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Where on Earth week 48: Vang Vieng, Laos
This location didn't seem to be too difficult for readers to figure out -- three out of four commenters guessed correctly, while one answer was close -- this person guessed the "Banana Pancake" trail of Chiang Mai (sounds delish).
So, Vang Vieng it is -- truly a budget backpacker's prime destination. During the day, travelers can inter-tube down the river, which is surrounded by lush green mountains. Riverside bars try to lure travelers in by providing zip lines and rope swings, and there's always an eager Lao man with a curved stick ready to sweep you in and serve you deliciously refreshing Beer Lao. After a mellow day on the river, head to the tiny town area to dazedly watch "Friends" reruns with other backpackers.
This photo was taken from my guesthouse after such a day.