Thursday, April 23, 2009

Thailand Pictures

The internet is quite slow, but i'll try to get some pictures up since its been so long. I'm in Vientiane in Laos at the moment, but here are some Thailand pictures.

Here i am in Kanchaniburi at some really nice waterfalls.
Part of the Grand Palace in Bangkok, I'm really small in the picture, haha.

Pieter with the largest solid gold Buddha in Bangkok.

Elephant riding on the trek from Chang Mei.

Swimming under the waterfall on the trek.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Still in Laos!

Again its been over a week since i updated, oh well. I'm actually back in Luang Probang where i was when i updated last. After we were here the first time we took a bus up north to Luang Na Tha for a few days which was great. We did a two day trek while we were there with a really great group of people. It was a lot more walking then the last one we did and the forest was really a jungle. We didn't see much big wildlife but we did see all kinds of weird jungle bugs, like huge spiders and the biggest centipede ever. And out guides kept finding strange wild fruit for us to eat which was pretty fun. There were six of us on the trek total and we all got along really well which made it more fun i think and one of the girls spoke Thai really well so the Laos people in the village we stayed in could understand her mostly since the languages are quite similar. We were also lucky that it only rained while we were sleeping because it had been raining almost ever day for a while before that. After the trek we all went out for indian food and i tried to convince everyone to go karaoke haha, but again it didn't work out as planed. The bar that was clearly labeled a karaoke bar turned out to just be a night club with crazy flashing lights, which was fun but not really want we wanted. Someday i will actually karaoke around here.
After Luang Na Tha we were trying to decided if we should head east or go back south, but we decided to go back to Luang Probang because we wanted to be in a big town for the Laos New Year which is right now. The bus back was pretty much the worst bus ride i've ever been on. On the way there it was ok even tho it was 10 hours of crazy bad bumpy curvy roads, but on the way back we were stuck in the back of the bus with a whole family that continued to throw up in little bags during the entire 10 hours. All of them, it was pretty gross. The only good part is that all of our trekking buddys came on the bus with us, so now we have been hanging out with them in town. Its crazy, a week ago this place was so quite and peaceful but for the new years its soooo packed full of people, both tourists and Lao and Thai people. The new year here is like a three day huge water fight, its pretty fun and crazy. Mixed in with all the water there are other fun customs like a sand castle contest type thing except everyone builds stupas and decorates them with candles and incense and everything. We decided to build one with our new friends Anna and Paul and soon some Lao people came over to help. In the end they basically took over, but it came out really nice. The other thing people do is once you are all wet from the water fighting, people throw flour all over each other so by the end of the day i was covered in a mixture of sand and wet flour, haha but it was pretty fun. I'm really glad i brought a water proof bag along so i was able to keep a few things dry. Last night we also went to the Miss Luang Probang contest, which was cool, tho lasted way to long. There were 38 contestants and we stayed about 4 hours, but it wasn't even done yet so we never found out who won, haha oh well. So we are planning to stay a day or two more here and then either go east or south. We are toying with the idea of trying to go to Vietnam for a short time, but its looking like we won't really have time to do that and Cambodia before getting back to Bangkok to meet Anjali and see southern Thailand. We might travel with our new friends for a while more which would be fun. I'll try to update again soon!

Monday, April 6, 2009


We made it to Laos a few days ago and so far its been great. Last i left off we were in Chiang Mai about to do a three day trek which was pretty awesome. The trek included an elephant ride, one night in a hill tribe village, one night it a camp at some waterfalls, lots of walking and swimming and some bamboo rafting on the last day. It was cool also because it was only the two of us and a Japanese girl with us and the guide. Some times tours like that can feel a bit too touristy but this one was quite good. After Chiang Mei we took a bus north to Chiang Rei and stayed there for two days. There wasn't a lot to do, but it was a nice place to relax for a few days and figure out our plans. Next was a bus to Chiang Khong and a ferry over the Mekong river into Loas and the town of Huay Xai. From our travels so far Laos seems to be similar to Thailand, but over all more relaxed and less crowded, which makes sense since there are fewer people. We decided to take the slow boat to Luang Prabang, which took two full days, but was pretty fun. Its a bit of a touristy thing to do but the river was great and we meet some people that we ended up hanging out with for the next few days which was awesome. The boat was really simple, just bench seats, but it stopped for the night it a cute little town where we got some great food and attempted to do some karaoke, haha. The karaoke didn't work out too well because there was no screen with lyrics and the mic didn't really work, but i had a good time anyways. So now we are in Luang Probang and tomorrow we are going to head up north to the Nam Ha wild life park. Luang Probang is great, its full of nice temples, great food and it has a fun almost french feel to it. A bit like Pondicherry in India. It the kind of place thats easy to stay longer then expected just because its so relaxed and nice to walk around, but i think we have stayed long enough, so we will head out tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The last of the India pictures

Alright a few more pictures of South India before I move on to Thailand!
First here is Eric in Calcutta at the Victoria monumentNext some of the carvings at Malabalapuram. Notice the stone cows in the second picture, haha.The best Thali ever, in Maduri. Kathakali dancing!So much tea in Munnar!
The Karala backwaters.Varkala Beach.I found this on a menu in Cochin and thought it was perfect, haha.