You’ve just had the best idea of your life...you want to travel Southeast Asia!
How exciting, you have so much to look forward to. But how do you start planning the trip of a lifetime in a faraway place where everything is so different from what you know?
Read our top 5 tips to start planning your big Southeast Asia adventure.
1. Decide when to go
There are two distinct seasons in Southeast Asia, a high (and dry) season and a low (wet) season. There are great reasons to travel in either season:
2. Plan Where to Go
Southeast Asia is huge and each country has its own treasures to explore. There's something for everyone, so do your research and choose what appeals to you, or do the Lot!
As a rule of thumb, we generally say to allow 2 weeks per country.
Thailand has picture perfect island paradises with stunning scuba diving, lush mountain jungles and traditional villages, not to mention chaotic, urban Bangkok and of course, the infamous Full Moon party.
Laos is a hidden gem as it's much less touristy than its neighbours. Its beautiful remote landscapes, strong Buddhist culture, relaxed way of life and endless adventure activities make it a favourite with travellers.
Cambodia is an intriguing and beautiful country with a dark past, breathtaking historic temples, endless rice paddies and tropical islands to rival Thailand's.
Vietnam offers so much variety with exciting cities, caves, expansive coastlines, motorbike joyrides, tailor shops, national parks and tunnels from the Secret War!
Myanmar (Burma) is an ancient world, relatively untouched by tourism with a distinct culture, gentle people, floating villages, ancient temples and the remnants of British colonialism.
3. Work out your budget
It's important to know how much you'll need to save for your trip. Work out a budget that covers the necessities like accommodation, food and transportation, and consider what type of activities you want to do when planning your budget.
Southeast Asia is known for being a cheap place to travel, but there'll be a few 'big ticket' activities you won't want to miss.
4. Pack the essentials
Now that you know which season you want to travel in, start thinking about what gear you’ll need to pack. Our advice is to pack light, quick dry clothes you can layer and a waterproof jacket.
You'll be able to find almost everything you might need in Asia; however, there are a few things we recommend you bring from home.
Buy when you're there: travel adapter plugs, books, cheap clothes, toiletries.
5. Do your Pre-travel checks
✔ Unlock your phone so you can use it internationally.
✔ Tell your bank you're travelling so they won't block your credit card.
✔ Send your itinerary to your family.
✔ Download offline maps that use GPS not wifi - A great app is MAPS.ME.
✔ Meet up with friends who have travelled Asia before for advice and tips
✔ Join the Stray Asia facebook page and check out our Travel Blog to stay in the loop!