Exploring the Mekong River – from Laos to Vietnam

10 11 2009

Some of the most amazing adventure destinations center around the great rivers of the world. Whether it’s rafting the Rio Grande, kayaking the Congo, or simply taking a leisurely cruise down the Nile, we seem to have a fascination with these waterways that have played an important role in human development. One of those rivers is the Mekong, which stretches for more than 2700 miles as it meanders through Laos, Thailand, China, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Myanmar.

Mekong River – Vietnam


In Laos, the Mekong is known as the “Mother River” and it plays an important role in that country’s culture and lore. Travel writer Kate Quill discovered this for herself recently when she made her own Mekong journey, sharing the details with us in this article from the London Times. Kate spent a week on the river back in October, and describes a tropical landscape filled with dense jungles and rocky peaks.

On her journey up the Mekong, Quill stopped at a remote village that gave her a sense of what life is like for those that depend on the river for their daily needs. Villages like the one she visited remain largely untouched by the outside world, lacking nearly all modern conveniences. She also notes that the Laos’ lack of public health care is also evident when interacting with the villagers.

I’ve been fortunate enough to visit the four longest rivers in the world, spending time on the Nile, Amazon, Yangtze, and Mississippi. Each offered their own unique experiences and glimpses into the cultures of the countries that they flow through. The Mekong seems like it continues this tradition, and offers adventure travelers another destination to add to their list of must see places.

By Kraig Becker

Recommended itineraries
Explore Mekong Delta & river tour
Mekong biking tours
Family tours in Vietnam


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