Surabaya Quick Travel Guide

Indonesia, Travel, Travel Guide

Where to go in Surabaya, Indonesia

1. Mount Bromo

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Michelle & Vera

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That’s Vera 

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Making their way to Mt.Bromo 

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The Iconic Postcard Photo (This is not Mt Bromo though) 

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Michelle looks sleepy there

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Mount Bromo

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Wear mask to prevent inhaling too much of the gas

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That morning ride 

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Crowded with people 

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Sunrise View 

  • Sunrise in Mt. Bromo viewpoint is very popular with tourists.
  • Book early with your guide for the jeep ride or ride with GoJek (Local Bike Sharing)
  • It can get very crowded at the viewing point so do go early and find your perfect spot. (Highly suggested to ask your guide bring you to other spot for sunrise)
  • Mt. Bromo located far away from Surabaya Airport so make sure you arrive one day earlier.
  • Normally trip to Mount Bromo is a guided tour and they will bring you to few attractions around Mount Bromo.
  • They will drop you off at the parking area and gotta walk about 20 minutes to Mount Bromo.
  • There’s temple located at the middle of pathway to Mt. Bromo.

2. Teletubies Hill

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Teletubies Hill 

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New member of the Teletubies squad

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Good Times! 

  • After visiting Mt.Bromo, we were brought to the Teletubies Hill.
  • Beautiful green mountainaoeus scenery
  • Horse Riding Available

3. Lautan Pasir (Sea of Sands)

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Jumpshot 1 

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Jumpshot 2 

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Jumpshot 3? 

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The Gang Lair

  • Vast land of dark sands, locally known as Lautan Pasir (Sea of Sands) 
  • Perfect spot to get your Instagram picture with the iconic hill.

4. Colorful Village (Malang, Surabaya)

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Rainbow Town 

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So colorful 

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Amazing arts 

  •  A small village located at Malang, Surabaya.
  • Rainbow colored house and townhouse.
  • Entry fee required

Extra Tips

  • Surabaya has a lot to offer so make sure you spend more than 3 days here.
  • If you have more time to spare do visit the famous waterfall and Mount Ijen.
  • Indonesian cuisine is a musts try although it can be extremely spicy.
  • We booked our trip through  Javanation Trip Organizer.
  • Our trip cost around IDR 975,000 / USD 68 / MYR 294 per person.
  • Very reliable guides and friendly. Highly recommended.
  • They know the places well and can bring you to eat awesome local food.
  • Check out our travel vlog here Surabaya & Lombok Travel Blog

For more info

Stalk me on social media, Lionel Benang

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Email Me at lionelbenangchai@gmail.com

 

 

 

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Kathmandu Travel Guide

Adventure, Malaysian Youtuber, Travel Guide, Uncategorized, YouTube, Youtube Channel

Where to stay in Kathmandu

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Kathmandu Aerial View

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Thamel Street At Night

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Thamel (Shopping Paradise)

 

  • Best places to stay in Kathmandu definitely in the vicinity of Thamel.
  • Plenty of hotels, restaurants, bars, trekking and gifts shop. (Walking Distance)
  • Bear in mind that Thamel streets can be very dusty so do wear your face masks.
  • Highly recommended Hotel Thamel & Holy Himalaya Hotel .

Places of Interest in Kathmandu

Bhaktaphur Durbar Square

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Bhaktaphur Durbar Square

  • Bigger compared to Kathmandu Durbar Square.
  • About 45 minutes drive from Kathmandu.
  • Bargain with your cab driver for the price. ( Around 1500 NPR / USD 15 / MYR 63 One Way)
  • 1100 NPR / USD 11 / MYR 46 Entrance Ticket.
  • Locals will approach you and offer to be your guide. (Not necessarily)
  • Do spend 2-3 hours here.
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Bhaktaphur Street

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Hindu Temple

 

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Amazing Archictecture

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Pottery Square

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Gayane trying Kufti (Local Ice Cream) for the first time

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Bhaktaphur Lake

Monkey Temple (Swayambhunath)

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Stupa

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Buddhist Prayer Flags

 

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Monkey

  • 200 NPR / USD 2 / MYR 8 Entrance Ticket.
  • Hire a cab. (Normally included in the day tour package or you could walk 30 minutes from Thamel street)
  • Locals will approach you and offer to be your guide. (Not necessarily)

Garden of Dreams

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Sola at Garden of Dreams

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  • 200 NPR / USD 2 / MYR 8 Entrance Ticket.
  • Flowers & Squirrels.
  • Great place for family picnic and dating.
  • Walking distances from Thamel.

Kumari (Living Goddess Place)

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  • Free Entrance (Donation expected).
  • Photo of Kumari (Living Goddess) are forbidden during visit.
  • Kumari will take a peek at the window just for a moment.
  • Walking distances from Thamel.

Kathmandu Durbar Square

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  • 1000 NPR / USD 10 / RM42 Entrance Ticket
  • Most of it still under construction after the earthquake.

Best Lassi In Town

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  • We were brought here by a local. (We have no idea where is the exact location)
  • 70 NPR / USD 0.70 / RM 3
  • BEST LASSI WE HAD SO FAR.

Watch Traditional Dance Performance

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  • There are plenty of restaurants here in Nepal that offered traditional Nepalese dance performance.
  • We were brought to Thamel Restaurant by our trekking agent and we had a great evening with amazing Dal Bhat.

Drink Local Beers

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Tips when travel to Kathmandu

  • Try Dal That (Local Dish)
  • Always bargain even for groceries. Yes. We did and it worked.
  • Always pay in Nepalese Rupees and they do accept MYR currency. (Many Nepalese able to speak decent Malaysian Language)
  • Bring your face mask. (It get very dusty and windy at times)
  • Phasphutinath Temple going to cost 1000 NPR / USD 10 / MYR 42. (We skipped this place because we think it’s a bit expensive)
  • Check out my video here on Youtube Kathmandu Travel Guide

Cheapest way to Siem Reap, Cambodia.

Adventure, Travel, YouTube

 

Hua Lamphong Train Station, Bangkok

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Hua Lamphong Train Station

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Train Schedule

  • Check out our full video here Lost in Cambodia
  • Get to Hua Lamphong Train Station in Bangkok, Thailand.
  • If you would like to stay overnight nearby can consider Train Guesthouse (Highly recommended)
  • Train ticket would cost you THB 48 / MYR 6 / USD 1.50
  • It scheduled 5.45AM daily.
  • Train tickets available for purchase on daily basis (No need for pre-booking)
  • 6 hours – 7 hours train ride.
  • Third Class Train.
  • No A/C.
  • Local food vendor will sell various food in the train.
  • Multiple stops along the way.
  • Last stop at Aranyaprathet Train Station, Thailand.
  • Take Tuk Tuk to the Thailand Border (15 Minutes Drive) cost THB 80 /  MYR 10 / USD 2.30
  • Cross the Thailand – Cambodia Bridge.
  • Avoid all touts and VISA scams along the way.
  • Go through Immigration (Visa & Non – Visa).
  • Private Cab Ride (USD 40).
  • 2 hours drive to Siem Reap, Cambodia.
  • They will drop you off to a Tuk Tuk Driver
  • Tuk Tuk Driver will tell you it’s free of charge but they will want you to use their service or they will charge you USD 5
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Platform 6

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48 THB TRAIN TICKET

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THIRD CLASS TRAIN

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RICE WITH EGG OMELETTE

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Classic

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Saying goodbye to her family

 

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ARANYAPRATHET TRAIN STATION, THAILAND

ANGKOR WAT

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Sunrise Silhouette. 

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Ta Phrom Temple

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Ta From Temple (One of the scene in Tomb Raider was shot here)

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Reality

 

  • Sun starts to rise at 5.30AM.
  • Get your entrance ticket for USD 37.
  • Some locals will ask you to buy long pants for Angkor Wat visit. (Shorts are allowed).
  • Tuk Tuk ride to Angkor Wat normally cost around USD 15 – USD 20.
  • You can get a guide in Angkor Wat or your Tuk Tuk will brief you the history of Angkor Wat and some other temples around it.
  • Food in of Angkor Wat are normally expensive (One fried noodle would cost around USD 6)
  • Visit some other nearby temples (Not just Angkor Wat)
  • Check out Central Hostel in Siem Reap for accommodation (Highly Recommended)
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Places to visit in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

PUB STREET, SIEM REAP

 

  • Siem Reap night life
  • Shopping heaven
  • Make sure you visit Angkor What! Bar.
  • Pub Crawl Available
  • Exotic food (Scorpion, Snakes for you try
  • Night Market
  • Try Khmer noodles on the street
  • Cheap beers & liquors
  • Do not give money to the young kids who begged on the street.
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Pub Street

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One Dollar Fried Noodle

  • They have plenty stalls along Pub Street Area.
  • This particular stall is my favorite.
  • Try their one dollar vegetarian fried noodle.

SIEM REAP COUNTRYSIDE

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USD 3 FOR A DAY (MOUNTAIN BIKE)

  • Do visit the country side of Siem Reap.
  • Can book with the local tour or rent a bike on your own.

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These kids are getting last few pieces of snails

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Catching fishes at the Paddy Field

 

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Happiness

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This family saved my day! Check out my video for more details!

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Lost while searching for the sunset spot.

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They offered me this for free.

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Uncle Mech

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Uncle Mech’s Mum

 

 

 

 

 

Amazing Laos (Part 2)

Adventure, Kayak, laos, Travel, Uncategorized, YouTube, Youtube Channel

Vang Vieng, Laos.

Found out about this place from a travel blogpost by Yoga Wine Travel. Check out Flo’s blog if you wanna travel to Vang Vieng. This is definitely my favorite destination in Laos.

Check my video here to know why What to do in Vang Vieng

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Vang Vieng Aerial View

Mount Pha Ngren Viewpoint

  • 30 – 35 minutes hike to the viewpoint.
  • 10,000 Kip (USD 1 / MYR 5) for the entrance fee.
  • Make sure you have a proper hiking footwear (Goes very rocky towards the summit).
  • Do come here for the sunset view.
  • Enjoy your Tuk Tuk ride (50,000 Kip / USD 6 / MYR 27) to the starting point of Mount Pha Ngren viewpoint. 

 

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Peak of Mount Phangern 

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This is the aerial view of Mount Pha Ngren Viewpoint. If you do not bring any water or snacks along, you can always buy it from the snacks lady on top of Mount Pha Ngren.

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Getting a Guided Adventure Tour in Vang Vieng

  • There are plenty of tour agents here in Vang Vieng.
  • Always compare and bargain the tour price with multiple agents before you make the booking.
  • Buggy ride tour here is a bit costly around USD 50 per ride.
  • We highly recommend this adventure tour agent. (Picture below)
  • This agency run by two brothers and they offered us a cheaper price.
  • We took (Tubing in Than Nam, Elephant Cave, Kayaking in Nam Song River and Blue Lagoon). All these for the price of 100,000 Kip (USD 12 / MYR 54)

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Talk to the owner (The guy with yellow shirt) for lesser price. Very kind and easy going gentleman.

 

One Day Adventure Tour Itinerary

Tubing in Tham Nam (Water Cave)

  • You will get pick up by their Tuk Tuk driver.
  • Journey to Tham Nam (Water Cave) gonna took around 20 minutes drive from Vang Vieng Town.
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Briefing by our local guide, Sai. 

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Walking through villages to Than Nam (Water Cave)

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Water Cave Entry Point (Than Nam)

  • However, we felt that the tubing was a bit rushy as the guide kept asking us to pull the rope along till the end. You will need to paddle yourself on your way out from the cave (Only for a few metres). Water get very shallow at some point and you have to carry your own tube and walk.

Elephant Cave

  • Moderate cave with Elephant lookalike stone wall.
  • If you are not into religious visit, I would suggest you skip this cave. Do not hire a Tuk Tuk just to visit this cave. It’s not worth it.

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Kayaking at Nam Song River

  • Tuk Tuk driver will drive you to this kayak/tubing starting point (About 15 minutes drive).
  • Guide will brief you about basic rules of kayaking (Beginner friendly).
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Kayaking Starting Point 

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Remember to chill here when you do kayaking as plenty of restaurants and bars blasting dance music.

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Locals having fun in the middle of the river. You can literally walk across the river as the water are very low this season.

 

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Michelle & the guides. 

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The views

  • About 45 – 50 minutes kayaking along Nam Song River (You do not have to paddle hard as you will be kayaking with the river streams).
  • Do visit their riverside bars.
  • The view is to die for. (Not literally)
  • Highly recommended
  • Skip tubing (Not as happening as before and lesser bars to party with)

Blue Lagoon

  • One of the most famous tourist spot in Vang Vieng.
  • Blue Turquoise River and icy cold water.
  • It is normal to see flocks of  Korean tourist here (Korean Variety Shows took place here)
  • Get pretty crowded in the late afternoon.
  • If you prefer less crowd,  go to Blue Lagoon 3 ( We did not go there as our time in Vang Vieng was very limited)

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The best part of the tour for me was kayaking along Nam Song River. Ditch the river tubing cause it is not that hype anymore and only couple of bars are open. Finally, we were dropped at our hotel feeling satisfied that late evening.

Cycling along Vang Vieng Countryside

  • We rented bicycles for the day (15,000 Kip / USD 2 / MYR 8)
  • Do ride along the country side because it’s very instagrammble.
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Michelle and her pink ride. 

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Cross this wooden bridge to the other side for free

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Perfect

Tips when travel in Vang Vieng

  • If you are into adventure and nature, please stay here for at least 3 days. You will fall in love with this amazing lively backpackers town.
  • Always compare and bargain tour prices with agent.
  • It might get quite chill if its rain or in the early morning.
  • This place is backpackers heaven.
  • If you love to party, there are several bars that are available. Do check them out in Trip Advisor.
  • Do try their sandwiches (Any streets sandwich vendors will do as they all taste amazing).

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  • We stay at Laos Haven Hotel & Spa. Highly recommended. About 5 minutes walk to Vang Vieng main street.
  • This time, we took the minivan which pick us up directly from our hotel to Luang Prabang. I would suggest you to leave day time because the scenery along the ways is just so breathtaking. The journey was so calming and therapeutic.  Overnight bus would take 8 hrs instead of 4 hrs for normal day time ride.
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That smile is a guarantee. 

Business Inquiries (Film & Photograph)

  • Email me at lionelbenangchai@gmail.com

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Amazing Laos

Adventure, laos, Uncategorized, Vientiane

Vientiane, Laos.

First leg of my trip in South East Asia started with this very beautiful city. From Kuching, we did overnight in KLIA 2, Kuala Lumpur for our early morning flight to Vientiane.

Vientiane videos on my Youtube Channel (Please subscribe to my channel)

Click Here Vientiane, Laos (Part 1)

Click Here Vientiane, Laos (Part 2)

Patouxay (Landmark)

  • 20 minutes walk from the city centre or  you could take a Tuk Tuk.
  • Do visit early in the day or during evening time as it could get very hot later in the day.
  • 10,000 Kip (USD 1 / MYR 5) to get to the top of the Patouxay.
  • There are plenty souvenir shops on your way up to the top.
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Patouxay (Vientiane City Landmark)

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View from the top of Patouxay

Hat Don Chan Beach

  • Look for this Hat Don Chan Beach (Not exactly a sea side beach but it is by the riverside) when you strolling at the night market.
  • Make sure you come here for the sunset overlooking the border of Thailand right across the Mekong River.
  • Plenty of activities such as paragliding, ATV riding and some aerobics taking places by the riverside.

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Paragliding with beautiful sunset background along the Mekong River.

Temples at Pha That Luang

  • Free Entrance
  • Tuk Tuk ride from City Centre to Pha That Luang cost around 30,000 Kip (USD 4 / MYR16)
  • Pha That Luang located right beside this temple & entrance cost 10,000 Kip (USD 1 / MYR 5)
  • There are plenty of temples around here including a sleeping Buddha statue.
  • Pha That Luang was on renovation when we were there.

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JOMA Bakery Cafe

  • If you love coffee and cakes, this definitely a place for you.
  • JOMA Bakery are very famous for its huge portion of salads and local coffee.

(P/S: We didn’t know until we were in Luang Prabang, that’s why we ordered a burritos)

COPE Centre (Cooperative Orthotic and Prosthetic Enterprise)

It’s a visitor centre that educate the public the relation between people with disabilities that got affected by unexploded ordnance (unexploded bombs). US had been dropping millions of bombs from 1960s to 1970s. Many of these cluster bombs still remained in Laos Jungles and had affected the locals.

  • Free Entrance
  • Tuk Tuk from the city centre to COPE Centre cost around 30,000 Kip (USD 4 /MYR 16)
  • Do watch documentaries short provided by the staff here.

Khop Chai Deu Restaurant

  • We came to this restaurant after checking its high review on Trip Advisor.
  • Definitely recommend this restaurant if you wanna try local Laotian food.
  • Remember to ask for less spicy if you are not into spicy food.

Hor Kham (Presidential Palace)

  • Beautiful Presidential Palace right at the traffic light junction.
  • We are not sure whether this place are visitable but the view at night is just amazing.

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Tips when traveling in Vientiane, Laos

  • Always bargain with your Tuk Tuk driver.
  • Ask your hotel staff / locals about the estimated price for the Tuk Tuk ride to your destination.
  • Pricing for the intercity buses varies slightly but it always more expensive to purchase bus tickets at your hotel.
  • They will do pick up for you at the hotel by Tuk Tuk to the bus station (only within 2KM radius)
  • If you plan to go to Vang Vieng or Luang Prabang after visiting Vientiane, there are plenty transportation available. Especially the VIP buses and Minivans. VIP bus cost moderately cheaper than the minivan. I would highly recommend you to take the Minivan instead. We took VIP bus from Vientiane to Vang Vieng. Took us longer than expected as the bus would stopped randomly at some places. Minivans are more comfortable and you will arrive at your destination sooner.
  • We bought VIP bus ticket here (Vientiane to Vang Vieng – 45,000 Kip / USD 6 / MYR 25)
  • We stayed in Hemera Hotel (15 minutes walk to city centre) and walking distance to Patouxay.
  • I would highly recommend this hotel as well. Spacious room, super helpful and friendly staff.
  • There is money changer that right in front of Hemera Hotel that offer higher exchange rate than the rest.

Business Inquiries (Film & Photograph)

Email me at lionelbenangchai@gmail.com

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