Ryan van Velzer

About the Author

Ryan van Velzer Ryan Van Velzer is a journalist, poet and photographer from Phoenix, Arizona. Awarded for in-depth reporting, he’s covered government, politics, food, culture and world events from Southeast Asia to Central America. Carving a niche as a travel journalist, Ryan’s passionate about capturing the essence of the communities, countries and curios he encounters on his journeys. In his pursuit, he’s written about everything from Hanoi traffic, Bangkok floods and Laos UXO to Cambodian homestays and eating crickets in E-san.

Located in the heart of the Indochinese Peninsula, the mountainous terrain and perilous winding roads of Laos make any bus journey into the clouds a trip to remember, writes Ryan van Velzer.

Featured The-Japanese-Bridge-in-Hoi-An-2.03.14-PM 3

In the center of Hoi An’s Old City at the Chinese Fujian Assembly Hall, resides the image of the Holy Mother, a deity said to watch over the people of Hoi An, protecting sea merchants and fishermen.


Laos has a lot to offer the eager traveler: the untainted beauty of its mountains, its ancient temples, the hidden villages lost in time, the wild adventure of its treks. There are two other reasons to visit a country often forgotten in the midst – and mists — of Southeast Asia: humility and perspective.

Delta arteries

Two hours outside the electric, neon rush of Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) is the Mekong Delta: 40,000 sq km of rivers, streams and islands where the Den and Sau rivers (local names) meet the ocean. Half-day tours of the Mekong Delta take travelers through farmland, mangroves, and jungles that seem to have more in […]


To eat Laotian food, is to understand the country’s history. In turns savoury, sweet, sour, spicy (really spicy) and salty. Laotian people understand complementing flavours in a way that is unique, even by Southeast Asian standards.