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Southeast Asia

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Ideas for various trips I take from Shanghai to Southeast Asia...
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Sanur, South Denpasar, Denpasar City, Bali, Indonesia
Sanur is a beautiful and quaint part of Bali with hotels along the boardwalk that lines the beach. The boardwalk really makes Sanur special, as walking in Bali can be treacherous in most of the towns with narrow streets and tiny sidewalks, but...
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Jl. Raya Petitenget, Gang Cendrawasih No. 68, Kerobokan, Badung, Kerobokan Kelod, Kuta Utara, Kerobokan Kelod, Kec. Kuta Utara, Bali, 80361, Indonesia
Although it’s located right near a popular stretch of Seminyak beach, this inexpensive, 16-room Puri Madawi hotel, set 300-meters back into the jungle, feels hidden and secluded. The resort is filled with authentic Balinese touches such as woven...
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Sunset beach, Jungutbatu, Nusapenida, Lembongan island, Bali 80771, Indonesia
Located just off the eastern shore of Bali, Indonesia, is a small island called Nusa Lembongan. It is a great place for a day trip if you're vacation in Bali, and it's only a 30-40min boat ride from Sanur. There is a boat that will take you...
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Mambal, Abiansemal, Badung Regency, Bali 80352, Indonesia
It took three years to realize this passion project: a spa retreat built mainly of bamboo. Book a riverfront suite, or the hotel can arrange a stay in a rural family’s home. This appeared in the January/February 2013 issue.
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Jl. Gn. Sari, Peliatan, Kecamatan Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia
Make sure to check everything off your to-do list before staying at Maya Ubud Resort & Spa because you'll immediately melt into the landscape and never want to leave. The tiered layout and minimal design seamlessly intertwine with the jungle...
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Jl. Goa Lempeh, Banjar Dinas Kangin, Uluwatu, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
Set on cliffs above the Indian Ocean, this posh resort is made up of 59 spacious villas that blend local stone and wood with Bulgari-made fabrics. It’s a luxurious combination of contemporary Italian design and Balinese traditional architecture. ...
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Unnamed Road, 82152, Jatiluwih, Penebel, Kabupaten Tabanan, Bali 82152, Indonesia
Bali's rice terraces are a beautiful sight, and a great place to view them is Jatiluwih in Tabanan. There are pathways cut through the fields for tourists and small stalls at which to sit and have a cold drink, but groups are few and far between,...
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Lake Maninjau, Tanjung Raya, Agam Regency, West Sumatra, Indonesia
This is what I think of when travel comes to mind. I think untrammeled territory, wide open country, bits and pieces of the world I've never seen before, people doing things I didn't know they still do or ever did, and a big, booming landscape....
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Jl. Hanoman No.8, Ubud, Kecamatan Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia
Clear Café may specialize in raw and vegan food, but you won’t find dream catchers or hemp tablecloths here. Instead, you’ll see marble-and-stone tabletops, driftwood sculptures, and a small courtyard pool. Notable menu items include black pepper...
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Jl. Ayodya No.10, Mengwi, Kec. Mengwi, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80351, Indonesia
The temples in Bali, Indonesia are famous for their multi-tiered thatch roofs. This was taken at Pura Taman Ayun in the village of Mengwi. Visitors are not allowed to enter the temples - we could only view from outside the walls. Thankfully the...
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Jl. Uluwatu No.Desa, Pecatu, Kec. Kuta Sel., Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
I'll be honest, you are going to find mixed reviews from travelers about visiting the Uluwatu Temple on the southern tip of Bali. People are going to complain about the thieving monkeys (for good reason), the lack of luster offered by the temple,...
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Phường 7, District 10, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

We spent our last day in Ho Chi Minh City with Geoffrey Deetz, a restaurateur and foodie from Oakland, California, who has lived in Vietnam for the past decade and operates the wonderful Black Cat Cafe. He and his Vietnamese girlfriend took us on...

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Chợ, Lê Lợi, Phường Bến Thành, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh 700000, Vietnam
Jackfruit and dragonfruit on display at a fruit stand in Banh Thanh Market in Ho Chi Minh.
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Pho Ga (chicken pho) is traditional to northern Vietnam and is served all day. The best time to get it from a local vendor is early in the morning because it's SO fresh and makes for a perfect breakfast. As a side note about this photo, I love...
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Hồ B52, Ngọc Hà, Ba Đình, Hà Nội, Vietnam
It took ages to find the (much acclaimed at AFAR) sunken B-52 bomber in Ha Noi. The twisted pile of metal hardly resembles a plane anymore, but it was interesting nonetheless. Even more fascinating to me was the 'lake' it had fallen into. This...
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341 Cao Đạt, Phường 1, Quận 5, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam
Whenever I get the urge to complain about my lack of space in the US, I remember the efficiently packed tight way that almost everyone else in the world lives. For instance, SE Asians are the masters of balancing their wares on bicycles. They also...
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Pemenang, North Lombok Regency, West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia
A Beautiful sunset from the Jeeva Klui resort on Lombok. A view over the infiniti pool out to the Lombok Straight towards Bali.
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Jl. Pantai Gili Trawangan, Gili Indah, Pemenang, Kabupaten Lombok Utara, Nusa Tenggara Bar. 83355, Indonesia
Gili T is the largest of the three Gili islands near Lombok. It has all the restaurant and nightlife offerings of Boracay in the Philippines but with the relaxed, friendly, tout-free vibe of the Perhentian islands in Malaysia. There are no cars or...
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Mount Rinjani, Sembalun Lawang, Sembalun, East Lombok Regency, West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia
Taking a 3 day/2 night Rinjani trek at the end of wet season is not the most brilliant idea I’ve ever had, but it is one of my most memorable experiences. After climbing up what felt more like a riverbed than a trekking path, we shed our wet shoes...
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Gili Trawangan, Gili Indah, Pemenang, North Lombok Regency, West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia
The Gili Islands lie off the coast of Lombok and are only accessible by boat. There are three laws on the islands: no dogs, no motorised vehicles of any kind, and no police. Because there are no motorised vehicles, horses and their carts (cidomos)...
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Words can do little justice to the scenery that awaits travelers to Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Hundreds of forested limestone karst formations rise from emerald-green waters, looking like slumbering creatures ready to stir. The...
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I come from a city with a decent reputation for Vietnamese food, and though I knew the food would be better still in Vietnam, I couldn't fully understand how much better it would be. This is cross-an-ocean-just-to-eat-it good. This is...
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65 Ngõ Huế, Ngô Thì Nhậm, Hai Bà Trưng, Hà Nội, Vietnam
This was one of my favorite restaurants to visit for lunch. My partner and I liked it so much that we visited again and again. This restaurant offers rough and ready local dishes, all brilliantly done and super tasty. Flavors abound in each dish,...
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15 Phố Ngô Quyền, Tràng Tiền, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội 010000, Vietnam
A 1901 landmark in Hanoi’s French Quarter, the colonial-style Sofitel Legend Metropole has long been a celebrity magnet, welcoming presidents, ambassadors, and literary and cinematic royalty into its marble lobby. Somerset Maugham...
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1 Lê Thánh Tông, Phan Chu Trinh, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam
Located in Hanoi’s business district, just two blocks from Tran Quang Khai highway (where it’s a quick 18-mile ride to Noi Bai International Airport), Hilton Hanoi Opera is in demand with the corporate crowd. Built to resemble the...
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12 Lý Đạo Thành, Tràng Tiền, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam
I enjoyed visiting this club-like restaurant (even though it is not a club, and totally open to the public). Vietnamese food is solid, and they have some Western dishes for those in need of a burger-and-fries treatment. Wine list here is one of...
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Số 4 Lê Phụng Hiểu, 4 Lê Phụng Hiểu, Tràng Tiền, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam
In many ways, the total number of fine Vietnamese dining options in Hanoi surpasses what's found in Ho Chi Minh City. This is yet another example of a solid restaurant in Hanoi. Excellent cuisine, wine list, service, and pinkly décor.
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Chợ Đồng Xuân, Đồng Xuân, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam
One of the best parts about visiting Hanoi as a traveler is the food—so fresh, so delicious, and so abundant that you can literally trip over it when trying to navigate the city's notoriously crowded sidewalks. This vegetable vendor outside Dong...
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Tanjung, Jl. Pratama, Benoa, Kuta Sel., Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
Give a man some pisang goreng (fried bananas) and you feed him for a day; teach a man to make pisang goreng and he comes home from Bali with skills for a lifetime! At Bumbu Bali Cooking School, classes introduce eager students to the island's...
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Jl. RSI Markandya 2, Gang Mawar, Banjar Sebali, Desa Keliki, Kecamatan Tegallalang, Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia
The Balinese have been using herbs and roots to treat most ailments for centuries. Unfortunately, as in many other places in the world, the knowledge of these treatments is being lost as the younger generation turns towards "western" medicine....