They’re as precious as a Tibetan visa, as treasured as a passport full of stamps and as priceless as a a love letter scrawled on the back of a Singha beer mat… S.E.A Backpacker Magazine is officially the BEST souvenir you can take from your travels in South East Asia. And with 20,000 copies printed every two months, you can grab a copy at hostels, guesthouses, adventure centers, travel agents and cafes all along the backpacker trail. Crammed with inspiration, travel tips and real backpacking experiences, each issue is a ‘travel diary for everyone’. Here’s a mouthwatering taster of what you will find in our current issue (Issue 18: May / June) Have you picked up your copy yet?
Bagan, Burma – Land of a Thousand Temples & Sunsets
The hottest destination in South East Asia right now, it seems that every backpacker who walks into the office lately has just got back from Burma! The New York Times voted Myanmar (a.k.a Burma) as the number three top place to visit in the world in 2012 creating a huge surge in tourism. A land that has been cut off from the rest of the world for the past 50 years, Burma is a mesmerizing place to visit, where 95% of people still wear traditional dress, tea is eaten and not drank and you can watch the sun set over a spectacular 4,400 temples. Our correspondent pays a pilgrimage to Bagan, an ancient archaeological paradise of a city, rents a bicycle and finds herself in a world of Indiana Jones and Tomb Raider style temples…
Bagan: Land of a thousand temples.
Featured Backpacker Experience:
In Search of Enlightenment, Vipassana Meditation in Thailand
What would happen if you imprisoned yourself in a South East Asian monastery for ten days, in complete silence without any eye contact, no book to read or even a pen and paper? Travel writer Karen Farini voluntarily trades her eye liner, eReader and hectic schedule for ten hours a day of meditation, at times feeling like she’s teetering on the edge of insanity. The big question is: in trying to gain enlightenment, does she end up losing her mind?
Vipassana Meditation in Chiang Mai, Thailand
Meet the Dancing Prisoners of Cebu, the Philippines!
Unless you’ve been locked in a cell yourself for the last half decade, you’ll likely have viewed the YouTube video of the orange jump-suited jailbirds of the world’s most extraordinary prison performing the dance to Michael Jackson’s Thriller. S.E.A Backpacker contributors, Matt Alzevich and Peter Cozad, visit Cebu’s Provisional Detention and Rehabilitation Centre in the Philippines, to watch the inmates bust their moves in a two hour awe-inspiring show and discover there’s as much controversy as there is choreography…
Inmates performing a routine at Cebu’s Provisional Detention and Rehabilitation Centre
Off the Beaten Track:
On the Road Less Travelled in East Timor
East Timor paid dearly for its independence. With over 200,000 deaths between 1974 and 1999 this South East Asian sovereign state is still in need of rapid development, its decades of conflict with Indonesia having prevented desperately needed progress. Thomas Hardaker and Sina Brunner of travel4more.org are raising funds for and awareness of the social and political issues in all the countries they visit. This is a colourful and laugh-out-loud yet ultimately important account of their voyage to the fifth youngest country on our blue planet…
Tiwu Nuawa Muri Koo turquoise lake, Ende, Indonesia
Unusual Delicacies of South “Eats” Asia
Vegetarians, animal lovers and the downright squeamish look away now! This issue’s food feature focuses on some of the weirdest fodder found in Southeast Asia. We’ve all been there, usually in a far-away land, presented with a terrifying dish that looks more suited to a gory movie than the dinner table. Is this really food? Could you eat any of it? And is it actually any more peculiar than chomping down on pig flesh or cow’s liver? Take a look at these culinary monstrosities and decide for yourself!
Barbecued tarantula in the jungles of Northern Thailand!