Breathtaking landscapes, new cultures, unknown food, temples, metropolises… The largest continent on earth has all this and much more to offer. Especially Southeast Asia has become a super popular travel destination in recent years – especially for backpackers. In the following, we have compiled our top 5 accommodations in the classic Southeast Asia backpacking round trip countries.
Here you will find countless other accommodations that are not only really cool, but also contribute socially or ecologically..
The Life Development Center in Thailand
Your trip starts in Thailand and you want to stay authentic and with locals? Then head to Chiang Mai, because this is where the Life Development Center is located. The non-profit organization has an organic farm and various centers to develop and educate people. You can choose between a single or shared room, which are located in small wooden huts in the middle of the greenery. Your food is completely included and comes from the farm itself, which you can also have shown to you. Your hosts also offer guided tours of the city for you, as well as transportation to various temples, hot springs or waterfalls nearby.
You will definitely get in touch with the locals and get to know life in Thailand from a completely different perspective. In addition, your overnight stay contributes to the support of local communities; because that is the goal of the Life Development Center.
XonPhao in Laos
Continue to Laos, the only landlocked country in Southeast Asia. In Vietinane, the capital of Laos, you will find your accommodation. You can rent a single room, but double and shared rooms are also available. Breakfast is included and for a small extra charge you can also get lunch and dinner from the accommodation. If you feel like it, you can join the yoga or jogging sessions in the morning. Your hosts also offer you to learn more about the local cuisine and go fishing and prepare meals together with them. You can’t get any closer to the life of the locals, can you?
With your overnight stay there, you finance a project which is concerned with improving the quality of life of people with disabilities. There is a training center and workplaces to teach disabled people practical life skills so that they can earn their own living in the long run. In addition, the organization acts as a network to empower people with disabilities and inform them of their rights.
Pepy Empowering Youth in Cambodia
Next stop: Siem Reap. In the middle of the capital of Cambodia is the organization that works for a stronger and more educated youth in their own province. And lucky for you, there’s a place to stay there – at a great price and perfectly connected. From there, you can be in one of the food markets, cafes, or out in nature in no time. You can also rent a bike and explore the temples and lakes nearby – or just sit with the locals and have fun.
Young people from lower social classes and without much financial means are given the chance to be prepared for a better future academically, technically and with professional training. Because the employees often come from similar backgrounds themselves, the young people accept the help much better and faster. They are more motivated to further their own education and perhaps go to university, so that they can then realize their dreams in the long term. And all of this is further encouraged by your overnight stay there, so that the project can support itself financially in the long term.
Nhà Yên in Vietnam
Close to the coast, you can rent a room from $13 per night at this accommodation near the coastal town of Hoi An. The authentic rooms have a wooden look and are perfect if you want to recover from a day in the city and the markets or on the beach. From there, you can quickly reach various towns and villages where bamboo mats are woven or rice paper or ceramics are made.
Your overnight stay there finances an organization that gives people the opportunity to read and exchange books. In addition, painting, craft and recycling courses are offered there. The goal is to create space for people to learn together and from each other, and to create things without media and digitality. In addition to these activities, the organization’s employees offer “Village Cleanings” to rid the environment of the ever-increasing amount of plastic.
Astungkara Way in Indonesia
Before heading back home, we make a detour to Indonesia. The natural paradise with its beautiful white beaches, volcanoes and a great diversity of species and different religions and peoples is definitely worth a trip. In Denpasar, a city in the south of the island of Bali is your great accommodation. There you will stay in wooden and bamboo huts, built on the edge of rice fields and a large vegetable garden. Each house has two floors with its own balcony, kitchen, bathroom and bedroom.
Your overnight stay there funds agricultural entrepreneurship scholarships for young Balinese. In addition, the project is currently setting up a market for high quality farmed and cultivated rice and sharing revenue from regenerative tourism with local farmers. The goal of all these approaches is a more sustainable and regenerative agriculture in Bali.
If you are now on fire for a trip to Southeast Asia, that’s completely normal – we have wanderlust as well! If you make cool experiences during your trip and in the socialbnb’s on site, you are welcome to write a small travelogue – it will be published here on the blog if you want. We are also always happy to receive your travel photos which we can share with our community on Instagram!
Here you can find a few suggestions with our cheapest socialbnb’s – if your wallet is small, but you still want to travel sustainable and with an impact.