Stray Days – stories from the road. Straying with Kelly!

Kellie on top of Mount Phousi in Luang Prabang

This month we’re Straying with Kelly Moodie from Canada who recently got off the beaten track in Thailand, Laos and Cambodia on the Mekong Pass.

Kelly on top of Mount Phousi in Luang Prabang

What would you say to yourself one month before took the Stray Bus?

Pack lightly and make sure to leave room for a pair of elephant pants (or several) clothes in Asia are so cheap and comfy! 

Group selfie on the shore of the mekong river

What is your favourite selfie (or group selfie) that you took on your trip? 

This selfie was taken with our whole group in front of the slow boat we spent two days cruising down the Mekong River on. We had a great group, it was quite diverse but we all got along so well. Morten (at the back with the blonde hair) was 20, and Andrew (in the blue hat) was 70 and he was out later than us most nights proving that age is just a number! The long boat was a great way to get to know everyone in the group.

Kellie at Tree Top Explorer

What were the highlights for you? 

The Tree Top Adventure in Paksong (Laos) was life changing. Zip lining while surrounded by the most magnificent breathtaking waterfalls was the most incredible feeling! In fact, the first thing that pops in to my mind when I think of my Stray adventure is the beautiful scenery in Laos. The scenery in Laos was amazing, everywhere, all the time. 

Kelly admiring the view in Laos

Another highlight was visiting the elephant conservation reserve in Chiang Mai. The one run by the Karen Tribe was incredible with very low person-to-elephant ratios so we got tonnes of time to interact with, and get to know, the elephants.

Elephant - Chiang Mai

What is the most interesting thing you learnt or did while on tour?

It was interesting (and horrifying) to learn about the millions of innocent people that were killed during the Cambodian genocide. This photo was taken at the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (formerly S21 prison) in Phnom Penh. It shows the prisoners who were arrested for “crimes” such as having a university education or being a teacher, doctor or a monk. It was terrible to realise this happened not long ago.

Photo of prisoners in S21

What will you miss the most when you return home? 

Khao Soi Food

Cheap and delicious Thai Food- especially Khao Soi which you can find in Northern Thailand and Laos. Crispy fried noodles in a yellow curry sauce is delicious and not something you usually find in Thai restaurants back home.

Barbecued Rat

The weirdest thing I ate on tour was marinated and barbecued rat in Cambodia. Surprisingly it was very tasty however I don’t think I’ll be craving it when I get home!

Want to feature in an up-coming Stray Days: Stories from the road? Email jodine@straytravel.co.nz 

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