Planning to travel around Asia is something that the majority of us can only dream of doing. It takes a lot of planning and preparation in some cases, and you obviously need a certain amount of money saved before you can go. Not only that, but you need some confidence, bravery and optimism in big bundles – especially if you are travelling alone. Getting out there and facing your great Asian adventure is only a post-read away…
Choose Your Country
There are 48 countries within Asia, so it’s not like you’re limited on choice of where to go.
Some share borders with European countries or have part of their land within Europe; Russia, Kazakhstan and Turkey are the three places which have this unique trait. Hopping between borders of continents is harder if you were to keep to the countries that are included, but this doesn’t rule it out completely – you just need to make sure that you have all of the correct paperwork in place and know the customs and legalities of each country that you’re entering. It also helps to know the political state of the place that you are visiting before you go – turmoil within a country can mean often bad things for the tourists that go expecting a nice time. Do your research before you set off; a quick check online will often answer any questions that you have got.
Choose Your Climate
Part of choosing which country (or countries! You’re not limited!) to visit depends on what climate suits your needs the most. If you are looking for warm and humid, you should head for Southern Asia. Hotter climates tend to present themselves in the South-East, and the further north you head, the colder it gets. When the word ‘cold’ is suggested, this doesn’t cover even half of the extremely harsh conditions that present themselves to tourists in Northern China and Mongolia. There will be more than just a coat needed to keep you warm. With that in mind, you need to ensure that you are packing for the climate that you are aiming for and don’t be too lax when considering what to bring – nothing is too much if you are switching up your countries and taking out different bouts of weather with your journey. It may be best to stick to a region so that you’re not having to go through all of the different weather conditions. It doesn’t make for a comfortable trip, and certainly isn’t good for the weight of your backpack or suitcase. Making use of what you’ve already got packed should be enough of a decider for where you are going to journey to.
Choose Your Recommendations
People who suggest to you where you should go usually focus on one main thing. There are those who travel around for the different types of food; those who like to go for the nightlife and the buzz of what’s going on; those who are travelling around for a change of scenery and to take in the nature that’s around them; and those who base their journey as one big relaxing holiday, and so focus on how much time they have had to themselves. There will be something that you will really take to, at least one of these points – it’s up to you to decide which one stands out the most for you and, as such, which recommendations you are going to follow through.
Choose Your Cuisine
A lot of people base where they will go upon the food that they like to eat. If you know that you can’t stomach spice, then Asia probably isn’t the place for you to go travelling initially – not because you will get something overly spicy wherever you go, but because the amount of herbs and spices that are added into dishes to give it flavour may cause mayhem on your stomach. In the Western world, we aren’t used to all of the complexities of the flavours that are presented to us in Oriental and Asian cuisine – it is something that tantalises the tastebuds all too often. It’s true that most of Asian cuisine has been dulled down for the Western palate, so now’s the time to really trial what’s on offer and see if you can handle it. There are some strange foods on offer, such as balut (an egg that’s boiled with a duckling inside) and century egg, but they’re only weird to us as we haven’t normalised them in our culture – they’re an essential and yummy everyday snack for the Chinese!
Choose Your Culture
Each country presents a different culture for you to immerse yourself in. If you are looking for a more relaxed way of living, which focuses on your inner energy and soul and keeps kindness and the forefront of their peoples beliefs, you may want to visit a country such as India; it is renowned for being one of the most peaceful and thought-provoking places in the world, and many yoga retreats have positioned themselves within its beautiful jungles to offer clarity to those who are wishing to learn. If you’re looking for a busier pace of life, head over to Japan or Hong Kong to really feel the hustle and bustle that inner-city living provides. That’s not to say that there aren’t quiet places for you to go and reflect within these countries; actually, it’s quite the opposite. It’s more focusing on what they’re famous for and knowing what you can get out of each country if and when you visit.
Choose How Long You’re There For
Deciding on how long you’re going to spend travelling can open up doors for so much more than just an extended holiday. You may fancy working out there, with countries such as Malaysia and Singapore offering hubs of business for you to get involved in, especially if you are from a more creative background. You will have to get a working visa depending on the country that you’re in, but this can easily be applied for online. If you are staying for more than a couple of months, you may want to look at houses for rent to establish more of a base. It could end up being a lot cheaper than booking to stay in hotels or hostels around the country. The one bonus that you’ve got to consider is that the cost of living over there is so much cheaper than what you are already used to; housing is cheaper, as are all of the commodities that you are used to such as food, drink and entertainment.
Choose Where To Stay
You really must think about the countries that you are wanting to spend more time in. There are some places that you will flit through and not discover fully, but they may not have appealed to you in the first place. There are train journeys that will take you along the railways that connect Asia, and it’s a good way of getting a small glimpse of what each country is like that you pass through. This isn’t to say, however, that you should just sit in the train the whole time. Get out and explore and see what piques your interest. Another thing to consider is that housing is a lot cheaper in Asia than it is in Europe and America. You can live in moderate luxury for the price of living in a normal, basic bit of accommodation in your country of residence. This is your one chance of living like a king or queen and taking advantage of the luxury that is on offer to you. There is nowhere else in the world that you will be able to get a house of big size with additions such as swimming pools and jacuzzis for such a small price.
Choose Going Off The Track
Don’t stick to everything that the normal tourists do. Obviously there are benefits and bonuses to going and seeing beautiful places – two of the seven wonders of the world (The Great Wall of China and The Taj Mahal) are to be found within Asia – but this doesn’t mean that you should let other people’s experiences dictate what you will or will not be doing with your time. Make your own adventure and always ask the locals for their recommendations. It’s an eye-opening experience to say that least, but they know about hidden treasures that aren’t released to those who go only for the popular attractions.
Choose What To Do
It’s great going off on a whim to explore, but it’s equally as good to have a plan on what you’re going to be filling your time with. Not only does this help with your budgeting, but it will help you fit in as much or as little as you want to do; getting ahead and figuring out how to get to where you need to be and what you need to do to is a brilliant way of planning your time and sorting out logistics.