Laos-y GibbonsOctober 22, 2016 in Laos
My dash for the border began with a tuck-tuck ride from my hostel in Chiang Khong at 7am; of course I paid way over the odds for this. Once at the Thai border I was processed quickly but had to wait for the 8am bus across the bridge to the Laos border; this didn't leave until 8:15 due to a troupe of Chinese tourists. At the Laos side paperwork slowed me down before I was once again ripped off by a tuck-tuck driver but I had no time to argue on price. I was off to the Gibbon experience office on the slowest tuck-tuck in the world. After running the last 800m I arrived at the office at 8:55am & the Jeep departed at 9am.
It took about two hours to reach the village we would trek from in the Nam Ha national park. It was a mountain village made up of simple huts but not lacking modern influences; orange satellite dishes were mounted outside most. It was another one hour trek into the jungle in the sweltering heat. When we finally reached our treehouse we just wanted to rest. There were eight of us in treehouse number one; an Austrian couple, an Australian couple, a Dutch couple, one German girl, and myself. All the beds were doubles with a mosquito net over them so it became clear that I'd have to share with the German girl. Unfortunately for her, I'd a good night's sleep & was snoring quite loudly. After dinner our guides returned to the village and left us to fend for ourselves for the night.
Day two began at 7:30am with our guides arrival and breakfast. We then went hiking and zip lining around to the other treehouses and in search of wildlife. After an exhausting trek we returned for lunch & a shower. Our guide then showed us some games he likes to play, told some stories about himself and the park before showing us how to make toy fish from bamboo. Before dark some of us went back out for more zip lining and then returned for dinner. We began to notice more and more the various bugs, spiders, and rats that we shared our house with and, most of us, became comfortable with having them around.
On our last morning we trekked out of the jungle with a heavy heart but enjoyed a well earned beer at the mountain village. When we returned to Huay Xai I stayed at a guesthouse with the Austrian couple before we all met at a local bar for drinks and food. Many of us had the same plan to travel on to Luang Prabang by slow boat the following morning.Read more