Southeast Asia is one of the dream destinations for tourists and visitors all over the globe. Many countries in Southeast Asia offer picturesque, intriguing, and inspiring landscapes coupled with unique, fascinating cultures to explore. Each country in Southeast Asia is blessed with some fantastic, oddest terrains, and attractions when you visit these countries. You will also get a chance to uncover amazing facts in these countries. Even though these countries comprise of absurd and weirdness, the beauty of these fascinating destinations steal the limelight and shine brightly through. We have listed some of the surprising facts to uncover surprising facts about Southeast Asian countries.
- The Hanging Coffins in the Philippines
Well, this is weird and absurd, but the Filipinos are always known for being coy. And mind you this is one of the bizarre yet popular attractions in this quiet, charming town of Sagada. Placed in the Cordillera region of North Luzon in the Philippines, blessed with fascinating vistas of the UNESCO World Heritage rice terraces. Tourists and guests wander in the narrow pathways comprising of Banaue and Batad, before heading to the town of Sagada for some peace and tranquility. One will have to maneuver through the Echo Valley trees and foliage before browsing through these massive rocks that have hanging coffins.
- Welcome to the first night zoo in the world
Well, the Singapore’s Night Safari is one of the most popular cultural attractions in Singapore offering a nocturnal experience like never before. The world’s first-night zoo spread over an incredible area of 36 hectares was launched in 1994. It is home to over 1,000 species of animals and birds. The 40-minute tram ride during the night offers an overview of the main attractions of the park while browsing through the animals in their naturalistic nighttime. Meander along the four interlinked walking trails in the park for a fabulous experience.
- Rich cultural history
Europe highly influences most of the influences in the culture in the region due to the predate Europe colonization in the last century. Many great civilizations like the Malays and the Khmers have flourished in this region. Strong Islamic influences were growing in the region till the arrival of the European powers with Thailand being the only country that not been colonized. The strategic location of many Southeast Asia countries like Japan, India, and Singapore places them between major international shipping routes. The main reason why many countries in the region were part of the World War II.
- Population in Southeast Asia
There is an uneven distribution of the population across various regions of Southeast Asia. There is a high density of the population preferring the lowland areas. Majority of the population still survive in small agrarian villages. The top hotspot cities in Southeast Asia are Singapore, Bangkok, Jakarta, Manila, Ho Chi Minh City. The cultures of these countries are very diverse in culture, history, religion, and ethnic compositions.
- An archipelago of many islands
Southeast Asia comprises of more than 20,000 beautiful islands. The mainland of Singapore nestled amidst 63 offshore islands. Indonesia is a combination of 13,677 islands. It will be impossible to cover all these islands in one holiday, but a selective group of islands can offer you a wonderful experience. All these different islands offer something unique to explore. No matter what your age, background, or race is, there is something in store for you across all seasons of the year.
- Rice is the staple food in the region
Southeast Asia rice farmers have been planting new species of high-quality rice for the past 20 years. The warm and humid climate is conducive to the growth of rice crops and has led to Rice being one of the staple foods in the region. Many countries like Indonesia have pioneering modern and intensive rice-planting machinery. Rice plantation is one of the driving factors to the development of Indonesia.
- Buddhism is a major religion practiced in the region
Buddhism constitutes the largest part of the population of Southeast Asia. Approximately 93% of the Thai and Cambodia population practice Buddhism. 36% of the Japanese population and 9% of the Nepalese population also practice Buddhism. Countries like Bhutan, Laos, Sri Lanka, and Burma also practice Buddhism. Buddhism has a long and rich history in Southeast Asia. Other major religions followed in the region are Islam, Hinduism, Roman Catholicism, and Confucianism.
- Thailand has no common surnames
Many countries in Southeast Asia have common surnames, but Thailand is one of the few destinations in the world that have no common Thai surnames. Surnames were introduced to the Thai culture only post the 1913 Surname Act. This act states that only one family in Thailand has the right to use any given surname. People who share the same surname should be related to each other. Hence, it is sporadic that two people in Thailand would share the full name.
- The city of artificial waterfalls
Well, this is no surprise, Singapore has transformed into a modern destination in the world since the past decade or so. There is an array of artificial waterfalls in Singapore that is vying for the attention of the tourists and guests. The 30-meter high artificial waterfall at the Jurong Bird Park in 1971 is the first and the tallest one in an aviary in Singapore according to the Wildlife Reserves Singapore. That’s not all; it also houses the world’s tallest indoor waterfall, the Cloud Forest at the Gardens by the Bay drops from a height of 35 meters. There is even taller indoor waterfall under construction at the Changi Airport expected to be completed by 2018 and would be 40 meters tall.
- Southeast Asian countries are named as little tigers
Major powerhouses like Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines are known as Little Tigers due to their fast-growing economies and industrial enterprise status. The major drivers fueling this growth are availability of cheap labor and major export of manufactured goods like electronics and clothing.