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Bruce and Roz Check Out South East Asia

Welcome to Bruce N Roz McLean's Travel Page. Here is where we will be keeping a record of our travels for all of you to read. Please feel free to leave a comment for us. If we have time in between discovering new places and meeting new people we will reply to them!

Diary Entries

Saturday, 19 June 2010

If you are looking for the new blog please go back to and press f5


Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Location: Australia

This trip is not just about a motorbike ride.

Some info to date.

Prices for flights are hard to find right now for May 2011 but should be around.

Gold Coast to KL $140.00 AA
KL to Cambodia $76.31 AA
Cambodia to Bangkok $227.15 Bangkok Air
Bangkok to Chiang Mai $44.00 AA

Private minibus/ motorbike to Laos $1900.00 per bike, working on reducing it.

Laos to KL $91.00 AA

KL to Gold Coast $228.00 AA

Accommodation can range from $20.00 per night to 120.00 and above however Roz and I know a few nice places at good rates, more later.

So airfare for the round trip through five countries should be around the $800.00 but there are often specials closer to the date.

Cheers for now Bruce

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Location: Gold Coast, Australia

Even more replies: I love they way he spells Engineer

Dear sir Bruce Mclean
its so nice to hear from you ! wish you have a good day ! , well that is very good quetion sir

please kindly check my side arrangement to ofer you

1 : alll of your wife will stay in the mininvan during your riding with the guide

2 : all of the helmet , and jectket will provide and offer you ,

3 : Motorbike inginering also following you to every where with the spear truck, cos of any imergency
4: when your first day in Chiengmai on arrival is depend on if you arrival in the morning or evening the our local reprentative office can offer you if you would like to do any thing

, Plse note : for more infors of the riding gear i will send you As the soonest

If you have any comment please feel free to keep in touch and contact me in any time

I am looking forwards to hearing from you again

Kindly regards

Mana Mr / Indochina travel

vientaine Capital Laos

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Location: Gold Coast, Australia

Another reply from the bike tour company:

Dear sir Bruce

one agian plse , the weather at that time is good for riding



Sunday, 13 June 2010

Location: Gold Coast, Australia

Looking at leaving Australia about 01 May 2011 depending on flights Etc.

It might be a option to fly direct to Bangkok from Brisbane then Cambo then back to Bangkok then up to CM.

Open to suggestions

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Location: Gold Coast, Australia

I have added some photos on the right hand side of this screen,
These photos came with the letter.



Sunday, 13 June 2010

Location: Gold Coast, Australia

Received an email from a company in Laos, for those of you who do not now where it is, I suggest you ask Google.
This chap is arranging a motorcycle tour from Chiang Mai, Thailand to Laos I think it is 10 days. at a rate of $1900.00 there is another company which does a tour of the Golden Triangle, I think it is about $1000.00 for 7 days

Dear Sir Bruce (I like that)

have a good day to you ! its quite long time that i haven't keep you a contact for your bike planing holiday to thailand and laos , and i am so sorry for my very late to give you the information about the tour program and i have completed for the motor bike picture i would love to send you soon as for now i am still looking for a very good bike for you as your mention + 500 CC

plse kindly check on the attch file

i am looking to hearing from you again
The details are below

Thailand -Laos culture & hill tribe
Motorbike riding Thailand –Laos soft adventure

Day 1 Chiang Mai (Arrival Day) (-, -, D)
Meet & Greet at Chiang Mai Airport + Transfer to Selected Hotel + Motor Bike Test to Doi Suthep Temple (1-2 hrs; Kawasaki ER-600) + Khan Toke Dinner with Traditional Performance

Day 2 Chiang Mai (Inthanon National Park + Baan Hawaii) (B, L, -)
Breakfast at the Hotel + Ride to Inthanon National Park (Highest Peak + Angka Natural Trail + King’s Royal Project + Hmong / Karen Hill Tribe Village + Waterfall) + Baan Tawai Wood Carving Village + 2 hrs Traditional Thai Massage + Back to the Hotel

Day 3 Chiang Mai – Chiang Rai (via Tha Ton Route + Elephant Safari) (B, L, -)
Breakfast + Chiang Dao Elephant Camp (Elephant Demonstration + Elephant Ride 1½ hrs.) + Tha Ton Temple (for a view point of Tha Ton Village) + Ride up & down hill to Chiang Rai Province + Visit Wat Rong Khun (or White Temple) + 2 hrs. Traditional Thai Massage + Free evening & Explore Chiang Rai Night Bazaar at own pace

Day 4 Chiang Rai – Golden Triangle (B, L, D)
Breakfast + Visit Morning Market & Chiang Rai City Tour + Ride Doi Tung (Doi Tung Royal Villa + Mae Fah Luang Garden) + Lunch + Visit Mae Sai (Border between Thailand and Myanmar) + Continue to Golden Triangle + Opium Museum + Visit View Point of the Golden Triangle + Check in at the Hotel (Golden Triangle Area) + Farewell Dinner (appx. 396 km.)

Day 5 Chiang Rai -Huay Sai –Luang Namtha (B, L, D)196 km
Breakfast Resort + Ride to the Chiang Khong Border to Huay Sai,On arrival at the Lao border checkpoint at HoueiSay pier, you will be met by your guide and taken through the visa formalities. We then head out of the town to Luang Namtha, along the newly improved road. The scenery is breathtaking and we have time to visit hill tribe villages along the road at Muang Phouka and other surrounding areas. We arrive in Luang Namtha in late evening. Overnight in the Boat Landing Luang Namtha (appx. 80 km.)

Day 6 Luang Namtha-Muang La (B, D) 155km
Todays after breakfast we drive to the road No R3 via international road No 13th is quite funny road on the way you can see many hill tribe minority such us Thaidam.Thaideng.Lantan.AKha ,Hmong in the afternoon we via Oudomxay for a short break to Lunch at the local restaurant. Latter drive to the top of the mountain Victory stupa Phuxay to enjoyable the Excellent View latter we heading out to the Moungla district as well know the hot spring on arrival we transfer to check in this small boutique hotel is very quite and very good for truly relaxing and bathing to the natural hot spring

Day 7 Muang La –Nong Khiaw(B,) 120km
Breakfast; upon leaving Muang La, we start to drive into the most mountainous area of Laos. The roads conditions are good enough to explore; however the verdant and rugged mountain scenery combined with the colorful local population makes for an unforgettable experience. Today, we drive through the area, home to various ethnic minority groups including the Hmong, Khmu, Akha and Taidam. The journey leads us through the scenic area to Nong Khiow. Here is a chance to visit Hmong at Ban Jarong, Ban Songja, Khmu hill tribe people before reach Nong Khiow by late afternoon. Overnight in Nong Khiow.(B)

Day 8 Nong Khiaw-Luang Prabang (B, ) 167km
After breakfast, we head out of the town to Luang Prabang, the ancient first capital of Lane Xang kingdom, the center of religious life in Laos and today the World Heritage City. We also stop to relax and take our lunch at local restaurant at Ban Pak Ou, a village opposite of Pak Ou cave in the side of a lime stone cliff and opposite of the mouth of the Mekong and Nam Ou rivers. The sanctuaries at Pak Ou consist of two large caves, both repositories for thousands of Buddha images, which range from mere centimeter to two meters in height.
We cross the Mekong by small ferry boat to visit Pak Ou cave, and we cross back to Ban Pak Ou to continue our way to Luang Prabang. This afternoon is spent free for own experience of this charming town with kind people. (B,)

Day 9Luang Prabang-city tour (B, By minivan
Breakfast at hotel, we take a sightseeing tour of the sacred city of temples, visit the National Museum, the former Royal Palace which houses the collection of valuables including the famous Prabang Buddha statue, gifts received from foreign dignitaries…etc…; visit Wat Xiengthong, the 16th century temple, which more than any temples in Luang Prabang.climb Phousi Hill, the 328 steps leads to the summit of Phousi Hill that dominates the sky-line of Luang Prabang overlooking the finest panoramic view in the whole Luang Prabang .
In the afternoon we drive to Kuangsi waterfalls, we take a short trek uphill to the top of the waterfalls to see stunning view and swimming of the lovely blue swimming natural poll and also you can visit of the bear century of Asia. back to Luangphabang in the evening shopping at the night market,Overnight in Luangphabang

Day 10 Luang Prabang-Vientiane (B, 396 km
After breakfast continuedrive to Vientiane via Vang Vieng. The journey is strenuous as we drive along one of the most scenic but rough routes in the whole of Asia.Lunch in Phoukhun Piengpha,shot stop in Vang Vieng, a small town which is located on a bend in the Nam Song River. This tranquil town is rapidly developed with the advent of tourist, but the beautiful scenery with a mixture of quiet water and limestone outcrops is unchanged for century dan continue toVientiane ,on arrivall we transfer to the hotel for check in after a short rest you might be want to strolling along the Mekong river bank to enjoy the beautiful sunset.Overnight in Vientiane

Day 11 Vientiane-departure (B, L,)
You will be picked up from your hotel this morning and enjoy a city tour of the capital. We visit the major sights; including the oldest Wat Sisaket with thousands of miniature Buddha statues and the former royal temple of Wat Prakeo, which previously housed the famous Emerald Buddha Image. On the way to the famous and sacred structure of That Luang Stupa, we will stop to take some pictures of the imposing Patuxay Monument, which is well known as Vientiane’s own Arc de Triumph. From there, we visit the central market or ‘Morning Market’ which is a great place for antiques, handmade textiles and gifts.after lunch, then transfer to airport for departure.

Tour price is net in US$ per person

1900 US$ / pax

Boat Landing resort , Laungnamtha province

Moungla Resort , Moungla hot spring district Oudomxai province

• Muang La Resort
On the edge of a small village where local people follow a traditional life style, Muang La Resort was built to respect its surroundings. Swathed in greenery, the resort is surrounded by forests, rice fields and hot-water springs that are thousands of years old; offering you complete immersion in this natural paradise. On the sides of the valley, an old and famous Buddhist temple brings an air of spirituality to this place of complete relaxation.
In the heart of a luxuriant garden, 3 wooden villas of ethnic design, offer 2 rooms of the highest quality and comfort. Each room has its own special ambience and all ooze tranquility in a wonderfully scented atmosphere emanating from local oils used to treat the wood. Pieces of Laotian art created by local artists and sculptors add the finishing touches to each room.
In the evening, the Resort is bathed in light from torches and candles in its gardens to give you a marvellous evening " under the stars" … You can take a table where you prefer, in the lush garden, on the terrace, or on a small island in the centre of the river, opposite the resort. Each day we offer a different choice of delicious dishes mixing Laotian & Thai cuisine accompanied by a selection of wines - a real experience in itself.
Still a very well-kept secret, Muang La Resort opened in October 2007 and promises an unrivalled opportunity to discover Laos, its people & its culture. Alternatively, you can simply enjoy the complete peace and tranquility and let the stresses and strains of everyday life drift away.

Nong Kiau River side , Moungngoi


HOTEL NAME : Villa Santi Resort
ADDRESS : Ban Nadeuay of 6 kms from the old city,Luang Prabang Lao PDR
TEL NO. : ( 856-71)253475, 253470
FAX NO. : ( 856-71)253471

FACILITIES : (the resort of 52 rooms)
LOCATED : The resort is situated on the valley surrounded by hills and ravens leading down to the Mekong river. The resort features 52 rooms elegantly decorated in Luang Prabang style and decor sits in over 10 hectares of beautiful landscaped gardens and streams. The resort sport facilities include a 30-meter pool, tennis courts, fitness club and horse riding. It is just 15 minutes from Luang Prabang airport. Swimming pool and large garden.


ADDRESS : 6 Pangkham Road , Vientiane , Lao PDR
TEL NO. : (856-21)217581
FAX NO. : (856-21)217583

FACILITIES : 30 deluxe rooms & Suites,
LOCATED : Historic French colonial hotel fully restored and centrally located. Suites, studio & poolside rooms, all with rose wood furniture, elegant and classic, IDD and satellite TV. Fully equipped with business center, souvenir shop. Restaurant serving French cuisine, banquet room Swimming pool, garden.


Please note as below , this include in Thailand price
- One way private airport transfer by air-con van with escorted
- 10 night accommodation with daily breakfast as indicated (twin sharing occupancy)
- Motorbike (Kawasaki ER-600) with gasoline (1 Motor Bike / 1 Pax) for Day 1 – 4
- 1 English speaking guide
- Air – con van with driver accompanying the group (Day 3 – 5)
- Meals + tours + admission fees as indicated
- 2 hours Thai Massage or Oil Massage / pax on Day 2 & Day 4
- Drinking Water and cool towel service during the trip
- Travel accident insurance (AIG)
Package Exclude:
- Optional or other tour & meals than mentioned in the program
- Expenditure of a personal nature such as drinks, souvenir and laundry etc
- Seasonal surcharge & gala dinner

Laos service inclusive
- Minivan service with A/c all the trip to following
- Well English speaking local guide
- Motor bike 4-500 CC , good bike
- Accommodation in 3-4 stars hotel with daily breakfast
- All entrance fees
- Laos Government tour tax
- Motorbike insurance
- Free Road map
- Drinking water + cold napkin
Service not include
- Travel insurance
- Personal expense shopping
- Soft drink , Drink or other
- Sure charge for Gasoline and other not mention on the itinerary

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Location: Australia

Hi Folks.

Well it has been a long time since Roz or I have been on to our blog, for that I guess we have just been slack.

As some of you may know next year I (Bruce) turn 50. and my brother Wayne is turning 60.

To celebrate this I am planning to travel back to Asia, it is such a fascinating place once you leave the cities (as I find all big cities are very similar).

Planning for leave the Gold Coast or Brisbane (depending on flights) at the start of May and take one of two flight paths.
Air Asia or a combination of others

Flight Path 1
1. From here to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia as all flights from Australia on Air Asia call through there.

2. Kuala Lumpur to Siem Reap, Cambodia to see Angkor Wat before they close it to the public

3. Siem Reap, Cambodia to Bangkok, Thailand to shop a little and visit friends and family.

4 Bangkok, Thailand to Chiang Mai, Thailand for some good night markets.

5. Some of the boys are keen to take off one a 7 day motorcycle tour around the Golden Triangle while the ladies check out the Day Spas and Night Markets.

6. Chiang, Mai Thailand to Bangkok, Thailand to collect whatever was ordered on the first trip

7. Bangkok, Thailand to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia then home.

Option 5A. The boys motor cycle tour goes for 10 days and we ride from Chiang Mai, Thailand to Laung Phra Bang, Lao (World historical reserved by UNESCO) - Then Back to Bangkok, Thailand and home.

I would be planning to be away for a month, the month of May as the weather is too hot in June.

You could join us at any stage.

Some may wish to fly Auckland, New Zealand direct to Bangkok, Thailand and join us for a play in Chiang Mai and then return to Bangkok and head back to New Zealand.

Talking with Paul, (H) he might be interested in joining us in Cambodia to see Angkor Wat then might fly back to France from Bangkok.

Brother Wayne might be able to meet us in Bangkok and travel to Chiang Mai for the bike ride.

Brother Don might meet us in Bangkok and also come to Chiang Mai, would love for him to see Angkor Wat however.

Sister Heather I hope can do the whole trip but I think work might get in the way however she is very keen to see Angkor Wat and Chiang Mai.

Of course this is a long way off (just under a year) and things change, we all understand that. This is just a starting point to thrash out ideas and plans.

Leave me a note on the side there or flick me an email to

Cheers Bruce

Option 2 flight plan coming later

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Recent Messages

From Heather
It all looks great! I can probably do 3 weeks, but definitely coming. The tour looks great.
Elephants, hill tribes, markets, angor wat, scenery and meeting the locals and their cultures----just what I'd love. Catch up with Neil if possible. The girls are still interested in coming over to Gold coast when we go however as you have said their plans may change by then?
looking good--exciting!
Response: Great stuff, there will at this stage be 2 or 3 trips through Bangkok so we can let Neil know closer to the time as to when we will be there, Roz is planning a trip back to Dr Dang our dentist as well
From Heather
soundz great! girls are still keen to come over with me and stay on in Gold coast.
Response: Fantastic, give me some dates Heather. I hope to Skype you soon B xxx
From wayne
ted all good at this end just need lift off date are you talking about taking the girls as well?
Response: I just emailed the guy as it shows there is a mini van following us, so if we can why not. Also asked if we could drop the first 3 days. will post the reply.
Welcome aboard
From Deb (sis)
Hi there, did you get my email ??? Thanks once again for the beautiful handbag. Luv Debs xxxx
Response: sorry for the late reply, yes we did & you are weclome
From Kev and Colleen
Sorry haven,t left a message for a while all the Xmas huha not sure where the time has gone ( Took a week to get all our house lights up again.
I am enjoying your blog and love all the pics.
We spent Xmas with Jane and the boys in Hamilton as they have a new house,
logan turns 15 on 29th . I cam remember when he was born and you came up to there house not sure where all the years go too. Just saw on the news tonight a local lady who was 98 and still doing community work. So I quess we all have a few good years to go , well my friends take care, will look forward to having a great catch up when we come over to the 2 Bear Shows in June.
Travel safe til next time
Colleen and kevin x x x
Response: All the best to you both for 2010. Hopefully we will catch you on the coast next year. Much Love xx r and b
From marilyn
Hi Guys,
Have only just caught up with your wanderings after a bit of a break. - still jealous. aAfter our full on Christmas I would love something a little more simple- although the low beds sound a bit daunting. That is one thing I like to be comfortable. Look forward to reading your blogs. Life sounds so fulfilling .
Take care
Marilyn xoxoxo
Response: Although Christmas Day in a Buddhist country was very quiet for us it was nice to be away from the "madness" NY could be a different story. Bruces's big bro is coming to BKK with his princess to celebrate with us. Great to be in touch Marilyn. Wishing you EVERY happiness for 2010 x
From DD Deb
Hi R & B, Hope you had a great Christmas and have a very happy new year! All good here on GC.
Response: Thanks DD keep in touch & all the VERY best for 2010. Bruce's Big Bro coming from Bali to have NY with us so be great to have family with us xx r and b
Merry Christmas to you both and we wish you nothing but health, happiness and pure joy in the coming year. Having the usual gathering ,only not on the verandah this year..too hot!! We all send this message of love to you both. Take care. Love Di, Ron, Regan, Damien Julie and also Benny./X X X
Response: Thanks guys it will be nice to catch up once we return, love to you all and have a safe New Year
From cass
Ho Ho Ho! Merry christmas to the happy travellers! Big hello and hugs to you. i am in melbourne at the moment at mum n dads for xmas so wont get to phone/skype you til i get home on 29th dec. weather is beautiful and mild in melb, having luvly catch up time with m & d & friends. owie spending xmas on GC & out on icecream boat. he's not looking 4ward to all the screaming kids! hope all is well with you & enjoy ur BKK christmas. Take Care XXOO
Response: Thank you Princess Marry. Our thoughts will be with you and "Big O" on Christmas day, luv to you both
From Heather
hello, sorry i haved missed your skypes! Hope we can catch up Xmas day? move went pretty good, still unpacking, Looking forward to CHCH with the family, Glenn moved and soundz OK, Michelle moved and also soundz Ok. Dana talking much more, able to have conversation with her now!
Take care, love u lots and we'll talk soon. xxoo
Response: Glad kids OK hope you are too. Yes a chat will be great.
We love you 2 xxxxx B and R
From John & Dianne Pepper
Hi Guys; Don & Gail gave me your link at the cafe the other day , Great to see what youve been up to. Your looking great & having a good time . All is well with us back here in N.Z keep up the good work & have a GREAT CHRISTMAS !!!!!!!! Lots of Love John boy
Response: Great to be in touch with you. We hope to settle for a few days and update the information on the blog. love to your family B&R
From Jess & Chris
Hi Ma,
have some Christmas Pud questions - can we skype sometime soon xxx
Love you
Response: I we are in BKK now can we Skype Monday am if we find connection.
From Grant
been home for a break.. was great, looking forward to the next challenge , where ever that may be... had a place with poor connections Roz.. had to write in word and do the copy/paste thing, at least that way I didnt lose it when the connection died. Back here in Sudan its cold.. really cold.. will be off to london to see grand daughter ad home around the 28th jan.. we will have xmas then..
Response: That sounds great Mr Grant, we will be looking forward to catching up you both
From Jess & Chris
Hi guys,
loving the photos! we are all moved in now and have the internet - been waiting for ages!!
Lets talk soon xx
Response: Looking forward to catching up and maybe seeing some photos of the new place. luv B&R
From alan
Hi Rozzie - Armin in BKK last night - he was fantastic!!! Thought about you......
Response: Maybe he might becoming to Prangku? Glad you enjoyed it
From Di & Ron
Hey just looking at the latest photos and Roz how long is your hair!!! You guys sure look like you are loving every minute of it over there. There aren't too many people who would do what you have done I am so chuffed that you are our friends! Love you both, no Christmas dinner this year, but we will save you some....Di X X
Response: Thanks friend. Yes the mop is getting long but in many ways easier to manage. Have it up most days. Good to chat yesterday, thank you for your support and encouragement.xxxx
From Di
Hi there, I tried the number, let it ring out, no good. Have tried your number there as well, but not getting through on either. Probably me . Love Di
Response: I think it might have been the fact that I left my phone downstairs last night and missed your call. Try again anytime, Thank Di
From cass (aka Mary!!)
Hello happy travellers!! what an adventure! really enjoying ur blog. isn't it amazing the people u meet travelling (ie Janpen). I can hear both ur minds ticking over with ideas. When do u finish teaching? Look forward to a skype chat soon. will look out for u online. BIG hug. xx00 p.s.Montmartre going broke since u both left!! come back soon!!
Response: we are both also looking forward to catching up with you Princess Mary, I have tried to set up call forwarding on skype, which should mean if you call our home number on the Gold Coast it should be forwarded to us at local call rates to you, Same for those in New Zealand and England who have our Skype numbers. I will put them on the web site soon.
Thanks Cass, keep in touch
From Grant
well guys .. time comes along as always.. so ypou will be back home in Jan.. same as me.. I need to go to London on my way out to see my son, his family and my grand daughter.. really enjoying my time home,, doing heaps and relaxing at the same time.. will be good to catch up before you return to Cambo..
am sure you will be on the road soon again..
Response: Had a great weekend in Roi Et many plans afoot. enjoy your time at home, yes it will be fantastic to see you in January
From Alan
Hi again guys! Glad things are going well. Great to read/see your experiences.
When choosing house designs etc, need to be careful to keep it basic whilst still more attractive for volunteers. Otherwise there can be the risk of "farang resentment" from the other teachers who will be next door but in the types of accommodation in your photos. Worth discussing with the school director at least as it can be a difficult balance.
Take care darlings and sorry we will miss you for Christmas...
Response: thanks Mr Alan, enjoy the GC hope to speak soon
From wayne
hi guys what about a bank account to help for the house we all cant get there but we can all help
Response: What a good idea. I am making a web site for the school so maybe I could link a page that shows donations and progress for the new volunteer house. See the photos of the current teachers houses above.
From Lizzie
Hi Guys, Sounds like the adventure of a "lifetime", good for you.Sorry I wasn't home last night Rozzy darling. Mon & Thurs Yoga nights, but look forward to a catch up ASAP when you can.
Yes there's alot to be said about gorgeous comforting beds/ full on showers/TV's and microwaves!!! Brucie, please make sure your darling one gets "big time" massages! Love you and stay safe, many blessings, Bizwiz x
Response: Thanx for your message friend. All is good. We are off to Roi Et after school finishes friday, going to do more exploring for voluntary work. We will have 3 days there as it is the King's birthday Monday so holiday xx rand b
From Colleen & Kevin
Greetings to you both has been awhile since I have been able to check out your site. Amazing time you are having We can relate to the type of enviroment your are in having been to Cambodia. You will have life time memories of your time spent there. Love the photos. Take care Love to you both
Colleen and kevin x x x
From Heather
Everything sounds great!! well done to you both.
I brought a house today! smaller however that has been the plan. Great that I get to move out and into new place on the 14/12/2009.
I have been going through old slides that Dad took. Hard case, may use some for Deb's 50th? Everyone well here, you guys take care, much love, xxoo
So glad everything has worked out for you x r and b
From DD Deb
Hi guys, loving the photos and blog. Angkor Wat looks amazing - have always wanted to go there. Stay safe & good luck with the teaching. Lots of lov e, DD Deb