Asia is the largest continent on the planet, with an unrivaled series of coastlines, landscapes that take your breath away, and an abundance of timeless treasures reminding tourists of paradise well-preserved. But in between the lush natural estate holding must-see destinations, tourist traps abound. A member of an online travel community asks which places are a must-see in Southeast Asia and what traps to avoid, and these are the most insightful responses.
1. Bali, Indonesia
Bali, according to a forum member, is a top Southeast Asia destination for its lush rice terrace, turquoise beaches, and other “touristy stuff, including the off-the-beaten-track experiences that make for the perfect adventure. Possible traps? Keep your eyes up for tout and scam,” someone advises.
2. Angkor Wat and Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Angkor Wat, an ancient temple complex rich in primarily forgotten history, is one of the travel treasures you can visit in Southeast Asia, someone suggests. A second traveler wants you to get lost in the magical estate of Phnom Pehn and Siem Riep while not ignoring Ankor Wat dress code, as that could get you in trouble with the ultra-religious folks.
3. Hanoi, Vietnam
Vietnam is famous for its old quarter winding streets, cultural vibrancy, and delicious foods, but a globetrotter wants you to visit the mountains of Hanoi for some spectacular sceneries that draw every jaw. You can take a two-day motorbike trip through Hanoi to soak in its splendor, “but be careful when on the roads. The conditions are awful, and it could be dangerous for someone used to driving Western-style. The intersections have no road signs, and that makes accidents very common,” he reiterates.
4. Chiang Mai, Thailand
While Thai mountains do not hold the spectacular grip of Vietnam’s pinnacles, Chaing Mai’s beautiful temples and bursting markets promise the cultural immersion of a lifetime, one holidaymaker explains. “It’s the perfect place for exploring the region,” someone else explains, adding that you plan your visit during peak hours as popular attractions in Thailand can be overcrowded.
5. Boracay, Philippines
If you’re looking for a destination hyped on relaxation and sports, an experienced voyager implores you to buy a ticket to Boracay. Tourist traps? Souvenirs can be overpriced, and learning to bargain is non-negotiable.
6. Marine Bay Sand and Garden by the Bay Singapore
Singapore, for one tourist of the thread, trumps every destination in Southeast Asia. Someone mentions Marine Bay Sand and Garden by the Bay as destinations of architectural wonders hinged on futuristic blueprints.
7. Luan Prabang, Laos
A Unesco World Heritage town, travelers tip Laun as a tranquil haven that blends well-preserved Buddhist temples with enthralling colonial French architecture. “Laos is an earthly paradise, save for its chaotic and unreliable transportation,” a traveler cautions.
8. Maafushi, Maldives
Mafushi’s pristine coral reefs and underwater bungalows leave you with so much to explore, someone explains. “I had my honeymoon in Maafushi, and the location holds a different kind of peace I can’t explain.” The downside is that the Maldives can be very expensive.
9. Cameron Highlands, Malaysia
Malaysia is great by the account of one tourist. Party backpackers do not overrun it as you would find in Vietnam and Thailand, and the Cameron Highlands offers jungles and chalets that are excellent for hiking and honeymooning. Cameron Highlands is, however, remote, and navigation can be hectic, and winter exploration is discouraged due to bad weather.
10. Bagan, Myanmar
Bagan archaeological zones are “unreal,” someone on the thread exclaims, comparing it to the biblical paradise of Eden. The downside? Consider touring with registered tour guides. Bait-and-Switch-Tours can make for an unpleasant experience.
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