Luang Prabang - Laos

Haven't been posting in a while, so I thought I'd post some pictures of the last place we went to. We had recently seen a lot of korean variety shows and one of them is 'Youth over flowers'. Baro, Ho Joon and Yeon Seok went there and had so much of a good time, that made us end up there as well.

The place is kinda simple, and I have been telling everyone that this is a place that's suitable for family outings, especially when you're lazy like me, and like cheap stuff like me.

The place full of temples and monks seen walking the streets of the city area. And booking a hotel in the city area is kinda like a good choice. We wake up, we walk to a temple just a few steps away from the hotel, and we sight see, then we walk back to the hotel, rest a while, and the walk a few steps to get to a popular eating place. Heck, I walk more at home then when I was in Luang Prabang.

Market view with a Wat in the background, This was taken on the entrance to Phou Si Hill. 

We had planned on one of the days there to climb Phou Si Hill, and watch the sunset from there. On one occasion, we got to the top, only to wait hours and find out that there was not going to be any sunset that day. But do use the alternate access downhill when you exit. The buddha statues there are wonderful!! Particularly like the details of the naga leading down the steps. (oops, I'm not suppose to like those right?)

Look carefully and you can see little birds inside. It's meant to be set free, not kept as pets. 

The thing I remember most!!! Coconut pancakes!! 
On one of the half days we spent there, we flagged a tuk tuk that brought us to Kuang Si waterfall. There were bears in the entrance to the waterfalls, at a place they called Tat Kuang Si Bear Rescue Centre. They (the bears) really looked comfortable especially one who seemed to be permanently stationed in the hammock.

At the Kuang Si waterfalls itself, we kinda
expected that the entire place would be filled with swimmers and young chaps jumping into the pools of water, like what was in the variety show. But I guess we made it there too early, and had the pool all to ourselves. You could jump into one of these pools and just swim there if you wanted to. 

Then comes dinner, where we had by god, the best steamboat barbecue meat we have ever had!! I mean seriously no kidding. We have a shop in Singapore selling this for 5 times the price, and it tastes five times less good. SGD10 covers dinner for 2 pax!!

And of course, its a must to see the alms ceremony. We got up at 5.00am in the morning, started preparing and then got out to see them, directly next to our hotel entrance!! We wanted to buy something, sit down and then wait, but instead ended up walking from one side of the street to the other to see which direction and how far they went.

You wouldn't be able to survive with just Laotian food the whole time. But nothing to fear, they have quite a number of different types of cuisine, from french to english to thai food. We had latte and chocolate coated pancakes at a french baguette restaurant which was again just steps away from our hotel. God, I love this place.

And if you're bored enough, you could always take a walk past a bridge along the Mekong river and have drinks at the ''cafe'' at the other side.

The nightlife on the other hand is mainly on night markets. They sell almost anything and everything, from handcrafted pouches to t-shirts to tea bag pouches to etc. etc.

And last but not least, we took a 1.5 hours boat ride to see the Pak Ou caves, with lots of Buddha statues all over and 2 levels to visit. The cave itself is relatively simple, and we thought there'd be scriptures or art carved on the cave walls, but to our dismay there weren't any. The boat ride was ok though, at least for the starting bit.

Oh well, we didn't spend much during this trip, but seriously speaking, it's value for money. Can't say that this will be the case a few years later, when the place becomes more developed.

We ended the trip thinking that this is probably one place that we would visit again. Simple, relaxing and nice. Not as nice as the guys portrayed in ''youth over flowers'', but nice enough. :) 

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