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Southeast Asia Travel News

The Southeast Asia Travel Specialists Since 1999

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…

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…

Another of Yunnan’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the ‘Stone Forest’ lies in the Shilin Yi Autonomous County some 2 hrs drive from Kunming City. Formerly the bed of a shallow sea, over hundreds of millions of years the sandstone and limestone rocks have been carved by the wind and the rain to form this spectacular labyrinth of odd jagged pinnacles,…

The tiny mountain-top town of Yuanyang lies just south of the steep Red River Valley in the southern reaches of Yunnan Province, not far from the Vietnamese border. Actually been there 3 times without seeing another foreign tourist, yet it is one of the most spectacular, and certainly photogenic landscapes in that part of the world! The rice terraces have…

Since being declared a UNESCO world heritage site in 1997 the spectacular and beautifully preserved old town of Lijiang has boomed in terms of domestic tourism – weekenders from Shanghai or Beijing – though sadly foreign visitors still seem to have difficulty finding their way here. China’s a vast country with tons to offer yet unfortunately many potential visitors can’t…

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…

And now for something completely different – a China pic! Early morning in picturesque Lijiang, Yunnan Province, Southern China. The whole of the old town of Lijiang – a maze of stream-lined, cobbled alleyways, hidden squares and an eclectic mix of ancient wooden houses, palaces, shops etc ranging in dates from the 14th century onwards, is now a listed UNESCO…

A ‘truly spectacular combination of rocks and water’, the awesome Halong Bay is one of S. E. Asia’s most dramatic and iconic landscapes.  An inlet of the South China Sea situated just off the coast of far North-Eastern Vietnam -nearly 2,000 islands and rocky outcrops fill the bay’s waters with a range of dramatic karst scenery; – sheer limestone cliffs, stalactites, caves, jungle-topped…