Quite possibly the friendliest people you’ll ever meet
There’s this little country in South-East Asia. It’s extremely poor, many of its citizens living under the poverty line. The country’s main city is a potholed mess. The country is also landlocked, so no beach.
Oh, and it’s absolutely littered with unexploded ordinances – the kind that still regularly kill and maim innocent people – that were thoughtfully left
behind by the Americans in a pointless war that many people still don’t even realize occurred.
Doesn’t sound very nice, does it? But the funny thing is that despite all of that, Laos is an incredible travel destination. Talk to any traveler who’s been through South-East Asia and they’ll go on about it for hours.
I’ve been trying to figure out what it is that makes this country such a great place to visit.
It’s cheap, obviously, but so are all of the countries around it, and it’s always Laos that gets singled out as people’s favorite.
It’s also the almost bizarre freedom that travelers have in a country whose citizens are quite strictly controlled. There’s that old adage of poor people seeming to be far happier with nothing than we are with everything.
Lao people are some of the friendliest you’ll ever meet. It’s not just the forced friendliness of pleasing the foreigners – it seems more genuine than that.
Laos is one of those special places where there doesn’t seem to be a barrier between traveler and the locals. Some countries you have to work hard to be accepted as a friend, but in Laos you feel like you already have many. For travelers, Lao people put you in touch with a simpler way of living, and you’re immediately made to feel part of it.
The country is a snapshot of life lived without all the gadgets and distractions of the Western world.
People don’t sit in cafes with laptops, they go to open-air restaurants and chat.
Most of all, they make you feel welcome, which is why everyone loves Laos, and why everyone wants to go back.
Have you had a similar experience in Laos? What makes it such a great destination?
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