Journey to Vang Vieng – smelly sweats and fried rats

If your meaning of fun and adventure is all about getting down and dirty into local culture and close to the common folks, then taking the public bus is a must-not-miss thing in Laos.

public bus in vientiane

Provided you don’t have claustrophobia and possess a love for buckets of sweats.

Air-conditioning comes as natural as the wind from the slide window which you have to share with the passenger in front or behind you.

me feeling bored on bus
So hot have to tie my hair up

Also, pray hard that a fat lady doesn’t sit beside you.

It’s suffocating enough without being shuffled to the walls of the bus, yes the seats on the bus are long sofas (sofa is such an overstatement here) instead of individual seats.

empty bus
started off as empty seats

As the bus driver declared departure at 2pm (Malaysian time 3pm), I got on the bus at 1:30pm. Just in case you know?

blogging on bus
blogging on the bus

Turned out I waited in the hot windless stationary bus for 2 hours before the bus started the engine, and drove to the station stop five metres away. -.-

bus semi full
People began to board the bus

Hence, by the time the bus actually left the station, it was close to 4pm. (God damn it, there goes my precious two and a half hours.)

The sun was killing as usual. Blazing lights shot down through the windows burning my skin. Now I have to choose between opening the window for air and wind, or slide it close and draw the curtains for fair skin’s sake.

It’s an obvious choice. I was swimming in sweats in no time.

The bus conductors made sure that they made full use of the every single centimetre of space in the bus, and take my word, I ain’t exaggerating when I say this.

bus in full

By the time the bus made few pick-up stops for the next hour, the bus was cramped like a bucket of rice.

In this case, at least half a ton of rice filled the alley between the bus seats and local passengers have to sit on top of the bags of rice for space.

carrying rice onto bus

Laos road might not be developed and there’s no proper high way connecting city to city, but you gotta admit they do offer some of the most beautiful sceneries along the way.

windy road in laos

Even if the road is a bit too windy to sleep through on a journey.

road view from bus

Okay, let’s be fair, local bus service was pretty high class here. At almost every stop, vendors selling sticks of “snacks” would flood the bus’ surroundings. I was spoilt with choices.. There’s fried rats, BBQ mini bats and frogs skewers, duck fetus eggs, bigger frogs, some odd looking grubs…etc. Have you pick.

sellers at the bus

What kind of transportation service do you find local delicacies being stuffed up your face every hour or so?

vendors at the bus

Needless to say, I was starving at the end of the ride.

fried frogs

Frogs anyone?


21 kissed Nicole

  1. WristBandMan1/4/08 8:17 PM


    did you try any of those?
    any at all?

    they look kinda tasty from afar... especially when you're hungry!

  2. Dutch food suddenly seems a whole lot better.

  3. wow, that's very interesting indeed. So how's the bats tasted like?

    By the way, I've seen that Kenny Sia, your fellow blogger, decide to stop blogging forever. I hope you didn't decide the same, at least not too soon, I am still enjoying reading your blog.

  4. haha Jessica, don't you know that today is April fool? and Kenny Sia trying to pull a prank?

  5. I've been pulling a couple of my own pranks at my blog too, so it's not surprising..

    Anyway, you should've tried the bats.. when we travel, we must be adventurous enough, otherwise, it wont be 100% experience..

  6. i actually feel like!

  7. ups yes, I just realise that clock in UK is 1 day behind!! So it was still 31 March when I was reading kenny sia :-)

  8. i juz came back from vientienne yesterday. we go together in a bumch of 40++ ppl. it was a trip organized by taylors college. and believe me.. the 4 days i've been there i never wanted to come back to malaysia and i wanted to stay there longer!!

  9. how i envy u guys.. i'm an ex-TARCian, and the only trips we get with 40++ ppl are self organized 'yumcha' trips to the mamaks around the Klang Valley lolzz..

  10. but seriously, did u try it nicole?

  11. Sigh... After a tiring day at school and reading your journal, i get so envious of you... Travelling, travelling and finding time for yourself.. Sigh.. =)

    Have a wonderful and safe vacation, Nicole~ =D

    No, thanks. Heard they tasted like chicken, but still no thanks.. >_<

  12. Trip would not be complete if you did not tried the local fried rats, bats, frogs or eggs. Somebody must tell us how the taste going to be like but then if you are prone to LS, avoid at all cost............ !!

  13. our trip looks fun.. i want to do it as well.. too bad my holiday is a bit too short for me to travel... i wish i can be like u tho... did u try those food? ew... its look nasty tho!!

  14. Just wondering where you get Internet access, in the hotel?

  15. Nice trip Nicole, keep up the writing. Haven't been to Laos, the food looks "delicious" to me.. lol

  16. Wild lives are not food. Nice photos you took though.

  17. Just curious, who took your pictures if you travelling alone? :) Great pictures definately.

  18. NO LA, she is travelling with someone. Someone from Corneto Loves Perhaps....hehehe...for sure.

  19. wow sounds great, i wish i could visit there one day. mind sharing ur travel internaries?

  20. u take great pictures... wat camera do you use?

  21. over there...i ate roaches,silk worms,grasshoppers,stink worms and Mekong deck...but not rats and bats...i dun think vientiene sells those...i didn't see any..