Myanmar: Kalaw to Inle Lake

Myanmar: Kalaw to Inle Lake

An early morning arrival in Kalaw was the first of many "night" buses in Myanmar meant to get in at 6am rather than their 2am arrival. Trekking from Kalaw to Inle Lake, a three-day hike through the mountains and valleys of south-central Myanmar ended up being a highlight of my visit to this country. From the small, quaint town of Kalaw, to the mountain villages lacking electricity and running water, to the touristy city of Nyaungshwe around Inle Lake, this five day venture was a whole lot of fun...and some bits of not.

Read More

Thailand: The Andaman Sea Islands

Thailand: The Andaman Sea Islands

After spending nearly five months depriving myself of some serious R&R on a beach, it was finally time to hit the islands of Thailand for a bit. In addition to appreciating being with friends and family along the way, I also enjoyed nearly perfect weather, a lot of nightlife, and some relaxation as I dozed and took in the sun for the better part of a month.

Read More

Thailand: The Laissez-Faire Paradise of Pai

Thailand: The Laissez-Faire Paradise of Pai

Pai is truly a place that has adopted the "backpacker or bust" attitude. Nestled high in the mountains of the Mae Hong Son province near the border with Myanmar (Burma) lies the small town that has become known to few outside of Thailand and most along the backpacker trail through Southeast Asia. Ahead of my trip I'd heard next-to-nothing about this mountainous haven, but it turned out to be just that, a haven of a somewhat normal climate, delicious food and coffee, street markets, a social scene, and a bit of corruption (but it's Thailand, so that's a given).

Read More

Laos: Luang Prabang and Jungle Trekking

Laos: Luang Prabang and Jungle Trekking

Laos is a huge country! I’m not exactly sure how familiar any of you are with the country itself, but take a look at Google Maps just to verify how massive this place is. I’m not sure if it’s the lack of paved roads, endless mountains, or just all-around rural setting that make it seem so large, but it really takes forever to get anywhere, and anywhere in Laos could potentially be the most picturesque place there is.

Read More

Laos: Vang Vieng

Laos: Vang Vieng

After a short two days in Vientiane (there's really nothing to do there) meant solely for acquiring a 60-day Visa to reenter Thailand in a few weeks, I took a four-hour excruciating bus ride up to Vang Vieng, a scenic town in the middle of the mountains famous for its tubing, nature, and backpacker culture.

Read More

Thailand: The First Week

Thailand: The First Week

I got lucky and met an amazing group of backpackers to spend my first week with so I ended up staying a significantly longer time in Bangkok that initially planned and got a chance to see a bit of the surrounding area as well. With five days in total spent in Bangkok and another two spent in Kanchanaburi, a small town about three hours west of the capital, I saw a lot in my first eight days in Asia, and it's been a major change of pace from what I'm used to at this point in my travels. 

Read More