From the vertiginous rice valleys of Sapa in Vietnam’s north stretching to the fascinating bustle of the Mekong Delta in the south, Vietnam is home to a wealth of attractions that will seduce both budget and top-range travellers.

Vietnam’s war-torn history — both the French and Americans have left their own unique and not often positive stamps on the nation — as well as its stunning and varied geography, delicious cuisine, hedonistic beaches and amazing shopping are all reasons to travel to the fast-paced Communist nation.


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Welcoming foreign tourists and their dollars for well over a decade, enterprising Vietnam has rapidly developed a well-trodden trail of tourist attractions. Many travellers kick off their vacation in the former capital of Hanoi in the north, where smokey French-style c...

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Stunning, ethnically diverseMalaysia is Southeast Asia’s unsung holiday hero, offering tourists a huge range of attractions to choose from. Mix and match a trip that includes lush jungle trekking, chilling out on white-sand beaches, amazing snorkelling and diving, gastronomic adventuring and immersing yourself in a colourful cultural heritage.

With the bustling capital of Kuala Lumpur midway between UNESCO-listed towns of Penang and Melakaand also just a few hours by bus from the sprawling Taman Negara National Park, many of Malaysia’s highlights are both affordable and easy to reach.


Whether you’re a budget-minded independent backpacker or a tourist with cash to flash, Malaysia satisfies against an exotic backdrop of wafting call-to-prayers, eye-watering spicy street foods and the chatte...

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Landlocked Laos is one of the Asia’s most enchanting destinations. Stunning natural beauty — think mist-shrouded mountain peaks flanked by jungle-clad valleys teeming with wildlife — combine with a fascinating Buddhist culture to make Laos a superb destination for backpackers and independent travellers, while luxury tourists are now also well-catered for.

Communist Laos flung open its doors to tourism in the early 1990s. The last decade has witnessed an explosion in development as businesses — some Lao, some foreign — mushroom to cater to the swelling crowds.


Laos is changing fast, but pockets remain well off-the-beaten-track, ready to be explored by adventure travellers willing to forego the usual tourist luxuries...

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Ko Kho Khao

Just a ten minute boat ride from the Takua Pa area of Phang Nga province, the relatively large island of Ko Kho Khao (pronounced kaw koe cow) doesn’t look very different from the mainland. However, for those seeking a family beach destination that’s not as remote as nearby Ko Phra Thongbut not as busy as Khao Lak orPhuket, Kho Khao is worth a visit. The island’s long golden beaches are the main draw, and aesthetically these are similar to the beaches of the Khao Lak area further south. The waters are slightly murky and lack the pristine aquamarine hues of Ko Surin, to the west, but the beaches still make for great swimming, romantic walks and dazzling sunsets.


While the island still feels like something of a secret place, moreresorts are gradually popping up, and Kho Khao is increasingly ...

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For decades off limits to all but the most intrepid tourists, today Southeast Asia’s Cambodia is a popular destination for all kinds of travellers: from independent backpackers who roam far off the beaten track to explore the stunning sugar-palm dotted hinterland to luxury tourists who stay in style and see Cambodia’s main drawcard of Angkor Wat between massages and exquisite French meals.

The ancient temple complex of Angkor Wat is Cambodia’s national treasure. The nearby city of Siem Reap has developed dramatically since the days Angelina Jolie filmed Tomb Raider here and fell in love with the nation.

While some lament the discovery of Angkor by the masses, the site is still breathtaking and Siem Reap offers all the comforts one could wish for on any budget.

Many do simply holiday at...

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Ko Bulon Lae

Surrounded by relatively clean waters and festooned with bright tropical flowers, countless butterflies, and charming locals who retain the old island ways, Ko Bulon Lae is something special. It might not be for everyone — none of the resorts have air-con or TV, and electricity only runs from 17:00 to 23:00 each evening — but for those who seek peace and quiet, or just a peak into one of Thailand’s most unique islands, Ko Bulon Lae is well worth a visit. Many come back again and again to enjoy the particular tranquility they’ve only found here,so don’t be surprised if Bulon casts its spell on you.

Ko Bulon Lae

For travellers with some time on their hands, Bulon Lae is a great place for alonger stay...

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