Exploring is my favorite thing to do while traveling. But exploring small villages is the best of the best. Usually tourists didn’t find out about them so the essence of the place is not changed. But hey we need hostels to sleep so good thing there are a bit of tourists there :P
I talked before of Laos Towns so now it’s time to know more of my feelings about Laos villages. Sorry if I completly forgot the villages’ names I have been but there are plenty to choose from. I went to a travel agency in Luang Prabang and checked all tours and wrote down the villages names ;) I booked my bus to Vietnam with this agency so I was able to leave my big backpack and bring only a small bag with essential stuff for a week. It’s so awesome to travel ultra light!
As soon as we arrived in the first village we felt a good vibe. WE because I was still traveling with Michael from Germany, my travel buddy for Laos. All kids and old people greeting us with a smile and “Sabadee” (something like Namaste in India and Nepal) we felt really welcome. Their economy is basically from the fish of mekong river and tourists so maybe that’s why they make the extra effort to be nice but I never felt it was fake.
In the way to find an hostel for the next days we met Joanne from China, she had a lot of luggage with her so we asked if she needed help. Minutes after me and Michael adopted her so it was the 3 of us exploring the villages together. It was the very first time I was traveling with a chinese and she made all easy because her english was pretty good, not so usual. I couldn’t believe when she said they didn’t have facebook or youtube in China… WHAT? The first question that came to my mind was how the heck we would contact eachother?! Oh email, that’s right.
Other then hiking and relaxing there’s not much you can do around here. In the second village we found a bungalow in front of the river for 3€/room which means we paid only 1€ person/night for an amazing experience! In this area there was a big group of backpackers that were traveling alone and met people in the way.
The last night together we made a bonfire and had great conversations. I could practise my bad spanish with a mexican who married a spanish girl to be european citizen and travel all Europe. I never thought about it, non-european people struggle a lot to travel Europe for a year or so, I’m so lucky! Actually portuguese has no big problems getting in/out borders, we are cool guys and have no trouble with anyone [Thombs UP Cristiano Ronaldo] I see americans in trouble many times, in Vietnam or Bolivia! I wish we could live without borders and Planet Earth was only one country. But then, what about all different cultures? I just don’t like that humans are treated in a different way depending on where they come from. We are all the same. In Thailand they have this sentence: Same, same but different.
This was the hostel we stayed in the first village, pretty cozy, built by the owners with wood and bambu. Every night we would make a circle around fire and ask all different questions about life in Laos to the owners, they were so nice to answer all and happy to improve their english!
Do you enjoy visiting villages? Which ones would you recommend?