As the deadline for my Thai visa loomed closer, the call to explore beyond the borders grew louder. With excitement pulsing through our veins, we set our sights on Laos, a land steeped in over 10,000 years of history, promising to unravel mysteries and unveil more of Asia’s hidden treasures.

Our journey commenced in the bustling metropolis of Bangkok, where we bid farewell to the familiar and embraced the unknown. A flight whisked us to Vientiane, Laos’ capital, where nostalgia greeted me in the form of old friends and the familiar hum of city I called home for the better part of one year. Armed with the keys to my trusty motorbike, a relic from my previous stint in this enchanting land, we set forth to rediscover the city’s iconic landmarks, from the majestic Patuxay Victory Gate to the vibrant pulse of its bustling streets and many temples.


We enjoyed a special dinner at a Korean BBQ restaurant. A popular option in this part of the world.

Korean BBQ.

From Vientiane, our travels led us northward, to the picturesque town of Vang Vieng, a haven nestled amidst breathtaking karst mountain formations.

Hotel views.
More Hotel Views.
Walking the Streets at Night.

Tucked away amidst the picturesque landscapes of Laos lies a river that beckons adventurers and nature lovers alike: the Nam Song. Flowing gently through lush valleys, towering limestone cliffs, and vibrant jungles, this majestic waterway offers an experience like no other, promising thrills, serenity, and breathtaking natural beauty at every turn.

As we embarked on a kayaking journey down the Nam Song River, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of anticipation building within me. With each stroke of the paddle, I felt a connection to the rhythmic flow of the river, a gentle reminder of the timeless power of nature and the wonders that awaited me downstream.

As we navigated through the winding waterways of the Nam Song, we were greeted by a panorama of natural wonders at every turn. Towering limestone cliffs rose majestically from the riverbanks, their sheer walls adorned with lush vegetation and cascading waterfalls that shimmered in the sunlight. Vibrant jungles teeming with life lined the shores, their verdant foliage providing a vibrant backdrop to the tranquil waters below.

Amidst the excitement of Vang Vieng, the serenity of the Nam Song River remains unchanged, offering a welcome respite from the hustle and bustle. With each stroke of the paddle, I felt a sense of connection to the natural world, a reminder of the timeless beauty and tranquility that can be found in the heart of Laos.

For anyone seeking an unforgettable adventure amidst some of the most breathtaking landscapes in Southeast Asia, kayaking down the Nam Song River is an experience not to be missed. So grab a paddle, hop in a kayak, and prepare to embark on a journey into the heart of Laos’ natural paradise.


Nestled within the lush jungles of Laos lies another hidden gem waiting to be discovered by adventurous travelers: the Tham Nam Water Cave. Far from the bustling tourist crowds, this natural wonder offers a one-of-a-kind experience that promises thrills, excitement, and a glimpse into the mystical depths of the earth.

After a scenic drive through winding mountain roads and verdant landscapes, we arrived at the entrance to the cave, greeted by the sound of water and the cool embrace of the jungle’s embrace.

A scenic drive into the heart of Laos.

Equipped with a sturdy tube and a sense of excitement, we eagerly joined a group of fellow adventurers and set off into the darkness of the cave. As we ventured deeper into the labyrinthine passages, the outside world faded away, replaced by an otherworldly realm of towering stalactites, hidden chambers, and shimmering pools illuminated by the soft glow of our headlamps.

With each passing moment, I felt a profound connection to the natural world, humbled by the sheer beauty and majesty of the cave’s ancient surroundings. It was a moment of pure serenity, a chance to disconnect from the outside world and become immersed in the timeless embrace of nature.

For anyone seeking an unforgettable adventure off the beaten path, Tham Nam Water Cave offers an experience unlike any other. So pack your sense of adventure and prepare to embark on a journey into the mystical depths of Laos’ hidden gem. The wonders of Tham Nam await, ready to captivate and inspire all who dare to explore its secrets.

Cave tubing.

One day, we ventured to a lively market, greeted by a symphony of sights, sounds, and smells. Vibrant stalls overflowed with an array of creatures that I had never imagined could be considered edible. From fried grasshoppers, skewers of grilled rats, and vendors selling slugs, snails, and even live insects, all of which are integral components of Laos’ diverse culinary landscape.

Edible Oddities.

Amidst the array of exotic offerings, one experience stood out as a refreshing contrast to the market’s more unconventional fare: freshly pressed sugar cane juice. At a quaint stall tucked away in a corner, a vendor operated an old-fashioned press, extracting sweet nectar from sticks of sugar cane with practiced skill. I eagerly ordered a glass of the freshly squeezed juice. As the vendor worked the press, the sweet aroma of sugar cane filled the air, enticing me with its promise of natural sweetness. With a satisfying thud, the juice flowed into my cup, its vibrant green hue a testament to its freshness.

Fresh Sugarcane Juice.

While spending a day swimming and splashing in the blue lagoon, I decided to hike up to the nearby Phu Kham Cave. Perched atop a limestone cliff, this ancient cavern offers a journey into the heart of Laos’ rich history and natural beauty, promising mysterious chambers, and a sense of wonder that lingers long after the journey’s end.

After a challenging ascent, navigating steep inclines and rocky terrain, I arrived at the entrance to Phu Kham Cave, greeted by a breathtaking panorama of towering limestone cliffs. With a sense of anticipation, I stepped into the cool darkness of the cave, eager to uncover its secrets. Stalactites and stalagmites adorned the chamber like ancient sentinels, their intricate formations illuminated by the gentle flicker of light, casting eerie shadows upon the walls.

One of the highlights of my exploration was reaching the cavern’s inner sanctum, a vast chamber adorned with a shimmering underground lake. As I gazed out across the tranquil waters, I felt a sense of reverence for the natural forces that had shaped this awe-inspiring landscape over millennia. But amidst the grandeur of Phu Kham Cave, there were also moments of quiet reflection and serenity. Sitting amidst the darkness of the cavern, surrounded by the echoes of the past, I felt a profound connection to the earth and the ancient spirits that dwell within its depths.

A cave hike.

Next, we embarked on a modern odyssey aboard the Laos-China Rail, traversing verdant mountains and dense jungles to arrive at our next destination: the timeless city of Luang Prabang.

As our journey to Vang Vieng drew to a close, we bid farewell with hearts full of memories and a longing to return. For those who dare to venture beyond the beaten path, Vang Vieng, Laos awaits—a true gem nestled amidst the rugged landscapes of Southeast Asia.

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