Day 24: Pak Ou Cave

Trip Start Dec 26, 2012
Trip End Jan 29, 2013

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, Louangphabang,
Sunday, January 20, 2013

Today we were up early to grab our slow boat to the Buddha caves. We were told that there was multiple Buddha relics which were kept in the caves which we were told were very interesting to see. We got on our slow boat with another 5 people and were off. Unfortunately, it was very foggy and unusually cold so the start of the trip was hard to enjoy as we had dressed in apparently inappropriate attire.

It was nice to see all of the fishermen out in their boats along the Mekong and see all of the little farms on the shore. We stopped at a small village known as whiskey village for a quick tour around. As soon as we crossed the rickety bridge and climbed some large dirt steps we were met by a man trying to sell us some of his alcohol. He showed us how he made his whiskey, or Lao Lao as its called here (its basically moon shine made of sticky rice). He then let us sample some Lao Lao as well as some white and red rice wine. We bought some of each and are bringing it home for dinner the night we get back. Prepare yourselves- Lao Lao is 50% alcohol (don't worry we didn't go blind...yet).

We then headed on to the caves. They were absolutely packed with tourists, it was awful. All of the Buddha relics were breaking and unspectacular- basically a Buddha junk yard. All in all we weren't impressed especially because of the price we paid to get there and get in, but that's probably the first time we has been disappointed on this whole trip so all in all not to bad.

We piled back on our slow boat and headed back to Louangphrabang. We grabbed some appetizers at the book exchange we got our book from, it was also a restaurant. Then we got new books and headed to Utopia, a very mellow bar on the Mekong which includes gardens, a beach volleyball court and lounging chairs along a deck over looking the river. We spent the rest of the afternoon there, as well as grabbed dinner there. We went to the market one last time and grabbed an Oreo shake, our new obsession.

Then we got back to the hostel and packed everything up to get ready for Cambodia tomorrow!
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