A Travellerspoint blog

Luang Prabang

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The first thing we noticed about Luang Prabang was that it was cold!! In saying that it was a lovely change to have to wear more clothes! After finding a place to stay we went to explore! We found some interesting things. This town feels alot more relaxed and almost homely.
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This buddist temple was cool. Lots of steps. Chatted to a monk.
Crossed this neat (slightly dodgy) bridge and went to the textiles part of town. The way they make fabric is fascinating! Saw the silk worms and machines in operation.
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The next day was a highlight. We booked an elephant experience. We went to a sanctuary where they have rescued elephants from hard labour. These elephants were once used to haul logs out of the forest. Here they work with tourists and get days off and a pretty good life.
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Our elephants were called Chocolate and Cinnamon (42 and 40 years old). They were lovely. Fun fact: an elephant eats around 130kg of food a day!
We went for a ride along a track, fed them and then bathed with them!
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Words cannot describe how cool it was! They are such fascinating creatures and to be so close was incredible!!!

We then headed to Kuang Si waterfall. It was a bumpy ride! The falls were beautiful! Swam here.. only briefly as it was very fresh!
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Saw some sun bears which were cool. These have been rescued from people who extract bile from them. :(
Big day!

Visited the night markets and spent another day cruising.
Was a great few days.

We decided to head to Thailand from here. This gave us two travel options a day on a bus or two days up the Mekong by boat. We are well over buses for the moment so chose the boat. It was a long was to Huay Xai, but the scenery was beautiful and it was nice to be able to walk around!
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Huay Xai has been amazing! Will update soon! :) as right now its time for bed! Zzzz

Posted by stomich 08:34 Archived in Laos Comments (4)

4000 Islands and Vientiane

Well its lucky we payed extra for a mini van from Siem Reap to Loas because it was totally worth it! Ripped seats, extremely uncomfortable and a terrible driver - what more could you want?!? (Gotta love how they carry the luggage!)
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Anyway a long trip with a big stop before we got to the border. We knew it was going to be $30 for New Zealanders to cross (it depends where you come from as to how much you pay). Then the bus driver charged us $45!!! No pay = no getting back on the bus! Grrr
Anyway after another scam getting onto the boat we arrived at Don Det (a small island in 4000 Islands). The first thing we noticed was how laid back it was here! No hagglers to be heard! So far so good! We hired bikes and biked around.
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Found the 'small waterfall',
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hung out on the 'beach',
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took a boat trip to see some dolphins (no photo - I kept missing them!). Our bums were sore from biking but it was a good day.
The next day we got a bus to Vientiane. Its a long way. I wont lie it was the longest and worst bus trip of my life. (Not a great time to get sick!). Vientiane has been great! After breaking down in tears on the sidewalk when we arrived, I then spent two days in a hotel room watching a procession of movies and sleeping! Thanks Tim for finding a nice room!
Wandered around today. Energy slightly lacking so resting again before another bus trip! Woo cant harldy wait. Looking forward to Luang Prabang - have heard its very cool there!

Posted by stomich 23:30 Archived in Laos Comments (2)

Siem Reap

The amazing Angkor Wat

Siem Reap

After our 16 hour bus, we finally arrived in Siem Reap. Our perception of South East Asia improved immediately, as the small town is mainly focused on Tourism. Everything is just a tiny bit cleaner and less rubbish which makes a big difference in the vibe that the town gives you. We got a $1 Tuk Tuk to the backpacking area near the markets, and found a awesome hostel for $7. They let us check in early, and boasting 50 cent beers and aa jot shower we were happy. Eventually we set off and it wasn't long before I was getting a fish foot massage!
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Exploring the Market area on foot in the middle of the day is hot work, so we retired for AirCon and Beer.

One the Beer and AirCon had fixed our overheating, we were off to the night markets for some more Bartering.
It's a strange feeling that we are paying such a small amount compared to home, but we still think that we are getting ripped off here.

Ohwell, some successful shopping done, ready for the next day at the amazing Angkor Wat.

Angkor Wat Day 1

Today we jumped on a tour of Angkor Wat & surrounding temples.
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Amazing.

That is the only way of describing the story, the history, the size, the beauty.

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We enjoyed some pineapple on a stick... Until the monkeys saw us. Then they enjoyed pineapple on a stick. 180_20150227_170813.jpg
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Our love for Cambodia was cemented today.

Ten million words wont don't do justice of Angkor

Angkor Wat Day 2

After a good sleep, we were keen for more temples, but with Nepal looming exercise is a must.
We grabed up some pushbikes and did both! After a day on our guided tour, we felt educated enough to appreciate the temples by ourselves.

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Stacey fed an elephant two pinapples and we found the training ground where they were made battle ready nearly 1000 years ago.

We also managed to clock up 40km which is the kind of exercise we should be doing every day.

That night we went to a traditional show and dinner, and were simply amazed at the dancing of the cambodians.

That wraps up three amazing days in Siem Reap, next stop Laos (rock paper scissors helped us decide).

Posted by travellinghoney 20:29 Archived in Cambodia Comments (1)

Otres Beach

Paradise in Cambodia

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Otres Beach was bliss

After a few days in the citys, Otres was exactly what we needed. If we didn't have more on our list of must do's, we would have stayed at Otres for a few weeks.
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Our days consisted with going for a walk on the beach, lying in the sun, swimming, and keeping ourselves refreshed at the beach table service bar.
We also had a fantastic sunset view point everyday, to wrap things up.

Our accommodation was a nice little bungalow on the beach for a whopping 16 USD per day.... that's $8 each to sleep in a beautiful spot on a beautiful beach.
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I think the best way to get a feel for the priorities is in the next pixture... outdoor shower that comes with free Wifi....
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Did i mention $1 handles of beer/$3 for a jug on the beach?

After 4 1/2 days of relaxing we left for Siem Reap via overnight bus....

16 hours to get roughly 500km... thats less than 40km per hour!

Time to see Siem Reap and Angkor.

Posted by travellinghoney 14:26 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

Phnom Penh

Tim last mentioned a long boat ride into Phnom Penh. Anyone who knows me will know that I cope extraordinarily well being hot and hungry. So when we got off the boat I was feeling peachy :) haha. We were in desperate need of a place to stay and something to eat! Found the first hotel we could. Splashed out and paid $25 for a nice room with air con! Yeah baby! It was so worth it! We discovered that we were really close to some night markets and then that I am a really bad barterer! Tim did well and came out with a sweet Cambodian outfit!
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We spent the following day wandering the city. We found some fascinating temples and some amazing designs.
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It was really hot!!!!
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we made it to the genocide museum. It was awfully sad to see and hear about what happened here. So awful.. and so recent.

Had the BEST fried rice of my life!!

We decided that we had had enough of the city for a bit and booked a bus ticket to the beach! Sihanoukville. The bus was painful to say the least. 6 hours in a crammy space in some insane heat! The worst thing was we were going sooo slow!! Anyway we made it.. smelling probably more than we should. Would you believe that this is the busiest time of the year at the beach. It is packed!! We struggled to even find a room! Have moved down to Otres beach today and it is much more chill and relaxing. Enjoying some time out with the sun. As I am writing this Tim just signed us up to a snorkeling day on Monday. Hope its legit!
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Bye for now! Xx

Posted by stomich 21:52 Archived in Cambodia Comments (0)

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