50 Must-Dos in 6 Southeast Asian Countries

12 Dec, 2019 | Travel Blog


1. Challenge your fishing skill in Hoi An 

Strolling through the ancient street may be the first thing that comes to mind while visiting Hoi An, but why not strive for a more unique experience by trying your fishing ability? Observe how skilful the locals are with their traditional fishing techniques then try to throw a giant nest from a small boat to catch some fish for yourself.

2. Visit the great Cu Chi Tunnel in Saigon

Served as a crucial operation base for the Viet Cong force against American military effort, this is a remarkable destination for any traveler who is curious about what war life was like for Vietnamese guerillas back then. 

Cu Chi tunnel

3. Basket ride in Cam Thanh Village - Hoi An 

Become a basket rider to explore the calm  water and coconut palm forest. This is an ideal opportunity to befriend the locals and they will show you their way of life in the ancient town and how to catch some crabs so be sure to seize the day. 

Cam Thanh basket riding

4. Kayak on Ba Be Lake

Pristine, untouched and biodiverse, it’s hard not to go on a kayaking trip on Ba Be Lake, where you slowly paddle through the water and lose yourself in the world of nature. 


5. Enjoy breakfast “anytime - anywhere” in Fusion Cam Ranh - Nha Trang

Who said that breakfast has to be at 8am? Not here in Fusion Cam Ranh, the unorthodox five-star accommodation that sits on the coast of south central Vietnam and pampers you with the particular the “breakfast anywhere, anytime” service. This literally means you can have breakfast on your bed, on the beach, or in the pool at ANYTIME you want (Now, you don’t need to worry about oversleeping!).  

Fusion Cam Ranh Nha Trang

6. Get around Saigon on a Vespa

Taxis might be more convenient when it comes to getting around, however, you can always hop on a Vespa for a more flexible adventure: meet and talk with the local people, stop at any local shop at any time, engage in the culture and the authentic flavours of Vietnam by yourself.  

Vespa - Saigon

7. Enjoy a luxury cruise in Lan Ha Bay

Served as an extension of Ha Long Bay, Lan Ha Bay still stands in its own province and is just as charming as its cousin, harbouring a great amount of limestone mountains, which have been segmented into smaller bays and gulfs by the sea surface. It’s thus highly recommended to get on a luxurious cruise to get the best out of the stunning seascapes while enjoying a top-notch service. 

Lan Ha Bay cruise

Photo: La Regina Legend Cruise

8. Explore Cai Rang Floating Markets

The market is no doubt most vibrant trading area in the dense network of Mekong Delta. Amid the bustling atmosphere and brisk performance of traders passing fruit from one boat to another, there’s a certain calming presence while as you immerse in the daily rural life of Vietnamese people. 

 Cai Rang floating market

9. Watch an AO Show 

If you’re an admirer of cultural art, you would revel in the unique and aesthetically pleasing performance depicting the rich culture of Southern Vietnamese with the signature bamboo dance and acrobatic moves.  

AO show

10. Join a cooking class in The Ancient Hue Garden House 

One of the finest restaurants for Hue cuisine, the restaurant features a 19th century Hue residence, where you’re welcomed to learn a cooking lesson and enjoy the dishes that you’ve prepared yourself in the garden.


11. Join a water fight in the Songkran Festival

Marking the traditional Thai New Year, Songkran Festival is a not-to-be-missed experience on 13th-15th April for those who look for a good water clash. Here, you can join the crowd on the street to shower each other with water guns and water buckets. 

12. Release a beautiful lantern into the sky in Chiang Mai

During the Yi Peng festival, the most anticipated sight is when thousands of sparkling sky lanterns adorned with written wishes and prayers are released to the sky, marking a new beginning full of hope and positivity. As the festival is usually celebrated on the full moon of the twelfth lunar month every year, which can varying take place in November, be sure to look at the most exciting Thailand tour that our expert has to offer!

Yi Peng festival

13. Spend a night floating on the River Kwai Jungle Rafts - Kanchanaburi, Thailand

River Kwai Jungle Rafts provides pro-ecology rooms that float on a bamboo raft flowing along the Kwai Noi River, making a sublime experience while discovering the hidden treasure of scenery of Thailand.   

River Kwai Jungle Rafts

14. Do island hopping in Phuket

Thailand is home to countless heart-stoppingly beautiful islands. Also known as the pearl of the country, Phuket covers a long span of mesmerizing white-sand beaches, serving as great target to start your island hopping journey. 

15. Chat with a monk 

Learning about Buddhism belief and way of life never gets more intriguing when you sit down to have a short talk with a Buddist monk. In certain temples including Wat Chedi Luang and Doi Suthep, you can join the “Monk Chat” program for deep insights on the country’s religion and way of meditation. 

16. Hang out with the elephants at Elephant Nature Park Chiang Mai 

Elephant Nature Park is one of the few rescue sanctuaries that protect the majestic animals from abuse and allow tourists to ethically interact with them in multiple possible ways, including feeding and walking with more than 200 of them. In the end, you will have a wonderful time with the beautiful animals while knowing that you’ve contributed to make a better day for them.  

Elephant Nature Park


17. Watch sunset on a hot air balloon in Bagan

From above, you will see the splendid landscape view of plentiful temples and monasteries near the extraordinary Irrawaddy River. 

18. Ride a horse cart tour in Bagan 

Riding a horse cart is like going back in time: a unique and dégagé way to discover the ancient kingdom and enjoy the scenery as you slowly pass by.

Bagan cart

19. Meet the tribe in Kengtung

It’s a whole new experience when you have a face-to-face talk with different tribes’ members in Kengtung and deeply learn about the Burmese value, their distinctive customs, cultures and languages. 


20. Savour your wine in the Red Mountains Estate

Sitting on the side of the renowned Inle Lake, the Red Mountain Estate is exceptional in producing wines with locally grown grapes. Your perfect day will be completed by savouring the finest wine of the country while staring at the dazzling sunset view over the vineyard and vivid lines of  grapes.   

Red Mountain Estate

22. Ascend the spectacular Mount Popa - the Burmese Olympus 

Mount Popa is an extinct volcano and on top of which stands the sacred Popa Taungkalat  Monastery, completely surrounded by a steep rocky cliff. Although the 777-step climb will take your breath away, so would the gorgeous view that stretches all over Bagan. 

23. Visit the giant Buddha in Monywa

Featuring thousands of Buddha images under the bodhi trees, Maha Bodhi Ta Htaung is known for its two giant Buddha figures: the Standing Buddha (the second-highest Buddha statue in the world) and the Reclining Buddha. For anyone who loves the beauty of Buddhism architecture, this sacred site will be your memorable visit. 



24. Witness the Komodo Dragon in action 

The Komodo National Park, which lies in the Wallacea region, was established in 1980 to protect the Komodo dragon, the world's largest lizard. One tip: you should always stay on the designated path to see these incredible creatures enjoying their natural habitat. 


25. Watch the sunrise on Mount Rinjani 

Mount Rinjani with the height of 3,726 meters above sea level, is the second-highest mountain in Indonesia. It is also an active volcano that offers extraordinary views over the sea and to the volcanic pinnacles of neighboring Bali and Sumba islands. Just imagine rewarding yourself with the beautiful sunrise view after a long trek, enjoying a cup of warm tea by your tent. What could possibly sound better?

Photo by rinaagtiana from Pixabay

26. Enjoy a meal at the Four Seasons Jimbaran

Jimbaran Bay provides you with unforgettable views to treat your sweetheart with a perfect meal by the beach. No need to restrain from the stunningly delicious food surrounded by an even more striking scenery. 

 Four Seasons Jimbaran

27. Swim with jellyfish in Kalimantan 

But what if you get stung by jellyfish? Fear not, for the Kakaban Lake in Kalimantan is actually one of the rare places in the world where you can swim with these invertebrate creatures since all four types of jellyfish in the region are sting-less.

jellyfish in Kalimantan 

28. Play jetpacking in Tanjung Benoa 

The small peninsula in the south of Bali is well-known for its beautiful white sand beaches and ideal location for water sports. If you feel the rush to strap yourself to a water jetpack to experience flying 10 metres above the water and feel the adrenaline bursting in, Tanjung Benoa is just the place for you. 

29. Go caving in Jomblang

Formed millions of years ago, Jomblang cave is part of a mysterious vertical cave system in Yogyakarta. If you don’t mind rappelling 20 meters down the cave through a sinkhole and witnessing the heavenly light streams through the ancient cave, then Jomblang should surely be on your visit list. 

30. Join a silver making workshop 

A 30-minute drive from the city of Yogya will take you to Kotagede - an ancient old town is notoriously known as the silversmith haven. Kotogede’s silver is unique in its embossment and contrast between black and white. Discover your inner handcrafting skill by creating your own piece of silverware and watch how beautiful tea sets and jewelry are made. 

31. Go for water rafting at Alas River

Indonesia is a paradise for water rafting. Among all the magnificent rivers, the Alas River is the best places to go if you want to end up with this audacious experience. The river flows through the Gunung Leuser National Park and goes directly into the Indian Ocean, making it rife with twisting currents and sharp bends that make the best out of water rafting enthusiasts.  

32. Have a floating breakfast at the Alaya hotel  

If you happen to spend your nights at Alaya Ubud in Bali, which embraces the serene views of the rice terrace and romantic setting, it’s highly recommended for you and your darling to start off the day with a floating breakfast in your own private pool accompanied by excellent champagne. 

Alaya hotel


33. Try Tarantula - a local favourite snack of Cambodians 

Convinced that you can conquer any kind of exotic food out there? You might wanna reconsider with Tarantula (Ping Pieng Chien). The crunchy, salty fried 8-legged spiders may leave a shivering taste in your mouth. 

34. Swim with the elephants 

Well acknowledged as a place where ‘elephants get to be elephants again’, the Elephant Valley Project feeds, protects, and provides shelter to these adorable, gentle beings. What’s more captivating than coming to play and swim with these elephants in the cool water of Mondulkiri? 

35. Chill on hammocks at Koh Rong Samloem

The locals at the famous Lazy Beach - Koh Rong Samloem take chilling to a whole new level by putting hammocks in the shallow water of the beach, making it the one-of-a-kind experience you wouldn’t forget: lying above the water, close your eyes and dote on the utter relaxation. 

36. Explore the seafood paradise at Kep

Home to some of Cambodia’s finest and freshest seafood, Kep is the place to be to satisfy your craving for fish and crustaceans. Ready-to-eat snacks, especially barbecued squid on skewers and other grilled fish are variously available with a range of price and quality. 

37. Visit the Killing Fields

The Killing Fields include a number of sites where collectively more than a million people were killed by the Khmer Rouge regime during its rule of the country. As a part of the history that shapes Cambodia as it is today - it is important for anyone to witness and learn our lessons. 

38. Ride the bamboo train in Battambang

Although not popular as a tourist attraction, Battambang still has a trick up its sleeve: the famous “Nori" - essentially a bamboo flatbed powered by a motorcycle engine which can reach V-max at 50km/h while the winds flows through your hair. Not your typical daily commute, isn't it? 

39. Go cycling around Siem Reap 

Siem Reap is a true paradise when it comes to its lush greenery, pristine temples, and quiet vibe. Then you should not feel hesitant to hop on the rusty bicycle to burn some calories and savor the surroundings of this magnificent historical city.

40. Experience birdwatching at the Preak Toal Bird Reserve

Preak Toal Bird Reserve is the place where bird lovers come together. During your visit, take time to adore more than 150 bird species - many of which are classified as endangered while learning insights about the local life on the mighty Tonle Sap - the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. 

41. Lose yourself in the Pub Street in Siem Reap

The Pub Street is the definition of nightlife spirit in Cambodia, where vibrant bars, nightclubs and restaurants abound at relatively cheap price. If you’re looking for an authentic partying time, you may not leave the Pub Street anytime soon. 


42. Have a Beerlao by the Mekong Delta 

Beerlao is the best beer in Asia according to Time Magazine’s thanks to its clean malt base and a surprising amount of decent spicy hops. There’s nothing quite like chilling by the Mekong river with the local's favorite drink.

43. Admire the Kuang Si Waterfall

No amount of pictures would be capable of authentically depicting the beauty of the waterfall. Featuring three tiers of a 50-meter drop into small and shallow pools, this so-called blue heaven will strike you hard in the eye once you see it yourself. 

Photo by Simone Fischer on Unsplash

44. Kayaking in Vang Vieng 

Vang Vieng is well-known as the city for those that seek tranquility thanks to its beautiful surrounding river, mountains and the countryside. One of the best ways to fully enjoy the area here is kayaking along the Nam Song river in the morning, when you can have all the river for yourself and admire the scenery as you slowly paddle through the stream. 

45. Join the Rice Festival

Also known as Boun Khoun Festival, it is a chance to show gratitude for the spirit and for the rice harvest. Often celebrated around Vientiane and mostly in March, the festival is a valuable  opportunity for tourists to learn about the rituals and enjoy traditional dance performance. 

46. Observe the Giving Alms morning ceremony

Also known as the tak-bak morning ceremony, this tradition is a morning ritual where monks silently line the streets while locals (and interested tourists) put gifts of food into the bowls carried by the monks. The ceremony is truly a must-see for any traveler who is intrigued by local cultures while visiting Luang Prabang. 


47. Try Lao-Lao (Lao's traditional Whiskey)

Made from rice using traditional methods, Lao-Lao is a potent alcoholic beverage that has a unique taste compared to its Western counterparts. Even if you’re not a fan of alcohol, it is also a pleasant experience observing the locals preparing and making the Lao-Lao. 

48. Visit the Pak Ou Cave - Luang Prabang

Consists of two natural caves and is located 25km to the North of Luang Prabang, Pak Ou Cave is the home of many Buddha structures varying in shapes and sizes - set in a rocky cliff face overlooking the Mekong River. Indeed, Pak Ou Cave is an unusual and a fresh change of location to learn about Buddhism.  


49. Tat Kuang Si Bear Rescue Centre 

Rescued from poachers who profits from their body parts, the bears are now given a safe and loving home to live happily for the rest of their lives. You wouldn’t want to miss a day to come along and see how they play and cuddle with each other. 

50. Try an herbal sauna

Unlike any conventional sauna, Laotian sauna infuses herbal fragrant herbs to make it an extremely aromatic experience - a great experience both to relax and to reap the numerous medicinal benefits, not an experience you should overlook.


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