Archive for the “Asia” Category

Why Sex Tourism in Thailand is Not as Black and White as You Think

I can still remember the first time I heard about Thailand. I was around 15 and watching Hard Copy. It was one of those late afternoon “news” shows in the 1990s that focused on “hard-hitting” journalism but were really a precursor to sites like TMZ. Hard Copy was doing an exposé on sex tourism in Thailand. The program showcased the Marines and old men who came to Thailand to buy the services of young, sometimes underage girls (and boys). I […]

61 Interesting Facts About Japan

I’m currently in Japan on a G Adventures tour, and I’m loving every minute of it. Japan has far exceeded my expectations, though I’m definitely not eating enough sushi. In four days, I’ve only had it twice. For someone so addicted to sushi, that just feels so wrong. I’ll be rectifying that soon enough, though (tomorrow for lunch). Japan is a country with a fascinating culture and history, so I thought I’d share some of the interesting facts I’ve learned […]

38 Reasons Why I am Excited to Visit Japan

Next week, I’m going to Japan. It’s my first real visit there. I say “real visit” because back in 2004, on my way home from Thailand, my friend and I stopped in Tokyo for a long layover. After arriving at 6am, we left the airport, saw the imperial palace, realized Tokyo in January is a lot colder than Thailand in January, and camped out in a Starbucks until the sushi restaurants opened for lunch. After eating a luxurious sushi meal, […]

The Best Thai Food You Can Eat

I know Monday’s post was a bit of a Debbie Downer, but don’t worry, I’m not done writing about travel—just being a permanent nomad. So in a complete 180 from Monday’s post, let’s talk about travel and my love of good Thai food. When I returned to Thailand a few weeks ago from being in Cambodia, I went on an eating binge. Cambodia, as much as I love it, doesn’t have a lot of great food. It’s very bland, and […]

Experiencing Local Cambodian Culture on Bamboo Island

Last week, I took my own advice about not wasting time and spent my last few days in Cambodia on Bamboo Island. I’m glad I did—it turned out to be the highlight of my trip, my first glimpse into Khmer (Cambodian) culture. Bamboo Island is an hour off the coast, near the town of Sihanoukville (where I’ve been the last month). It’s a small island that you can cross in 10 minutes and has only two beaches. There isn’t a […]

The Wonderful Ruins of Angkor Wat

I didn’t make it to Angkor Wat this trip, but I was there in 2007. I’d hoped to go back—not because the ruins are different or because I wanted to deal with the larger crowds. No, I just wanted to take pictures with a better camera. But since I didn’t get do that, I decided to show you the wonder and beauty of Angkor Wat with some older photos instead. Luckily, photos of it are timeless, even if the lenses […]

How a Harsh Reality Destroyed My Dreams and Why I’m OK with That

I had a dream once. It was a damn good dream too. It began last November. I would land in Asia, the last stop on my nomadic journey, explore everything I hadn’t seen, and re-see all my favorites. I’d visit Hong Kong, finally get to Laos, relax on the islands off Cambodia, trek the jungles of Malaysia, show my friends Thailand, and volunteer at an elephant park. It would be a great finale to an amazing journey. And as November […]

The Complete Guide To Diving in Koh Tao

This is a guest post by Alexandra Baackes. Travelers in Thailand like to label their destinations neatly. Intricate island paradises are boiled down to one or two simple words or associations. Koh Phi Phi? The Beach. Koh Phangan? The Full Moon Party. Koh Tao? Diving. Some of them are fairly well deserved. After all, Koh Tao (“Turtle Island”) is second only to Cairns, Australia when it comes to number of annual dive certifications. Travelers flock from all over Southeast Asia […]

Phnom Penh, I Love You!

It was 2007, and I was only meant to be in Phnom Penh for three days. I had less than a month in Cambodia before I moved to Thailand, and I wanted to explore as much as possible and get off the tourist trail a bit. But three days became four, four became seven, and seven became ten. Every day, I woke up, thought to myself, “I’ll get the bus tomorrow,” and rolled over and went back to bed. I’d […]

The Tragic Death of Phnom Penh’s Lake

In my nearly six years of traveling the world, my days on the lake in Phnom Penh, Cambodia still remain some of my favorite. I had come for a few days and ended up staying for a few weeks. I spent my time in the famous Number 9 Guesthouse on the lake, watching movies, having a few cold beers, meeting fellow travelers from around the world, and watching beautiful sunsets over the lake. We had a perfect view, as the […]