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Southeast Asia Travel News

The Southeast Asia Travel Specialists Since 1999

Today we’ll mostly be posting boat photos! The spectacular limestone scenery of Vietnam’s Ninh Binh Province, which certainly lives up to its name ‘Halong in the paddy-fields’, is…..well spectacular, but unluckily the weather was a bit overcast on the day we visited so our photos conspicuously fail to do justice to the landscapes. With our somewhat limited photographic capabilities, (we’ll…

To round up our round up of Southeast Asian World Heritage Sites last, but not by any means least, here’s Vietnam’s entries and would be entries. Vietnam weighs in with seven sites currently inscribed on the list and whilst you may think that’s not a huge return on it’s spectacular and varied landscapes and wealth of historic buildings  there are…

One of our very favourite spots in Vietnam, the picturesque town of Sapa lies amongst the high ranges of the ‘Tonkinese Alps’ in the far northwest of the country, close to the border with China. This small, mountain-top settlement became popular during the French era as a cool retreat for colonists from the rigours of the Hanoi climate.   Now…

This year’s Lausanne Alpine Club’s, (Club Alpin Suisse, Lausanne), Southeast Asia tour took the form of a Vietnam odyssey from Hanoi to Saigon including side trips to UNESCO World Heritage Halong Bay plus the spectacular Sapa hill station in the far north. Some great images here of the colourful Bac Ha Sunday Market and its equally colourful Flower Hmong clientele…

Whilst Tai groups had probably been gradually infiltrating southwards into what is now northern Vietnam, Laos and Thailand for several centuries from their homeland in Southern China the process was hastened during the late 12th and 13th centuries as the Mongol armies under Genghis Khan & Kublai Khan also extended their empire southwards. Ethnic Tai clans and tribes who would…

Plenty of great markets to wander around in Vietnam and indeed the wet market across the river from Can Tho is also a favourite but we do particularly like this market because it is one of the increasingly rare, genuine ‘floating’ ones. The famous Damnoen Saduak market near Bangkok – featured on innumerable postcards and TAT ads, (Tourism Authority of…

We’re really pleased to see that Vietnam Airlines are now promising to introduce direct flights from Saigon to London later this year which will make Vietnam trips simpler and cheaper so hopefully giving a big boost to both our All Points East tours of Vietnam as well as tourism in general in a country that, as S. E. Asia goes,…

Although the ambulant Akha street vendors of Khao San, Tha Pae Gate and other tourist hot spots are very successful and the Lisus in Pai night market do well in the high season, across Southeast Asia it’s the enterprising and commercially minded Hmong that dominate the hill-tribe handicraft market. Their bright colours and bold patterns can be, and have been,…

Continuing westwards from the Flower Hmong of Ha Giang and Black Hmong of Lao Cai we reach Lai Chau Province and its colourful Red Hmong sub-group. Their villages are quite widely spread across the northern and central parts of the province, being replaced to the south and west by Tai and Lao sub groups.  Occasional White Hmong villages can be…

The Black Hmong sub group of Northern Vietnam are particularly well known due to Sapa’splace on the well-trodden tourist trail. Although the town itself is actually inhabited by Vietnamese traders and cafe and hotel staff Sapa is totally swamped on most days by Hmong from the surrounding villages. You’ll also come across the distinctively dressed Red Dzao, the more discreet…

After a drive along the much improved road from Laos’s Muang Khua to the Vietnamese border, Wi’s gallant group have now arrived in the remote outpost of Dien Bien Phu. Anyone knowledgeable of recent history may have heard of Dien Bien Phu since it was the site of a famous, and historically very significant battle, (see Wikipedia article),  in 1954…