Imagine being able to sleep in tree houses deep in the jungle of northern Laos and spend the days whizzing through the treetops on zip lines, in pursuit of endangered gibbons. This incredible adventure is possible through the Gibbon Experience, a unique tourism opportunity in the jungle near Huay Xai in Bokeo province.
Focused on sustainable jungle tourism, the Gibbon Experience represents the combined efforts of local conservation activists and villagers to quell the widespread poaching and logging in Laos' Golden Triangle. It allows for the unique experience of traveling by a network of zip lines to see rare wildlife, such as the black gibbon, which was previously considered extinct but only reappeared in the area a few years ago. Here, your guide will 'fly' you through the treetops so you can get a bird's (or gibbon's) eye view of the vibrant green jungle. At the end of the day, you can sleep in one of the many tree houses built of local, sustainably-collected materials. Additionally, all meals are provided by your guide and consist of fresh, local ingredients.
Houayxai, Bokeo Province, Laos
How to get there
Huay Xai is a small, remote town in the north of Laos. To get there, your best bet is to fly from the capital Vientiane. Alternatively, if you are coming from Thailand, you can cross the Mekong River at Chiang Khong. From Huay Xai, the project site is three hours by car, followed by a few hours on foot.
What to bring
Since the Gibbon Experience is in the middle of the rainforest, you will have to make due without electricity or running water. Make sure you bring a flashlight and a bottle of water if you plan to hike in the forest. You'll also want to bring a backpack for your things that you will need for your stay, as it's possible to leave your main luggage at the office in town. A camera with a fully-charged battery is also a good idea. Finally, you'll definitely need insect repellent and sunscreen.
There is an ATM in Huay Xai that takes international cards. It's also possible to pay in advance through PayPal.
Make it happen
While it's truly an amazing experience, this excursion costs quite bit more than what you've probably encountered around South East Asia. Aside from the fact that it's difficult to reach, many of the items you will use will have to be carried to the site, making the costs higher.
Nevertheless, it's worth earning that extra money just to see this breath-taking part of the world. One way to do that is to sell your extra clutter before you depart for your trip, because it will just weigh you down on the zip line. If you're looking to sell electronics, musicMagpie.com is a good place to start.
Don't miss this magnificent corner of the Golden Triangle jungle. Book now and experience that feeling of flying on a zip line and seeing the gibbons frolicking in the trees.
Editor’s Note: This is a guest post
Photo Credits: Houayxai from Wikimedia