South East Asia 2013 – First Thoughts & Index of Links

“Indo-China is a great bay-window bulging from the southeastern corner of Asia, its casements opening on the China Sea and on the Gulf of Siam. Of all the countries of the Farther East it is the most mysterious; of them all it is the least known. Larger than the State of Texas, it is a land of vast forests and unexplored jungles in which roam the elephant, the tiger and the buffalo; a land of palaces and pagodas and gilded temples; of sun-bronzed pioneers and priests in yellow robes and bejeweled dancing girls. Lured by the tales I had heard of curious places and strange peoples to be seen in the interior of the peninsula, I refused to content myself with skirting its edges on a steamer. Instead, I determined to cross it from coast to coast.”

– E. Alexander Powell – Where The Strange Trails Go Down, 1922

I did not quite travel coast to coast, I did not trek across the peninsula on elephant back, nor in a Renault held together with twine and wire. It also was not 1922 and I never felt the need for a .45 service automatic as Powell did when he was making his way through. Below are some words and photos to share in my experiences of traveling Cambodia, Vietnam, and Hong Kong over the course of two weeks. It was not nearly long enough, but was one of the grandest trips I have had yet.

To get started… – Start here!

Cambodia – Day One – Siem Reap, Cooking class, a night out.

Cambodia – Day Two – A tour of the Angkor area and the temples.

Cambodia – Day Three – Journey from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh.

Cambodia – Day Four – The Killing Fields, S-21 Prison, markets, a night out.

Cambodia – Day Five – The Royal Palace, flight to Saigon.

Vietnam – Day Six – Around Saigon, Cu Chi Tunnels, food, and a night out.

Vietnam – Day Seven – Independence Palace, War Remnants Museum, and more food.

Vietnam – Day Eight – Arrival to Hoi An, and taking it all in.

Vietnam – Day Nine – An Bang Beach.

Vietnam – Day Ten – Last day in Hoi An with some good eating.

Hong Kong – Day Eleven – Hong Kong arrival, wandering the city and ferries, food, and some night shots.

Hong Kong – Day Twelve – Victoria Peak, lots of photos, and some irritable bowels.

By Daniel Hatke

The author was born and raised in Indiana. After graduating from Purdue University he worked in the asset management industry in New York City. He holds an MBA from Columbia Business School with concentrations in finance and entrepreneurship. Currently, he is fueling his curiosities through taking time off for extended travel and experiences in Europe and Asia, as chronicled here.