When we arrived in Singapore the immigration counters were giving out free sweets. We’ve never seen that before and it was such a contrast to the usual surly welcome that we knew we were somewhere different. Singapore is unlike anywhere else in Southeast Asia—clean, efficient, and wealthy. Some say it’s boring; we say it’s easy, and all travellers need easy from time to time.
Despite what you read in travel memoirs it’s not that easy to get invited into locals’ homes for dinner, and it has only happened to us a handful of times during our years on the road. So we were excited to be invited to try out a new service called With Locals which is like Airbnb for eating out.
Two years ago we found the perfect balance on Koh Lanta—a Thai island that wasn’t too developed or crowded but had enough facilities for us to live comfortably. On our latest visit to Thailand we couldn’t resist returning to the island we’d loved so much, but we knew there was a danger that it wouldn’t be the same.
Planning a trip to Cambodia isn’t difficult. Like elsewhere in Southeast Asia it’s well set up for travellers, who have been visiting in increasing numbers in recent years. You could manage by turning up on a bus from Thailand with no preparation or plans but there are some things it’s good to know before you arrive.