The only long travel day I encountered during my time in Southeast Asia was the rather grueling 7 hour mountain drive from Luang Prabang to Vang Vieng. This journey winds, twists, and zigzags through the mountains. The positive side of this long travel day were the incredible scenic views the whole way.
We passed local villages and watched families mulling about, children running down the streets, and cattle roaming independently in the middle of the roads. In the backdrop, tall and jagged mountains lined the outskirts of the villages. Through the warm haze the mountains appeared an inky navy blue.
Of course, throughout the cramped ride, the first thing I would do during our stops is catch up on some yoga to stretch out. We ate lunch at a restaurant that quite possibly had the nicest views from any bathroom on Earth. As you sit (or I should say squat, rather) over the toilet, you are gazing out into the open mountainside. No wall in front of you – just you and the mountain sky.
Once we arrived at our hotel for the next couple nights (The Elephant Crossing), I was ecstatic to discover that the breakfast area was outdoors and right on the river. There were two hot air balloons slowly bobbing up and down over the river as the sun set.