All posts filed under: Laos

In spirit of the season: Haunting sights in Laos, Thailand

VIENTIANE, Laos – From the light-hearted to the macabre, ghosts and spirits have recently been visiting the area. Below are two must-see spots where the living may meet the dead. Ben Hansaa – The Funhouse View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jason Rolan (@jasonrolan) After the revolution, believing in spirits was officially discouraged, but belief in them still remains strong. This year, the end of Buddhist Lent fell at nearly the same time as Halloween. In the carnival erected annually at Vientiane’s Boat Racing festival, there is a haunted house where youths dare each other to face the horrors inside. In Thailand, or America, this would be called a Ban Phi Sing or “Haunted House,” but bowing to official sentiments, it’s simply called Ban Hansaa or “Funhouse.” Chair and Noose – Khon Kaen Manifesto View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jason Rolan (@jasonrolan) Shifting focus to Thailand’s Isan region, one of the original Lao diaspora communities where people of Lao descent outnumber the current population of Laos by almost 400 …

Travel Gems: Phonhong, Vientiane

Greetings, travelers! Around 70km north of Vientiane lies the capital of Vientiane Province, Phonhong. It’s usually not even a blip on the tourist radar. It looks much like any other highway junction town; a few petrol stations, a market, and a handful of noodle stalls. But slow down, dig a little deeper, and you will find some fascinating things. To the west and south of the city lies the expansive Phou Phanang National Protected Area. Due to high levels of encroachment and fruit and rubber plantations, it’s now just a National Protected Area in name only. It is marked with large expanses of sandstone escarpment, hiding a couple of treasures for our visit today. Laos’ Grand Canyon View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jason Rolan (@jasonrolan) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jason Rolan (@jasonrolan) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jason Rolan (@jasonrolan) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jason Rolan (@jasonrolan)   Location: Sitting just a few kilometers west of Phonhong …