Posted by: Jay & Christina | October 19, 2010

One of the Four Thousand Islands

After Vang Vieng, we decided to skip out on the capital of Laos, Vientiane, and instead head to Si Phan Don (Four Thousand Islands). Four Thousand Islands is a group of islands in southern Laos and this required an overnight bus. We are no strangers to overnight buses, so we expected some sort of reclining seat and a fitful night of sleep, but were really surprised to see actual mattresses on our bus! The bus was a moving bunk bed! They provided us with clean sheets, pillows, blankets, bottles of water, and a small dinner.

Si Phan Don 002

We settled in and lounged on our mattresses. We were feeling pretty posh until we pulled up at the next bus station where we saw some of the other overnight buses. These buses looked like luxury hotels next to the one we were riding in. Nevertheless, we I was able to sleep pretty well, albeit the constant swaying and sharp turns the bus made every now and then. Unfortunately for Jay, he had a dripping air-conditioning vent above him. He and the other guy across the aisle were abruptly woken up to cold drops of water dripping on their foreheads similar to what I’d imagine is like Chinese water torture.

In the morning, we boarded a boat to one of the islands, Don Det. We “hmm-ed and haww-ed” about staying on Don Det, and finally decided to take a short boat ride to Don Khon. We found accommodations at a clean and comfortable guesthouse called “Pa Kha” where the proprietor couldn’t have been more sweet. She was a lovely host and we really enjoyed our stay there.

Si Phan Don 041

So, what is there to do in Don Khon? A whole lot of nothing, and that was the point. We spent our days lazing around on hammocks and watching life along the Mekong pass us by.

Si Phan Don 009

We also watched beautiful sunsets along the river.

Si Phan Don 030

Si Phan Don 038

We managed to rent bikes one day and ride around the island. It was a difficult ride because the rains had made the dirt roads really muddy. More than once we were ankle-deep in mud that suctioned the flip-flops off our feet. Eventually, we made it to the other side of the island to see if we could get a glimpse of the famous fresh-water dolphins, but we were told during rainy season, they migrated to the Cambodian side of river. So, instead, we found some hammocks and a bottle of beer and lazed around some more before we made the bumpy ride back to our guesthouse.




  1. Hi there…found your blog through and I’m so glad I did! Your photos are gorgeous, especially the sunrise and sunset ones. I can’t wait to read more, especially since SE Asia is coming up soon for us.

    • Hi Amy! Thanks for your kind words! Enjoy SEA, it is beautiful in so many ways. And make sure to eat to your heart’s content!
      Safe travels, Christina

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