Southeast Asia – The Land of the Cover Band

So… here I am, after a year of travel, sitting in lovely Cameron Highlands, Malaysia. I had many goals for this year, and as I’m sure you’ve all gathered, a big one was to volunteer with different conservation and animal welfare groups across the globe. Just over a week ago, I summed up the last of these efforts at an elephant village in Surin, Thailand. It has been so enlightening and inspiring, both in the struggles we face as a planet and the good people out there trying to make a difference. 

(My Merrell boots… they were with me for a long time, many hikes over 5 continents. But I finally had to let them go in Asia.)

So now what? Well I’m about a week in to a 28 day tour of South East Asia. I found this G Adventures tour though my amazing STA travel agent, Amber. I knew I wanted to see more of Asia, but I wasn’t sure where to start. I’d been traveling solo(ish) this whole year so I figured a group tour might be a nice option. The tour is essentially Bangkok, Thailand to Bali, Indonesia via Malaysia and Singapore – trains, planes, and automobiles abound! 

(Pretty Thai islands…)

(This is what a dive boat in Thailand looks like.)

So far, it’s been pretty great. I mean, what’s not to love about 15 or so jet-lagged people crammed together on various modes of transportation to see the sights?! I enjoy everyone on the tour immensely, but after traveling solo(ish) for a year, it is a bit of an adjustment. But adjustments are what make life exciting! 

(Some of the beautiful street art in George Town, Penang, Malaysia. The cats are my favorite and there’s 101 around the city!)

(George Town has an owl shop… I got these two for me and Steve)

As the title suggest, so far everywhere in Southeast Asia is obsessed with cover bands. From malls to restaurants and Taylor Swift to Billy Joel – cover music is the rage. I will admit though, sometimes the cover is better than the original! It’s an amusing quirk of the area. We’re half way through our Malaysian adventure and I’m happy to say I don’t see this trend slowing down. Rock on cover Taylor, rock on!

(A beautiful tea plantation in Cameron Highlands, Malaysia. The altitude and cool temperatures make this place ideal for tea growing.)

(The mossy forest in Cameron Highlands. This ecosystem is very ancient and unique in this part of the world.)

After this tour I’m pretty much done with this little globe trot. I have a few weeks in London before finally going home in May. I’m very sad to see it all come to an end. There’s certainly so much more I want to do and see, and I will – in due time. But the time is coming to return to a big girl job and find new exciting adventures there!