Saturday, March 8, 2014

Blue Lagoon & Phu Kham Cave

At 8:30 am, we left Maylyn Guesthouse, west of the free bridge, on very nice rented multi-speed Giant mountain bikes (30,000 kip). It took around 30 minutes to cycle to Phu Kham Cave, where the Blue Lagoon is.

It was a scenic and easy cycle through rice paddies and local houses with mountains in the backdrop. All the roads are unpaved dirt roads with little rocks so it's a very bumpy ride. It's mostly flat so not a difficult ride at all - make sure you get a mountain bike because it might be rough on a regular city bike. When other vehicles pass by though, it can get very dusty so it's best to leave earlier in the day (less cars).

It's pretty straight forward as there are English signs starting 1 km away. On the way there, there are lots of other caves. You'll pass by 2 bridges on the way there.
It costs 10,000 kip to get in, including both Phu Kham Cave and the Blue Lagoon. There are some restaurants selling food and drinks as well as picnic tables and huts for you to relax in. Around 9 am, there weren't anybody around. After 10:30 am, lots of people started arriving. Even though I wouldn't really call it a "lagoon", the water of Blue Lagoon is refreshingly cool and beautifully clear, with lots of fish swimming around. It's quite deep so you can even dive in. There are also tubes for rent at 10,000 kip.
You can get to Phu Kham Cave by climbing up some pretty steep rocky steps - takes about 5 minutes so not too bad. The front bit of the cave is naturally lit, so you don't really need a flashlight unless you want to follow the red arrows and go further into the cave where it gets completely dark. There are head torches for rent at 10,000 kip. Also, make sure you have sensible footware as you might need to climb over some rocks.

After Phu Kham Cave and Blue Lagoon, we continued on cycling the 30+ km West Vang Vieng Loop, which took over 2 hours on bumpy dirt roads, through more villages and farms.