Backpacking literally means travelling with only a backpack, this kind of travel has its roots dating back to 1960’s, where hippies from the USA and Europe swept through India and Southeast Asia in search of a carefree life on a sandy beach under the sun. Once the initial mass craze died down, it was the turn for young people from the developed countries to embark on journeys around the world with nothing but an open mind and a light backpack for company. Nowadays the trend has taken various forms and though it’s no longer only fresh out of high-school teens who are enjoying this kind of travel, it is still quite cheap and suitable for different types of travellers. If you are planning on exploring Southeast Asia in search of opening your chakras, finding inner peace or just in search of interesting traditions and customs, here are some useful tips to enrich your experience.
One of the first things that you should remember is that you are on a journey to help you explore the world around you, to see how others live, to witness the miracles of nature and enjoy the stunning landscapes prevalent in one place or another. When travelling, don’t be scared of exploring the area by a bus or a train. Surely this is not the most comfortable, or safest, option, yet it is cheap, and on the bright side you have the possibility to see everything throughout your journey. Perhaps you will like what you see and decide? Who knows what the road ahead has for you, relax, take a book with you and absorb all the new experiences.
The beautiful thing about backpack travel is that you are free to stop in the most unexpected places that interest you and look around. Whether it is on the way to your next destination, or just a rural settlement you are passing on the way to a famous attraction, remember that you don’t have to stick to your initial itinerary. The myriad of possibilities is endless and you are the master of your own travel destiny. You decide where to stop and where you wish to continue. Be open to the world around you!
A great way to improve the quality of your travels, especially if you are going solo, is to try to make friends or meet fellow travellers to get insider tips. The locals always have certain secrets that they will be more than happy to share over a coffee, or something a little stronger. Don’t be scared of asking for help or advice, more so if you are somewhere for the first time. Visiting a new country can be intimidating, but once you find out where all the great spots are and meet a couple of locals, you will feel right at home.
A great tip for exploring Southeast Asia is – don’t limit yourself to one country or once city. Regardless of how the region looks on the map, things are closer than they look. When launching on a trip to Cambodia, you have the perfect opportunity to visit neighboring Laos, Vietnam or Thailand! Do everything you can in the amount of time that you have available, remember that the only thing stopping you from enjoying more and experiencing more is only yourself.
If you are dreaming of exploring Southeast Asia, there is one thing to remember – be open for new experiences, read travel guides and spend a fair amount of time on research before, yet ask for advice from locals, meet people, make friends and take advantage of every opportunity that you get on your way.