SI PHAN DON
The plan for 4000 Islands was to get to Don Khong, one of the largest islands, spend the day exploring it on motorbike and then catch a ferry to Don Det where we would spend the next 4 days or so. We did get to Do Khong alright, but a hotel owner tells us that there is only one morning ferry heading to the other islands and so our plan has changed to a one night stay. Instead of exploring the island on motorbike however I have got the cold and was manstruating the rest of the day. Next morning, ready or not, we were on a ferry heading for Don Det and not much later landing on a sandy strip of the local beach. Almost immediately apparent is the usual type of tourist, who visit this island. Happy Shakes, Space Cakes, Funny Smoke signs greet us on our arrival. Indeed, this is a happy hippie paradise. It feels like a fast rewind to late sixties, there wasn't even electricity until about 5 years back. Today electricity supply is more or less uninterrupted round the clock. Set in the middle of river Mekong on the very south of Laos with parts of the scenery belonging to Cambodia on the other side of the border, there is really not much to do... Except maybe watch the Irrawaddy Dolphins at sunset, or one of the great waterfalls on Mekong. Other than that you can rent one of the infamous tubes and float around or just relax in one of the bars lying down on a mattress, maybe hanging in a hammock, looking at the river and inhale marijuana, take drugs plenty, or snack on mushroom infused goods. Would be a pretender if I didn't admit my sadness that I did not have a partner in crime and also relieved that a 'highbernation' stage was successfully avoided. More or less... You hear the locals often repeat: 'Most come for a night, some stay for months and few stay forever.' There is plenty of accommodation to choose from and just like restaurants and bars they range from basic to upmarket through 'happy and magic' to fit a hippies need in any age and economic background. Need I say, it felt like home... but after a while it just gets a little... well, same same. So unlike you're a philosopher wanting to examine an issue in detail or writing a book, there is really no need to stay too long...
Move in, enjoy, have fun, recharge, space out: BEEN THERE, DON DET!
Not the worst view for $5 a night.
...same-same, but different...
OH!!! I'll be back! Who's coming?!?
Sums it up!
Lazy, LAZY island!
Deformed trees from high water levels during the rainy season.
...that stick in the water (above) is an Irrawaddy Dolphin. My tone may be sarcastic, but the boat trip alone is well worth it..
I was dissapointed that the cockfights were canceled until I run into a random street fight.
Kea's Backpacker Paradise had the best food and cocktails to offer. Well, we didn't search too much further...