Thakhek / Laos

Finally Christmas, finally school holidays. And the assurance that the bet from the beginning of the year has a good ending. To get them cheaper, we booked the flights to Laos in February. And now, shortly before Christmas, there are no signs of snow, what makes leaving winter time in Europe for us and our emotions even more simple.

Laos is something like a sleeping paradise for rock climbers. Vertical limestone everywhere. An unbelievable amount. Just a very, very small part is explored. We stayed at „GreenClimbersHome“ near Thakhek. The main house and ten bungalows are made out of Bamboo. Surrounded by limestone cracks. Sleeping, eating and climbing are just minutes away from each other. The guests are, like in so many climbing hot spots these days, very international. We celebrate Christmas and New Year, together with French, Canadian, Danish, Americans, Swiss, local people, Korean, Norwegian and Austrians.

During the rest days we rented scooters in the nearby town of Thakhek to check out the countryside. There is a tour called “the loop“. It takes three to four days, but we can definitely recommend it, if you have some days off at your travel. Everything in Laos is more simple than in the countries around. We liked it that way. Just sometimes - we missed the sea. On the other hand, it is a real adventure to swim into some caves, have a look at the fishermen on Mekong river, or drive dirt roads for hours. Even when you crash sometimes. We also will remember our small bets, who out of our group can eat the spiciest noodle soup.

Three more things we loved are named “Lynn, Kurt and Wolfgang“. Somebody found the little cats at a nearby crack and brought them to Uli and Tanja, the owner of "GreenClimbersHome". Now, they try to feed these little kittens, so hopefully they get strong enough to withstand the next rainy season. You can see lots of small cats in Laos. Everywhere. But just very few old ones. One of the strange things in this country, we couldn`t find out why it is like that.

Pics: © Ralf Heuber