I posted recently about my favourite experiences in Asia, but I thought I’d post some of my regrets, too! Thankfully I have no major regrets, but there are a few things I wish I’d done differently.
1. Not getting pictures with many of the people I met
All throughout our travels, we met incredible people – both travellers and locals. Towards the end, I got a little better at taking pictures, but there are so many people I have nothing but memories of. I felt insecure asking to have our picture taken; in case they didn’t want to, or got annoyed or offended. I didn’t want to seem weird. But it’s not weird.
2. Pushing my empty-stomach-drinking to the limit at the Full Moon Party
I never especially expected to make it to the sunrise at the Full Moon Party, but I had a really fun night and it did end a little early – plus I feel awful that Ash had to look after me! I’m not normally a lightweight, honest. In fact, I’m great at pacing myself and understanding my limits and I have amazing nights out because of that. It was my empty stomach, the fact I didn’t drink any water, and the five pre-drinks that did it. Whoops.
3. I had a contingency plan for our Chinese visas and forgot to use it
After leaving Asia altogether, I was looking through my notebook that’s full of scribbles, places we shouldn’t miss, prices, packing lists, booking sites and tons more.
And right at the back, way away from everything else I’d written, for some reason I had noted down websites we could book all our Chinese transport through in case we needed to do it in order to get our visas.
Of course, when our visas were denied, I didn’t find this information anywhere and ended up completely skipping China by booking a last minute flight to Vietnam, which cost us significantly more than it would have been to go through China.
4. Not spending enough time in Malaysia
I’ll be honest. We didn’t have high expectations of Malaysia. We quickly fell in love with Penang and several friends we met were going to Langkawi, the Cameron highlands and Perhentian islands. But our aim for the trip was achieved: we deliberately didn’t budget much time for Malaysia in case we didn’t like it, and now we know where we want to go if we go back! My main regret is forgetting to book our overnight train to Singapore so that we had to miss a day on our already cut-short trip, which included a visit to the Batu Cave.
5. Not staying a night on Koh Phi Phi
We never planned to stay on Phi Phi due to the expense and how crowded it would be. It turned out that although it was a little more than anywhere else we’d been (50-100 baht more a night, 14 baht for water instead of 7, etc), it wasn’t crowded at all and the parties seemed to be a lot of fun! I couldn’t spend a lot of time here, but it would have been really cool to have one night.
6. Missing out Da Lat in Vietnam
This was my one regret for our time here, but we worked our visas so that the first week was spent in Hong Kong (cheaper flights and cheaper/less hassle than sorting the visa in advance), giving us only three weeks in Vietnam itself. We could have happily done the whole month and visited Sapa too, but my real regret is not making it to Da Lat.
We also wish we’d made time for Pai in Thailand, and Laos. More places to add to our list when we return, of course!
Let’s face it – if these are my biggest regrets, I didn’t do too badly, did I?!