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lizziecarver


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Trips:

Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance

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http://blogabond.com/lizziecarver




TUUUUUBING

Vang Vieng, Laos


WHAOOOOOO.

I've been very slack in recent weeks at updating the blog.

After Hoi An I traveled further north through Hue, Hanoi and Halong Bay. I'm sure all of these places would have been incredible (especially Halong Bay) but unfortunately it was bloody freezing so I rushed through.

From Hanoi I got the night bus (30 hours!) across the border into Laos. As soon as I got here I was so happy. Its lovely to be back in the sun, away from big cities and traffic. Our first stop was the capital, Vientiane. Vientiane must be the smallest, calmest capital in the world. It about as hectic as your average village in the UK and a welcome break after Hanoi.

Following this first stop was Vang Vieng, the birthplace of tubing. I was really excited because I came here a couple of years ago with Claw on holiday. Vang Vieng is focused on an activity called tubing. Essentially this involved hiring a big rubber ring, floating down the river, drinking whiskey buckets and doing massssive rope swings. i.e. a massively cultural experience.

I spent 5 days partying, hanging out with Jess from Africa and generally having the time of my life. On the 6th day I woke up and knew I had to make a decision. Either I leave and get on with some proper travelling or stay and get a job....

I had already been approached by a couple of bars to see if i wanted to stay so I decided to stay. So now I'm "working" here for a couple of weeks. I use the term "working" very loosely in this context because Its the easiest job I've ever had. I get to work at 11.30 on the river. Hand out free shots, do some body painting, a couple of rope swings (trying to perfect a flip) and play beer pong for 3 hours. Then in the evening I go to a bar in town and spend a couple of hours behind the bar until the music gets good and then I'm free to partayyyyyy.

Some pictures of tubing.... more to follow x



permalink written by  lizziecarver on March 21, 2011 from Vang Vieng, Laos
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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Shopping Paradise

Hoi An, Vietnam


After a long journey on the nightbus I arrived in Hoi An.

Hoi An is a little quaint town on the coast famous for tailoring.

I could have spent longer here but I had to leave because I couldn't stop spending money. I got 2 pairs of shoes made and 3 new work dresses tailored all to the Carver dimensions (i.e. Chicken legs and a beer gut).

I went to the bakery and had tea and cake at least 3 times a day. When I wasn't shopping or eating cake I was cycling around with my new Dutch friend Margreet. We went out one day and found a completely empty beach all to ourselves. I heart Hoi An.



permalink written by  lizziecarver on March 3, 2011 from Hoi An, Vietnam
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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Nha Trangy Trang

Nha Trang, Vietnam


After the slight disappointment of Mui Ne we arrived in the eagerly anticipated [[Vietnam/Nha-Trang]]. [[Vietnam/Nha-Trang]] is a large Vietnamese city on the coast. Days are spent recovering from the night before and the booze is CHEAP. Buckets are on offer for $1, everything is BOGOF and bad Mojitos are free.

Because I'm a right nan I could only hack 2 days before having to go somewhere to get over it. I found a place on the internet which sounded quite cool. It turned out to be a hippy commune/homestay on an empty beach about and hour away from [[Vietnam/Nha-Trang]]. I spent a couple of days reading books, eating incredible food and going to bed before midnight.




permalink written by  lizziecarver on February 26, 2011 from Nha Trang, Vietnam
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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Mui Ne

Mui Ne, Vietnam


After leaving HCM we headed up the coast to Mui Ne. According to the Bible (Lonely Planet) Mui Ne is an up and coming beach paradise. There must have been a typo in there somewhere because it turned out to be a massive resort, filled with Russians dedicated to Kite Surfing. This would have been fun if Kite Surfing wasn't do expensive to learn. Being a wind surfing Mecca meant the beach was windy as hell and too dangerous to go on for fear of being struck by a kite.

The other activity on offer was visiting some sand dunes (just as windy but with lots of sand around)...

...and drinking which we resorted to due to the lack of other activities in the area



permalink written by  lizziecarver on February 25, 2011 from Mui Ne, Vietnam
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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I need a job.

Mui Ne, Vietnam


With less than 3 months until my return I need to start thinking about the J-word. If anyone knows of any jobs going please email me on carver.elizabeth@gmail.com. Obviously only jobs insurance or becoming Americas Next Top Model.

permalink written by  lizziecarver on February 23, 2011 from Mui Ne, Vietnam
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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I'm in Vietnam!

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam


The bus journey from Kampot (Cambodia) to Ho Chi Mihn City (HCMC) in Vietnam was without a doubt the worst of my life. I got on the minibus at 9.30 and was lulled into a false sense of security by a relatively wasy border crossing. Once across the border we stopped, were taken off the bus and onto motor bikes, with out packs. After a short, but almost deadly journey we arrived at another bus. It definitely wasn't the shiny aircon bus I'd been promised. It was more like a tin can on wheels. They crammed more and more locals onto the bus. Everyone that got on seemed to bring bags of miscalaneous seafood onboard. I had a bad of live crabs by feet and at one point a box containing squid burst so there was squid everywhere. No one like a humid fishy journey. I had no local currency and then also realised that I had given in my bus ticket to the driver from the first bus so I didn't actually have a ticket anymore. It was another 10 hours and a further bus jouney before we got to HCMC aughhhh.

I was meeting Collman and Matt who are here working as spies but pretending to teach English. Its sooo nice to see people from home. Hopefully we are going to the beach together tomorrow!

Today I went to the Cu Chi Tunnels which are the tunnels used by in the Vietnam War. The highlight was a very scary trip down the tunnels. We hadn't really prepared for how small and hot they actually were. If anyone had farted it would have been fatal.



permalink written by  lizziecarver on February 22, 2011 from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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I heart Kampot

Kampot, Cambodia


After Koh Kong it was going to take a lot to find anywhere nearly as nice. I had heard from a couple of people that they really liked Kampot so I decided to head there. Kampot is a lazy little town next to Bokor National Park. We stayed at the best backpackers ever, Bodhi Villa, which was set on the river, had amazing hummus, $3 dorm beds, the friendly staff ever. The backpackers also had a recording studio attached to it which also meant that there were a couple of bands there. On Friday night they have live music nights so the bands that stay there play. I met some incredible people and had probably the best night out I've had since I've been away.

I would have loved to stay longer but I was working to a deadline to meet Laura 'Cole the Mole' Collman and Matt in Ho Chi Min City.

permalink written by  lizziecarver on February 19, 2011 from Kampot, Cambodia
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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The perfect beach!

Sihanokville, Cambodia


After a couple of days in Snooky I decided to move on and try and find a better beach. I brought a boat ticket to Koh Kong which is a couple of hours from the mainland. It was one of those really awful boat journeys where you seriously start considering what your going to do if the boat goes over. It was all worth it in the end because Koh Kong was out of this world beautiful. The island is 70km sq, has 100 locals and 3 sets of tourist bungalows the oldest of which has only been there 18 months so its fairly new to touists. I cannot describe how incredible the island was. The beach with the pier on was a couple fo KMs long and had some shacks on. Then if you walked around the head land I found a beach that must have been 4kms long, pure white sand, turquoise water and I had it ALL TO MYSELF. Literally just me.

I had such a nice couple of days there. I found a cheap bed in a dorm owned by a diveschool on the mainland where the divemasters stay. After being ill for ages I finally got my appetite back, ate incredible food and read 3 books.




permalink written by  lizziecarver on February 17, 2011 from Sihanokville, Cambodia
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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Snooky- a bit like shagaloof but in Cambodia.

Sihanokville, Cambodia


Last week I had a brief stopover in Phonm Pehn to see the killing fields. I had been feeling under the weather so after doing some cultural stuff I decided to do what all girls do best, shop and pampers myself! I got a haircut for $3.50 where the lady continually showered me with compliments, I got a manicure and a pedicure for $2 and a new pair of demin short in the style of Fiona Hemming. Armed with my new look I got on a bus to Sihanoukvile, a beach resort in Cambodia. Sihanoukvile, or Snooky is easily the trashiest place I've been in Cambodia. The days started very late and were spent on a particularly dirty beach, in the early afternoon the promoters (Mainly British gap yearers running out of money) come around ang give out drinks tokens. The evening is then spent cashing in all these free tokens and heading to the beach nightclubs. Luckily I met some really really fun girls on my first night and also bumped into my friend Lisa from Dahab so we had a really funny time. I tried to drink through it as best as I could (I was still sick)...

After my pampering in PP I decided I hadn't had quite enough so we all decided to get our legs threaded. After which the beach lady accused me of having hairy armpits, so that had to go as well. This slippery slope continued until I had a small Cambodian lady in between my legs threading my bikini line....



permalink written by  lizziecarver on February 14, 2011 from Sihanokville, Cambodia
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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Budget accomodation

Siem Reap, Cambodia


Cheapest bed I've found so far...!



permalink written by  lizziecarver on February 12, 2011 from Siem Reap, Cambodia
from the travel blog: Backpacking... it's not as fun as Insurance
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