Laos Gay Islands: Si Phan Don – The Scruffy Italian Traveler

Author: , February 8th, 2017

The Scruffy Italian Traveller

The Gay Islands of Laos are amazing!

Si Phan Don, also known as the “Four Thousand Islands”, is an archipelago on the Mekong river where to enjoy a heavenly and relaxing holidays! Are they Gay Islands? Well, if for Gay we mean Happy, Queery, Laid Back, then yes, these are definitely Gay Islands 🙂

There are different ways to get to Si Phan Don: the archipelago is just an hour bus or car ride from the border with Cambodia. I organized my trip from Siem Reap, in Cambodia, after the visit to the astonishing Angkor Wat. I left Siem Reap on board of one of the many minibuses organizing the crossing border.

Crossing the Border Cambodia – Laos

In 5 or 6 hours car ride you arrive into Laos. The border crossing is a a folkloric experience. We had to get off the bus, walk to the custom border, form an orderly queue, pay the fees (legally and illegally due) for the visa to the agents, and then wait. And wait. And wait.

Wait for? Oh what a question! Wait for the time needed to get a visa and a stamp on passport of all the people (no more than 30 of us) eager to enter beautiful Laos. It was a very hot (and long!) afternoon. The whole process (that could potentially take no more than 15 minutes in total, for all of us) took more than 4 hours: as I already knew, the discretionary military power is very strong… But hey we managed it in the end!

By Sergio Scardia – Full Story at The Scruffy Italian Traveler

Laos Gay Travel Resources

Vientiane, Laos – The Scruffy Italian Traveler

Author: , October 31st, 2016

Vientiane, Laos

I stopped in Vientiane on my way to Malaysia after a tour around Cambodia and Southern Laos in December last year. I arrived in the big Laos capital after spending a few days in the beautiful area of the 4 thousand Islands in the Southern part of the country, where I chilled and relaxed while enjoying its beautiful outdoors!

Vientiane lays on the big, beautiful, and quite Mekong river, as quite as the life of the city itself. You can spend plenty of time walking along the Mekong, sipping a drink, stopping for a cafe in one of the many bars and restaurants facing the riverside, having an ice-cream, and still not getting tired of it! As you can imagine, due to its position, Vientiane is a very hot city during the day, which makes this kind of refreshments even more enjoyable!

The best moment to enjoy the Mekong river is the sunset: find a nice spot along the riverside, possibly further from the chaos of the city center, and enjoy the best moment of the day! The sun sets down just in front of the river, such a romantic view!

By Sergio Scardia – Full Story at the Scruffy Italian Traveler

Laos Gay Travel Resources

Oceanlink Travel – Gay Vietnam Tour Operator

Author: , April 21st, 2016

Oceanlink Travel

Periodically we’ll feature one of our properties here to let our readers know about some great gay friendly places to stay:

Oceanlink Travel assembles members having great passions for the tourism industry. Besides that, our travel product team also specializes not only in running classic tours but also in offering unique and sublime tour programs by bringing tourists deep impressions of culture, local people, and cuisine in Vietnam. Especially, our leading programs are pre-wedding photo shooting, wedding and honeymoon packages for LGBT Tourists. We can turn tourists’ dreams of love into reality by our thoroughness and thoughtfulness, so as to ensure that the tourists will have truly memorable experiences in Vietnam.

Why is Oceanlink Travel trusted to provide these leading packages for LGBT tourists?

  • In-house photographer & stylist
  • LGBT friendly tour guides
  • Using our own transportation fleet
  • Travelling with local experts
  • Offering unique & romantic beach resorts

See the Oceanlink Travel Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals in Vietnam

Five Things to See in Cambodia and Laos

Author: , May 22nd, 2015

Cambodia - google mapsThis weekly travel column is brought to you by ManAboutWorld, an immersive digital gay travel magazine for iOS and Android devices from Billy Kolber, Ed Salvato, Kenny Porpora, and nearly 75 Global Correspondents.

Cambodia and Laos sit between Thailand and Vietnam and are among the least developed countries in Southeast Asia. Tourism is a bright spot in both countries, and based on our short exploration, it is easy to see why. Despite the difficult history and circumstances, people greet visitors with enormous smiles and warmth. Cambodia’s magnificent Angkor Wat complex, rediscovered in the 1850s, is a bucket list draw for world travelers.

It has brought about tourism infrastructure development, and some of the same free-wheeling tourist economy trappings — good and bad — seen in more developed tourist economies. By comparison, Laos is most notable for its relative lack of development, but here too, the power of tourist spending is changing the landscape — literally and quickly.

We visited the three most accessible destinations in the area: Siem Reap and Phnom Penh in Cambodia, and Luang Prabang in Laos. All three are easily reached, with accommodations for luxury travelers, backpackers, and everything in between.

By Ed Salvato – Full Story at Towleroad.com | Cambodia Gay Travel Resources | Laos Gay Travel Resources

Image via Google Maps

Nomadic Boys – How Many Days to Spend in Luang Prabang

Author: , April 11th, 2015

Nomadic BoysWe spent over a week in Luang Prabang during our trip to Laos, but most of this time was spent catching up with our blog. It’s a great base in Laos for working: Wi-Fi works quite well and is a little bit cheaper than Vientiane.

We stayed at the Singharat Guesthouse, paying $23 a night, which included a hearty breakfast.

But more importantly, there is so much to in this UNESCO city. So here’s our take on what you can do in 4 days in Luang Prabang:

Day 1: visit the Kuang Si Falls

The Kuang Si Falls were the highlight of our stay in Luang Prabang. This is a series of waterfalls around 23km from the town centre. You can swim and dive at the waterfall made even more special by the surrounding jungle and the young monks who join in.

Full Story at The Nomadic Boys

Nomadic Boys – 10 Observations and Facts About Laos

Author: , April 10th, 2015

Nomadic Boys

We knew absolutely nothing about Laos before planning our trip here. It’s often compared to Thailand because of its tied history, when the former Thai Siam Empire ruled not so long ago.

Yet, through our travels in this little known country, we discovered several quite distinctive and remarkable facts about Laos.

1. The highest consumers of sticky rice (“khao niaow”)

The Laotians are the highest consumers of sticky rice (khao niaow) in the world. They refer to themselves as luk khao niaow meaning, “children of sticky rice”. A few hundred years ago when rice-farming methods changed, the Laotians stuck to their roots and continued farming the glutinous sticky rice. This has prevailed and so sticky rice remains a fundamental aspect of every meal in Laos.

Full Story at the Nomadic Boys

Nomadic Boys – The Best Street Food in Luang Prabang, Laos

Author: , April 9th, 2015

Nomadic BoysLuang Prabang is a great city to visit in North Laos. We particularly loved it because of the excellent street food in the night market. It reminded us of our street food experiences in Thailand and the yummy street food scene in Xi’An in China.

This is our top 10 favourite street food in Luang Prabang that made us very happy during our week in this city:

1. Barbecued meats

There are many stalls selling barbecued meats. But unlike elsewhere in Laos, the street food in Luang Prabang this has been adapted for foreigners. In Laos, every part of the animal is eaten, so eating in a more local restaurant was hard for us (congealed pig’s blood in your noodle soup anyone? Or chunks of pork fat or other insides…?) The meat at the night market is by far the best street food in Luang Prabang. It’s proper meat and it’s damn good.

Full Story at the Nomadic Boys

Nomadic Boys – Harvesting Rice Luang Prabang, Laos

Author: , April 8th, 2015

Nomadic Boys

Laos is famous for consuming a lot of sticky rice and the Laotians are the highest consumers of it in the world. In Luang Prabang we visited the Living Land Farm where we learnt how to harvest rice. There are 13 stages involved (technically 14: the last one, our favourite. Can you guess what it is?)

Step 1: select best grains from previous harvest

Nomadic Boys – Our Laos Travel Video

Author: , April 6th, 2015

03a-Stef-cover-photo-Stef-and-buffaloIn March 2015 we discovered Laos. We started in the capital city, Vientiane then went North to Vang Vieng. Vang Vieng is popular for tubing with some beautiful surrounding landscapes.

In Luang Prabang, we learnt to harvest rice, took a cooking class at the Tamarind Cooking School and went diving with the monks at the stunning Kuang Si Waterfalls.

We ended our trip in Laos taking a slow boat from Luang Prabang back to Thailand passing Pakbeng.

Full Story at the Nomadic Boys

Nomadic Boys – Discover Laos’s Gay Luang Prabang With a Local

Author: , April 5th, 2015

Nomadic Boys

It appears to be another Asian country struggling hard to accept and protect its LGBT population. There are no anti discrimination laws in place and marriage equality is nowhere near being implemented.

Yet, there are no laws criminalising homosexuality and haven’t really ever been since independence. We also felt completely at ease travelling as a gay couple in Laos: locals just didn’t bat an eyelid when they worked out we are not really brothers.

We also noticed a very accepting attitude towards lady boys (just like in Thailand), more so than in Western Europe. We buddied up with Somphorn, the owner of the popular gay friendly Lao Lao Gardens in Luang Prabang, who gave us a local’s insight as to what it’s like growing up in gay Laos.

Full Story at the Nomadic Boys