We’ve arrived in Laos!
Crossing the border from Thailand was pretty straightforward and getting our visa-on-arrival wasn’t too tricky and only involved one 20 baht backhander in order for it to be processed.
Once inside the country, we took a pretty well-trodden tourist route - the slow boat from Huay Xai to the UNESCO World Heritage city of Luang Prabang (via a 1 night stopover in Pak Beng).
The first leg was lovely - we had tonnes of room, the scenery was spectacular and the mood on board was jovial. After our night in Pak Beng (a village that surely can’t believe its luck that so many foreigners are now passing through every day), we arrived at the pier to take the second leg, only to discover we were now all being put on a smaller vessel. By the time Jade and I boarded, all the seats were taken.
Eager to please, the crew started pulling seats off of a neighbouring boat and put them in the engine room where all the smokers convened and where there was barely any airflow. We didn’t enjoy it very much.
Since then, we’ve explored the city of Luang Prabang (touristy, pretty, interesting) and the capital city of Vientiane (intriguing, complex, blossoming) and we’re now in Vang Vieng (stunning, adventurous, vibey). We’re in Laos for another week or so before we head to Vietnam.
New on YouTube
In our latest travel vlog, we’re taking a bus out of Amritsar, India and heading towards the Pakistan border to see the Attari–Wagah Border Ceremony.
The ceremony marks the daily closure of the border gates and happens every day at around 5pm (varies according to time of sunset). Anyone can go to watch it for free, so we did.
There also another video that you might have missed, in which we go the world’s largest kitchen at the Golden Temple and enjoy a free vegetarian meal.
Trending on the website
Our most popular travel guides change with the seasons and this time of year is no exception. Here’s what’s being read the most right now on our website.
Give Back is a tool that we created to help you find amazing experiences and give back to the places you visit. In each newsletter, we highlight one of the more recent additions to the database.
Discover a reforested area of Thailand
One of the latest activities added to Give Back is one we’ve actually taken part in.
During our visit to Pai, Thailand, we visited a newly reforested area to discover the work of Conserve Natural Forests. We even got our hands dirty by potting some seedlings for the nursery. It was a wonderful day, topped off by a visit from Kamee, an elephant that is free to roam the area as she pleases.
In each newsletter, we bring you the best bits from the internet that we’ve seen recently.
- Travel companies are ‘greenwashing’ — here are 3 ways to find ones that aren’t
- A new overland trip to northern Africa with flight-free travel company Byway proves you don’t need to hop on a plane to venture further afield. (If you end up going to Morocco, here are 24 things to know before you go).
- Prince Harry has launched an eco-travel scheme inspired by sustainable Maori practices
- Travel better in 2023 with these top 10 sustainable holiday destinations
And that’s it for our fortnightly newsletter. We hope you found it useful. We’d love to hear from you if you have any questions or comments. If you’re receiving this in your inbox, just hit reply!
Until the next one,
Jade and Matt
P.S. If you’re curious about the tools we’re using to plan and book our big Asian adventure, head to our Resources section.