Southeast Asia has always been a drawcard for Aussie tourists, as the flights are always short and cheap and the abundance of natural attractions appeal to everyone, from those who feel inspired to trek into the jungle to others who feel that lazing on the beach is more their speed. Here are the top five natural attractions in Southeast Asia.
Halong bay, Vietnam
Halong Bay is a breathtaking vista of tiny islands and limestone pillars. It’s worth taking a boat trip around this natural beauty to fully appreciate its appeal. There are strict regulations in place to protect Halong Bay so the area has remained remarkably untouched despite the high volume of humans living there and passing through. Vietnam is such a majestic part of Southeast Asia and Halong Bay is truly the jewel in its crown.
Tonlé Sap, Cambodia
Looking like a picture postcard, Tonlé Sap is a UNESCO biosphere providing over 75% of Cambodia’s inland fish catch. See how many pelicans and stork you can spot as you look out over the freshwater lake from the surrounding mountains before watching the locals take their boats out to find today’s catch. Make sure you go during the wet season when the water levels are at their peak so that you can make the most of your visit.
Sukau Rainforest, Malaysia
Take a tour through this astounding rainforest and learn about the conservation efforts to preserve the population of turtles that’s underway at the Sukau Rainforest eco-lodge. Elephant migration also takes place here, so be sure to time your trip so that you can watch the parade of elephants pass by. Stay overnight at the Sukau Rainforest Lodge and experience the serenity of this natural wonder.
Chocolate Hills, Philippines
These hills are so perfectly formed; they look like they almost couldn’t be real. They stretch for as far as the eye can see, numbering 1,260 and mostly identical. The name comes from the fact that in the dry season they all turn brown looking like a sea of Hershey’s Kisses, and the hills are so famous, they feature on the Bohol provincial flag and seal.
Dong Phayayen-Khao Yai Forest Complex, Thailand
This is an incredibly vast ecosystem – it spans 230 kilometres and is home to more than 800 species of fauna, including 19 vulnerable and four endangered species. This is a world heritage listed natural attraction you could spend days wandering through so make sure you add it to your list of adventures when planning your trip to Thailand.