Today was another one of those days in two halves.
The morning of 270kms was more like yesterday: fast, straight dual-carriageways lined with local commerce; be it a row of roast chicken stalls or, for a change, sausage stalls.
We travelled for a while through a National Park of dense forest where signs warned of wild animals on the road. Too right; Jaguars!
Some had an early coffee stop at the Pha Nok Khao Wat below the steep mountain named after an owl, although the resemblance defeated us.
Our second stop was at a Pagoda where Robin didn’t miss the opportunity to ring the gong
We transited Loei, a pimple on the map, but a significant city with it’s own airport. It’s size probably explains the huge number of traffic lights and although we were on the main road we were successively stopped at every light, even only 500m apart, and had to wait many minutes each time because in Thailand they use a 4 way stop system at crossroads.
Having cleared Loei, we had some nice road to our lunch destination in Chiang Khan, a delightful village directly on the Mekong river facing Laos the other side.
After lunch the drive was entirely different. A single carriageway road with long sweeping bends followed the Mekong for a while before drifting inland through valleys and villages . It was ideal driving country and we took advantage of quiet roads and little traffic. 140kms flew by before we arrived in Dansai and a visit to the Ghost Museum.
Dedicated to local culture and craft, the museum focuses on the tradition of mask making which a photo will better describe. Apparently there is a Ghost Festival but quite what it celebrates is not clear.
Our Hotel, the Phu Pha Nam Resort is an eco-lodge that would not be out of place as a base for African Safaris; lots of wood and spectacular views of dense woodland.