The spring roll thief
Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
371Trip End Feb 26, 2011
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Where I stayed
The flight only took 1 hour, but for Andrew it was an hour too long as he sat white knuckled even while he ate his in flight 'snack' (some kind of hard sandwich, chocolate sponge cake and a brown piece of apple - maybe they could learn something from Ethiopia Airways)
Anyway we got to Vilay guesthouse, our home for the next few nights, and settled down to a chat and a beer with the owners Vilay and Ben and a semi-permanent Australian guest (with 5 Beer Lao's which were great) before getting an early night (11pm'ish) in preparation for a sight-seeing frenzy tomorrow.
Our intended early start wasn't quite as early as we’d liked but nevertheless we still made time for a bakery stop en route. Tucking in to our delicious slices of pizza we wandered in to town appreciating all the quaint little shop houses and colonial mansions along the Mekong River. Luang Prabang sits in a deep valley cut by both the Mekong and Khan Rivers and was a mountain kingdom for more than a thousand years.
Firstly we explored the Old City and the Wats on Sisavang Vong were stunningly beautiful, it was so calming and serene to walk around them while the monks were milling around in their bright orange robes
Next we visited the former Royal Palace which is now a museum housing the remaining royal paraphernalia which wasn’t looted. The most impressive part of the building was the Throne room which is decorated with amazingly beautiful multi coloured glass mosaic walls, unfortunately photography was not allowed but it was absolutely stunning. The museum also contains the most sacred Budda image in all of Laos, the Pha Bang, which is from what Louang Prabang takes its name.
In the same grounds we also saw a photography exhibition entitled "The floating Budda", lots of black and white stills depicting the towns monks’ history.
Later (after about 5 hours of walking) we somehow mustered up the energy to climb Phou Si, the hill in the centre of the city, to visit the temple and take in the beautiful views of Luang Prabang
Feeling all templed out we had a couple of Beer Laos in one of the bars on the main street convincing the bar tender that despite it only being 3pm that he should charge us Happy Hour prices. We got chatting to a couple of Irish girls who were traveling the opposite way around Laos so could fill us in on the madness that is Vang Vieng. Having whiled away a fair few hours in the bar we were feeling a little hungry so ventured in to the night market in search of food. We found a buffet stall which had a huge array of dishes on offer so filled our plates, Andrew managed to hide four spring rolls and 4 eggs (which should have been extra) under his mountains of noodles so felt quite pleased with himself, shame on him when the price for a plateful was only 10,000 kip (about 60p). Andrew Edit - The spring rolls were an extra 2,000 and eggs an extra 1,000 I didn't deceive anyone, no-one asked if I had any extras and it was only afterwards I saw the signs advising that eggs and spring rolls were extra.
Erica edit: No, he knew alright!
Feeling full we walked down to the river to attempt to walk some of our feast off and got totally disorientated by all the night market stalls that had appeared, or maybe that was the effects of the Beer Laos. After 'One for the ditch’ , a term that we learned from our Irish chums Rorie and Emer, at a river side restaurant we called it a night and drunkenly navigated our way home. Andrew edit - Erica neglects to mention we actually had 10 beer Lao each (they are about 650ml each and 5%) and we were completely and utterly trollied.