Dear friends and business partners,
With the sands of time continuing to shift, our destinations have put an incredible amount of effort into carrying out our sustainability promises.
Despite obtaining Travelife Partner status in all our destinations, we simply do not leave it here, and we are actually picking up the pace in giving back to society, and offering support to those in greater need of a helping hand.
The CEO story
I tend not to flood your inbox with news and updates on how we and our respective governments handle these pandemic times.
The changes in regulatory mandates on domestic and regional level are too frequent and often out-of-date once posted. While the world is working towards a common goal to contain and combat the Covid-19 crisis with prevention and ultimately a cure, the tourism industry is faced with regulatory measures to alleviate an ever-surmounting pile of issues of its own. Reality is hitting hard when travelling around, and seeing once flourishing businesses closed down, no longer able to cope with the consequences of sometimes illogical decisions made by government officials.
My CEO Story here tackles the handling of this pandemic head on, with the demand to open the borders as the most effective operational solution.
CEO Asian Trails
Going Native In Secluded Indonesia
Intrepid travellers meet isolated tribe
A famed destination for surfers who travel far to ride its legendary waves, the Mentawai Islands are now attracting alternative travellers interested in rich ethnic culture. In particular, an encounter with the famed hunter-gatherer Mentawai people who live a lifestyle passed down from ancestors thousands of years ago.
The tribe are famed for full-body tattoos inked with symbolism and for their skill at using what Mother Nature provides to sustain life. Though only 150 km from the mainland, the islands are one of the last frontiers for Indonesian adventurers. The indigenous people were kept isolated until the 19th century by strong winds, volatile currents and razor-sharp reefs.
Besides preserving the tribe’s unique traditions, this isolation has preserved the archipelago’s pristine flora and fauna.
A Balanced View of Hong Kong
Geomancy exploration gives greater harmony
The skyscraper-studded ‘city of lights,’ with more high-rises than anywhere else on earth crammed into a territory of just 2,754 sq-km, is teeming with Feng shui elements – as long as one knows where to look! This integral part of Chinese culture is unveiled through a dedicated journey through the lively, insomniac metropolis.
Guided by an expert practitioner, the meaning of the earthly elements is blended together with the use of public transport to view the island from a more balanced perspective – beyond the towering buildings and fast-paced pursuit of big business.
Chilling in Chhlong’s Colonial Charm
French influence pervades Cambodian town
Labelled as one of the most charming destinations for a mini-break, rural Chhlong in Eastern Cambodia provides a tranquil countryside experience for those seeking respite from the urban sprawl.
Situated a few hours from Phnom Penh and a short drive from Kratie, this sleepy riverside town ticks all the boxes for a convenient weekend getaway. It has attracted a steady stream of travellers interested in its early 20th century French architecture created during colonial rule.
Prominent among these is the Le Relais de Chhlong, a period mansion with sensational views over the Mekong. Formerly the French governor’s residence built in 1916, this 10-suite boutique property was fully renovated in 2017 with an eye on the past, featuring antiques, vintage photographs and chic colonial influences.
Seasons of Change in China
Snow creates stunning desert scene
As we head to the Northern Hemisphere’s colder months, the vastness of Inner Mongolia is the perfect place to view China’s immense mainland region covered in snow.
Our China product specialists have created some wanderlust-infused travel ideas covering snow-capped dunes and abundant isolated lakes spread across a surreal landscape few travellers get to see. Trending is our five-day exploration by camel caravan from Bilutu, the site of the world’s tallest stationary sand dune and the third-highest dune in the world, with an elevation of 1,605 metres above sea level.
Instagrammers can snap away at their hearts’ content at this perfect November-March get away from it all location.
Support For U. N. Campaign
Malaysia staff back ‘humanity heroes’
As part of our Corporate Social Responsibility activities for 2020, Asian Trails Malaysia has helped the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, to implement its ‘Humanity Heroes’ aid campaign. Our staff helped to prepare 1,398 dignity kits for distribution to female refugees all over Malaysia.
The kit includes information on sexual and reproductive health, women’s rights, mental health and psycho-social support, child protection and safety against sexual and gender-based violence.
Giving Back In Ho Chi Minh City
Meals on wheels help the needy
Vietnam office staff recently provided support to ‘Help Saigon Homeless,’ a not-for-profit organisation that provides hot meals and food supplies to the marginalised. In true Vietnamese style, our staff drove across the districts and suburbs of the big city by motor cycle and donated hot food and packaged items to people in need.
The charity’s weekly scooter run involves three teams who dispatch supplies along three designated routes to ensure that aid is consistent.