Saturday, 21 November 2015

SE Asia: why there?


In case you missed it, last week I shared the exciting news that in February my boyfriend and I are going travelling for six months! Yup, six months of exploring SE Asia and all it has to offer. Excited is a bit of an understatement I guess - we're counting down the days already.

Last time I briefly explained the reasoning for our trip. Essentially, it's a case of if not now, when? 

This trip has been a long time coming; we decided on Christmas Eve 2014 and have spent all of 2015 saving, planning... and building excitement! So I guess this post is about how we've gone about organising our trip and the things we still have left to decide on. I'm hoping others who have travelled the countries we're planning on visiting will be able to pass on some hints and tips - as well as maybe giving others that nudge to consider a big trip. 

Both Rich (boyfriend) and I have visited Asia before. We went to Malaysia together two summers ago and packed KL, the Perhentian islands (my second time), Penang and Langkawi into a two week trip. Previously I spent a month in Malaysia and Indonesia with Kat, again visiting the Perhentian islands (heaven on earth), KL, Bali and the Gili Islands. Rich has also visited various Thai islands with his friends - so we feel we've had a good taste of what Asia has to offer already. 

You may be thinking - why are you going back? Spread your wings! And we thought exactly the same. We initially planned on spending the six months in South America, but after looking into it some more we realised our hearts lie in Asia. All our travels have done so far is whet our appetite - we want to see more! So this time we will be skipping most of Malaysia, Indonesia and the Thai party islands and instead seeing more of what Asia has up it's sleeve. 

We've decided on the following as definites:
Philippines - likely splitting our time between Palawan and Boracay
Malaysia - returning to Penang as we loved it before and didn't get to see enough
Thailand - Krabi, Phi Phi and then moving up to Chaing Mai and Pai
Myanmar/Burma - Yangon and Inle lake
Vietnam - Hanoi and all the way down the coast to Ho Chi Minh
Cambodia - Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville

All we've done so far? Booked our flight out there and a return, coming back in August. We're flying to the Philippines to start and coming back from Bangkok. The rest we will be (largely) figuring out when we're there! 

I'd love to hear from anyone who has visited SE Asia and any of the places we're planning on seeing - or any others we've missed out and must see! Any feedback would be gratefully received.

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4 comments

  1. Myself and my boyfriend visited Asia just over 2 years ago for 10 weeks and had the time of our life... I wish we could do it all again! I have a few recommendations if you're interested. We spent 6-7 out of the 10 weeks in Thailand and there's so many incredible places to explore. Our favourite islands were Koh Lanta (pretty deserted during the rainy season, stunning stretches of beaches to yourself), Koh Lipe (has the whitest sand I've ever seen). Koh Tao had the most incredible snorkelling and diving, and amazing restaurants there. If you go yo Krabi you must get a boat out to Ton Sai. It's tiny but beautiful and visit 'mama chicken' there. In Vietnam we adored Hoi An but the best bit was an incredible home stay in a bamboo hut on the Mekong Delta. Also go elephant treking in Chang Mai but make sure it's with a company that treats them properly. The full moon party in Koh Samui was amazing but we stayed on the opposite side of the island so it didn't feel like a party place. Sorry about the essay - just thought it might be helpful to share my best bits! Emma

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    1. This is amazing and so helpful! Thanks Emma. Researching these as we speak!

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  2. Wow I can only look on in jealousy! You'll have such an incredible time and I'll be stalking for lots of photos!
    Sophie
    x

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  3. I went to SE Asia last year & in addition to the above I absoloutly think you need to add in Laos, it is beauriful & the best place I have ever visited. I travelled there from Chaing Mai on a longboat with an overnight stop on the way, was so peaceful. Agree with the above comment re Elephant Sanctuary in Chang Mai, the one I went to you spend a day bathing & caring for abused elephants rather than riding them, so much nicer! Also in Bangkok i'd recommend staying in the Chillax hotel & heading to a great restaurant called Tealicious which I think is in the top 5 best restaurants in bangkok. Hope that helps! X

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