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  • Backpacking hotspots in Asia

    Nong Khiaw, photo by John Pavelka

    Backpacking in summer is a great way to experience new and exciting places, especially if you are on a budget. For less money than what you would pay for an all-inclusive holiday, for example, you get to see more places, and (some say) even have a more authentic view of a foreign destination.

    Backpacking is also more adventurous, and there’s a sense of freedom in being able to go where you want, whenever you want, and getting the most out of a holiday. So if you’re set on a backpacking trip, there are lots of amazing places to see, especially in Asia, which has become a backpacker’s paradise in the past few years. So here are some of the most popular backpacking hotspots in Asia.

    Nong Khiaw, Laos

    Although Luang Prabang is the classic destination in Laos, but the small town of Nong Khiaw is a better destination for backpackers. Isolated, but not too much so, Nong Khiaw has a decent choice of accommodation, and some of the most interesting natural sights in Laos.

    It is nestled between some impressive limestone mountains, and good road connections for those who want to explore the area more thoroughly. There’s also a good tour agency in town (Tiger Trails) that can arrange hiking and walking trips for solo travelers or groups.


    If Bali is too fancy or pricey for you, it’s possible to enjoy the relaxed tropical-island atmosphere in Timor without the pressure of staying in luxury resorts. As a former Portuguese colony, Timor-Leste has colonial charm as well as plenty of natural wonders.

    You can have as many abandoned beaches as you want, with natural rock pools and snorkeling spots, plus there are a couple of very affordable hostels which can even help you plan your activities on the island.

    Assam, India

    India has long been a favorite destination with backpackers, and Assam has some of the most interesting sights and activities in the country. You can spend your time trekking through the ‘Scotland of the East’ (Meghalaya), visit Guwahati for some city life, and explore hillside villages and scenic hill stations.

    Bangkok, Thailand

    Bangkok is one of the friendliest and liveliest destinations in Asia, and there’s a lot to see and do there for a backpacker, especially if you are traveling solo. There are so many affordable hostels full of travelers in Bangkok that you always have the possibility of finding some traveling companions.

    Macau, China

    The former Portuguese colony of Macau is rife with nightlife, great cuisine and lots of attractions. Although it is known as China’s premier gambling destination, you can do a lot of things in Macau for little money – not the least of which is exploring the colonial heritage of the city. The villages of Taipa and Coloane, just outside of Macau, are also well worth visiting.

    Nong Khiaw

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