Southeast Asia Round Up

As we write this, we are in Tbilisi, Georgia and about to head to Armenia. But just after spending almost five months in Southeast Asia and releasing our site, we find that we’re being asked “what was your favorite ______ in Southeast Asia?”

Here is our attempt to answer those questions, preempt a few others, and provide an overview of our experience.

Our Travel Path in Southeast Asia Between December 2006 and April 2007

(please excuse the fact that the map below looks like it was scribbled on by a 2-year old)

southeast_asia_map1.jpgDecember: BangkokKoh Pha NganBangkokHanoi

January: HanoiHalong BaySapa – Bac Ha – Hanoi – Luang Prabang – Nong KhiawLuang PrabangVang ViengVientiane

February: Vientiane – Da Nang – Hoi AnSaigonPhnom PenhSiem ReapBattambangBangkok

March: Bangkok
Patong (Phuket)RanongKhao SokPhang Nga

April: KrabiAo Nang – Ko Lanta – Railey BeachKrabiBangkokPrague


Award For the Most Waves and Smiles in Southeast Asia

Children Playing in Mud - Battambang, Cambodia
Laughing and playing in the first rains of the season. Battambang, Cambodia
  1. Best Boat Ride – Siem Reap to Battambang, Cambodia
  2. Best Boat Ride, Honorable Mention – Luang Prabang to Nong Khiaw, Laos
  3. Outrageously Cute Kids – Trek Outside Luang Prabang, Laos
  4. Condensed Milk and a Smile – Phnom Penh, Cambodia
  5. Tet Flower Market – Saigon, Vietnam

Visually Spectacular

Click on the More Photos link at the bottom of each entry for even more images.

  1. Sapa, Vietnam
  2. Bac Ha Market, Vietnam
  3. Cai Rang Floating Market in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam
  4. Halong Bay, Vietnam
  5. The Andaman Beaches, Thailand

Southeast Asia: Digging into Humanity

Handing Out a Book to Village Kids - Nong Khiaw, Laos
Handing out a Big Brother Mouse book in Laos.

A selection of stories that highlight the less seen.

  1. Battambang on a Motorbike
  2. The Other Side of Siem Reap
  3. Across the River in Luang Prabang
  4. Handing out Books to Village Kids – Laos
  5. Vietnam’s Open-Kimono Exhibit about its Subsidy Period

Southeast Asian Food: Top eating experiences, in no particular order

  1. Chau Tom – Hanoi
  2. Beef in a Leaf – Saigon
  3. The Lao Trinity – Jeaw Bong, Khai Pen, and Sticky Rice in Luang Prabang
  4. Prawns on the Mekong, Vientiane
  5. Cambodian morning soup
  6. Cambodian fish Amok
  7. Thai knom jeen in Krabi

Southeast Asia Photos


We’ve purposely tried to keep ‘em short. Check for them at the bottom of an article or check for an index of articles that have a video embedded here.

Some of our favorites:

  1. Saigon, Vietnam – possibly the only place (with the exception of Hanoi) where the traffic makes us laugh
  2. Battambang, Cambodia – who knew a day on the back of a motorbike could be so fun?
  3. Boat to Nong Khiaw, Laos – sitting on kindergarten-sized seats for 8 hours can be butt-numbing, but this trip is worth it

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  1. Sher says

    Thanks for sending the link to this. It’s going to take me a while to get through it all but I’m looking forward to reading about what you’ve been up to. I know that Switzerland isn’t on your route, but if things change, look us up.

  2. Brian says

    More, more! write faster, write, write like the wind! I need to know what you are doing. Couldn’t you just hook up a wireless webcam and microphone and keep it on all the time?? Looking forward to your next update. :-)))

  3. says

    Sher, great to hear from you! Yes, there’s a lot on the site…hope you have fun going through it and check back for updates. Switzerland isn’t exactly on our route right now…but one never knows. Our route will change many times I’m sure!

  4. says

    Brian, given all the gadgets we’re carrying with us, we probably could stream directly…scary thought! Just stay patient for a few more days!

  5. stephanie wallace says

    Myself and a friend are looking at doing a really similar route to yours, We are heading off in Feb to teach English in Cambodia so would he starting from there.
    At the moment we are debating the pros and cons of local transport versus an sta or stray hop on/off bus.
    Any tips/advice would be greatly appreciated :)

    • says

      Hi Stephanie,
      Sounds like you’ve got a great adventure ahead of you in Southeast Asia.

      We didn’t take any STA or stray hop on/hop off buses while in SE Asia, but we’ve seen them and have talked to others who have.

      Pros of these:
      – Possibly nicer, more comfortable buses as they are more geared towards travelers.
      – Run the tourist routes, so might be faster to get from A to B than stringing together a series of local buses/trains

      – less interaction with locals
      – more expensive

      We had pretty good experiences with public transport in SE Asia, especially the trains (Vietnam, Thailand, etc.). For us, the added experience of traveling with locals and getting a look into ordinary lives of people was a factor in choosing local transport.

      Good luck with your trip!

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