You Can Do on Your Own
Thailand for the Birds
Avid birders and animal watchers alike shouldnt miss a trip to Phu Kradung (Bell Mountain) National Park, near the border
of Laos and the Thai town of Loei, considered the most beautiful in Thailand.
Prolific orchids, temperate, tropical and evergreen forests are home to
130 bird species including the brown hornbill, large scimitar babbler,
maroon oriole and snowy-browed flycatcher.
Information, restaurants, porters, equipment rental and accommodations are all available from the park station Information Center at Sithan, at the base of the mountain.Ancient Thailand in an Afternoon
Muang Boran (the Ancient City), 15 miles (25 km) southeast of Bangkok,
claims to be the worlds largest outdoor museum. Yet, it goes largely
unnoticed by foreign travelers.
Take a city bus directly from Bangkok to Muang Boran or sign up for a guided tour from Bangkok. Open 7 days a week, 8AM-6PM.
Vang Vieng, 100 miles (160) km north of Vientiane is famous for its limestone sinks, ravines, underground streams and caves, is a great place to take in typical Laotian countryside and to explore the karstic scenery. Vang Vieng is not a major tourist stop (the town didnt even have electricity until 1992), but has nice accommodations. Caves lie on the west bank of the Nam Song River.
Hire a non-motorized fishing pirogue (pole boat) to take you across
the river, and head for the hills. There are a number of caves within
walking distance, and information and maps are available in Vang Vieng
at guesthouses and restaurants. Explore the honeycombed tunnels and caverns
on your own, or hire a local guide. Caves are accessible June-November.
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