It’s the final day of my travel costs series in Southeast Asia. Over the past week I’ve broken down our spending in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Today I’m wrapping up the series with a quick look at how much we spent in Singapore plus a summary of our total costs in the region. Read more “Travel Costs: Singapore”
Stretching across 17,000+ islands, Indonesia is the fourth most populous country in the world. This archipelago spans from Sumatra in the west to Papua in the east and is home to a large variety of different ethnic and cultural groups. Each island varies from one another, from its landscape, religion, architecture, and character, providing travelers with differing experiences from one island to the next.
With so many islands and varying things to experience, we picked three islands to spend our time in: Sumatra, Java, and Bali. Read more “Travel Costs: Indonesia”
Gorgeous beaches, mountainous regions, fast-paced city living, exotic jungles, highly developed infrastructure and cheap travel costs, Malaysia is unlike any other Southeast Asian country. Located south of Thailand and spanning over two landmasses (Peninsular and Borneo Malaysia), Malaysia is the melting pot of the region, made up of Chinese, Indian, and Malay cultures. Malaysia was our favourite country in Southeast Asia, and not just because it had the lowest travel costs. The people, the food, and uniqueness of the country made it an incredibly enjoyable place to explore. Read more “Travel Costs: Malaysia”
Thailand is the most popular destination in Southeast Asia. For decades, travelers have been flocking to this part of the region with the lure of cheap getaways and a chance to find that perfect hideaway. Thailand is an adult’s playground with something for everyone. Jungle trekking, scuba diving, zip lining, rock climbing, kayaking, cooking courses, island hopping, all night partying, incredible street-side dining, shopping, the list goes on. So it goes without saying that after years of reading and hearing about how amazing Thailand is, we came into the country with very high expectations.
We entered Thailand from the north, after a two-day slow boat journey from Luang Prabang, Laos. Getting our 60-day visas in advanced was imperative since we would have only received a free, 15-day visa on arrival by entering the country overland. Our first stop was Chiang Mai where we stayed for 5 nights in a fan cooled, double ensuite room. We learned to cook Thai food, meandered the old city streets, and had our laundry done. We hooked up with one of our “family members”, whom we met in Laos, rented a car, and tackled the 1864 curves of the Mae Hong Son Loop. For 4 days, we drove clockwise from Chiang Mai, stopping in Mae Sariang, Mae Hong Son, and Pai. We visited the Doi Inthanon National Park, reached the highest spot in Thailand, and came face to face with the Karen Hill Tribe famous for the Long Neck Women. Read more “Travel Costs: Thailand”
Often overlooked on the backpacking trail in Southeast Asia, Laos is a diamond in the rough. It is the definition of laid-back travel, where days are spent reading in a hammock, discovering richly adorned palaces, or just watching the river float by as you enjoy a drink on a patio. This landlocked country is the idyllic place to sink your feet into, soak in your surroundings, and just enjoy a slower pace of life.
We entered the country from the Cambodian/Laos border in the south and made our way over to Si Phan Don (the 4,000 Islands). We stayed 1 night on Don Det, 5 nights on Don Khon, and 2 nights on Don Khong. Leisurely days were spent mainly eating and drinking sitting beside the mighty Mekong River. When we did pull ourselves away from our idle lifestyles, we rented bicycles and explored the islands.
Feeling refreshed and recharged after a week of practically doing nothing, we headed north to Pakse and stayed for 4 nights in a double room with AC. Again, we didn’t get up to much except spending most days at a great little café, meeting some amazing travelers (whom we’d continue traveling with for the next two weeks and dubbed “the family”), and taking a day trip to the Bolaven Plateau. Read more “Travel Costs: Laos”