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Huay Xai: The Gibbon Experience

Fulfilling my childhood dream of sleeping in a tree house!!

sunny 25 °C

So we left Luang Prabang as 6, but when we arrived at Huay Xai, the border crossing, the others continued into Thailand. We had good reason for our separation..... we wanted to do THE GIBBON EXPERIENCE!!!

Huay Xai is a tiny little town on the border, with a few guesthouses and small restaurants for those tourists simply stopping overnight for the Gibbon Experience. We spent the afternoon enjoying the sun, relaxing and getting excited for the next days adventures!

The Gibbon Experience...
So The Gibbon Experience is an eco tourism forest conservation project.The money from us tourists goes towards forest protection and community projects in Bokeo Nature Reserve, Northern Laos. Guests stay in tree houses and use zip line cable gliding network to scour the primary forest in search of the illusive Black Gibbon.
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Until this trip, we are both unaware of actually what a Gibbon was.... needless to say it was all about the zip wires for adrenaline seeker Becs!!

So we set off for our 2 days 1 night trip. First off was a 2 hour trek through the jungle to the zip wires....

Approaching the jungle on foot
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Just a tiny zip wire across the river to practice our safety procedures before the big ones!!
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The trekking was cool, bambo trees everywhere, occasional kids from local villages climbing trees and beautiful scenic views.
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However the real fun began when we go to our first Zip Wire!!!
The zipping begins...
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After a couple of hours, a little more trekking and 9 zip wires later our tree house was in sight....
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Wow..... it really was the tree house Becs always wanted as a kid!!! The best part was zip wiring in and out!!!
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Terry apraoching the tree house:
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Becs about the exit the tree house:
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The Tree House was 3 levels high.... the first level for zipping in and out and the slightly smelly bathroom...
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The 2nd layer the communal room for relaxing, eating and later that night sleeping...
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And the 3rd level a little more space for sleeping.... being a little higher we bagged this level for sleeping!!
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The views from the Tree House were amazing!
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That afternoon after lunch we went out for more zipping, and before dinner Terry joined our guides at their camp for a game of football Thai style!! He came back with a very bruised head...?!?!

Dinner.... who else has ever had their dinner delivered by women on zip wires...!!
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And as the day came to an end a beautiful sunset....
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Sleeping in the tree house was pretty tranquil, you heard the usual buzzing of the insects and birds in the morning.... maybe even some gibbons singing if you listened close enough.... but the mosquito nets kept the bugs away and the temperature was fine!

In the morning before breakfast - we zipped and trekked to the biggest tree in jungle....... 6 people around its base!
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The guides also let us have a sneaky peek of a new tree house being built nearby....
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Breakfast... usually the food on tours is ok...... not so much this morning.... rice, green beans and omelette....
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After breakfast it was time to make our way back...... another 7 zip wires and 2 hours trekking!
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Zipping across the jungle was quite honestly one of the best things we have ever done..... its amazing to be so high up, and being able to see all the amazing trees and views from the air... you feel like your flying!

As we arrived back to the village - we took a few snaps of the locals... quite typical Laos Village Living...
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Our Gibbon Groupies and Guides (Tam and Doi)!
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After what can only be described as an amazing 2 days we left Laos on a high and set off for Thailand...
The border crossing consisted of an exit stamp, a speed boat crossing the river and entry stamp... all in all it took 20 mins - the easiest and quickest border crossing ever!!

Laos from the Thailand side of the river! Bye Bye Laos
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Posted by becs and terry 23:48 Archived in Laos

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