After leaving Bangkok we headed on our night bus all the way to Laos. We decided to leave Thailand for a few days to visit Laos as we heard how beautiful it was and how dramatic the landscape. We are so glad we went now as thoughts are that in a few years time it is going to get over touristy and over populated and it will def detract from how charming and rural it is - as you ride along in the bumpy bus you just cant help but be taken in by the way of life - every hut is made out of woven bamboo and as we criss crossed over the river we could see lots of people bathing and cleaning their clothes in the river which was a rather humbling experience - makes you realise how different your own life is from theirs but thinking about it i woudlnt say ours is better just very different - yes they are poor but the simple things make them laugh and smile - and it makes you realise how much we take for granted.
On a less deep note lol - Vang vieng, which is renowned as the best place in Laos to go Tubing - was fab. We stayed in really cute little river side bungalows and had really stunning views over the river and surrounding mountains - we really were in the middle nowhere and the silence was bliss!!!!! There were even hammocks where we could go and chill out right next to the water! We ended up having a lazy day as we had been on too many bus journeys but we booked ourselves on our tubing and caving trip the next day so we were all sorted.
We were up bright and early the next day to begin our trek caving and tubing expereince - the caving photos speak for themselves so i wont go into too much detail apart from we had to squeeze and crawl on our stomachs and steve went splat at one point and came out looking like a cave man ha ha very funny for us not so much for him as he hobbled on a broken flipflop he he! We also went caving on rubber rings which may not seem that dangerous but the south east asian community are not renonwned for safety techniques - as you can imagine from the free wheeling tuk tuks in bangkok - and we had batteries hanging round our necks with wires leading up to our head torches - not very safe but we went along with it anyway ha ha!
After dinner the real fun came - we walked back through the countryside to our tuk tuk and the scenery was just gorgeous! Then we headed down to the river to start tubing - they basically give you a massive rubber tyre and you just float down the river. Every so often there are bank side bars and activities to get stuck into and the people working pull you in by throwinbg you sticks to hold onto. There were some zip wires and rope swings - you go ever so high and let go if you dare ha ha - d and round had a go at it and managed to smack their asses in the process lol! The bars blast out music and some of them had camp fires for the freezing bodies and there was plenty of laos laos (laos whisky) to go around - safe to say we ended up floating down the river with big bottles of beer in hand - bennett def had the right idea by anchoring herself to the canoe that was with us and let the guys in the canoe do all the work lol! Round and Holly got a bit carried away with all the different things to see and the canoe had to come back up stream for them. All in all a brill day but the photos def say more than any journal entry could so were going to love and leave you to browse the photos.