Everybody is doing it. So, I might as well.
To recount a year is difficult, and especially when it is a year like 2013 which was nothing short of momentous. I checked my hard disk to find out that I have travelled to a total of 14 countries this year, and the total pictures in my hard disk totalled up to 32000! So, what better way to recount a year, than to show it in pictures.
The Thaipusam festival is one of the most bizarre festivals that one can imagine. I have been wanting to check out the Thaipusam festival for a few years now. Finally got a chance in Singapore, and my camera literally started crying by the end of the day.
Travelled to Manila and to Bintan (Indonesia), which would be the first of 3 times that I have visited this beautiful Island. Lobo, who runs the shady shack resort, has absolutely adorable kids.
Took my love for Indonesia higher, by visiting Bali, and riding a motorbike around for a week. I would go on to visit Bali once more the next year. Such was my love for this place!
Went nuts on skyscanner, and ended up booking flights to Taiwan, Bangkok and Malaysia. Checked out the Songkran festival (thai new year), during which I didnt dare to bring out my camera and get it wet. But more surprisingly, visited the Taroko Gorge in Hualien, Taiwan, during the rainy season which was infamous for rockfalls. And survived to tell the tale.
Visited Cambodia with fellow couchsurfers from Singapore. A week’s journey that began in Phnom Penh, and continued to Siem Reap.
On an impulse, booked flights to Bangkok again for some debauchery on Khaosan Road. Ended up joining an anti-Thaksin protest for a bit to shout some slogans. Oh, so much fun!
Finally, a month where I did not travel at all, and stayed put in Singapore. But had some fun times during the Hari Raya Festival, eating and clicking around the many pasar malams in town.
Took a 10-day break, and headed to backpack in Spain. My first European backpacking experience, which would embolden me to go on more the next year. Actually, a lot more.
Wanted to visit an offbeat country, so took a weekend out in non-alcoholic Brunei. It was worth the trip. Brunei has a lot to offer, from the capital of Bandar Seri Begawan, to the oil-town of Seria.
Did a whirlwind tour of Hongkong and Jeju Island (Seoul). Bicycled halfway (almost) through Jeju, and camped in the cold winter. Sleeping in Jimjilbangs (Korean saunas) and clicking away in the UNESCO sites of Jeju. And in an infamous erotic theme park.
Extended my love of offbeat locations to Myanmar. Yangon is a charming capital, while Bagan was eye-openingly beautiful!
Capped the year with a trip to Egypt and Jordan, against all friendly advises not to. Turns out that the media makes us paranoid for no reason. I had an amazing time in Egypt where the tourist pack had reduced after the arab spring revolution. And Jordan’s archaeological sites are simply mesmerizing.
So, that was my 2013. And while I backpacked most of them, I wasnt alone. I travelled with people, or met amazing travellers on the way. Or stayed with some amazing people. And I cant stop to think of all those wonderful souls that made my year what it is. Thank you all.
2014 looks interesting, with Timor Leste, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and Western Africa on my radar. And I hope to find the same, amazing travelling buddies as you guys. Here’s wishing everyone, another year with amazing travels.
Click here: For the 2014 round-up!