I embarked on a 12-day solo adventure in 5 southeast Asian countries exactly a year ago. It has been the most adventurous travel escapade I had until now.
Unlike last year where I can hop-on and off from buses, running trains and sorts with ease; this time, I get to travel with my 62-year old mom, my best friend, closest friends and their families. All ten of us experienced an exhausting but fulfilling 9-day adventure trip in Southeast Asia.
We traveled more than 2,000 kilometers on land from Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam then crossing the entire Cambodia nation with a two-nights stop in Siem Reap. Crossed the border to Bangkok in Thailand for a night and then rented a van to Penang in Malaysia. An overnight bus to Singapore concluded our trip with an awesome escapade in Singapore.
The trip consisted sleeping in buses and vans and getting caught in horrendous 9-hours queue to cross the 10-minute ferry ride across the Mekong river. We experienced first hand together with all the tourists on board our bus to bribe a traffic officer to help hasten our ferry ride to no avail.
Crossing international borders were not as smooth too as it was last year because of the surge of tourists to Thailand and a looming long weekend due to national holidays.
My mom and friend’s dream to cross the southern Thailand peninsula to Malaysia did not happen since outbound trains from Bangkok to anywhere are all fully booked. We experienced to eat exotic (super spicy) street foods and practically dining in street corners and market stalls. We slept in dormitories and hostels much to my mom’s shock and surprise since she had to share a room with a total stranger. We experienced running while pulling and carrying our luggage that gets heavier after every major stop in a city. And we endured the driving ability of a Thai man trying his best not to fall asleep to reach Malaysia in an overnight 12-hours ordeal. And to top it all, language barrier did not do much of course to ease our desire for a wonderful escapade, in fact it made it all the more challenging.
After what seem like forever but truly an adventurous one, we made it to Singapore with a grand accommodation in a friend’s posh condominium and a big celebration in Singapore’s Universal Studios. My mom and friends especially those who traveled for the first time abroad thrilled and surely will never forget our ordeal in an adventure to Southeast Asia.
I will soon post a per country escapade of our Southeast Asian adventure.