Tag Archives: luang prabang

The Fear Factor

26 Mar

Z on canopy zipwire, Tad Sae Waterfall, Luang Prabang, Laos

Loving every minute of it!

Can intensive, sweaty, pulse-pounding vertigo count towards one’s recommended 30 minutes cardio? If so, I need no more exercise for at least a week…

I blame my son. There we are, last day in Luang Prabang, beautiful World Heritage town, all geared up to mooch around and finally visit the oldest temple in Laos, when we get talking to someone who insists we should go to a waterfall. There are rare Malaysian sunbears, elephants, and, the kicker for the young master, a zipwire.

Envisaging this as a sort of one-off flying fox over a waterfall, which Z can undertake while I watch admiringly from the side, I agree. And off we set. Z clad practically in jeans, shirt and sandals. I clad rather less appropriately in a shortish frock and flipflops. Continue reading

Pressed Flowers

25 Mar

Paper lantern made with pressed flowers and leaves, Night Market, Luang Prabang, Laos

We saw some of these being made!

It’s pretty rare for me to get excited about crafts, though Z and I loved watching weaving in action the other day. Oh, yeah, and normally I hate tourist markets with a passion.

But the paper workers around Luang Prabang, Laos, produce some of the most beautiful objects we have seen on our travels. Like this lantern made with pressed flowers and leaves, which we saw at the night market. Continue reading

Palanquins and Kings

25 Mar

The generational differences between me and Z never cease to amaze me. We went to the Royal Palace in Luang Prabang, Laos, yesterday, former home of the kings of Laos.

We were pacing down a corridor in our bare feet, trying to work out the sense of the legend of the Lao prince who became a hermit and gave away everything — most challengingly, his two children to a slave-taking Brahmin. We were talking about Abraham and Isaac when Z stopped dead in absolute horror. Continue reading

Unexpected Pleasures

24 Mar

sign to weaving village, luang prabang, laos

A sign of good things to come

Travelling with children, the best days sometimes come out of absolutely nowhere, and from the lowest expectations. And on our first day in Luang Prabang, Laos, my expectations were pretty much rock bottom.

Yet we ended up swimming in the most fantastic set of rapids, having masterclasses in weaving and petanque, meeting an utterly delightful baby, eating our best Lao food so far, watching an A-grade Mekong sunset, chatting for hours, and being given a pile of movies that one or the other of us has been wanting to watch for ages.

This journey, and the unmitigated blessing of ample time with my son, has converted me to mooching. But, of its nature, it’s not something you can set out to do. Continue reading

Up with the Larks

23 Mar

So we’ve arrived in Luang Prabang, Laos, and, as ever, I’m still trying to work out whether the benefits of night buses — saves a day’s travel and the cost of a room — are outweighed by the pitiful condition in which we reach our destination. Continue reading