SEA is Mecca four tourists seeking spiritual engagement through self exploration and cultural interaction. It is quickly becoming industrialized and pristine beaches, littered with tourists and their waste. The fading reality of this situation is a major incentive to get on the band wagon and see the ruins, rainforests and religions of the east. When travelling be aware of the footprint you leave, travel mindfully.
SEA is very cheap to live. This makes it the perfect destination for the budget traveller. Save as much money as you can so you have disposable income to do whatever you want. If you don’t have this luxury, you will not be disappointed. Scuba diving, cliff jumping, waterfalls rainforests, ancient ruins and wildlife are just a few examples of your options.
The people are as beautiful as they are diverse. The various cultures differ from country to country and regions within them. Despite these differences, the people are consistently welcoming, helpful and considerate. Religions vary from Buddhism to Islam to Hindu to Christianity.
The levels of spirituality found within SEA are also diverse. Some are very religious, others not at all. Depending on what type of spiritual experience you are seeking, you will be able to locate it within the regions of commonality or difference. Spirituality does not have to conform to a religion. Spiritual growth when travelling through SEA is inevitable. You are bound to experience insight and implicit knowledge that will bring you closer to yourself and to the world around you. The world begins to feel small, your place in it equally so. An interesting realization of the interconnectivity of life is realized and to me, this defines spirituality. Exposure to the majestic ruins encourages these realizations. That history is such a short span of time, people have existed for a blink of the eye. The advancements made by primitive people is also profound. The possibilities human beings are capable of with minimal means is incredible.
The English language is widely spoken, making international travellers able to communicate on a large scale. This makes travelling easier than many other destinations around the world where only local tongues are spoken. Thailand is particularly known for the simplicity of its travel.
The food!!! The food is as diverse as the religions. Prepare to stimulate your senses with spices, herbs, exotic fruits and coconut dishes! Food is a unifying agent that brings people together, breaks down boundaries and it immediately gratifying. The food in SEA is to die for. You can find food from the West and food from the East. I suggest going for the better quality Eastern choices with fresh vegetables, heavy spice and nutrient packed sauces. SEA is perfect for the vegetarian as this is home to the majority of them.
As SEA is a backpackers Mecca, you will meet a lot of likeminded tourists. The chances that you will make lifelong friends are very high! The chances they are form your home town are low. Making connections across the world is a great way to contribute to the global community.