Chiang Dao Caves in Chiang Dao Thailand

When my bus arrived in the “city center” of Chiang Dao, a small community on the side of Doi Chiang Dao Mountain in a sleepy part of northern Thailand, I thought I had missed my stop. The word tiny is too large for that town. But there was a driver waiting with a songthaew, …

a solo traveler in asia

I couldn’t wait to learn to scuba dive while traveling solo in Thailand. But within two days of arriving on the island of Koh Tao, I threw in my fins and quit my open-water dive course. Yep. I’m a scuba-school dropout. I learned that I don’t like to breathe underwater, sure, but I also …

Solo traveler in Thailand

I spent 45 days traveling solo in Thailand. From getting lost in Bangkok to rafting through a bat-filled cave to meditating with monks in Chiang Dao, I learned the hard way so that you don’t have to! Here are the top 10 things I learned:

life in the ubud monkey forest

I spent one month in a bungalow just outside the Ubud Monkey Forest in Bali, and the overarching lesson that I learned there was this: the jungle ALWAYS wins. Now, I don’t mean to paint my life in the Ubud Monkey Forest as a hardship by any means. It was one of the most …

monks collecting alms in luang prabang

Outside of temples and padogas across Southeast Asia, there are cages full of tiny birds. If you buy a bird and release it, this symbolic gift of freedom is believed, by some, to bring good luck or to ensure a wish will come true. I asked a guide in Vietnam about this and she …

sidewalk eating

The food in Hanoi is – without question – some of the very best that I’ve had in all of Southeast Asia. Much of the culinary life in Hanoi takes place right on the sidewalk – from cooking soft-shell crabs to shelling sunflower seeds, to slurping noodles while perched on tiny, plastic chairs – …