Laos assures US it will help counter Chinese assertiveness

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, right, escorted tours to vietnam and cambodia Pha Tha Luang in Vientiane, with Phouvieng Phothisane, acting director of the Vientiane Museums, far left, and Tata Keovilay, with the U.S. Embassy, Laos, Monday, Jan. 25, 2016. The massive gold stupa is the most important national symbol in Laos. Kerry is in Laos on the third leg of his latest round-the-world diplomatic mission, which will also take him escorted tours to vietnam and cambodia cambodia tours from vietnam and China. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, Pool)

VIENTIANE, Laos (AP) – The prime minister of communist Laos assured U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday that his small nation will help counter China’s assertiveness in the South China Sea.

Laos this year takes the rotating chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, with the group’s heads of state scheduled to hold a special meeting next month in Sunnylands, California, at the invitation of President Barack Obama as part of his foreign policy to reach out to the region as a counterweight escorted tours to vietnam and cambodia China.

Kerry’s visit to the landlocked nation of fewer than 7 million people was meant to pave the way for the summit, with a goal of making sure Laos holds the group together. Kerry arrived in the Laotian capital Sunday.

Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong “was very clear that he wants a unified ASEAN and he wants maritime rights protected and he wants to avoid militarization and avoid the conflict,” Kerry told reporters. “And that will develop as we go into Sunnylands, and there will be a greater, I’m sure, articulation of that unity going forward.”

ASEAN nations such as Vietnam and the Philippines have become increasingly concerned about China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea, including its construction of man-made islands and airstrips in contested areas.

How to Spend the Holidays on Cambodia?

cambodia vietnam tour packagecambodia tours from vietnam‘s infrastructure is not so well developed as compared to the neighboring vietnam cambodia tours cheap and Thailand, but cheap regular bus services, a suitable domestic airline as well as relaxed locals make the adventurous travelling – and easier as one might think. A cambodia tours from vietnam Tour Package can help you know more.

From Siem Reap

Most visitors generally start with Siem Reap by following the Angkor Wat holiday journey, which comprises ‘Temple Town’, the catalyst for exploring the empire of Khmer world heritage archaeological spots, and the nearby area. One may get to Siem Reap by bus or train from Bangkok or using a short flight from Singapore, Bangkok,Ho Chi Minh City and other capitals of asia.

Battambang city

Cambodia’s 2nd largest city is Riverside Battambang although it feels same as a country town. Most tourists are here to hurtle on the “bamboo ‘train” through the through the rice fields, known as a norryin Khmer.

It is a wooden frame concealed with bamboo slats and powered by an engine of motorbike that runs on a railway of single-track built in the 1920s by the French. They are fun, generally its worth to spend some days taking in the city’s arts and architecture.

Islands and Beaches

Sleepy south coast of cambodia tours from vietnam is skirted by primeval sandy beaches shaded by casuarinas and coconut palms, while there are supremely undeveloped islands off shores. Some tourists appreciates Angkor Wat Tour Package.

Rivers, mountains and forests

The cooler provinces of Mondulkiri and Ratanakiri of east are inland to lazy rivers, rolling hills, rubber plantations, impressive waterfalls, endangered wildlife and forested mountains.Cambodia Vacation is the first choice of people who love to discover the world.

Kompong Cham and Kratie

Kompong Cham, The provincial capital is on the 75 miles of Phnom Penh towards northeast on the Mekong, is a comfortable bus ride from the capital. It crafts for a riverside in walk easy stop, over a bamboo bridgea bike ride to a sunset cruise or KohPaen island. Generally a Cambodia Travel Tour can help one to see most places.

Ban Lung and Stung Treng

By bus it takes about Two and a half hours from Kratie, Stung Treng is an additional laidback town of riverside that makes a great base for seeing the dolphins those are Irrawaddy from the PreahRumkel and O’Svay villages, where wetlands are known for birdlife.

Two and half hours further away by bus, Ban Lung is located that is a base for several activities, including mountain biking, kayaking, trekking in the national park of Virachey.

outcoors vietnam and cambodia tour packages

Let start with the basics of vietnam and cambodia tour packages as in such trips are better to get started from the Northern Country which is more popular in terms of flights deals and many tourist from Australia and USA will land first into Hanoi, however, Starting your holiday from Hanoi to spend a few days exploring its charming lakes, Buddhist sanctuaries, Temples and the Pagoda’s, Palaces and numerous museums that are dotted around the beautiful Hanoi, the next step should be at least a two days to explore a magnificent UNESCO heritage site that has been recognized as a natural wonder, the Halong bay tours are coming in different class and style, there are more than 100’s of cruises, boat and traditional junk that leading the explorers through this magnificent jungle karst bay, the other destination in the northern loop of the country should be Sapa, this is a very famous part of Vietnam known for its gigantic but serene lush valleys that is home to the different ethnic minorities that are living across the Sapa Valley, there are several activities such as trekking in different level, home-stay with local peoples, visiting hamlets and participate in the daily life while visiting the colorful markets.

The next destinations according to your time-frame and interest would be definitely the central highlights of Vietnam, in such you must flight from Hanoi to Da Nang and spend a few days in the central area, Da Nang has become among the most renowned beach holiday to Vietnam with its own class and standard of hospitality as well as several world class luxury beach resorts. Hue and Hoi An are two ancient peace of Vietnam that should not be missed at all, from my point of View and according to TripAdvisor readers almost 14 out of 20 tourist will visit those two ancient cities, so, planning and staying in the central Vietnam should be well considered.

Let not forget that Vietnam has a long coastline and in such travelers might find it very interesting, Nha Trang and Phu Quoc Island as well as Mui Ne are among the most popular beach destinations in Vietnam. In Nha Trang, there are more facilities and more luxurious compare to other beach destinations in the country. Once in Nha Trang, you could expect a luxury vietnam cambodia tour package vacation packages through the countless deluxe and high end beach resorts, boat trips and diving and snorkeling are also very well organized and arranged through any hotels and or travel agencies.

Southern vietnam cambodia tour package, this is the most exciting part of any travel within Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City, or, former Saigon is one of the largest cities in Southeast Asia as the hectic life that lives there is proof of this. The city represents some of the most important attractions in Vietnam, explore the central Saigon and visit the basilica Cathedral as well as the central post office , there are also several museums and palaces that will keep you busy for a few days stay in the biggest metropolis of Vietnam. However, when visiting Saigon, you will feel the Vietnamese tradition, gastronomy, architecture, etc that is well mixed with the French colonial style in the old days. When traveling to Ho Chi Minh you will be surprise with the mix of architectural styles that you will see, the typical curved roofs of the region coexist with the communist practices and geometric constructions.
Mekong Delta, the most beautiful part of the Indochina will surely capture your eyes and soul, life is on through the waterways and nothing better than spending a few days on the luxury Mekong river cruise , the most popular and well organized waterways between Vietnam and Cambodia is to cross the border by speedboat or cruise. Furthermore, the tours allow you to experience the most famous cities on the Delta such as My Tho, Ben Tre, Cai be and Cai rang with its well renowned floating markets and the Chau Doc that leading the cruise journey to Phnom Penh, in Cambodian side.

Vietnam and Cambodia Tour Packages: What to include?

Cambodia is located in Southeast Asia bordering with Thailand to the west, Laos to the north, and Vietnam to the east and the Gulf of Thailand to the south. In Phnom Penh, the capital of the kingdom, you can visit the Royal Palace, official residence of the Cambodian king. You meet some of the best venues and museums are allowed and the manicured gardens that surround it. The country’s most prominent religious monuments are Wat Phnom, Wat Lang Ka and Wat Koh Ounalom.

The remains of the Khmer empire can be seen in the temples of the city of Angkor Thom, an archaeological site dating back to 9th to the late 15th century which occupies more than 400 square kilometers. Find the pyramid of Baphuon, the Terrace of Elephants and the Leper King, Ta Prohm temple Buddhist lifted off the ground by the force of the roots of the jungle, and the Angkor Wat. This is also one of the most popular activities that one could include to the tour packages Cambodia . In addition, Siem Reap is situated a few kilometers from Angkor and is the ideal place to stay while visiting the temples instead and there are few excursions that could be arranged as a day trip from Siem Reap in such I can recommend Tonle Sap and floating villages on boat trip.

Most popular Vietnam and Cambodia tour packages

Talking about the best routes in Vietnam and Cambodia, I would suggest southern vietnam cambodia tour package and Siem Reap including cruise tours through the Mekong to the Phnom Penh, or if you have more time to explore both country in depth, then, I would suggest to start in Hanoi and explore then northern area, then flight to central city of Da Nang and visit Hue and Hoi An, then, think of Nha Trang and Southern country as well as the Mekong Delta. The Vietnam and Cambodia tour packages are much more popular then combining other Indochina destinations together, the reason should be around the flight deals between Ho Chi Minh City and Siem Reap, or the exotic waterways that offers an excellent holiday to Vietnam and Cambodia

Why The Chinese Are Obsessed With Korean Culture

Chinese tourists chat after shopping at a duty-free store on February 4, 2014 in Seoul, South Korea.
ChinaFotoPress via Getty Images)

The Chinese inbound tourists in 2013 have become the first nationality of visitors to South Korea, ahead of the Japanese, and accounted for more than 35% of total visitors. Economics and currency haven’t helped the Japanese flows-notably a weak yen has hurt-but political tensions have probably not been great either. As reported by the Chosun Ilbo, Chinese visitors now fuel the economy of resort island Jeju, and virtually all restaurants on the island now have a menu in Chinese. Regardless of yen fluctuations and political tensions (or lack of), there is probably no changing the fact that Chinese will dominate Korean tourism now.

It’s clear that Korea is to a certain extent the new Japan, the new land of the cool. Talk to Western expats in Hong Kong and ask them where they go on weekends or weeklong trips: mostly the so-called LVMC countries (Laos, Vietnam, Myanmar and cambodia tours from vietnam) as well as Thailand.

Ask Hong Kong or Chinese colleagues where they go: they will mention Tokyo, Taiwan and Singapore but by far their favorite destination is almost invariably Seoul, Korea. Why? Because it’s got what I would call the 4 Cs’: clean (streets), close (destination), cuisine (reliable) and above all it’s just cool. Cool in the sense that music, movies, soap operas, brands, the general vibe from Korea is really loved in the region. It’s not rare to see youngsters who are not Korean listening to and dressing up like K-pop singers.

When I came back from trips to Laos or Myanmar, the two recurring questions my Asian colleagues asked were: Oh, right, is it clean? Is the food safe?’ When I came back from Seoul, they just said: Cool, right?’

I have also met Chinese inhabitants of third-tier cities who learn Korean before they think about learning English.

And in late 2013-early 2014, Saint Laurent lipsticks, Burberry trench coats and Samsonite Red (the casual sub-label of the suitcase giant) bags were out of stock in Korea and some parts of China, as the products had been used as product placements in some of the greatest Korean soap opera successes, such as My Love from the Star and Reply 1994.

This Korean show is big in China.
“My Love from Another Star”

cambodia tours from vietnam a consumer point of view, if you don’t know Seoul but have been to Japan and thought the Japanese were the most spoilt consumers in terms of choice for consumer goods, think again. Not only does Korea carry all of the international brands in a broad distribution footprint, but also there are a multitude of very edgy, very relevant local Korean brands doing well.

To get the better deals on both imported and local brands, the Chinese spend mainly in the duty-free channel in airports and more importantly in downtown locations, notably in Seoul’s Lotte Department store duty-free section and at Shilla Duty Free. Regulations have made it difficult for foreign duty-free operators to develop in the duty-free market in Korea for now, although a third concession will be up for grabs in 2018 in Incheon airport.

Incheon is both the international airport that serves the capital, Seoul-the largest city in the developed world, with more than 10 million inhabitants-and also the third South Korean city in its own right, with close to 3 million people.

The duty-free market is dominated by a quasi-duopoly between Lotte Duty Free, part of the Lotte group that owns the department stores, and Hotel Shilla. In 2013, the two controlled about 80% of duty-free sales, or around KRW 5 trillion in sales (close to USD5 billion). About KRW 1.5 trillion of that was made by luxury goods alone (close to USD1.5 billion).

This means the duty-free channel alone probably represents not far from 40% of the total luxury goods market in Korea.

Why so much? For a long time, the Japanese represented the biggest clients and were big spenders. Now the Chinese dominate tourism, and they are even bigger spenders. The good thing for retailers is that the Japanese spend a lot on high-end accommodation whereas the Chinese spend less on hotels and more on retail.

Looking at Shilla’s split of sales by nationality-more than a third of sales with the Chinese-it seems that the shift from Japanese to Chinese shoppers has taken place quickly.

The substantial increase of Chinese inbound travel in Korea had led to the funniest (or you might say saddest) developments one can think of. As odd as it may sound, there is a project to develop a number of locations in downtown areas for foreigners only’. The aim is to tap into the Chinese potential, counter the opening of Chinese duty-free areas in China itself-as in China’s island Hainan (avatar Lewis Wang calls it the Chinese Hawaii’)-and answer the complaint amongst foreigners that Korean downtown duty-free locations were crowded with too many . . . Korean consumers.

Surprise comes full circle when the project includes the obligation to carry not 30% but 40% of Korean products. In other words, you please the Chinese tourists by offering more, cool Korean products but, if possible, with fewer Koreans in the store actually shopping there.

A travel law was implemented late 2013 for all tour operators, banning shopping tour vietnam and cambodia programs from charging extra and demanding tips. According to the Chosun Ilbo, Korea’s biggest travel agency, Hana Tour saw the number of Chinese tourists it handled go from 10,000 in September to 4,000 in October 2013. But selfishly, looking at the luxury shoppers, this law has not massively affected shopping on the high end.

Indeed, in a move that is a bit like raising minimum bets in Macau, monitoring group travel means you will retain more qualified’ shoppers for the sector. As long as Korean culture and corporations continue to influence consumers across the Asian region (and sometimes beyond), the duty-free market in luxury should continue to thrive. Korea is by no means an emerging market for luxury if you look at local consumption, but it is still a vibrant one.

Text and figures taken from “The Bling Dynasty: Why the Reign of Chinese Luxury Shoppers Has Only Just Begun
” by Erwan Rambourg; ISBN: 978-1-118-95029-6. Copyright 2014 by Erwan Rambourg. Reprinted with permission of Wiley.

Thai jungle seen as breeding ground for Indochinese tigers

BANGKOK (AP) – Conservationists say they have evidence that the critically endangered Indochinese tiger is breeding in a Thai jungle, giving hope for the survival of an animal whose total population may be less than 300.

Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation along with two private organizations announced Tuesday they have photographic evidence of new tiger cubs in eastern Thailand, supporting a scientific survey that confirmed the existence of the world’s second breeding population of the tigers. The other breeding ground is in the Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary in western Thailand.

The Thai agency, along with Freeland, an organization fighting human and animal trafficking, and Panthera, a wild cat conservation group, said only 221 Indochinese tigers are estimated to remain in two Asian countries, Thailand and Myanmar.

In this 2016 photo released by Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation/Freeland, a curious male tiger walks in the jungle in eastern Thailand. Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation, Freeland, an organization fighting human and animal trafficking, tour vietnam and cambodia Panthera, a wild cat conservation organization, announced Tuesday, March 28, 2017 that their investigations had photographic evidence of new tiger cubs in eastern Thailand’s jungle, signaling the existence of the world’s second breeding population of endangered Indochinese tigers. (Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation/Freeland via AP)

It is feared that tigers, which once ranged across much of Asia, are now all but extinct in southern China, cambodia vietnam tour package, Laos, tour vietnam and cambodia tour vietnam and cambodia much of Myanmar, the groups said in a joint statement. Indochinese tigers are smaller than the better-known Bengal and Siberian tigers.

“Poaching for the illegal wildlife trade stands as the gravest threat to the survival of the tiger, whose numbers in the wild have dwindled from 100,000 a century ago to 3,900 today,” it said.

The statement noted the tigers’ “remarkable resilience given wildlife poaching and illegal rosewood logging” in the eastern jungle.

“The Thai forestry department proved that with protection you can not only bring tigers back, but now the western forest complex, specifically Huai Kha Khaeng, is a global model of tiger conservation,” Alan Rabinowitz, chief executive officer of Panthera said in a video call from New York. “It is one of the best protected and best tiger areas left in the world. Thailand has shown that you can protect tigers and bring them back. They can do this now in the eastern forest complex as they’ve done in the western forest complex.”

In this 2016 photo released by Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation/Freeland, two tiger cubs investigate a rock along a forest trail as their mother walks past in the jungle in eastern Thailand. Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation, Freeland, an organization fighting human and animal trafficking, and Panthera, a wild cat conservation organization, announced Tuesday, March 28, 2017 that their investigations had photographic evidence of new tiger cubs in eastern Thailand’s jungle, signaling the existence of the world’s second breeding population of endangered Indochinese tigers. (Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation/Freeland via AP)

Welcome To Vietnam Tours

One of the most requested sights people ask for when embarking on Vietnam tours is the rural experience. Many people appreciate that Vietnam tours give them a taste of the urban life of Vietnam and the country life as well. When taking Vietnam tours in the country areas, you’ll be delighted to see people tending to their rice fields using ancient techniques, children playing alongside beloved farm animals, and the humble architecture that spots the mountainous country landscape.

Hanoi, Hue, Saigon, and Halong are some of the most popular places Vietnam can take you. The Vietnam area is so vast that many people try to cover as much ground as possible in one trip. Using a professional Vietnam cambodia tours from vietnam company ensures you’ll get the most out of your time in Vietnam without the stress of trying to be in too many places at once.

The topic is incomplete without mentioning the cuisine that Vietnam has to offer. From the urban to the rural areas of Vietnam you’ll be able to explore an exotic and palatable menu that will delight and inspire you. Vietnam is known throughout the world for its unique and tasty spin on traditional Asian cuisine, and experiencing this great food first-hand in Vietnam is something no one ever forgets.

If you want a truly rich cultural experience with your Vietnam, don’t pass over Hue. This ancient city is the old imperial capital city where you’ll find everything from rulers’ palaces to tombs, pagodas, and temples in the unique styling of Vietnamese design. Hue is a favorite place to take Vietnam tours for those who are interested in the true depth of history that Vietnam offers. In addition, Hue offers some of the most ancient and complex cuisine you’ll find anywhere in Vietnam!

If you want a few moments of quiet from the bustling Vietnamese culture when on Vietnam tours, make time to visit the Mekong Delta, Mui Ne, and Phu Quoc. These slow-paced villages will frame some of the most amazing scenery Vietnam has to offer and will entice you to take a break and simply rest for a while. Vietnam tours that focus on these special areas will ensure you get time on white sand beaches where relaxation is the main agenda. The water and beach atmosphere in Vietnam is famous throughout the world for a very good reason.

Hanoi is another popular destination for people. Hanoi is the current capital of Vietnam and is a favorite destination for all people taking Vietnam tours from around the world. Ho Chi Minh is a sight to be seen, and many people say that seeing this amazing space in person is the highlight of their vietnam cambodia tour package trip. Hanoi is another great place on Vietnam tours to experience the best cuisine and local beer that Vietnam has to offer. Hanoi is where the modern energy of Vietnam is most lively, and where you’ll get to see how vietnam cambodia tour package is evolving into the future.

Hoi An is the true souvenir destination. This creative city bustles with countless tailors, craftsmen, and artisans who work with ancient and modern Vietnamese art styles side-by-side. Vietnam is famous for clothing, and a Hoi An stop on your Vietnam tours will show you why. In just a couple of hours you can have clothing custom tailors to suit you using your own hand-selected fabrics. You can also find the biggest variety of traditional arts and crafts that Vietnam has to offer in this charming city.

Vietnam tours are the best way to experience everything Vietnam has to offer in the most inexpensive and thorough way. If you love the culture of Asia, Vietnam has to be on your list of places to experience soon.