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Thursday, November 10, 2011

25 Days of Laos (Part 15)

This is a journal of our 25-day trip around Laos on a rented Honda FTR that we fondly called Mustafa. It starts with a long bus ride from Hanoi to Laos and ends with a longer bus ride back to Hanoi.

Day 20: Vientiane to Phu Hin Boun NPA
After having gone through our loop and with 5 more days in Laos, we decided to go to the Phu Hin Bun NPA which is around 311 kilometers for Vientiane. The roads from Vientiane to Vieng Kham were pretty straight and were sort of boring after going through the mountainous terrain up north. The only thing you'd probably find exciting during the trip would be having a glimpse of North Eastern Thailand across the river or the occasional traffic jam caused by water buffalos. We had two stopovers before getting to Sala Hinboun where we were going to stay for the night. One was at a restaurant (for the sports commission according to the sign) by a river and a bridge and a small store in Vieng Kham.

A Temple That We Passed Along The Way

In Laos, water buffalos tend to have their way on the road.

Beep all you want but they ain't moving.
It was after a turn in Vieng Kham that the landscapes changed. The karsts that we passed were definitely striking. Around 38 kilometers from Vieng Kham was a view point. Below it stood several limestone karsts that had a dark, gothic appeal amidst the green and blue hues that surrounded them. It was absolutely breath-taking.

The View From The Viewpoint

The Sala Viewpoint 
 It was already 7 in the evening when we finally reached Sala Hinboun. There, we got a charming bungalow with a spacious terrace by the river. It was well-maintained and the bedroom was beautifully decorated. The only complaint that we've got would be the water running out at night. And, on our first night there, we did have some challenging shower situations. Since it was already dark, we didn't get to appreciate the beautiful view opposite our terrace.

Quick Travel Tips:

Sala Hinboun. It's around 15.1 kilometers from the Kong Lor Caves.

Sala Kong Lor. It's around 1.5 kilometers from the Kong Lor Caves. We didn't get to stay here when we were in the area since it was open yet.

The Journey Continues:

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