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Best & Cheapest Asian Countries To Visit

Asia has some of the best budget travel destinations in the world and for the budget backpacker, this is the ultimate cheapest Asian country to visit.

I’ve given a quick rundown of 9 more of the cheapest Asian countries to visit to begin with and the number one cheapest Asian country to visit is at the end of the article.

Let’s start with the first 10 cheapest counties in Asia.


10 Cheapest Asian Countries


Laos

Cheapest Asian country to visit, walking in hills in Laos.

Laos is undoubtedly an awesome country to visit on a budget and is part of the backpacker’s paradise of 4 countries all interlinked with each other that are great to visit, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Laos.

Laos also has some great temples in the city of Luang Prabang, which is one of the most chilled-out cities in southeast Asia to visit and hang out in, with many stunning nature trips nearby as well.

Cambodia

Cambodia is home to one of the most famous temple complexes in Asia, if not the world, Angkor Wat. If you have any interest in ancient architecture in Asia, then Cambodia is a must-visit country.

As far as the cheapest Asian country to visit goes, this is also one of the best, and apart from Angkor Wat, there is plenty of jungle activities to do and some laid back beaches in the south to relax on.

Thailand

Things to do in Lopburi Thailand.

Thailand is known as the ‘Land of the Smiles’ and for good reason, it’s one of the friendliest countries and is seriously a cheapest Asian country to visit as far as things to do there go.

There’s a reason I spent several years of my life living in Thailand (it’s also where I met my wife.)

It also has some of the best food in Asia!

Add to that some of the best islands in Asia, beaches, nightlife in Bangkok, plenty of historic temples in the ancient old city of Chiang Mai, and hill-tribe hiking in the north where you can also stay in chilled backpacker hangouts like the village of Pai.

I have written many guides to Thailand but the one I will recommend here is my guide to the city of Lopburi which is where I lived for 2 years.

Kyrgyzstan

Cheapest Asian country to visit, man on horse with an eagle.

Ah, Kyrgyzstan! One of my favourite countries in the world. Friendly people. epic mountains and some of the best hikes in Asia, along with different cultures all sharing this small country together.

The best experience I had in the country was attending the World Nomad Games on 2 occasions, once in 2014 and the other in 2016, where nomadic tribes from around the world came to compete in ancient nomadic sports.

Indonesia

Tana Toraja, Sulawesi.

Having spent the best part of a year on different trips in Indonesia exploring many places, I can easily say that Indonesia is one of the best budget-friendly countries in Asia to travel to and also one of the most fascinating.

From great hiking and tribal adventures in Papua to ancient rituals in Tana Toraja in Sulawesi, and beach time relaxing in many areas, it’s the ultimate destination for backpackers.

Malaysia

Cameron Highlands attractions valley tea.

Many travellers just visit Peninsula Malaysia as it’s easy to get to between Thailand and Singapore or as a jumping-off point to the Indonesian Island of Sumatra. But Malaysia has some of the best adventures to offer in Asia on the Malaysian part of Borneo

The Cameron Highlands are a top choice for backpackers on Peninsula Malaysia for hiking and tea plantations to chill out in.

The one problem with being a cheapest Asian country to visit is that if you do go to the Borneo part and do some of the best activities there, then it will add up to your budget, such as flying to the Kelabit Highlands.

Sri Lanka

Sunset in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka is like a mini version of India and maybe a little easier for travelling, and not just for the obvious reason of being a smaller country than India, but also because it has a more relaxed vibe to it (read: less hassle.)

Backpacking in Sri Lanka is one of the best destinations in Asia for backpackers as it has so much to offer for its relatively small size.

You have epic surfer beaches, hills, mountains, wildlife safaris, ancient temples, and much more. It’s also one of the cheapest places in Asia to visit.

Vietnam

Hue or Hoi An. Palace in Hue.

Vietnam completes the ‘Golden Circuit’ of Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam. These four countries are a backpacker’s haven.

Vietnam is one of the most fascinating countries to visit in Asia and offers up everything from ancient historical cities, beach hangouts, and nightlife in Ho Chi Minh City, with lots of jungle and nature activities as well.

Two of my favourite cities in Vietnam are Hue and Hoi An.

Nepal

Nepal is one of the ultimate destinations in Asia for those seeking mountain thrills. I visited in 2001, and out of all the countries in Asia to visit, this is one of the best, by far.

It’s cheap to travel and as the main activity to do there is mountain trekking in the Himalayas, it won’t cost you much either, as long as you trek alone and not with an organised tour.

Kathmandu city has some awesome historical places to visit as well and the south has Chitwan National Park where you can adventure into the jungle and seek out wild elephants as well as crocodiles by the river, and more.

Pakistan

Backpacking in Pakistan.

Ok, Pakistan may not be the cheapest Asian country to visit overall, but it certainly is cheap if you get away from the cities and head into the mountains of the north where epic mountains await and friendly tribes welcome you to stay.

I’m a bit biased on this one, having lived for 3 years in Pakistan and exploring all over the country. It’s one of the best countries in Asia for mountain adventures, and off-the-beaten-path for many backpackers.

Read my guides to Pakistan.


Cheapest Asian Country To Visit

And the cheapest Asian country to visit is…

India!

Train in India.

Yes, although there are plenty of budget-friendly countries in Asia to visit, India really is the best bang-for-your-buck destination out there.

When I spent several months backpacking in India I managed to travel very cheaply and yet had a great time and saw and did many things.

India just has so many experiences to have, from epic mountain hiking in the Himalayas in the north, the historic desert cities of Rajasthan state, mind-boggling big cities like Mumbai, ancient places like Varanasi on the holy Ganges River, to relaxing on the beaches of Goa and Kerala.


Go Budget Backpacking In Asia

Asia is a backpacker’s paradise and if you’re on a tight budget, then any of the countries listed here will be excellent places to visit.

For an overview of budget travel around the world take a look at the 25 cheapest countries to travel to.

For loads of more travel in Asia, have a read of my guides to Asia.


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