from north to south

checking in from vientiane, again.
this time we are only in the city for a few hours.
we will board a sleeper bus tonight at 8:30 pm that will take us to pakse, which is in the south of laos. we will arrive there at around 6:30 am. 
before i get ahead of myself talking about our future plans, let me blog about what we have been up to since i last posted. we were in vang vieng for 5 nights and we biked, hiked, tubed, relaxed, ate really well & watched the beautiful sunset every night. vang vieng was seriously amazing. the weather was great (it could have been hotter, but it was still nice), the people were friendly and the atmosphere was so chill. 
one day we didnt have anything planned so we just hiked around & found a cave and had a guide take us about 30 minutes deep to a natural “lagoon” inside the cave. that experience was cool, even though the lagoon water was kinda nasty. after that we just walked around town & down by the river where the local kids showered. another day we tubed and spent about 3 hours just floating down the relaxing mekong river. toward the end of our tubing ride some local boys hopped on our tubes to help paddle up downstream. we thought they were just “hitchin a ride” but really they wanted a tip at the end. for what, i dont know. and almost every evening we found a riverfront restaurant and brought our books to read while we soaked up the last bit of heat from the firery red sun. 
after vang vieng we minibussed it to phonsavan. that was one long & terrible minibus ride. we were cramped like 15 into a 10 person minibus and the roads here are indescribably terrible. they are not paved and there are no highways between cities and everything is up and down and around mountains. and to top it off the girl behind me threw up. it was so bad. anyways we arrived in phonsavan after 6 hours on the road. looking back we probably would have skipped going there, but for some reason i was set on seeing the ‘plains of jars,’ which wasnt even THAT cool. the town phonsavan was depressing, cold and ugly and dirty. we did not like it there, to say the least. the moment we arrived we booked a bus for the next night to leave. anyways, we did go on a tour of all 3 sites of the plains of jars and the guide was nice and informative. but like after seeing site 1 you dont really need to go to the other sites, the jars all look the same its just the locations that are different. he took us also to see a giant buddah and also to see another really pretty temple that was in the middle of nowhere. after the tour we came back to our hostel, showered, ate and then packed to board a sleeper bus to vientiene (where we are now). the sleeper bus was pretty wild. it was like bunks where 2 people fit (barely!) on a bed & if you were traveling alone, you had to bunk with a random. so awkward. the ride was also very twisty and turney and people were snoring so it was kinda hard to actually sleep, even though you are literally laying on a bed, but dek & i dozed off a few times. 
now i am back to the beginning of the post where tonight we will board another sleeper bus to get to the south of laos, to pakse. we were suggested by a friend to visit tad lo, which is in the salavan province. we really want to go see the waterfalls there. this one in particular looks amazing. 
kayakers on the mekong in vang vieng
 just walkin around
 roosters & chickens were everywhere! 
it was very…fitting.
 i had a view of some boys fishing from where we had dinner
 one of the many breath-taking sunsets we witnessed in vang vieng
 coffee break
a bridge made out of wood and bamboo that was kinda scary to cross
the way to the cave was so pretty & green

 in the cave, luckily it was really big & wide so i didnt get claustrophobic
in phonsavan 
3 placemats on 1 table. 
i just loved this photo for some reason
 plain of jars- site 1- in phonsavan
 the jars were huge!!!
 a crater left from the bombs dropped 
 make sure to stay inside the white markers because not all the ground is cleared of bombs
 it didnt budge  🙂
monkeying around at the plain of jars site 3

a “house” being held up by empty bombs that the locals detonated and used 
  
 dusty road where the villages are in phonsavan
 antennas being held up by bamboo
 he poured the melted aluminum into these boxes and they formed spoons because of the spoon shape cut-out on the inside of the box

a giant buddah

  a crazy-looking caterpillar 
 a temple with local boys playing soccer
 beautiful laos
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