The Top Attractions in Southeast Asia Most People Don’t Know About
There is no reason to stay on the tourist path in the beautiful countries of Southeast Asia. The peoples of Southeast Asia are friendly and willing to help accommodate you especially when you head off the tourist track. Over our years traveling most of the countries of Southeast Asia, these 5 are our favorite off the beaten path places we’ve been. Next time you travel, get the whole experience, get off the trail!
Definitely a favorite for us is Mondulkiri Province is located in East Cambodia and only recently traveled by tourists due to the recent highway opening. A 6 hour taxi ride from Phnom Penh, there is so much to explore from hidden waterfalls with heights of 20 meters to jungle treks alongside elephants. A definite get away to unplug and enjoy nature.
2. Lampang Thailand Thai Elephant Conservation Center (www.friendsoftheasianelephant.org)
In Chiang Mai, we took the bus on an hour drive to the conservation through the beautiful hills when I was 9 months pregnant with my first! They take excellent care of their elephants and operate the first elephant hospital in Thailand with injured elephants from surrounding Laos and Cambodia. On our visit we saw a baby elephant missing a foot from stepping on a land mine. Quiet a site for a pregnant mom! Support their work by clicking the link above.
3. Inle Lake Myanmar
Stepping out of time and going back 100 years, Inle lake will ease you into its life of simplicity as you experience life on the water. Watching boat drivers steer with their feet, children run and play on narrow decks in front of their crowded homes, and floating gardens as far as the eye can see. Difficult to get to but worth the trip out! We headed that way with a small baby and enjoyed every minute of it but bring warm weather clothes as it gets chilly at night.
4. Luang Prabang Laos
Our journey took us on a canoe ride down the Mekong to this beautiful quant town of Luang Prabang Laos. Like no other place in Southeast Asia this town is sophisticated, elegant, with a romantic feel. We only spent 2 nights until we journeyed down to Vientiane but wish we had stayed longer as it was our favorite town in Laos. Laos can be traveled on a budget or 5 star whichever your style (or wallet) will do!
5. Scuba Cambodia
Last, but not least is a personal scuba favorite. We recommend Scuba Nation divecambodia.com for this underseas journey. Cambodia is not known for great diving but you would be surprised. Great on the budget and many places to explore. You may even spot an octopus, whale shark, schools of barracuda, spotted eyed eels, spotted blue stingrays, and more. One of the best locations to go is Explosion Reef Koh Tang Cambodia where unusual marine life spotting is common and the water is clear. My son Eli went scuba diving or the first time when he was 10!
Whichever journey you choose, don’t forget your coffee! If you’ve never tried civet coffee, you are missing out! Looking for an unusual Christmas gift? But, make sure you buy from a trustworthy source as many advertise that it is civet coffee but they are not. Here is a trustworthy brand: