Monday, January 19, 2015

Laos Wonderland — The Secrets of Nature

Laos Wonderland - The Secrets of Nature

Southeast Asia at its best. 85% of the country is untouched nature, widespread forests, steep mountains and wide river valleys, but also cool high plateaus and savannahs. The primeval forests support a fauna like something out of a fairy tale, with elephants, tigers, leopards, and some of the rarest animal species on the planet. Species never seen by humans are discovered at regular intervals.

In recent decades, the few large mammals to be described for the first time were all found in Indochina and experts assume that most of them are at home in Laos: wild oxen such as the saola and kuprey or the truong son munjak.

No outsider has ever seen a living specimen of the latter; its existence is only known indirectly, through skeletons, horns and bag that are occasionally found in remote villages.

And there is the Mekong, one of the last untamed rivers on Earth. Fed by hundreds of tributaries, it is one of the richest freshwater systems on the planet, comparable only with the Congo or Amazon.

This is where the Mekong catfish lives. At 3 meters long and weighing in at 300 kilograms, this monster must be the largest freshwater fish on earth.

Oft-overlooked in favor of its better-known neighbors — landlocked Laos remains one of Southeast Asia’s most exotic travel destinations — "Simply Beautiful" is their official tourism slogan. Laos is bordered by Burma and the People's Republic of China in the Northeast w/ Vietnam to the East, Cambodia to the South, and Thailand to the West.

2013 "World Best Tourist Destination" Award
European Council on Tourism and Trade Delegation

Wildlife scientists and nature conservationists are blown-away by the Laos' complex, diverse and rich biodiversity. Hidden yet bountiful, its ecosystem is an isolated paradise — untouched wilderness w/ stunning 360° landscape views of lush jungles & mountain forests along w/ its pristine waterfalls, picturesque mountain villages, "never-seen-before" animals and exotic plants.

While growing-up in the inner-city boroughs of the Bronx, Brooklyn & Queens — and while working as a young professional in upstate Albany, Manhattan & Jersey City, hardly anyone knew about a tiny Southeast Asian country called Laos. Today, approx. 4 million annual visitors help spread the Laotian culture and tradition — making tourism its fastest growing industry.

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