ex-Marine (husband, Steve) and I went to Laos over the Millenium and spent a fast two days visiting Vientiane and Luang Prabang. As a matter of fact, our plane from Hanoi to Vientiane was the first to take off and land January 1, 2000. (Hard to believe that was six years ago.) Both places were filled with sweet people, unusual sights and left us wanting to see more of this country.
Reading through the huge Explore UK catalog, I came across the “Spirit of Laos,” a 17-day in-depth tour of the country starting in the remote west and traveling overland to Luang Prabang. From there, it included a series of airplanes, driving and a boat journey down the Mekong River into the southernmost part of Laos, close to the Cambodian border.
The trip began and ended in Bangkok, Thailand, probably the easiest part of this trip. Because of the adventurous nature involved, a high-tolerance level for “potential discomfort” was needed. There would be visits to numerous ethnic minority villages, full-day walks, long drives with possible landslides and delays, the boats were not exactly a Celebrity Cruise, and some guesthouse stays may have shared bathroom facilities.
So what’s a little discomfort when we’d have a chance to see the Plain of Jars, visit Wat Phu (a 6th century temple considered one of the archaeological wonders of Laos). and do some elephant riding! It sounded great to us.