Don Det is one of the many wonderful islands filling the Mekong delta in Southern Laos. The best way to explore the never-ending maze of mini islands and rivers? Kayaking! Two people to a boat, we followed our broken-English-guide through small rapids, past beautiful shores, between bushes and trees, and into the sunny life of Laos. We paddled for a few hours until we reached a point of shore where we were told to stop. From there, we walked through the tropical surroundings, over a few “bridges” (which were more literally 1 piece of bamboo between two sides of shore- a slight gymnast status balancing act was required), and finally into an opening where a glorious waterfall flowed. The waterfall, as usual, was postcard perfect. A rainbow appeared in its mist. We stood there and watched until the sun was too strong and we needed to cool off. To the left was a patch of still water where we swam, floating on our backs, looking at the few perfect white clouds. Then, lunch time. We repeated our steps in reverse- bamboo bridges and jungle walking. Back at our kayaks, the guides had made us a barbecue. Stuffed full, we continued kayaking through the small rapids, enjoying the picturesque scenery. Eventually, we reached the end of our adventure, where we loaded into a truck which took us to a boat. The boat motored off to a different part of the river where we silently looked for fresh water dolphins. A few surfaced here and there, and a few more jumped, showing off their fins. It was pretty freaking cool.
Then, back to the kayaks. We slowly and leisurely paddled back, watching the sun nestle into the land off to our right. I was perfectly exhausted, sore from paddling all day and wiped out from sunshine and smiles. Slightly sunburned, but forever joyful, sleep was the perfect remedy to end another perfect day.
(slightly sunburned is an understatement by the way: I have sun-glass tan lines).