People have been traveling it since the 1970s. Starting in beautiful Thailand, the trail makes its way to up-and-coming Laos, through Vietnam, and through the temples of Angkor Wat. It then heads back into Thailand, where people head south to party in the Thai Islands before moving down to into Malaysia and Singapore. Despite the vastness of the region, the tourist trail is much more uniform in many ways than Europe. Prices can be quite similar in places, transportation types don’t vary too much, and general travel advice is usually the same.
Destination for Southeast Asia
Accommodation – Accommodation in Southeast Asia is really cheap. You can find rooms for as little as 8,000-20,000 KHR or 16,000-40,500 LAK ($2-5 USD) in parts of Cambodia and Laos. In Thailand, you will typically pay 200-440 THB ($6-13 USD) per night. In Vietnam, expect to pay 100,000-175,000 VND ($5-8 USD). In Indonesia, between 100,000-135,000 IDR ($8-10 USD).
Food – Food is very cheap in Asia. If you eat the local food, you can live on only a few dollars a day. Southeast Asia is filled with delicious street stalls where meals cost less than a dollar. If you eat western meals, then expect to pay anywhere between $4-20 USD per meal depending on how nice an establishment you go to.
Transportation – The easiest and cheapest way to get around Asia is by bus. A bus will take you everywhere and anywhere you want to go, no matter how far. The backpacker trail is so worn that there is a very well established and oiled tourist bus system to take you anywhere.
Activities – Activities here are pretty cheap. Most day tours only cost around $15 USD, often times less. Learning to scuba dive will set you back a few hundred dollars and the multi-day pass to Angkor Wat is 160,000 KHR ($39 USD).
Reviewer: Christopher Freville – travelled extensively in South East Asia from 1995 to 2015.