Tuesday, February 21, 2012

For the Love of Pho

Spring rolls and pho bo


I love pho so I was excited to get my fill when in Vietnam. I ordered pho bo (beef pho), veggie salad rolls, and a dessert drink (waterchestnut jellies, coconut, grass jelly, mung bean paste, ice, and coconut milk). I think I must be accustom to the Vietnamese food served back home because I was sadly slightly dissapointed in my meal. While the pho was good, I found the broth to be a little bland and the noodles thinner and mushier than I am use to back home. The spring roll also had too much Thai basil which unfortunatly added a really bitter taste. Thankfully I have no complaints about dessert because it was awesome. I feel really wrong criticizng and comparing Vietnamese food I have back home to the authentic stuff here, but...oh well.

Sights of Hanoi

Love the old architecture

So many motorbikes

Love the contrast between new and old

Street Food (Vang Vieng, Laos)

 Van Vieng, notorious for its water sports and caving among many other things. Those who are familiar with Vang Vieng will know what I am talking about. I chose however to avoid all that and take part in an awesome cave tubing and kayaking tour for the day.

View of the river and limestone carst from my hotel. Sorry about the poor picture quality, it was taken with my cellphone.

Chocolate and white chocolate brownie ball (white choco was actually
just icing and the brownie itself smelled of Asian margerine, ew.

BBQ rat

BBQ gizzards and bat on a sick

Monday, February 13, 2012

For the Love of French Colonial Architecture (Luang Prabang, Laos)

Meal Time (Luang Prabang, Laos)

Thai mint and lime smoothie. Super refreshing. 10,000 kip

Luang Prabang salad. No where as good as the one I had the other night :( So sad.

Beef lap (also so where as good as the one I had the other night). Oh well. Still lots of herbs and mint.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Traditional Lao Meal (Luang Prabang, Laos)

Tonight our group got the opportunity to go to a local woman's house here in Luang Prabang and indulge in a homemade traditional Laos meal. When we got there we were greeted by four elders from the local Wats (temples) who blessed us and tied string around our wrists for good luck. While they were doing so they were chanting and praying and the whole thing was rather moving.

After that we were served a wonderful traditional dinner which included fried eggplant, lamb curry, sticky rice, Lap (ground beef with mint and cilantro), Luang Prabang sausage, bamboo shoots, dried river seaweed with sesame seeds, and a dish I can not stop raving about, the Luang Prabang salad. For dessert we had mango with coconut sticky rice. Hands down the best meal I've had on my trip so far.

Lunch at Kuang Si Falls (Luang Prabang, Laos)

Lao soda. Getting addicted to this stuff, yet it tastes like nothing.

Papaya salad

After checking out the waterfall my group and I decided to stop for a quick lunch at one of the many little restaurants operating just outside the falls. I decided to try the green papaya salad, something I have been meaning to try for a long time. Boy was I disappointed. I am not sure if this version I had in  Laos is anything like the Thai one, but whatever it was I was not expecting it to taste the way it did. It probably didn't actually taste bad, I just had different expectations and so I was severely disappointed.

Sights (Luang Prabang, Laos)

This place is absolutely beautiful. The city is filled with crumbing old colonial French architecture and buildings and the way of life here is slow placed. Words can not describe the quietness and beauty of this place.

My favorite

Pak Beng and Hmong Village Along the Mekong (Laos)

Our longboat

Along the Mekong.

Our villa in Pak Beng.

Massive food menu in Pak Beng


Hmong children

View from the Hmong village

White Temple (Thailand)

At the entrance

Representing hell while the while temple represents heaven

Kuang Si Falls (Luang Prabang, Laos)


Got to swim in this. Cold but refreshing.

Sun bears. There is a sanctuary for sun bears at the falls.