Seeing the scenic Ou river from the balcony of my hut in the forest was already amazing but taking a boat trip up the river left me speechless.
I had never even intended to do it but my friends, a group of Theravada monks, signaled that they would love the trip upriver for a meditation session by the side of the water. I had seen a western tourist sitting by the banks of the Ou River in meditation pose for hours that morning, so I decided to invite my monk friends and chartered a boat.
The prices up the river are insane and my initial thought was that they would go down by the sight of the monks. But like one of my friends said, they would likely charge even more when they see monks! However, I am a hard-ass negotiator and off we went from Nong Kiau (Nong Kiaw/Nong Kiao) towards Mueang Ngoy.
As beautiful as this area might seem, don't be fooled though! This area was one of the most heavily bombed area by the U.S. during the Vietnam War as you can see from Mother Jones!