Who need’s electricity anyway? Visiting Laos will not be complete without visiting 4000 islands. A place where electricity is not present, making a trip more exciting!
I ended up going to 4000 islands (the southern most point of Laos – close to the Laos/Cambodia border) based on the flip of a coin. When in doubt, i tend to ask fate what i should do, flip a coin, and go with it. And it has always seems to work out.
So after my ‘easiest’ 16 hr bus journey (thank you, Valium), i arrived in Pakse, decided not to stay, and got on another bus straight to the islands.
The 4000 islands are where the Mekong River splits, creating, well, 4000 (i can only assume) little islands. Out of these 4000, there are 3 main ones which people visit, Don Kon, Don Det, and Don Khong.
A friend and me spent 10 days in total just chillin’ on these 3 islands.
Our days were spent mainly swinging in hammocks, renting bicycles and exploring the beautiful scenery, and drinking Lao Lao (home-made Laos rum). We also drank a lot of amazing Lao coffee, had banana fights, played with a slingshot a lot, and ate a lot of cakes at this bakery which a dutch guy had set up, overlooking the river.
I can’t explain how incredible these 10 days we’re (one of the highlights of my year long trip). As the islands are so small, all of the accommodation is built half on land, half over the river, so every day when you wake up you walk onto your ‘balcony’ and the river is underneath you.
The scenery is beautiful. You are on a tiny island; there are no roads, just dirt tracks, and palm trees and rice fields all around you, with the occasional Buddhist temple or waterfall every now and again!
All the people of the islands were incredible. We would be riding our bikes, then a family would call us over and give us shots of their home made whiskey (which you have to accept!) and want to know all about you. Every day we would wake up to find that the guy who owned the hut’s we stayed in, would have bought us a fresh bunch of bananas, or a few coconuts.
Only one of the 3 islands, which we visited, had electricity, and that was only from 6pm – 8pm each evening! After that point, its beers and conversation by candle light!
The islands are so simple, and so unspoiled. But they are just incredible. There’s such a beauty in simplicity, and i learnt that during my 10 days in the 4000 islands!
If you are going to Laos, please don’t miss the 4000 islands.