Southeast Asia is packed with perennial favourites: places we go back to again and again because of their classic appeal, whether it be natural, historical or cultural. But the world is changing fast, and we’re constantly seeing developments across our destination countries that bring new regions to our attention, or let us see our well-known favourites in a different light. So without further ado, where will we be travelling in 2017?
Phong Nha National Park
With the new Hollywood blockbuster Kong: Skull Island promising big things in March 2017, a few classic Vietnamese destinations will find themselves in the limelight. As we discussed in a post at the end of last year, scenes from the movie were filmed in Halong Bay and beautiful Phong Nha National Park – both destinations that you can visit on our Vietnam Adventure itinerary.
Laos is Southeast Asia’s underrated gem – but not many visitors go further beneath the surface than the World Heritage city of Luang Prabang. Perhaps this is a good thing, because it means that the rest of the country is quiet, peaceful, and ripe for exploration. One of our favourite options for 2017 is Nam Nern. Tucked away in the northeastern corner of the country, this wild region is a fantastic place to explore the jungle, go wildlife-spotting on a night safari, and even sleep in a “nest” hanging from the trees.
When travellers head north from Hanoi, most head to the rice terraces and minority villages of Sapa. Though beautiful, the Sapa region is fast becoming saturated with tourists – so if you want a glimpse of unspoilt beauty, you need to go a little further. After exploring the highlands ourselves in 2016, we put together our Northern Star itinerary, which will whisk you up to Vietnam’s northern borderlands and give you an insight into the lovely Ha Giang Province.
Cambodia is home to one of the largest areas of contiguous forest in Southeast Asia, and as of 2016 the protected area has been extended to cover the majority of the Cardamom Mountains. Koh Kong is your gateway to this tropical paradise, and you can head deep into the jungle to visit the area’s wildlife release station, where rescued animals are returned to the wild. What a wonderful reason to stay a little longer in Cambodia, and to see how conservation efforts are really making a difference.
As people gradually realise that there is more to Cambodia than Angkor Wat, other places are slowly making a name for themselves. Kep is one of those places: a seaside town known for its old Art Deco villas and excellent crab, it’s the perfect place to relax for a few nights – or a jumping-off point to explore the islands of the Cambodian coast.
Our Karma Cambodia itinerary visits both Kep and Koh Kong – click here to read more.
Are you ready to start planning the holiday of a lifetime in 2017? Just get in touch with one of our travel consultants to begin planning your perfect trip today.