Southeast Asia is now a popular region in the East. With many travellers choosing Southeast Asia because of its great weather, idyllic beaches, fantastic cuisine, intriguing calming culture and affordable prices to name a few; who wouldn’t want to visit these shores for a holiday or a new adventure?
With this region getting visited more and more by the masses of new tourists, it’s important to know what incredible experiences can be had in Southeast Asia.
We’re not talking about Angkor Wat in Cambodia or Bangkok’s Reclining Buddha, because they have been done many times before. To counter the bucket list attractions, we’ve put together a comprehensive list of 8 incredible Southeast Asia experiences that really will win your heart.
Travel South East Asia: See Orangutans in Borneo
One of the most loved and smartest primates on earth, the Orangutan can be found in Borneo. These orange friendly apes are a true representation of the exotic natural world in Asia. In Borneo, they are found mostly in the Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak. Unfortunately, the Organgutan is now endangered as a result of habitat loss. To see them in the wild, you must go venture into the rainforest. Alternatively, an easier option is to visit them at ethical reserves that promote responsible ecotourism.
Hiking Mount Bromo, Indonesia
If you want to hike in Southeast Asia, Mount Bromo is definitely a goal worth setting. Standing at an elevation at over 2,000m high, Mount Bromo is an active volcano and last erupted back late 2015.
Still, the world-class rugged views, the surrounding un-active volcanos and the sheer journey is what its all about that make Mount Bromo an incredible experience to take in Southeast Asia.
Travel South East Asia: Riding A Motorbike Through Vietnam
As you’re probably well aware, Vietnam has got something of a motorbike addiction. With almost more motorbikes than people, it’s easy to hop on two-wheels and peruse this country. The best thing you can do for an unforgettably daring adventure is to go riding the whole breadth of the country. You can stop where you like, witness stunning cascading mountains, rice terraces and old communist towns. Most noteworthy, is that Vietnam is shaped like a ‘S’, so you can only go two ways, north or south!
If you are riding, make sure you know what you’re doing. Take out adequate motorbike insurance and have a good understanding of Vietnamese road custom; it’s very different to what you’re probably use to!
Exploring Rice Terraces in the Philippines
Locally dubbed as the ‘Eighth Wonder of the World’, the Batad Rice Terraces are like a park for the giants. Banaue, just before Batad, is filled with sprawling, never-ending rows of rice terraces. Once you’ve got your feel of Banaue, ideally via experiencing the Hapao Rice Terraces, Batad is the next step. Cascading from the highest rice terraces to the Tappiya waterfall, hiking here is quite the experience.
Trekking through Inle Lake, Myanmar
Myanmar has had an eventful few years. Opened to tourists back in 2011, then the whole Rohingya crisis, who knows what is next to happen in this Asian nation. However, you can still find serenity by visiting Inle Lake and it is the best place to get off the beaten track and go trekking in Myanmar. The three-day trekking adventure from Kalaw to Inle Lake is the one most intrepid traveller pick, with mountains, villages and winding lakes to bypass.
Searching for Komodo Dragons, Indonesia
Where many of us read about fairy tales that include the mythical creatures that are fire-breathing dragons, in Sumatra, East Java, Indonesia, you can actually go looking for Komodo Dragons. Komodo National Park is the only spot that you can visit these marvellous creatures in the wild. They are wild for a reason due to their nature. Komodo’s are strong, poisonous and relentless meat eaters. It’s best to keep your distance when you visit them!
Wreck Diving in Coron, Philippines
It’s no secret you can go scuba diving in Southeast Asia. Many first time travellers tend to get their PADI licences in dive havens like Koh Tao in Thailand. But if you want a real experience that involves scuba diving, head over to the island of Coron in the Philippines. There are a dozen WW2 Japanese shipwrecks that are available to be explored, making Coron Bay one of the best adventure diving spots in the whole world. Depending on how experienced you are and what licence you hold will depend on what wrecks you can dive.
Elephant Sanctuary, Thailand
We all want a selfie with an elephant; it’s part of travelling Southeast Asia. However, due to all of the awareness about visiting elephants in Thailand, it’s important to choose a sanctuary that is ethically responsible. Furthermore, elephant riding is a big no-no in Asia, in case you didn’t know. The best way see elephants are to see them in their natural habitat and assisted by people who care for elephant welfare. Chiang Mai in recent years has elephant sanctuaries that promote sustainable ecotourism without the dangers of abuse or neglect of other Asian elephant camps.