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  • DIY Ha Long Bay

    DIY Ha Long Bay

    While all the talk is of visiting Ha Long Bay on an organised tour, it is sort of possible to visit it independently. Sure you'll still end up on a tourist boat, but you won't be a part of the group onboard. Is that close enough? We thought it was and here is how we did it.

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  • Mid-range Ha Long Bay

    Mid-range Ha Long Bay

    If you're travelling independently through Vietnam but you've a bit more cash to flash than the norm, you still want to know when it's worth spending that bit extra or not. When it comes to Ha Long Bay, tours are priced from very cheap through to reasonable, then there's the splurge take.

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  • Ha Long Bay for flashpackers

    Ha Long Bay for flashpackers

    For those who are put off by the tales of woe from the cheapest of the Ha Long Bay cruises, but don't want to pay top dollar for a luxurious boat, there is a selection of mid-range vessels to choose from. For our flashpacker tour of Ha Long Bay we went with Dugong Sails, the most commonly recommended boat offering tours in the price range of around US$75 to $85 -- we paid $75 for our two-day, one-night trip.

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  • Budget Ha Long Bay for backpackers

    Budget Ha Long Bay for backpackers

    Vietnam Tourism have outdone themselves in making sure that Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is regularly cited by travellers as their "must visit" destination whilst visiting Hanoi. And it is, but for most backpackers on a budget, the most relevant question is "How cheaply can I do it and what do I get for my hard earned (and more easily spent on booze) money". Well, read on.

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  • Loy Krathong in Thailand

    Loy Krathong in Thailand

    Loy Krathong is a time to forgive, forget and literally launch fresh hopes into the universe. Along with the related Yi Peng events up north, the festival is celebrated across Thailand with no shortage of booze and fireworks to accompany candlelit lanterns floating on water and in the sky. Observed on the full moon of the 12th lunar month, 2014's "Festival of Light" falls on and around November 6.

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  • Blue Dragon Children's Foundation

    Blue Dragon Children's Foundation

    Blue Dragon's Street Outreach team recently took in three homeless boys, one of whom was living in a precarious position under a bridge in an attempt to stay safe. The other two had previously been sexually assaulted. Fortunately the harrowing stories are usually balanced by positive and uplifting news: Blue Dragon kids have done well at school, a child who was living on the street has been re-united with his family. The list goes on.

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  • Day trips from Bangkok

    Day trips from Bangkok

    Where you might expect modern industry and suburban living to dominate, the old ways of central Thai life quietly endure. Reachable as day trips from Bangkok, many attractions can also be found amid the orchards, canals and villages that stretch just beyond the urban sprawl. In our opinion, a taste of the slow pace of life is what makes these short-lived adventures most worthwhile. Gradually, we've filled in the relatively new "day trips" section of Travelfish's Bangkok attractions guide with some of our favourites, most of which rarely make it on to travellers' itineraries. For those willing to stray from the predictable historical sites, shopping malls and party streets, greater Bangkok and a little beyond has a lot more to offer than you might imagine.

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  • Weaving and textiles in Luang Prabang

    Weaving and textiles in Luang Prabang

    Laos is renowned for its tradition of weaving and Luang Prabang has become a hub for textiles. Weaving is an art and skill that has been passed on between generations. What begins as a silkworm, a bud of cotton or a hemp plant is transformed into a cloth that tells a story about the weaver, her village, her tribe and ethnicity: Hmong, Tai Lue, Tai Dam, Lanten and Katu, just to name a few. Textiles are a fascinating way to connect with the culture of Laos and through them you can discover the country’s astounding diversity.

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  • 10 great hostels in Singapore

    10 great hostels in Singapore

    In early 2014, we stayed a night in each of 15 Singapore hostels we selected from an original list of 30 we had carefully curated. From those 15 nights, we hereby present our 10 favourite hostels in Singapore. We can't say these are the best, as with more than 100 hostels in Singapore in total, we haven't stayed in them all. We can say, however, that the 10 following hostels are terrific. Some are great for families, others for flashpackers, others still for couples (yes, there are double dorms) while a select few maintain that old-school backpacker vibe some travellers love.

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  • Bangkok craft villages

    Bangkok craft villages

    Short-term visitors often size up Bangkok as a place of glitzy malls, thumping nightclubs, street stalls, traffic jams and impressive, but touristy, temples and palaces. Peel back this out layer to discover a rich and persistent artistic heritage that's likely to turn first impressions of the city on their heads. How to find it? Any of six centuries-old craft villages are great places to start.

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  • Ha Long Bay or Sapa?

    Ha Long Bay or Sapa?

    Ha Long Bay and Sapa are both highlights of Vietnam for good reason, but if you only have time for one, which should you choose? It's not a decision we'd like to have to make but we've put together some guidelines to help if it's one you'll have to face.

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  • Soi Dog Foundation

    Soi Dog Foundation

    Phuket, like most areas of Thailand, is home to many stray animals in need of care. But visitors returning to Phuket will notice that there are far fewer sad, sickly dogs and cats on the loose than there were a decade ago, thanks in no small part to the tireless work of Soi Dog Foundation in providing medical care, sterilisations and adoptions for the island's strays.

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