I traveled to all of the four countries one after another, and now on my way further down to Indonesia, I know that these countries – even though they seem similar – have huge differences. I can imagine living in Thailand and settle down in that country where I’m sure it was the first and only time I visited Cambodia. There were days of pure joy – reaching the top at a rock-climbing adventure or getting overwhelmed by the food choice on a night market in Chiang Mai. But also, days of pure frustration – while traveling for two days on shitty streets, in shitty busses, warm and with a headache only to make 400 km.
I traveled to all these four countries one after the other in around three countries, and it’s exciting to compare these countries to each other. You may think that these countries are similar to each other, but that’s not the case. There are vast differences, and one of these differences is the quality of Hostels. I think that’s a critical point when you are traveling for a long time and especially when traveling solo.
It’s time to see how much I spent in one day in Laos. I have to say, Laos is really cheap! Especially the activities are incredibly cheap, and the local food is also affordable. I spent a little bit more on that day because I had a private Hotel room. This has two reasons. First of all, I needed some privacy, and I found that the Hostels in Laos are just not as good as in the rest of SEA, so I decided myself for a private room and paid a lot more than for a Hostel room.
Here are 5 things you can’t miss while you are in Vang Vieng.
Luang Prabang is the first city in Laos I visited. Here are my 5 top things to do in Luang Prabang.
As we all know by now, the transportation in SEA is not the best. This counts especially for Cambodia and Laos. Proper Motorways are non-existing, and flights are costly. I was in the north of Thailand and wanted to go to Laos. There are three possibilities to make that journey. The fastest is a flight, but the costs are around 150 euro for a 45 mins flight, and then you need a taxi to the airport and from the airport what adds even more charges. The second option is an 18 hours bus which was no option at all – uncomfortable buses, extreme bumpy roads and that for 18 hours is not fun at all. The third option is a two-day slow boat along the Mekong river from the border between Laos and Thailand to Luang Prabang. I finally decided myself for this option and paid 45 euros excluding food and accommodation for the night.
Thailand is my absolute favorite country until now and here are my 5 reasons why you should visit it too.
Pai in North Thailand – with only 2300 habitats – is now one of the most visited backpacking places in Thailand. I don’t know how it was there before so many tourists came but what I was about to find there was everything else than a small village in the mountains. The whole city is built to fit the needs and demands of modern tourists. There are probably more Hotels and Hostels then traditional houses and one Burger place next to the other.
Basically, Thailand can be divided into three parts when it comes to activities and things to do for tourists. On the one hand, there is Bangkok which is a mega city and offers anything a big city could offer. The south is to relax with a lot of beautiful islands and beaches. And then there is the north, my favorite part, full of action and nature, cheaper and activities as far as you can see.
While I was in Chiang Mai in the north of Thailand, I did a two-day trekking tour to the Karen villages. Karen people are people who live in Thailand but don’t see themselves as Thai people. They have their language and live deep in the jungle. They still have the very remote and old houses, and most of them have no electricity. They cook mostly on fire and have their meat production – chicken or pork running in their front yard. Very interesting to see how these people live and nature was beautiful.