When it comes to travelling, Southeast Asia has long been a favourite amongst individuals from all over the world. When you start to look through what it has to offer, it becomes pretty simple to see why. Many areas are budget-friendly, which takes a lot of pressure off you when you’re planning and saving for your trip.
There’s delicious cuisine to try out, a favourable temperature and climate for most of the year, most areas are extremely rich in culture, and there’s the choice of both beautiful beaches and busy cities. What’s not to love? So, if you’re planning a trip, here are a few highlights of the region to consider.
Many people associate Malaysia with Borneo and its sprawling ancient rainforests. This, of course, proves to be an amazing trip for those who don’t mind diving into nature. However, Malaysia also has large cities to offer those interested in a city break instead. In fact, Kuala Lumpur, the country’s capital, is a bustling metropolis with diverse culture thanks to Malay, Tamil, and Chinese influence. Its city skyline is dominated by the Petronas Twin Towers, each with over 80 floors, high viewing platforms, and a skywalk connecting the two.
The city is also home to the Kuala Lumpur tower, which again has viewing platforms that are more than worth climbing or using an elevator to reach. You needn’t worry about accommodation while visiting, as there are plenty of beautiful and comfortable apartments on offer and you’re never really too far from the main attractions.
If you want a break from the hustle and bustle of the inner city, you can also plan a day trip out to the Batu Caves.
A guide will pick you up from your hotel, then take you around the Hindu Batu Caves with their resplendent gold statue. You might even see some grey macaques while you’re there!
Singapore is an island city-state located just off Southern Malaysia, so if you have enough time for an extended trip, you might want to consider visiting both places, one after the other. The proximity of the two places allows for this without proving too expensive.
One of the most visited attractions in Singapore is Gardens by the Bay. This is an awe-inspiring horticultural attraction spans over 100 hectares and is maintained and cultivated by a multidisciplinary team of professionals. This team includes skilled landscape designers, horticulturalists, arborists, engineers, plant health specialists, garden and turf management experts, and plant research and orchid breed specialists. When you consider the amount of work that goes into the gardens, you’d think that you wouldn’t be all too surprised by beautiful results. But even with the work taken into consideration, you’re still likely to be taken aback by the end result. There are three areas to visit: Bay South, Bay East, and Bay Central. Bay South is the largest of the three exhibits and is home to award-winning cool conservatories and iconic Supertrees.
There are also floral displays such as Tulipmania, Orchid Extravaganza, and Blossom Beats here. Bay East is more tranquil and the perfect spot to relax while people watching in front of a stunning view of the Singapore skyline. Bay Central is a waterfront with beautiful views over the city. If you get a taste for plants after this experience, there are even more on offer in the National Orchid Garden, Singapore Botanic Gardens, and Cloud Forest.
Bangkok is Thailand’s capital and is best known for a combination of ornate shrines and bustling street life. Some of the most beautiful sights that this area holds lie in its religious sites.
Start out at the Temple of the Reclining Buddha (otherwise known as Wat Pho). This is one of the oldest and largest temples in Bangkok and (the clue is in the name) is home to the largest reclining Buddha statue in Thailand, which reaches over 150 feet in length. I’d advise taking a trip around this temple with a guide, as they will be able to teach you more about the history of the temple, offering stories and anecdotes as well as interesting facts and figures as you go along. Other notable temples to consider include Wat Bowonniwet Vihara, the Temple of Dawn (Wat Arun), and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha (Wat Phra Kaew).
The last of these lies in the Grand Palace, a complex of buildings built in 1782 that lies in the heart of Bangkok and has plenty more to offer visitors. Certain parts are not open to the public, as the building is still occasionally used for Royal rituals, State banquets, and other official functions, so respect the rules and keep to the designated areas.
4. Da Nang
Da Nang lies in Vietnam and is home to the Marble Mountains, a cluster of five hills made from limestone and marble. This well-known pilgrimage site has peaks, tunnels, temples, and caves, so there’s something to suit any traveller with a sense of adventure and a love of all things natural. There are Buddhist sanctuaries and places of worship dotted along the hills. If you wish to climb the mountains, leave yourself at least four hours and make sure to take plenty of supplies, wear sensible shoes, and whenever possible pair up with a guide who knows the area well. They will be able to show you the best routes and ensure that you don’t get lost.
They will also be able to tell you tales about the history of the area, such as ancient folklore regarding its origins (it involves a dragon, an egg, and a beautiful girl). Alternatively, you can rest on the beautiful My Khe Beach below.
As you can see, Southeast Asia has so much to offer and these are just a few places that belong to the area. There are so many more out there for you to discover. Just ensure to plan your trip thoroughly and stick to your plan once you arrive. Everything should go swimmingly and you should see everything that you hoped to.