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Hoping to stay in Asia for a couple years, Help Please ;P

Travel Forums Asia Hoping to stay in Asia for a couple years, Help Please ;P

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1. Posted by MonkHermit (Budding Member 17 posts) 8y

Hello there people!

I live near the UK, the channel islands to be exact,
And have constantly gone to Thailand, but only on 1 month bursts due to work etc :(

I am planning on going to Asia with a friend of mine to backpack and see as MUCH as we can of the "real" world, No tourist traps please ;P But saying that we will prob visit a few,

Right i have been training in Martial arts for a number of years now and its part of my life, The main point of this trip is for me to go around to the different cultures and find some "real" clubs and practice everywhere, Not like these "fake" Asian clubs you see on the tv etc,

I currently 22 yrs old and my mate is 26, We are gonna to live like downright bums in the cheapest places we can find, hell even live it rough in the jungle for a bit ;P lol ...that will take research though lol,

We are planning to have about £12,000 each, i was wondering how long would that last out in Asia,
We are planning on doing Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Nepal, China, Japan and if anything left over would love to hit Oz or even better New zealand... Is this possible on our budget? we are gonna try and stick to most of the travels on land to save cash.

Even find some clubs that if you fight for them, they will train you, house you in a feed you etc,
Also i have NO idea about all this Visa business, could anyone show me a site where i can "enlighten" myself?

Cheers guys/gals!

Take care!

2. Posted by bwiiian (Travel Guru 768 posts) 8y

If you really want to stay away from tourists and see the real Asia and stay in far away places why don't you try the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia etc where the tourists still haven't turned up at yet? Everyone does the Thai-Viet-Laos-Camb route so you will see loads of tourists if you decide to take that route. If you do the Phil-Malaysia-Indonesia etc trip then your money will last a lot longer as you wont see too many tourist traps. You will also find some of the best beaches in the world but they will be totally deserted!
Alternatively you could do the Thai-Viet etc route then miss out Japan, Oz and New Zealand (they will take up a lot of your money) then head down to Philippines Indo etc. That way you will see SE Asia in the more developed parts (esp Thai) but also see the more underdeveloped parts before the tourists find them and high rises ruin them. The average person working in a call centre earns roughly £1000 - £2000 a year in the Philippines (which is considered a very good wage) so you can see by that how far your money will go there (30p for a San Miguel).
Unfortunately I don't know anything about martial arts so I cant help you there.

3. Posted by MonkHermit (Budding Member 17 posts) 8y

Hey there,

Thanks for getting back to me,

Well i would love to see the Phil-Malaysia and Indo defiantly,
Providing on how far my money goes,
I thought the route i chose before would be the best one for easiest to get to places and let your money stretch out as its mostly by land, Thailand is a must do because of the Muay Thai so i plan to spend 6 months there, the same goes for China as its huge for martial arts, and want to find me a real master ;P,

Ive always wanted to go to Japan because the life out there seems to entice me,
Surly if i went to the more rural ares it would be cheaper, Im gonna be staying away from big cities due to costs and its not what im after on my holiday, Hell i would love to have a tent and walk along for the great wall of china for a couple weeks or so and see the sites,
I just wanted to see how much my money would last out there, so im thinking £12k-14k would be a good amount for good while to not worry about money too too much ;P

4. Posted by TLWH (Travel Guru 516 posts) 8y

bwiiian pretty much hit the nail on the head there. Indo, Malay and the PI are top spots to avoid tourists. I can attest.

However be aware of the Visa situation in those countires. PI for example just raised its tourist visa fees up, and they are now the steepest in the region. Boxing is popular there.

Living in a tent by the beijing wall is likely to get you arrested. However if you truely wandered off to a remote region of the wall. Where there will be no electricity or water, and the locals will not speak English. Then you can try your luck.

As for other remote areas then yes they will be a lot cheaper, a lot cheaper. But the facilities will be less. In other words the clubs you are looking for may not exist in local villages. You might find local den's, though. Again, speaking the language will help.

Hopefully some one from one of these countries will pick up on this post and help you out with specific information. Otherwise I would say wait until you get here. What you see and what you hear are very different things

All the best

5. Posted by MonkHermit (Budding Member 17 posts) 8y

Heheh ya i always wondered what kinda trouble i would get into if i pitched up by the great wall ;P
But oh what a site it would be hehe,

But ya i can speak a bit of Thai already, hence why i will be hitting there,
I defo seem to have a knack for picking up the asian languages quite well, so will be more than willing to learn when i get there, I think my best bet is to get the cash ready, Dump myself in Thailand, to help me get to the "vibe" shall we say and then go on from there, I am sooo gonna make a decent video of this once i return,

My friend is building a website for me so that i can post all of my crazy blogs/videos and photos to keep in touch with friends,
Anyone know a good website where i can get infomation on Visa's?
This seems to be the biggest pain for people when traveling, All i wanna do is learn Gung fu man! ;p hehe,

Thanks for the help though ppl,
Keep em coming ;P

6. Posted by ang3l83 (Budding Member 21 posts) 8y

Hi MonkHermit,

Just sharing some thought with you...In Malaysia, we do not have fighting clubs like the muay thai in Thailand where people come and practice for fights, but we do have local martial arts call silat... this art is not advertised in media instead it is a known skills that is passed from generations to generation even it is one of the national sports apart from taekwando...sound a bit weird since it's famous but no fight clubs?..

but then again, silat is not just for fighting but also self learn this you must find a good teacher (usually it's in a village and the cost of living here is pretty cheap around less than RM300 or so a month)'s good if you could have a local contact to make some ground arrangements since you will not really find a teacher in a dwellers prefer the taekwando or boxing nowdays..but school kids do learn the arts on weekends near the school grounds (depends on the school arrangements)..

In terms of language, English is the second language here but if you go to rural area, most of them doesn't speak in English..but sometimes they can understand simple english words..

This art is also common to the Indonesian since we share almost the same culture, just the language is a bit different..but then again, as far as I know, there is no silat clubs around..usually the teachings is being taught at the teacher's yard...

By the way, for the Visa can try to check on the local immigration's website of the country that you would like to visit. I find this most helpful since it help you on the guidelines of obtaining a Visa...

Hope you'll enjoy ur trip

7. Posted by pau_p1 (Respected Member 214 posts) 8y

here in the Philippines, amongst the famous martial arts here would be the Korean Taekwondo, I believe you'd find several offering Japanese martial arts of Judo, Aikido, even Muay Tai (Thai)... major cities like Metro Manila and Cebu should have a number of these...

you may want to try also the Filipino martial arts of Arnis and Yawyan.. and yes Boxing is a big sport here specially now that we have the first Asian fighter (Manny Pacquiao) to hold 4 world boxing belts in different divisions..

yes the Philippines has hidden wonders which are is not frequented by regular tourists.. actually our 4 entries in the New 7 Wonders of Nature are not very much frequented by travellers..

currently.. 1GBP = 84 PHP.. so your 12K = 1M pesos.. which will take you a very long way.. heheeh... food in fast foods has an average of P100 per set meal, upclass restaurants having P300-P500 meals, cheap side food stores ('carinderia') having upto P35- P50 per viand.. 1M will definitely bring you very far... :D And going outside of Manila or Cebu would be less expensive..

Also most Filipinos speak or at least understand basic English... English words abound the country so it should be easier to communicate even in the most rural corners of the country... especially if you find the elder people who used to speak English fluently back in the 40's-50's...

[ Edit: Edited on Aug 15, 2008, at 1:41 AM by pau_p1 ]

8. Posted by MonkHermit (Budding Member 17 posts) 8y

Hey guys/girls ;P thanks for the reply ;P,

Thanks for your reply, I am famiular with your nations martail arts, Pencak Silat if i am correct?
I have not studied it myself, But it is the very things like this which i want to indulge in so that i can find "myself",
I am not looking to become a fighter, which would be a bonus IF it did happen, but to learn different martial arts and to learn about the different cultures, become one with the land and the people if that makes sense ;P,

How much is 300RM? I will have to look into that to see how much that would be in british sterling, as that would be interesting to know, I think its not going to be an easy task to find a "true" teacher, but i shall wonder the lands until i do come across a master who will take me in ;P,

I am more than willing to learn some of the language while im out there, not just for myself, but as a sign of respect for others to show that i am trying, and am not your random run of the mil backpacking tourist ;P

Thank you for your infoamtion though, If you find anything else out interesting please let me know so that i can have all this info recorded ;P,

Hi Pau_p1!

Thank you for your reply also,
I thought the Philippines also had their own martial art, i thought they specialized in stock fighting and also had some hand to hand combat system? Maybe i was mistaken?
But it is good to know that Martial arts is big out there, so i will feel more than at home when i turn up ;P,

But yes i imagine that the Philippines has some great sites to see and would be amazing to go trekking in, But wow that money would go a LOOOOONG way and that would be great as i want my money to last as long as i can, I will be staying away from upper class resturants as much as i can ;P, i dont mind eatng in a run down place, as long as they sell rice i will be happy hehe,

But it is good to know that English is considered a bit language over there as it will be help, But i will be putting in alot of time while there to learn some of their basic language so it will help me get around a bit more, All this tlaking about Asia makes me want to go now! hehe ;P

Thanks for your advice people!
Please keep it rolling in hehe ;P

9. Posted by Hien (Moderator 3906 posts) 8y

Hi MonkHermit,

Google for ChinWoo and read about the organisation and its history. You might be interested in it. And this article may be of interest to you: Star Wars actor Raymon Park in Malaysia to hone wushu skills. There are many ChinWoo associations in Malaysia (see this directory) and the one in KL is also a Federation of all the associations nationwide. If you're interested in this kind of martial arts, you could go to the one in Ipoh where Raymon Park took his lessons. :)

By the way, the exchange rate is £1 to about MYR6.30. One pound could get you a meal if you eat local food. McD's meal (large) cost almost twice the amount. Yes, fastfoods are "luxury" food in many parts of SEA, not like in the UK.


10. Posted by Swept Away (Travel Guru 1113 posts) 8y

You sound like my friend in Bangkok. He is 23 and is doing what you are planning to do.

good luck