Wow, just completed a fabulous cycling tour along the Mekong River into and Through Laos. It was stunning. The scenery was brilliant everywhere we went and the people were great. This is the best cycling trip I have ever done. I met up with the tour group quite close to the Cambodia – Laos border at a place called Svay Chek which we reached from Sisophon by car. Here there was a community called Ou Svay. The people were really great and we had a nice meal while the bikes were being checked out and fitted for each individual. We were soon ready to go and in no time at all we were at the Laos border.
Immigration was really easy and we headed on through into Laos. Within no time we were at a waterfall which was really pretty, we took photos and walked around. We went to see the Irrawaddy dolphins which for me was a huge highlight of the trip. These wonderful animals were driven almost to extinction but thanks to conservation methods they have fought back from the brink. The local fishermen use them to help drive the fish into their nets, it’s unbelievable. Moving on we went to a town called Don Daet where we had a meal and stayed overnight.
After breakfast, the following morning, we cycled on to Si Phan Don, the 4000 Islands. This is an amazing place, the Mekong River just splits up into hundreds of small streams and form the islands. We caught a ferry across to one of the big ones, Don Khong for lunch. Here we rode round the island a bit and took in a Biodiversity and conservation park. This was great fun, we had a guide who pointed out all the interesting things and explained the world that was being done here. We visit an old temple here called Phu Asa and had dinner before sleeping in a lodge at the park.
The birdlife at the park is superb, there are thousands of birds singing away in the morning as we had breakfast. We set off again hugging the river which stays close to Cambodia all the way at this point. We saw another park area, I forget the name. It is almost easy to forget whether you are in Laos or Cambodia on this trip. The river weaves all over the place. On dirt roads for quite a bit of the time, we really got the feeling of being miles away from anywhere. We picked up the main road again and cycled on into Ban Muan to catch another ferry to take us to Wat Phou. This old Khmer temple is in the foothills of mountains in a really pretty setting. We returned along the Mekong to the lodge again and had dinner.
On the next morning we were heading off to Pakse, by car. Some of the group went off in a different direction But I wanted to go north to Pakse city which was about two hours in a car. Pakse was a really great place, I stayed for a couple of nights before catching the bus to Vientiane and my flight.
If you like cycling, you will love cycling in Laos.