Have you ever fantasized about traveling to Southeast Asia and exploring its tropical rainforests, sandy white beaches and bustling modern cities? There’s never been a better time to make your dreams a reality and explore this diverse and exciting region of the world. Blessed with fantastic weather, friendly people, amazing cuisine and a rich tapestry of diverse cultures, Southeast Asia offers a potpourri of thrilling eco-friendly adventures just waiting to be discovered. Here’s our list of some of the most unique experiences that you can have in Asia and feel good about doing them.
Exploring Ancient Volcanoes In The Philippines
If you’re looking for an eco-friendly adventure, traveling to the densely populated metropolis of Manila in the Philippines is not usually at the top of most people’s list. Comprised of 17 cities and municipalities with a population of more than 12 million people, it is also home to Taal Lake and Volcano Island. Located just south of Metro Manila, you can easily book a Taal Volcano day trip to explore this prehistoric crater with HotelQuickly’s sister company, eOasia. Here you will discover a truly natural environment that feels worlds away from the congested city. You can either hike or go by horseback to the rim of the crater and explore its numerous volcanic cones and rugged lakeside terrain.
Lizard Kings Of Indonesia
Boasting a pink sand beach and landscapes surrounded by blue-green waters with seagrass beds, mangrove shrublands and some of the world’s most beautiful coral reefs, Komodo Island is a nature lover’s paradise. Home to Komodo National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the few places in the world where you can visit more than 4,000 Komodo dragons in their natural habitat. You can explore the parks and do some light trekking as well as do some minimal impact snorkeling. If you want to take it to the next level, consider going on a Komodo National Park 2-Day Cruise aboard a local Indonesian boat. In addition to Komodo, you will visit some of the lesser-known islands such as Sunda and Kanawa.
Bugging Out In Bangkok
Bangkok has a fun and unique reputation for being an adventurous place where you can dare yourself to eat a giant roach or a grasshopper from a street vendor near some tourist hotspot. Although this is the stuff that great Instagram shots are made of, it’s not generally recognized as a serious culinary option. Insects In The Backyard is one Bangkok restaurant that is trying to change this perception by being the first edible insect fine dining experience in Thailand. They are serious about elevating the status of “creepy crawly” cuisine and introducing it to the masses as a viable alternative to traditional sources of protein. They tackle issues related to globalization, overpopulation and climate change by working directly with farmers to harvest bugs in a sustainable and hygienic manner. You can dive headfirst into delicacies such as Giant Water Beetle & Crab Ravioli, Potato Espuma with Smokey Bacon Flavored Bamboo Caterpillars, Tiramisu with Silkworm Powder or just settle for a Daiquiri with Red Ants.
Monkeying Around In Malaysia
One of the most popular ecotourism sites in Malaysia is Taman Negara, which literally translates to “national park”. One the oldest tropical rainforests in the world, it is renowned for the rare mammals that live in its protective canopy. You will even find an intricate walkway system that allows you to sightsee the roof of the forest without disturbing the inhabitants and minimizing your impact on the environment. Be sure to visit the Semenggoh Wildlife Centre, as they work to rehabilitate injured or captured animals; mainly orangutans. This is a unique opportunity to get up close and interact with the apes during feeding times, and you’ll see other wild animals and endangered species along the way.
Get Lost In Laos
Nestled along the mighty Mekong River, Vientiane is a city of contrast with an easy going small town feel and an eclectic and vibrant street food scene. Everything transpires at a leisurely pace, and it’s a magical place that has managed to evade the frenetic rush to “modernize”. Instead, it embraces its history, environment and traditions with an intrepid sense of cultural identity. It’s easy to explore by foot or on a bicycle, and you can’t help but wander the dusty streets and investigate the many food stalls that emerge along the balmy river banks in the evening. Location is critical, and staying at the Riverside Boutique Resort puts you in the center of everything while giving you an ideal vantage point to explore the river, temples and sites, such as the Buddha Park of Xieng Khuan.
Melissa is a passionate foodie, travel writer, and editor working in media internationally and in the USA. She has lived in Bangkok since 2004 and has a background in the travel industry. Melissa’s writing has been published globally in many prestigious online and print magazines for over a decade. Her motto for life is “You cannot live or love well if you have not wined and dined well!”