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Top 10 | What are the best backpacking destinations in Asia?

Do you also dream of a backpacking trip through the most beautiful destinations in Asia† You will probably know that not all countries in Asia are suitable for backpacking, especially as a single woman. In addition, it is of course super fun during such a trip if you also experience the real backpacking atmosphere. But what are the best backpacking destinations? And what do we mean by 'best backpacking destinations'?

Also read: Plan a world trip in 10 steps | Full manual & step-by-step plan

What makes a destination suitable for backpackers?

We know from experience that a perfect backpackers destination consists of the following features:

  • Nice and helpful locals – They ensure that your trip is just that little bit more fun & getting a lift is always handy..
  • Delicious street food – Because street food is cheap and it's the perfect way to get to know the smells and colors of the country.
  • Public transport – If public transport is well organized in a country, it saves a lot of stress and hassle, especially for novice backpackers.
  • Good and cozy hostels – New friends all over the world, do I need to say more?
  • The party content – Because there are still plenty of backpackers who want to drink as many beers as possible in every country.
  • Costs – How cheap is a country? Still one of the most important parts for backpackers. The cheaper the country, the longer you can travel.

Also read: Top 10 | What are the cheapest countries for a world trip?

What are the best backpacking destinations in Asia?

10. Jordan

Jordan doesn't sound obvious at all when you think about backpacking, but this country is very suitable for this! Most backpackers will start their trip in the capital Amman and therefore it is easy to make contacts. Just pick the right hostel and voila! You immediately have some travel buddies with you. If you mean 'drinking' and 'partying' by a backpacker atmosphere, then you should of course not choose a country like Jordan, because you will most likely not find it there. What makes you as a backpacker very enthusiastic is the adventure this country has to offer. Public transport is great, the hostels are great and the people are very helpful. We'll do it below summarize in a rating from 1 to 5† The more backpacks, the higher the score!

Also read: Top 10 tips for bucket list destination Petra in Jordan
Also read: Bucket List Destination: Jordan's Wadi Rum Desert

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Wadi Rum, Jordan is definitely one of the best backpacking destinations
Wadi Rum, Jordan is definitely one of the best backpacking destinations

9. Cambodia

Cambodia is a country that is often combined with the countries of Vietnam, Thailand & Laos. Traveling on to Cambodia (and vice versa) is very easy. You will therefore encounter many other backpackers here. The popular destinations in this country are: Phnom Penh and Siem Reap† If we have to rate the locals if we only look at Phnom Penh, they get a 1, but luckily Cambodia offers much more than just the capital. Siem Reap, on the other hand, is really a backpacking paradise. Not surprising, because here you will find the large temple complex Angkor.

Also read: Travel route Cambodia in 2, 3 or 4 weeks | All must-sees and travel tips

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Kampot, Cambodia | A great backpacking destination
Cambodia | A great backpacking destination

8. Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is a-ma-zing for backpacking, especially because the country is so diverse and the travel distances are not that great. In Sri Lanka can you do many pieces traveling by train, which is also a nice change. What is unfortunate about backpacking in Sri Lanka is that there are not 1 or 2 popular routes, so you can miss the connection with other backpackers.

Also read: Itinerary Sri Lanka in 2, 3 or 4 weeks | All must-sees and travel tips

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Elephant Rock, Sri Lanka | Top 10 backpacking destinations
Elephant Rock, Sri Lanka | Top 10 backpacking destinations

7.Myanmar

Myanmar has not really been discovered by 'normal' travelers yet, but it is swarming with backpackers! It's not really a party destination, it's a bit more expensive than other countries in Asia, public transport is still lagging behind and most people don't find the food very special either. But why does Myanmar then at number 7 in the best backpacking destinations? Most likely due to the fact that this country still feels undiscovered and not have to share your sights and experiences with 100 other tourists. Delicious!

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Bagan, Myanmar | best backpacking destinations
Bagan, Myanmar

6. Laos

When it comes to backpacking, you can somewhat compare Myanmar and Laos. In Laos you go back in time, just like in Myanmar. And how good that feels! Expect a beautiful nature, adventure and culture, but don't expect luxury and delicious cuisine. Adjust those expectations and then you are perfectly in Laos! Of course, this also differs greatly per destination. The higher north you go, the more primitive it will become. Staying close to Luang Prabang and Vang Vieng? Then you don't have to prepare so much. Then expect great hostels, a lot of party content, but less authenticity.

Also read: On the scooter through Laos! † The two most popular motorbike loops

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Nong Khiaw, Laos | Backpack destinations Asia
Nong Khiaw, Laos

5. Philippines

The only drawback of the Philippines is that backpacking very pricey is in this country. If you want to see a lot (and you want to), that means that you will also have to fly a lot. An additional disadvantage is that you have to plan while backpacking, otherwise you will of course suffer from even higher prices. Enough islands are also accessible by ferry, but these are also more expensive if you compare it with traveling by bus or minivan. We can't think of any other drawbacks. It's amazing!

Also read: Itinerary Philippines in 3, 4, 5 or 6 weeks | Comprehensive guide

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The boat trip from Coron to El Nido, Philippines
The boat trip from Coron to El Nido, Philippines

4. Indonesia

Indonesia (and we don't just mean Bali) definitely belongs in the list of best backpacking destinations. The country is so big! you would be here could easily spend 3 months† Unfortunately, with a free visa you 'only' get 1 month. When you pay for your visa, you can extend it per month. Not really useful, but the possibility is there. Public transport is sometimes a mystery, but the country makes up for it with their beautiful population and beautiful nature. And the best of course is the food. We love it!

Also read: Itinerary through Bali in 2, 3 or 4 weeks | All must-sees and travel tips

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Mount Bromo, Indonesia
Mount Bromo, Indonesia

3. Malaysia

Malaysia is really a backpack mecca. I am mainly talking about the mainland. You can also choose to extend your backpacking route with the Malaysian island of Borneo. In Borneo you will find a lot of nature, but the real backpacking atmosphere there cannot be compared with mainland Malaysia. The highlight is surely Kuala Lumpur where there is a huge range of hostels and delicious street food. You can cool off in one of the luxury shopping malls this city has to offer, but you can also enjoy yourself at the street eateries. This city really has everything. The best thing Kuala Lumpur offers is it perfectly organized public transport† With the tram you can reach all the sights in no time. Other highlights of the country with a real backpacking atmosphere are Penang, Langkawi, Cameron Highlands and Taman Negara.

Also read: How much does traveling in Malaysia cost? † Everything about budget and costs

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Lunch in the jungle of Taman Negara, Malaysia
Lunch in the jungle of Taman Negara, Malaysia

2 Vietnam

Vietnam, is (besides our number 1) one of the best backpacking destinations and when you are backpacking here, it seems as if there are no other 'kind' of travelers. The nice thing about traveling through Vietnam is that you can choose 2 routes. From north to south or from south to north. There are simply not really any other options. You will therefore automatically connect a lot with other backpackers† The country is also very diverse. of luxury cities to the smallest villages and from a boat trip through the famous Halong Bay to a brisk hike in the mountains of Sa Pa. Vietnam is also well known for covering part of the route (or even the entire route) on a motorcycle. A very nice experience when you don't feel like those long bus trips. Because if you want to see Vietnam in its entirety, you have to travel a few kilometers.

Also read: Exploring Halong Bay from Cat Ba Island | cheaper alternative
Also read: The 12 Most Beautiful National Parks in Vietnam | From Jungle to Beach

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Hanoi, Vietnam
Hanoi, Vietnam

1. Thailand

At number 1 of our best backpacking destinations is (of course) Thailand, † As an experienced backpacker you don't immediately think of Thailand, but are you thinking about your first backpacking trip? Then Thailand the place to be† It won't get more 'backpacking'. Hostels galore, public transport especially for backpackers, party hostels, a wide choice of destinations and delicious food.

Also read: Travel route Thailand in 2, 3 or 4 weeks | All must-sees and travel tips
Also read: The 10 Most Beautiful National Parks in Thailand | Untouched Wilderness

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Chiang Rai, Thailand
Chiang Rai, Thailand

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Ilse & Nick

ILSE & NICK - OUR TRAVEL LIFE
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