A nation of islands off Asia’s Pacific coast, Japan includes the four “Home islands” of Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku and Kyushu, which most travelers are familiar with, as well as nearly 7,000 more, mostly volcanic islands, that stretch over 3,000 km NE to SW. Comparatively, the area occupied by Japan is slightly smaller than the US state of California, and nearly the entire landmass is made up of the four primary islands. But, with towering mountains and almost 30,000 km of coastline, Japan is certain to harbor hundreds, if not thousands, of hidden gems that most travelers have never dreamt of. Today we’re going to discover a few of them. 

Continue reading

French Polynesia is made up of four archipelagos in the South Pacific, spanning more than 2,000 km. Perhaps most famous of the islands, Tahiti, conjures images of a postcard-perfect tropical paradise with coral-fringed lagoons and over-the-water bungalow hotels. But with more 100 islands, French Polynesia is certain to harbor a few travel surprises.

Continue reading

Longtime listeners and friends likely know that Scott and I love beer. I’ve worked on and off in the beer industry for decades and Scott has retained his amateur status in hopes of someday representing Canada when beer drinking becomes an Olympic event. Today, we’re going to talk hops and mashed malts from across the continent, to help you enjoy the best brews during your next Asian adventure on this episode: Favorite Beers of Asia. 

Continue reading

As we reach the beginning of 2022, the world looks forward to traveling again, but the travel experience may never be the same. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however, as we discussed in a recent episode #132 Predicting Travel Trends in Asia for 2022 and Beyond. Supporting this assertion, an June 2021 Booking.com study that polled more than 29,000 travelers across 30 countries suggests that the pandemic has been the tipping point for sustainable travel. But how are travelers to know which properties in Asia are the most sustainable and regenerative, representing the region’s next-generation hotels? That’s one of the topics we’ll be discussing with our guest, Tomo Hamakawa, on this week’s show.

Continue reading

The Republic of Maldives, is a collection of 1,200 small coral islands in the north-central Indian Ocean, with only 200 of them being inhabited. Famous for luxury bungalows on stilts over stunning clear water, no natural point is higher than 1.8 meters, and there’s a population of less than 600,000. The country stretches 820 km from north to south, and more than and 130 km from east to west, covering a large swath of ocean. Put on a tropical shirt and let’s discover the Maldives with travel writer Tom Masters.

Continue reading

While Talk Travel Asia has been sharing and dreaming of travel since 2013, there are still lots of countries in the region that we’ve yet to dedicate an entire episode to. As we begin 2022, we note a handful we’re curious about and hope to feature in the year ahead. Get ready to expand your travel ‘bucket list’ as we share some fun, interesting, and quirky facts about 13 countries we’d like to cover as show topics in 2022.

Continue reading

The Mekong is one of the world’s great rivers. Covering a distance of nearly 5,000km from its source on the Tibetan Plateau in China to the Mekong Delta in Viet Nam, the river flows through six countries: China, Myanmar, Thailand, Lao PDR, Cambodia and Viet Nam. 

Continue reading

Here we are, nearing the end of 2021, the future looks brighter around the world, and we hope to all get traveling again. Travel is one of life’s great joys. We learn about the world. We learn about ourselves. Sometimes in the best possible ways, occasionally in horrifically bad ways, but with some perspective, hopefully in a memorable way. Today, Scott and Trevor share some of their Best, Worst, Scariest & Strangest Travel Experiences. 

Continue reading

Central Asia is one of those regions that few international travelers are familiar with, nowadays. That wasn’t always the case, however, as the Silk Road was once a crossroads for the movement of people, goods, and ideas between Europe and Asia, and Central Asia was at the heart of this prosperous trade route. Geographically, Central Asia stretches east-west from the Caspian Sea to China and Mongolia, and from Afghanistan and Iran in the south to Russia in the north. In between are “the ‘Stans”, including the former Soviet republics of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Today we have the benefit of an expert in the region, writer Bradley Mayhew, joining us to share a bit about everything we didn’t know that we didn’t even know, about one of the largest — and least visited — regions of Asia.

Continue reading

Here we are, nearing the end of 2021, the future looks brighter around the world, and we hope to all get traveling again. It’s been a while since Trevor and Scott last met in person and with vaccines appearing to be having positive effects and countries talking about opening up again soon, we thought it was time to do a check-in with one another. On this episode, we’ll gauge what’s on our travel radar, places we’d love to travel together and give updates on what regional travel for us looks like in the coming months. This is Checking in with Scott & Trevor.

Continue reading

“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.

Continue reading

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. 

Continue reading