Talking about cycling this week… Well I must say I am not a great cyclist myself but there’s something magical about a laid back, slow paced cycle around SE Asian towns and villages.
If you’re a globe trotter yourself or planning to conquer the world with nothing but a backpack on your back you’ve probably heard of Vang Vieng. Whether you got drunk while tubing down the Nam Song river, while it was still in its full swing or missed the all the craziness once the dangerous swings and slides got banned after way too many lives were lost due to drunken shenanigans, tubing is what majority of us travellers know Vang Vieng for.
C and I were there in late November 2011 and limited our tubing experience to watching everyone come back around 5-6pm, totally intoxicated and ruined from their day on the water.
What we did instead is immersed ourselves in the local area renting bikes and motorcycles and exploring using super awesome Hobo Map that we accidentally found and bought in Vientiane.
From local villages, caves, hills, streams and rivers to riding our (city!) bikes in rice fields on C’s 27th birthday those few days we spent in Vang Vieng were some of our most memorable and chilled our days.
I loved visiting local villages, eating chicken fried rice at the back of someone’s house. Watching kids play with a plastic water bottle as this was the only toy they had and creating stuff our of sticks and twigs using their imagination as their best guide was just so inspiring…
Don’t get me wrong, we did spend a few hours in local cafes that play episodes of Friends, South Park and Family Guy on loop and had a good laugh but if you do find yourself in Vang Vieng, do yourself a favour and go explore! It’s just too beautiful, peaceful and friendly to be missed. I found it mesmerising.
And don’t forget the Hobo Map! They’re awesome and will take you places you’d never find on your own.
Till next week