade or two (you can't say century any more as time moves too quickly). Gone are the hordes of motorcycles and pickup trucks, the 7/11s and noisy bars. This is Laos and the southern part near the 4 thousand islands is very quiet and laid back. While there are quite a few tourists here it has not yet been overrun. The Lao people are still genuinely friendly and eager to please. After our long trip we ended up in Pakse, a jump off point for the south. It's a simple place but boasts a couple of good coffee shops and a beautiful rooftop restaurant whose cooking is inspired by a French chef. From there we took a minivan south to a place called Champasak. From our cute little b&b we were able to cycle to Wat Phou, a group of Khmer ruins that predate Ankor Wat by about 4 centuries. After a couple of ferry crossings in very tippy boats plus a bumpy bus ride we found our selves on the island of Don Khone in the middle of the Mekong. The island is populated by rural Lao who eke a meagre living through fishing and agriculture. The tourists are huddled in one small town at the edge of the island. There are quite a few hotels and guesthouses but few tourists. We are enjoying sipping fruit shakes and eating on the terrace of our guesthouse overlooking the river, riding around the island and reading. There is really not much else to do and we love it.



From Marianne C. on Feb 21st, 2012

Lovely update; it really does seem relaxing. Winter seems to be done with (dare I say it), green shoots are pushing their way through the soil and the pussy willows are appearing. Our umbrellas are well used these days though. Thinking of you! Best, Marianne & Co.

From Sharon B. on Feb 21st, 2012

Interesting to see the Mekong from Laos - nicer colour than Saigon :). How about we all go to Laos and build a school with windows for the kids? That might be good for them and us??? Keep us posted - nice narrative too. xoxo Sharon B.

From Carel on Feb 21st, 2012

Loving your blog and photos!