It’s day one of a two day trekking tour. We were up early for the tour and headed to the booking office around the corner. Luang Nam Tha isn’t very big so there were only a couple of tour agencies to choose from.
There were 8 people in our group, 5 Germans and a Dutch guy. The plan was to walk to a village via the jungle / forest and sleep there for the night. The walk was going to be a little tough due to the climate and a couple of hills.
The scenery wasn’t too amazing as the trees were still thick. We stopped after a couple of hours to eat, using leaves from plants for the table.
This route we were using was the same route that the villagers used to get to the local town for supplies. The route included a river crossing with a bamboo bridge and another bridge which we didn’t have to cross.
We arrived in a really poor village in the afternoon after around 5 hours of walking. We bathed in the river and bought drinks and souvenirs from the village. The beers were warm but we didn’t mind considering they had to carry them to the village for 5 hours!
There were lots of children and most weren’t clothed properly. John played football and rattachan (wicker ball game) with the village boys. He was twice their size but his feet weren’t ready for barefoot football!
That night we would all be sleeping in a hut for the guests. This was one of a few villages which take in tourists. Some of the fees we paid for the trip are meant to go to the village but they would also make some money from the beer and souvenirs we bought.
In the evening we sat down for a meal in the kitchen which was also our room for the night. We had some more beer and several shots of lao lao, a type of home brew rice wine. We were all in bed for 9 knackered from the day of walking ready for the next day.