Penang and Malaysia, Cambodia and Laos. Colorful, vibrant, amazing Asia at its best. This presentation shows you three of Asia's finest and gives you the inside track on how to live on the beach with budgets as low as $525 a month.
Picture a tear drop, emerald green and surrounded by myriad blues. That’s what the exotic island of Sri Lanka looks like on a map. Up close it’s even more beautiful, fringed with golden sand beaches, home to lush tropical forests, tea plantations, and mist-enchanted hill country. This is the place to see elephants and leopards in the wild, stand in the shade of the world’s oldest living trees at the old royal capital, surf, dive, fish, and explore thousand-year-old temples and magnificent colonial cities. And it’s undiscovered.
As I laze beside the infinity pool of my apartment, sipping a cool drink, it’s hard to imagine why I didn’t make the move to Malaysia, and the island of Penang, sooner. Property, health care, and the cost of living are generally a quarter of what you would pay in the U.S. The weather is great, the beaches are perfect, and there’s a lot to do. I’m not surprised an increasing number of expats are buying property here.
It’s six o’clock in the morning and I am standing at the water’s edge, a pilgrim at the ancient temple complex of Angkor Wat. Like millions of others who have ventured to this same spot in the 900 years it has been a worthy destination—I’m waiting for the sun to rise. I’m waiting in the quiet of the dawn for that moment when the outline of the five stony-gray towers comes into focus and the ancient temple begins to glow.
Since opening to tourists in the early 1990s, Laos has become a magnet for travelers looking for unspoiled Southeast Asia. Two million people visit each year, drawn by world-class hiking, cycling, kayaking, and more in a pristine natural setting unblemished by development. Traditional village life is the norm. The countryside is dotted with Buddhist temples and ancient shrines.
One of the world’s great port cities, Mumbai is highly charged and energetic, bursting with stock-market money, a glamorous international art scene, and high-end bars where the beautiful people stay until the wee hours drinking champagne. Away from the bustling boulevards you’ll ﬁnd nameless alleys where coconuts sell for 30 cents, haircuts are a buck, and the city’s frenetic trafﬁc...
I ’ve always been attracted to the madness and energy of Bangkok. There’s something in the air in Thailand’s capital. Crammed with exotic sights, bustling markets, old temples, art-deco hotels and fast-food stalls on every corner, its rivers packed with boat trafﬁc, and people everywhere… If you love cities, you’ll love Bangkok.
In the musical South Pacific, the island of Bali Ha’i is an exotic paradise off limits to all except the officers. But in reality, the tropical island of Tioman—where the 1958 blockbuster was filmed—is a destination open to any traveler.
A few years ago our friends spent a month in Tahiti, one of French Polynesia’s paradise islands. When they showed us photos of the house they stayed in, my wife and I were speechless.
This is a special place of stillness and tranquility. Luang Prabang, in north-central Laos, is a riverside town like no other. Here you’ll walk wide, French-style boulevards and feel like you’re in 1920s Paris, yet you can linger in palm-shaded temples and enjoy the serenity of Buddhist shrines.