South East Asia was my first real experience at a unique culture – my trips to America and Oz were different but they were as close to my current surroundings as I’d get. It was actually in Australia were I started to hear the stories and it’s safe to say it did not disappoint!


  • 5 New Countries
  • 12 Flights
  • 70 Days


After a hellish flight to Kuala Lumpar I spent my first few days in SE Asia pretty much eating food! Everything from an excellent food tour to enjoying views of the Patronas Towers from the rooftop.


Well what can I say about this place; it’s special and I can already tell it will be one of my favourite countries.

I was super lucky to have met the Americans; Dusty, Mike and Cody as soon as I left Chiang Mai. I’d go on to travel most of Thailand with them either side of getting scammed and visiting the Bridge over the river Kwai. On the west coast islands I done everything from my Advanced scuba licence to South East Asia’s biggest pub crawl 4 times and then the crazy Full moon on Koh Phangan!

From there it was time to explore the even more beautiful Andaman Islands on the west coast with Carlos. Here I experienced a my first and only ping pong show, a hit and run and a little workout on Krabi island. More to follow after India

Whale Shark, Koh Tao, Thailand. South East Asia Reflection Post

South East Asia Reflection Post


A visit to Laos and Cambodia are part and parcel of a trip to Thailand. We arrived in Laos via the slow boat from Thailand and enjoyed the crazy atmosphere is one of the remotest parts of Laos, Pakbeng. Laos offers a fantastic day tubing and a hidden gem in the way of Si Kuang waterfalls, the most beautiful falls I’ve ever seen

After it was down to Cambodia with the Americans for a few weeks exploring the cities and Koh Rong. Our time in Siem Reap was spent eating the most disgusting “food” I’ve ever had the pleasure of trying as well visiting the biggest temple in the world, Angkor Wat.

Koh Rong was a place of two sides, quite literally. The main beach was filthy yet fun but just around the corner was Long Beach, where we would be 4 of maybe 10 people on it for sunset. We unfortunately called it too early and left a day or two before we should have.

More history was offered at Siem Reap in the way of the killing fields. This created a huge contrast in emotions compared to our previous 2 weeks.



Then it was time to get back to Thailand which obviously had me super pumped. I headed to Kanchanuburi to see the death railway and the bridge over the river Kwai.

From here I headed down to the islands for the first time and met up with the Americans again. In Kao Tao I got my advanced diving certificate and took part in South East Asia’s largest pub crawl countless times!

The essential full moon party was had before I took the bus over to the Islands on the West coast. Here I had was given an array of new experiences such as a ping pong show, the party beaches in Koh Phi Phi and climbing Tiger Temple beside the most stunning Railay Beach!

David Simpson in Nangyuan Island in Thailand. South East Asia Reflection Post

South East Asia Reflection Post


After a week in India it was back to the Thai islands where I ran into Phil, Aled and a room full of nutters at CK Hostel. The next 2 weeks were spent trying to stay alive, enjoying Christmas on Koh Tao and a New Years Eve Full Moon party.

David Simpson with three guys in Thailand. South East Asia Reflection Post

South East Asia Reflection Post


After a month detour in New Zealand and Fiji I was back in Asia to meet my buddy Phil for what would be the best 3 weeks of my trip so far. For episode 1 click here and the reflection post click here.


  • PEOPLE – 9/10
  • BACKPACKING – 9/10
  • WEATHER – 8/10
  • THINGS TO DO – 8/10
  • FOOD – 8/10
  • VALUE – 9/10
  • BEACHES – 8/10
David Simpson with three guys traveling by boat to Laos. South East Asia Reflection Post

South East Asia Reflection Post


  • HIGHLIGHT – The Islands!
  • LOWLIGHT – My lost luggage
  • MVP – The waiter in Laos
  • VISIT AGAIN – Every year!
  • RATING – 9/10


It is no coincidence why Thailand is called the land of smiles. If you travel there you’d be blind to miss this fact and the same could be said for the rest of South East Asia. It’s a place where everyone whether they are locals or tourists are wearing flip-flops and shorts and everyone is happy. It was the perfect place to really begin my Asian experience!


Off to Hong Kong for The Asian Series and the world’s highest bungee and tower climb! Click to read episode 1.


This post is part of The South East Asia Series, click to explore or for episode 1 click here.

Question Time

  • Have you been to South East Asia?
  • What is your favourite country in the region?
  • Highlight of South East Asia

Let me know in the comments below . . .

Send this to someone who might like it

About the Author


Related Articles:

Got a question, some advice or want to tell me about your experience?

I’d love to hear it . . .

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.
You need to agree with the terms to proceed