Why we continue to love SE Asia


The Retire to Asia team has just returned from spending 3 weeks (Feb/Mar 2020) in Bali, Thailand & Malaysia revisiting our current business partners and forging new alliances. It therefore seemed appropriate for us to re-visit the many reasons why we continue to love SE Asia.

In no particular order:

The Food

Fresh, healthy, delicious, cheap and reflective of the many cultures who have settled and influenced the region.

SE Asia remains a food lover’s paradise.

 The Nocturnal Vibrancy Of Life (and sense of community)

Sitting at a local bar as the sun sets, SE Asia starts to wake up.

Street shopping, scooters, the laughter of children and adults permeates the airwaves as people stop to sample the food and produce carts trundling the streets.

It is not uncommon to see 2 and 3 generations of families out and about enjoying one another’s company with the sense of respect of the younger generations for their esteemed elders.

Streetscape in the backstreets of Pattaya, Thailand. One of the more popular tourist precincts in this beautiful country.

Colour, noise and a festival like atmosphere tends to greet all and sundry as the heat of the day subsides into the warm embrace of the evening.

The Friendliness Of The People

Thailand is known as the land of smiles and it is easy to see why. Other regions also mirror this happiness and relaxed way of living.

Yes, some of the bigger cities have crowded roads, streets and markets however it all seems to adjust and thrive on the general ebb and flow of life.

Whether the relaxed lifestyle is due to climate or religiously driven tolerance, the friendliness of the people is one the many charms of living and travelling in SE Asia.

Amazing Climate And Natural Beauty

There is something amazing about a tropical paradise, long open beaches, palm tree’s and thousands of islands in the various SE Asian archipelago’s.

Whether it is rainforest, temples, mountainous regions, rice paddy fields, rivers, lakes and beaches, this region is as rich and diverse in topography as it is with its food, culture and peoples.

Accessibility To All Of SE Asia To Explore

As this downloaded AirAsia flight route map highlights, basing yourself in one of the 4 main countries that we deal with (Bali, Philippines, Malaysia and Thailand) places you firmly in the middle of any incredibly diverse and vibrant region of our world.

Utilising a cheap base closer to the many places of interest is a great way to explore, live and travel during semi and full retirement. The many budget airlines in the region offer lots of affordable choices.

Cost Of Living Benefits

Backed by independent research that we use on our website, these SE Asian countries offer a 50% to 75% cheaper cost of living than our major cities of Australia. Enjoy!

Whether it is a $3 Tiger beer, $2 bowl of Pho soup, a $10-$15 three course meal for 2, a one hour Thai massage for $10, no cover charges, free parking and cheap taxi / bus transportation at less than $1 for short to medium distances, SE Asian daily living costs makes your budget go a lot further than say in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth.

Permission To Live – Life Is Not Too Over Governed

Australia seems to be increasingly layered with more onerous sets of rules governing what we can and can’t do. Ie lockout laws, greyhounds, alcohol and dog walking in public places, beaches, parking restrictions etc. Catering to the noisy minority, local, state and federal government and law enforcement authorities seem to be further restricting our lifestyle freedoms by stealth.

The amount of families that we saw happily jump on a scooter, groups picnicking on the beaches with food and alcohol, commuters jumping on and off taxi trucks for 10 baht (50 cents) unrestrained, with children and without seatbelts and doing it safely made us lament at some of the daily Australian freedoms we seem to have lost back home.

Where in Australia these days could you purchase alcohol 24/7 from a 7/11 or mini-mart and drink / smoke outside with family and friends. Should you wish to relax and do this on a beautiful beach, in a park or other public place then you can do this throughout most of SE Asia generally without hassle and restriction. Naturally the predominantly Muslim countries of Indonesia and Malaysia have certain restrictions here, but tolerance tends to govern the overzealous enforcement of rules.


Yes we maybe a little biased but as you can see from the above pictures and information, there are many reasons why we suggest you visit SE Asia to see for yourself and who knows, you too may fall in love with the region.

If that is the case, the team at Retire To Asia, is more than willing to help you make that a more semi or permanent living or retirement lifestyle option for you.

Please visit www.retiretoasia.com.au  or contact us directly on  1800 961 377 to learn more.

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