Ban Nalan Trail (Day 2)

Louang Namtha Travel Blog

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Waking up in our 5 star hotel in Ban Nalan.
"You pick the place and I'll choose the time,
And I'll climb the hill in my own way,
Just wait a while for the right day,
And as I rise above the tree line and the clouds,
I'll look down, hear the sound of the things you said today."

Fearless - Pink Floyd

Around noon I had was woken up when Paul had to go to the toilet and I quickly followed him for the same purpose. I lay back on my thin mat with a splitting headache but I couldn't be bothered to find myself an aspirin in my backpack.
Breakfast.
Cuddling up in fetal position against the cold I dozed off again. When I woke at 8 o'clock it seemed like I was the last one to rise and shine. Most of the lao-lao and Beerlao that I'd downed the previous evening seemed to have worn off .., fortunately! After knocking some life into myself again with cold water and a visit to what Keo referred to as the 'happy room' I was much better.

Breakfast consisted of sticky rice and fried egg. Simple but nutritious. Around 9:30 AM we left Ban Nalan for our second day of trekking. The crew had decided to take the shorter but slightly harder route. The first 45 minutes made 'slightly harder' a bit of an understatement, since we went steeply uphill. On average though it did indeed prove to be slightly less challenging than the first day. Around noon we reached the top of the mountain, after which we descended to a mountain stream, only to be going uphill again.
Khamu woman at Ban Nalan.
By this time I had decided that no matter how much fun these jungle trekkings are, I prefer to walk in the mountains, so you can actually enjoy the views instead of looking at your feet most of the time. Having said that, descending to the Lenten village of Ban Namleu took us past some amazing viewpoints of the surrounding hills.

The Lenten were a completely different tribe from the Khamu that we'd visited in the previous two days. Not unlike the Hmong I'd seen in Thailand and Vietnam, the women (who normally make a tribe much easier to identify by their clothing) dressed in black with rims of purple around their dressed. After another well-deserved Beerlao and washing of the sweat we enjoyed another fine lunch at Ban Namleu before being taken back to our resort, arriving there around three o'clock. A much needed shower and rearranging our baggage, stuffing away the smelly clothes as fur away as possible, followed.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.


After relaxing at a bar in Luang Nam Tha we were supposed to meet Keo at our hotel but there was no sign of him. We left a message at our reception and checked if he still was in his guesthouse but there was no sign of him. We decided to go for another beer at the bar we;d been in earlier (and where I'd forgotten to take my Cambodian krama scarf). While we were chatting away Leo turned up with his sister and we moved on to the Rambo restaurant he'd suggested. Keo was hyperactive and we guessed he'd had more that a few beers in the meantime. Still, his suggestion for dinner was an excellent one. We were served something that was a combination between an hot-pot and a barbecue. You'd roast fish or meat at the top while boiling vegetables in the water beneath it. All very tasteful, especially when combined with the right combination of Beerlao. This turned into a bit of a surreal evening with Keo and sister Sin and even one of his soon to be ex-girlfriend joining in. One of the highlight must have been the duet Mieke and I did for Hotel California when the karaoke machine was turned on.

Around 10 o'clock it was high time to head back for the hotel, and after a last Drambieu on Ad and Mieke's balcony and some blogging it was time to go to sleep. I know I deserved it after those two exhausting days.
Biedjee says:
You might want to explain that in Laos they have a completely different meaning to "happy room" than elsewhere in SouthEast Asia! :-)
Posted on: Nov 12, 2009
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Waking up in our 5 star hotel in B…
Waking up in our 5 star hotel in …
Breakfast.
Breakfast.
Khamu woman at Ban Nalan.
Khamu woman at Ban Nalan.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Trekking back to Ban Namleu.
Lenten family at Ban Manleu.
Lenten family at Ban Manleu.
Lunch at Ban Namleu.
Lunch at Ban Namleu.
Paul scaring the kids of Luang Nam…
Paul scaring the kids of Luang Na…
BBQ in Luang Namtha.
BBQ in Luang Namtha.
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Louang Namtha
photo by: edsander