Around the World in 80 Pairs of Shoes


May 15, 2013

Travel Contrasts: East vs West

This month’s travel link up is all about Travel Contrasts, a tricky topic but a goodie me thinks!  I’ve decided to write my travel contrasts post about East vs West after my recent visit to Asia so come and join Emma, Rebecca and our lovely guest host for the month, Zoe from Love and Limoncello.


Travel Contrasts: East vs West

How do you define East vs West?  Not an easy question so I went to the fountain of all knowledge and no not the Daily Mail website but one even better, Wikipedia!

Cultural rather than geographical in division, the boundaries of East and West are not fixed, but vary according to the criteria adopted by individuals using the term. Historically, Asian and Islamic nations have been regarded as East, while Australia, Canada, Europe, New Zealand, Latin America and the United States are regarded as West.

Travel Wish List: East vs West

When I decided to start travelling, The East never ever entered into my travel wish list; Europe i.e. The West was always in the number one spot – culture, history and gorgeous hot Italian men, seriously why would you ever want to go to the East…oh and you can buy pretty amazing shoes in Italy as well…I seriously need to marry an Italian who owns a fabulous shoe company but I digress!

The East for me was where all the dirty backpackers went on holiday for drug fuelled parties; it never ever appealed to me at all.

First Impressions: East vs West

It’s hard not to fall in love with The West instantly, especially when you’ve grown up in New Zealand where old buildings aren’t that old and the history isn’t as varied as you find in Europe.  I fell in love with Europe and the love affair has never ended.

My first impression of The East was our 3 night break in Singapore a number of years ago and it was okay, let’s just say Singapore didn’t blow my socks off.  Singapore has got the reputation of being the boring cousin of Hong Kong (and it’s pretty easy to see why).  As much as I loved Singapore, it did seem a bit sterile and a bit like having a holiday in a very very clean NHS hospital but while surrounded by orchids and pretty butterflies.  One thing we did realise on that trip was how truly fabulous the customer service is in The East; seriously if there was a competition for best service, The West wouldn’t even be welcome to attend the awards ceremony.


What’s changed: East vs West

But there’s change afoot, after our recent trip to Hong Kong and Malaysia I realised that I had discounted a whole continent due to a few backpacking stories that I’d heard and that I don’t have to follow the well trodden backpacker path.  The luxury hotels in the East are truly fantastic!

My love for the West i.e. Europe hasn’t waned and there are still many more places I would love to visit and the list forever grows (mostly thanks to bloggers going on holiday and then me seeing their blooming photos) but I’m having a quiet love affair with the East.  It’s fair to say that I’ve fallen in love so of course I’ve made myself a little Travel Wish List for The East.

My Travel Wish List for The East

These are some of the places I would love to visit in the future in The East!

Beijing, China (image credit)


Angkor Wat, Cambodia (image credit)


Fushimi Inari Shrine, Japan – (image credit)


Bagan, Myanmar (image credit)


And there are many many more including The Mekong Delta and Sapa in Vietnam, Macau and a return visit to Hong Kong to just name few!

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