Kuang Si Falls: one year later

I mentioned in a previous post how much can be packed into a year, how much can change in just 365 days. Especially when you say yes to every opportunity that comes knocking on your door...or beat on doors until they open for you. 

While coming back to Laos has proven to be a blessing in a lot of ways, it's also been quite strange. So much has happened to me in the time since my introduction to this magical place, yet LPB itself has remained frozen in an invisible bubble {with the added bonus of a new Mexican restaurant}. 

So when the opportunity to go re-visit Kuang Si waterfalls with fellow staff members presented itself, I was on the fence. I could stay home and finish homework due later in the week. I mean, I had seen the bright blue pools of water before. I suppose I was expecting Kuang Si to have also remained untouched by time. 

But, I forgot about the flooding. 

I agreed to go and what I saw when I arrived at Kuang Si I realized the scenery was changed entirely by the rains. There was an overflow of rushing water that destroyed the staircase to the top of the falls and swept away the many small bridges through the water. The amount of water crashing down the rocks of the falls was unbelievable.

Despite the muddy color of the water and the damage done, the falls were beautiful and I still found myself smiling from ear to ear. The others invented a game called "let's photobomb the serial blogger's pics". Dora did it best, obviously. Everyone was having a blast splashing in the water.

How could you not have a blast with this bunch?! 

It was kind of poetic, really. Kuang Si was still stunning and standing even after a devastating event, like a destructive flood. It looked different, but I loved it just the same as I had the first time I walked up on it sitting among the trees. I had a full circle moment sitting in the exact same spot I sat in just over a year ago. One of those magical moments that sound cliche af when written about on a blog. 

Although, I could have done without the mist almost ruining my camera multiple times, it was a day I'm glad I said yes to. Saying yes always leads to the best days, amirite?

It is easiest for visitors to get from Luang Prabang to Kuang Si by tuk tuk, however, we were a bit spoiled. The man who picks up our new volunteers from the airport took us from our staff house 45 minutes out to the waterfalls in his air conditioned van. 

There is a 20,000 kip {$2.50} admission fee to get into Kuang Si Waterfalls, plus whatever you have negotiated your tuk tuk price to be. If you are in LPB or passing through, make sure you give yourself a day swimming and splashing at Kuang Si. It is well worth the drive.

As a side note, there are also rescued Moon Bears on your way to the waterfalls. These bears have been saved from the traditional practice of bile farming!

Despite a close-call with my camera {it survived!!}, broken bridges over muddy and murky water, and returning to the "city" with grad homework awaiting my arrival...I had the best day with people who continue to add uncontrollable laughter into my days!