“Singapore may look small, and geographically speaking it is, but this tiny island city-state is jam-packed with a myriad of things to do, see, buy, and devour. The sleek and efficient public transport system makes zipping around a breeze, allowing you more time to dip your toes into this melting pot of cultures, religions, food, and architecture.” That’s an excerpt from an article by today’s guest, Ria de Jong, about the Lion City, otherwise known as Singapore, the smallest and southernmost country on mainland Asia, which we’ll talk about on this episode of Talk Travel Asia.

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The subject of many novels and movies, Central Asia sits at the crossroads of legendary rivalries and is crossed by the fabled Silk Road. The region is massive, covering more than 4-million-square-km and includes five countries that were formerly a part of the Soviet Union, including Kyrgyzstan, the focus of this episode. Both Kyrgyzstan and its neighboring countries have diverse cultures and rich histories but are largely unknown to western travelers. On this episode, we’ll chat with travel writer and photographer Stephen Lioy about his life in the region, particularly Kyrgyzstan, where he lives, to get some inside tips for visiting one of the world’s most remote travel locales. 

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We don’t have a crystal ball, nor do you, so predicting travel trends in Asia for 2022 may entail a mixture of everything from wishful thinking to worst-case scenarios. With mass vaccination taking root, we’re hoping the future soon looks brighter and borders will open again to travel in the not too distant future. In this episode, we’ll share some things we hope to happen when travel to Asia kicks off again, cross our fingers that certain trends are left in the past, and imagine travel anew. With that said, all items discussed might not materialize, then again some of them may. So join us as we look to that light beginning to emerge at the end of the tunnel and begin imagining the travel to Asia that is hopefully to come.

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On this week’s episode of Talk Travel Asia podcast we discuss traveling Asia by train, particularly how new rail lines across the continent will make travel by train in Asia more exciting than ever. Few modes of travel hold as much allure, intrigue, and romance as going from here to there by train. Riding the rails has been a mainstay for roughly two centuries, and as lines were built, formerly inaccessible areas of the world were open to anyone who could afford a ticket. Nowadays, high-speed rail projects are making traveling by train in Asia faster than by airplane as more and more countries update their train and rail systems. On this episode, we’ll chat with James Clark, about recent and upcoming rail projects in Asia and those in the works to help you plan your next trip.

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Making the most of holiday time should be a prime objective of any trip. After all, we can make more money, but not time. Ensuring that every minute of a trip is as of high value as possible, tuned-in, and ready to go, can positively impact the experience. But the importance of good arrangements and planning increases exponentially when building an activity-based trip. Equipment needs to be ready and working well, support needs to be considered, accommodations often need to be dialed in ahead of time, and lots of other factors need to be considered. On this episode, as long-time travel professionals and travelers, Trevor and Scott will share some planning and execution tips they’ve employed while arranging successful surfing and cycling trips, to help you get the most out of your next active holiday.

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Among the many things Thailand is famous for, one is its beaches and islands. World-famous amongst travelers are the islands of Phuket and Koh Samui, while Koh Phangan is famous with backpackers and Koh Tao with scuba divers. But, with two major coasts featuring over 3,000 km of coastline and dozens of smaller islands, many of which have accommodation of some sort, Thailand has island and beach destinations for nearly every type of traveler. On this episode of Talk Travel Asia podcast, we’ll chat with David Luekens, a travel writer specializing in Thai islands, who will share some tips to help you plan your next fun-in-the-sun holiday in coastal Thailand. 

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Language screw-ups, weird taxi driver stories, and warning signs we wish we could tell our younger selves are a few of the topics we’ll discuss on this special cross-over episode between Talk Travel Asia and Bangkok Podcast. Scott and Trevor have each spent the majority of the past 20 years living in Bangkok, as have our guests, Greg and Ed, whom they’ve known nearly as long as they’ve been living in Asia. Over the past two decades, the City of Angels has changed nearly as much as the four have, and, while three of the four are still experiencing it as a home, there’s an old expression that continues to summarize this expat life: the good, the bad, and the things that can only be explained by saying, TIT, “This is Thailand.”

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Travel creates opportunities to try new things, learn about the world, meet inspiring people, be active, and disconnect from daily life. But travel has largely come to a standstill and the tourism industry has required novel solutions to survive. Our guest today will discuss how he’s making it possible for underprivileged young people to gain travel experiences and the benefits from travel in order to help transform their lives –and help keep tourism providers afloat. Listen to this week’s episode of Talk Travel Asia podcast to learn about how tourism can help children in Asia by Sharing the Wonder.

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Living and working in Asia isn’t quite the same as traveling in Asia. The differences between living somewhere, working there part time, or having a holiday include the good and the bad, and we thought they would make an interesting topic. Over the years, Scott and Trevor have drawn comparisons between living in Southeast Asia and what it must be like living in Europe. Both are made of a number of relatively geographically smaller countries that share some similarities but are otherwise very different in terms of language, food, and cultural customs, to name a few. While they often make this comparison in regards to travel, as it’s very easy, especially from Bangkok, which is geographically central to Southeast Asia, to travel to one of a half dozen different countries on a flight of no more than one hour, they have never discussed the differences between living in some of these countries. On this episode they’ll do just that: talk about expat life and how the experience differs between some of the countries they’ve personally lived.  

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Discover Isan on this week’s episode of Talk Travel Asia, as we get travel tips for northeastern Thailand from Lonely Planet author Tim Bewer.

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Experiencing animals in Asia can be one of the most interesting parts of your travels. The animals you will encounter while traveling in Asia are often exotic: certainly different from the animals found in most visitor’s home countries. From elephants to street dogs, you’re bound to have at least a couple interesting animal encounters and experiences as you travel through Asia (and a few animal tales to take home as souvenirs). After living in the region collectively for more than four decades, Scott and Trevor have had some fun, at times unnerving, and often unique animal experiences in Asia, which they share on this week’s episode of Talk Travel Asia podcast: Animal Tales: Experiencing Animals in Asia.

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