After breakfast the next day we rented some scooters. Actually just one. Because in a country where already kids drive around I was deemed a safety hazard since I couldn’t deal with it. At least I had tried it and could now sit shotgun with a good feeling.
There was no real plan for the day except to start with other waterfalls on the island. They were so small that they hadn’t even made it onto the map but they were there nonetheless.
We started with the French history area which had exactly nothing to offer beside precarious bridges and a wall along the Mekong.
The main goal for the day was to see the Irrawaddy dolphins for which the best time was the afternoon. Until then we had more exploring to do so we turned back and set out in the other direction. Upon turning around we also managed to find the temple that was in our area and which we had missed on the way to the falls.
We crossed the French Bridge into Don Det and on the only available road traveled to the village of Don Det.
Here we parked the bike to explore the village. Not that there was much exploring to be done but still. We saw a big pig and a small one and a monkey that wanted to grab my bracelets all the time. He probably needed just a bit of attention since there were not so many tourists.
Outside of the village (because in it there was nothing) we found an inviting looking place and had a rest stop there. The Crazy Gecko seemed like the best place on this small island. Very cozy and inviting with a good wi-fi connection an excellent food.
After lunch we circled the island on the scooter until we landed again near the French Bridge.
Right beside the bridge an American had built a huge pool which we could use for a fee. Looking at the comings and goings of backpackers (ok maybe not on this picture) it was quite the clever business model.
After 3pm we left to look for the port and hitch a ride to the dolphins. We were told that the best time to see them was either in the morning or after 4pm. As it turned out we didn’t need to go to the port since a few enterprising boat owners offered the same as the harbor boats at competitive prices. And you can watch the dolphins at any time,
We got on the boat and traversed the Mekong. To our right side we could see Cambodia, so near we could almost touch it.
We stopped in the middle of nowhere, just somewhere on the river. And really in a minute the dolphins were here. Not that I could really prove that, but we definitely saw larger fish/mammals (depending on what you want to believe). I have a few pics were you can see ‘something’ and these should be Irrawaddy Dolphins. To see the ‘something’ you’ll probably have to double click the picture and hope that you have still 20/20 vision.
Going upriver after was also great to see. If you want to get a taste of it, please click here.
Once we got back to our little cove (harbor would be too much for it) with good luck and prayers that the gas will be enough, I got off the boat and fell flat to my feet. A very graceful exit with Dudley standing by and holding out his hand which I had completed overseen.
Except for some scratches though nothing happened, so I just got back up, fixed my invisible crown and off we went back to the hotel. Before going to our rooms we stopped for a picture with the local monkey. The owner of our hotel had bought it at some market so it wouldn’t end up in a stew. We were told that for a while she walked with him on a leash around the island but other locals threatened to kill it. So now it lived in this big cage and the owner came every day to give hugs and kisses on it. It was really beautiful to watch the love they had for each other. And instead of cocks crowing it was the banshee shrieking of the monkey that replaced the alarm here.
We spent the last evening again with my next door neighbors, the Australian couple. They were leaving for Cambodia the next day while we would go back north to Champasak on their recommendation. A long and hard shower made the muddy road to the restaurant almost impassable and I was glad the we were leaving the island the next day. Yours, Pollybert