7 places you didn’t know you needed to visit in Southeast Asia
Looking for new adventures in Southeast Asia? We’ve got you. There’s always something new and exciting to uncover in Vietnam, Thailand, Bali and more if you’re ready to travel a little deeper and seek it out. Find the perfect beach spot, surf break and hidden waterfall just waiting for you.
We’re here to help you travel deeper, and this month we’ve got epic discounts on flights to Asia with Malaysia Airlines, plus hot deals on tours with Topdeck, Contiki, Busabout, Intrepid all over Southeast Asia—so you can you travel more for less in Thailand, Vietnam, Bali and beyond.
The unique town of Chumphon is found just south of Bangkok. Known for its culture and beauty, and the lively Chumphon Night Market where you can experience authentic Thai food. Watch your meal being cooked right in front of you and savour the sights, sounds and delicious smells that make Thailand such an intoxicating destination. If you’ve got time, it’s worth seeing more of Chumphon—it’s National Park consists of beautiful beaches and an archipelago of 41 lesser-known tropical islands.
North of Bangkok, head to Kanchanaburi. While this province is known for its dramatic WWII history with it’s dark-tourism spots Death Railway, Bridge over the River Kwae (Kwai) and the Allied War Cemetery, the city also offers a range of pleasant diversions from the past. Take a bamboo raft along the River Kwae, or head to the Thong Pha Phum National Park to uncover a natural oasis of waterfalls and hot springs. Don’t miss Erawan Waterfall, located in the Tenasserim Hills, it’s considered one of the most impressive waterfalls in all of Thailand and taking a dip in it’s emerald-hued waters is insta-worthy moment to remember.
3. Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park
If you’re looking to see a wilder side of Vietnam, you’d be hard pressed to find an area more pristine and rugged than Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park.This World Heritage site is home to some of Asia’s oldest mountain peaks and its unique cave systems run for hundreds of kilometres. Of these impressive limestone caves, Phong Nha Cave, is one of the most stunning and it’s also luckily one of the most accessible.
4. Phan Rang
Those seeking to find the next Vietnam hotspot should head to the low-key coastal city of Phan Rang, where you’ll encounter some of the best weather in the country and where adventure sports reign supreme. Try your hand at kitesurfing or stand-up paddle boarding, cycle mountain trails or get your hiking boots on for an exploration around the many hiking tracks within nearby Nui Chua National Park, you can also surf the breaks off the national park. All that adventure surely worked up an appetite—dig into the local speciality: banh can and banh xeo—egg, seafood and vegetables cooked into a pancake. And, relax on the beach and try the local drop, Phan Rang is home to vineyards producing their own wine.
If you’re a water baby, you’ll find yourself in luck in Amed. Located on the East Coast about two hours drive from Kuta, this small region of fishing villages is home to some excellent reefs with abundant sea life to explore, making it a lesser-known hotspot for snorkelling and diving. You also have the option of grabbing a scooter and heading inland to visit the lush hillside terraces and nearby mountain ranges.
6. Nusa Penida
So you might have heard about Nusa Lembongnan as being the place to escape from the mainland, but it can get busy there too. If you’re looking for the next untouched slice of Bali, check out Nusa Penida next door. Penida attracts travellers looking for super chilled island hang. It’s also well known for its diving, and on land you can explore its temples, quiet beaches and cascading waterfalls.
One of many great things about Bali is the size, you can be in an entirely different feeling place in less than an hour. Take Sideman for example, just a 45-minute drive away from Ubud, this laid back village is nestled among fruit trees and has dramatic vistas of Bali’s highest peak. Gunung Agung, making it a great base for climbing the nearby volcanic mountain range.
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