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Thread: Laos, Vientiane

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    Laos, Vientiane

    I recently got back for Vientiane where I stayed for a few days to apply for a non-immigrant visa. The last time I was there was nearly 5 years ago, wow.... things have changed. Before, hardly a car could be found, you saw them, but very few, motorcycles were around but if you stood on a balcony of your guest house it wasn't very evident, tourist here and there but once again not very evident. Really a very quiet town without much going on at all. Now when coming into town you might actually hit traffic, with a brand new Mercedes in front of you and a nice new pick-up behind you. As you walk through the town it is unbelievable the amount of construction going on, new side-walks be done all over town, guest houses being remodeled, and hotels opening up, the town is a lot cleaner than it used to be and there are many more venues for everything, food, drinking, dancing, romantic candle lit dinners, etc....(there is even a V-shop) Despite all that is going on the atmosphere is very "sabai" and given the friendliness of the locals I would think Laos would be called the land of smiles. Prices are about the same as Chiang mai when it comes to most western/Thai/Lao food, hotels/guest houses, but beware the Lao tuk-tuk driver, they will charge you quadruple the true price without a blink of the eye (so when negotiating go to one quarter or half of there price). If you decide to go to Laos make sure you bring dollars for the visa as it is more costly to pay in baht (about $10 more). For US citizens the cost is $35 or 1500 baht (you calculate the difference) and between $30 and $40 for most other European countries. All together my 3 night trip cost about 7000 baht including 1500 for Laos visa and 1000 baht for Thai tourist visa ( make sure all your papers are in perfect order when applying for non-imm visa, they are very particular). Anyway, has anybody else been to Laos lately? I would definitely recommend it as place to go to get away from it all for a couple days.

    I left my USB cable at home, I'll have to post some photos later this evening

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    What are the closing times now?

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    for the border? or thai immigration? or for the town in general?

    The closing times for restaurants, bars, clubs is still generally 11:30 or 12 but there is a bowling ally in town that is open till 4-5am, when in town you can ask any tuk tuk driver to take you to "bowling" and they will know.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cali kid
    The closing times for restaurants, bars, clubs is still generally 11:30 or 12 but there is a bowling ally in town that is open till 4-5am, when in town you can ask any tuk tuk driver to take you to "bowling" and they will know.
    Ah, thanks, nothing has changed then since I went 2 years ago.

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    While I was there, I was told by most of the locals that the biggest changes have taken place just in the past 2 years

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    I went back last year and yeah it has changed a lot. Last time I went there was 10 years ago and it was indeed a very quiet town, with only UN trucks or SUV patrolling around (mostly UN envoys, expats and diplomats)

    They have a nice Danish bakery and the old colonial French houses which were in ruins are being restored for making nice little restaurants and hotels. Unfortunately the restoration is not always good, and they mix local "building materials" with the old colonial architecture which results is not what you would expect from a historic restoration. A shame really. I think they looked better in ruins as they were witness of a nostalgic time.

    You can order my favorite Vietnamese food there, Baguette Patte
    Last edited by Butterfly; 18-12-2006 at 12:31 PM.

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    They had just closed the nightclub in that hotel, forgot the name now, and the "Bowling" had become the only venue after hours .
    Don't know about all the building and modernisations, the fountain had been done up before then, no more cheap beer and free-lancers in the delapidated open-air cafe.

    Well, I'll have to get out there myself and see one of these days.
    Looking forward to your pics!

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    Is there any nightlife in Vientaine, if so how do I find it ??

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    forget about whoring, bring your meal with you

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    Actually, it is very possible to go whoring, I myself was propositioned a few times, it depends on where you go. The nightlife, well, that depends on what you consider a nightlife. I believe there is between 7 and 10 places to go at night that would be considered like a club or disco and several more that are just bars. But keep in mind that all of these places will be closing between 11 and 12, which is when my nightlife usually starts, after that you would have to resort to the bowling ally, plenty of working girls there.

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    Sorry, this is how you find it.
    You have got to find a lady, easy enough, go to a place called "bor ben yung" some ladies will show up around 9pm just let one of them know you want to see a club or disco or whatever you prefer, I am sure they will be happy to show you around for the price a maybe a few beers, maybe not even that.
    here are a few places:
    Bor ben yung...
    Duan chan....
    Novotell....
    Future...
    Music house...
    Oasis....
    Last edited by cali kid; 19-12-2006 at 10:42 AM.

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    thanks for the tip

    from what I saw, in the "secret bars", the meat quality wasn't that great and some were a bit too young for my taste.

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    the problem is not meeting them...it's where to take them for a shag...

    it's illegal in Laos to have a woman in your room if you are not married...

    so how do you get around that?...

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    I haven't been for a few years, and ony a few times but never had a problem taking 'em to my room. usually the lobby's empty and no one has ever complained. I got soem dirty looks though, I always put it down to my natural good looks
    When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty -- T. Jefferson


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    Those dirty looks

    Frank

    Surely your good looks wouldn't draw some dirty glances from Lao girls would they ? LOL

    On a more serious note, would you consider living full-time in Vientiane for a year or two or is the place just too dull to spend time in ? The reason for my question is that I am thinking of accepting a job there and I'm really not sure of what to expect or whether I will cope with such a serene environment.

    Roderick

    Quote Originally Posted by friscofrankie View Post
    I haven't been for a few years, and ony a few times but never had a problem taking 'em to my room. usually the lobby's empty and no one has ever complained. I got soem dirty looks though, I always put it down to my natural good looks
    Last edited by roderick17; 18-12-2006 at 10:04 PM.

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    You can always do runs to Udon where all the hotties are these days !!! tons of uni girls looking for a farang there

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    Quote Originally Posted by klongmaster
    the problem is not meeting them...it's where to take them for a shag... it's illegal in Laos to have a woman in your room if you are not married... so how do you get around that?...
    I dont know if the laws have changed but a few ladies I was talking to told me that some laws had just recently changed, that being one of them i dont know. When one night a guy at the hotel saw me come back with a lady he simply asked her for her ID and we were off on our marry way without any problem at all, the other 2 nights it was too late and no one was around.

    Quote Originally Posted by roderick17
    On a more serious note, would you consider living full-time in Vientiane for a year or two or is the place just too dull to spend time in ? The reason for my question is that I am thinking of accepting a job there and I'm really not sure of what to expect or whether I will cope with such a serene environment.
    I would recommend going there for a couple weeks before you make a decision. I definitely that depending on the type of person you are you could be happy there for a while, 2 years sounds a bit long but a year might be very nice.

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    I'd live there in a second.the food is just outstanding.I suppose we gotto that the Froggies for something!

    Went there about three years ago with the wife.Told here I couldn't wait to get there and have some decent fresh bread etc.Silly cow told me in no uncertain terms that Asians didn't eat much bread.When we saw the first of many baugette shops/stalls etc I can remember saying to her as I was pointing to the bread "What's this then, scotch mist?"

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    You went for a non imm visa right? did you get it?
    your line "1000 baht for Thai tourist visa".....what was that for?

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    I went for the non-imm (2000 baht) but the letter from my company guaranteeing my employment was not addressed to the Thai immigration office Vientiane, and because I did not have that they said I could not apply, so i went for the tourist visa (1000 baht). Like I said in the first post, be very meticulous when getting your paper work in order.

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    Greetings. I am about to head-off to Vientiane for a two-year stint in working in that very quiet place. Someone on this board suggested that if things go get too quiet then I should skip across the border and enjoy Nong Khai at night.

    Can anyone on this board tell me where will I find the hotest spots in NK ??

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    To ALGRL

    Hi Alagrl

    I tried to send this to you in a private message, unfortunately I dont have enough credits to do this. I thought I'd post this message with my thanks to you instead !

    Roderick

    In response to your private message :

    Thanks Alagrl for that useful information.

    I haven't visited Northern Thailand before so I'm not sure what to expect. Being a keen golfer, I'll probably get down to Victory for a round of two and then return to Nong Khai for a beer or three !!! If you are in Nong Khai it would be great to meet up you and your spouse, as well.

    Again, thanks for this information

    Roderick
    Last edited by roderick17; 23-12-2006 at 10:48 PM.

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    Great! Hope you enjoy it. Victory is definitely the best designed and maintained golf course in the area, although I understand that several others are being planned in conjunction with new housing estates.

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    Hi Lesbontemp

    Hi Lesbontemp.

    I've just re-read the message that I posted to you in this thread. I hadn't realized the icon I used would wind-up displaying that middle-fingered gesture. I apologise to you for using it, please do not take offense with my post. This really was an innocent mistake !

    Again, thank you for your help

    Roderick

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