Over the month of March, I’ve travelled along the mountains, rivers and rice paddies of Thailand’s north, revisited with much nostalgia the familiar streets of Singapore, revelled in the festivities of Las Fallas in Spain, and finally made that illusive trip to India’s northeast to live with the Mishing tribe of Assam and explore the wilderness of the eastern Himalayas. Below captures my adventures in Asia, mostly visually.
Thailand: Chiang Rai and Koh Mak
March started with a trip to the northern tip of Thailand, where we stayed in a village home stay with a Thai-Dutch family on their rice paddies. Our days were spent strolling along the Kok river, hiking in the mountains beyond, and indulging in the most delicious home-cooked Thai food.
I made a nostalgia-filled trip back to Singapore, on invitation from the Singapore Tourism Board. Although I’ve studied and worked in the country for half a dozen years, it was the first time I saw it from the lens of a traveller (and realised just how expensive it can be compared to its neighbours. I discovered just how quaint the shophouses and by-lanes of Chinatown are, sampled chic new cafes and concept bars that have popped up along what were once unassuming neighbourhoods, revisited some of my favourite vegetarian eateries, and in a way, found closure in my decision to move back to India.
Northeast India: Assam
A second item off my bucket list for 2013 (the first was revisiting Southeast Asia), I finally made that illusive trip to the first of the seven sisters. Guwahati felt something like India in the 90s; chaotic and in transition. But I fell head over heels in love with Majuli, the largest river island in Bhramaputra, and possibly in the world. Majuli was surreal, almost other worldly – there were rolling meadows everywhere, sleepy riverside villages, and more cattle grazing on the endless pastures than people on the island. These were landscapes I’ve imagined New Zealand to have!
Which of these places would you most like to visit, or read about?