Sunday, August 8, 2010

Day 42 Sun 08/08 - Chiang Khong Boat to Houay Xay in Laos

Today Distance : 1.3km       Total :2527.9km 
Today weather : 28 - 38C  Bright and sunny                                                                                           Today Spend  :115000kip   (Rm 1=2500kip) Total :115000kip  
                                                                                                                                                                                     Today's ride is just 1.3km from Baan Fai guest house to the river crossing Thai border post by boat.Together with a Japanese backpacker Matsu and a local Thai Sumate who happen to stay in the same guest house.Sumate sent Matsu to the border post while I cycled.According to Sumate,a bridge will be built and complete in 3 years time sponsor by the Thai/Japan governments.No problem for my passport exit stamp as today is my last allowable day in Thailand,if not a fine of 500 baht per day for overstay.The fee for crossing is 100 baht including the bike 60 baht.At the other end is Laos border post,I get a stamp for 30 days till 6 Sept, free for the stamp but had to pay 10000 kip (no receipt) for overtime service on Sunday.My first impression about Laos if comparing Thailand is : Less people,less choice of foods,things are more expensive except the Lao tobacco,prices in the range of Rm1-3,Internet here 10000 kip an hr is double that of Thailand. Went to the only tourist information centre to get a free Laos map ( a really lousy one better than none at all ).From here, you can take a slow boat ( 6 hr 125000kip) or a speed boat ( 2D1N 230000kip), but I still prefer on riding than just sitting on the boat. I will follow Route 3 to Luang Namtha about 200 km .Matsu and I shared a room ( 50000k) in Friendship guest house tonight. Tomorrow he will take the boat to Luang Phrabang while I will ride on to challenge the famous Laos mountains.
From left,Sumate,Matsu and me in Baan Fai guest house

To the river crossing Thai border post

Loading my bike to the boat ( 100 baht)

Matsu making sure my bike won't fall

Laos border post at the other end of the Mekong

Laos border post

Houay Xay from the rooftop

Friendship guest house ( 50000 k)

Rooftop view over the Mekong

Matsu still young on 23, don't blame him!

Pork rib BBQ (one for 5000k)

Laos fried rice 12000k

Laos whisky in....known to be better than Viagra

Laos temple on the hill top

Staircase up the temple

Mountainous Laos

A Buddhist praying session in progress