7th January 2015
Miles rode 125 (200km)
I left Luang Prabang and again didn’t take the direct route, I initially rode southwest and the roads were empty, I then headed southeast and the road started to climb, the ride was amazing and through a mountain range that peaked at 1,900 metres. I was cold for the first time in ages! There were very few cars on the road, it was just me and the mountain.
This is the reason I rarely use Lonely Planet or Trip Advisor as they have out grown themselves, every backpackers bible is Lonely Planet, I have used the bible myself previously, the problem is everywhere they recommend is so so crowded. Yes, I miss the odd ‘must see’ place but what I get in return is quite often just me in places where hardly any tourist visit. I love just heading of and seeing what I come across.
In Europe in the mountains we have ‘beware falling rocks’ signs but I don’t ever see falling rocks, today I saw no signs but many falling rocks!
As I crossed the high pass I dropped 1,200 metres very quickly into a lovely valley, I passed many villages where the kids (as young as maybe two or three) play in street, its a total rural lifestyle where bicycles outnumber cars 100:1 I Saw some cars and only one lorry which confirms my thoughts that this part of Laos has no industry. The only shops and restaurants I saw were shacks run by locals by the roadside, when I say shacks, I love them.
I arrived in Vang Vieng mid afternoon, a very small town which I can only imagine is in Lonely Planet as there are many backpackers. I can see why it’s very beautiful with a river running along side the town with mountains behind.
Time for a beer…