Top 10 Budget Travel Destinations for Asia in 2012

Asia is a popular destination for many travellers, particularly those who have a limited budget for their adventures. The great news is that it is possible to travel quite cheaply to some amazing destinations in Asia and to parts of the Asian continent that allow you to avoid crowds and have incredible experiences.

No matter where you travel in the world, it is incredibly important to have sufficient and appropriate travel insurance cover. For everyone, but particularly for those travelling on a budget, travel insurance should never be seen as an ‘avoidable expense’ and because so many flexible and cheap travel insurance options are available, this form of protection is necessary and affordable.

Asia offers many great budget travel destinations and here we give an overview of 10 of the best:

1:  Hanoi, Vietnam

Hanoi is the capital city of Vietnam and is compact enough that finding your way around is easy. In the city an impressive mix of Asian and colonial architecture can be observed and visitors cannot help but be fixated and amazed by the prolific motorbike traffic.

Expect to taste amazing food, often available at inexpensive prices and visits to the tomb of Ho Chi Minh and the ‘Hanoi Hilton’ prison can be seen at no or an extremely cheap cost.

2:  Goa, India

The popularity of Goa as a travel destination is increasing for two main reasons – it is cheap and its collection of beach towns are the perfect place for relaxing and soaking up the sun, especially when you have had enough sightseeing. Another great feature of Goa is that it has an authentic, local and unaffected feel.

For those that enjoy a drink, the absence of taxes and laws restricting the consumption of alcohol in Goa means that alcohol is available at incredibly inexpensive prices.

3:  Hoi An, Vietnam

Hoi An and its location by the beach are a travel highlight for many visitors to Vietnam. The Old Town is a UNESCO Heritage Site that is essentially a small, protected and charming Chinese-style fishing village. Hoi An is renowned for its beauty and individuality and the food on offer is fresh, delicious and inexpensive.

4:  Pokhara, Nepal

Pokhara is the starting point for many treks (including the Annapurna Circuit) and is a fabulous location for the budget traveller. The low key, lakeside neighbourhood of Pokhara features inexpensive accommodation options, eateries and shops. Well worth a visit, travellers should think carefully about the timing of their trip to Pokhara as it is rainy or hazy for at least 6 months of the year.

5:  Chiang Mai, Thailand

In the north of the country, at Chiang Mai, a different experience of Thailand can be attained. With beautiful temples, fabulous night markets, delicious food and wonderful opportunities for relaxation, Chiang Mai is less hectic and less expensive than other parts of Thailand and a great base from which to trek and take tours to other towns.

6:  Luang Prabang, Laos

Luang Prabang is one of Laos and the world’s most appealing cities. Full of charm and still a relatively inexpensive travel destination, Luang Prabang is an ideal base for further exploration of the region. Excellent restaurants, accommodation and stunning views can be found in this great city.

7:  Kuta, Bali, Indonesia

It is still possible to secure cheap travel options in Bali and Kuta is the main location in which a quality budget holiday is possible. The budget resort town of Kuta is set right on the beach and is immensely popular with surfers and backpackers. From Kuta, it is then possible to travel on to inland locations such as Ubud where the Balinese feeling of paradise can be experienced.

8:  Bangkok, Thailand

A perennial favourite of the budget traveller, Bangkok is a great place to start any adventure in Southeast Asia. Bangkok is so appealing because many of its most famous and important sights can be reached by foot from the Kho San Road backpacker district.

9:  Siem Reap, Cambodia

In close proximity to the amazing Angkor Wat Temple complex, Siem Reap is a clean, pleasant and inexpensive Southeast Asian city. In Siem Reap there are many things to see and do and fabulous food that can be purchased at great prices.

10:  Beijing, China

The Chinese economy is strengthening and Beijing is sometimes classified as one of the more expensive Asian cities. However, Beijing is one of the world’s greatest cities that, in comparison to the West, still represents cheap travel possibilities.

Many wonderful Asian destinations can be explored by those on a budget.

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