Laos is one of my favorite countries in Asia and it is one that I was fortunate enough to live in for just over 6 months. I first hit Laos when I began traveling around 5 years ago and ever since it has held a pretty special place in my heart.
One area of Laos which is incredibly popular and that has changed dramatically over the years is Vang Vieng, a rural city which was once known for its hardcore rave and party scene. The government closed down many of the rave bars that existed in 2012 and since then the region has gone from strength to strength. When I first hit Vang Vieng, I was more than happy to indulge in the party scene but these days I prefer a much more relaxed lifestyle. As I have changed, so too has the city and here is why it garners so much attention amongst travelers.
When the bars were closed down in 2012 many of the partygoers were forced to the fringes of the region and instead of continuing the party, many of them set up adventure companies. Now, instead of going crazy at a rave, tourists can find a huge range of activities to take part in such as tubing, caving, rafting, kayaking and rock climbing. The level of activities here is incredible and it makes for the perfect setting for some adrenalin-fuelled action.
Laos is not the cheapest of Asian countries but it still won’t cost you very much to travel around here and Vang Vieng is one of the cheapest places that I have been to in the country. This low pricing extends not only to the accommodation and the food but also to the wide range of activities which are available to you.
Slow Rural Pace
Vang Vieng, at its heart, is a rural community and coinciding with that is an incredibly slow pace of life. Whilst on the one hand you can get involved in activities and add some real excitement to your trip, on the other you can really relax ,take stock and live the easy life. If you are working online, I would really recommend this as a place to stay in for a short while where you can get to work in a relaxing and cheap environment.
The all-out, hardcore rave scene may have dissipated but that is not to say that this place no longer knows how to party, on the contrary in fact. If you are looking to let your hair down then Vang Vieng is still one of the best places in Laos where you can do exactly that and this who were over out in 2012 did not let that stop the party entirely. After a day of adventure, why not go crazy with some cheap alcohol and some expectational bars!
Any will overlook this place because of the reputation that it has gained over the years but if I were you, I’d give Vang Vieng a second chance.