Tag: Asia

Tips For Enjoying Exotic South Asian Cuisines That Are Worth Trying

There are many exotic South Asian cuisines worth trying in India. South Indian cuisine is famous all over the world for its mouthwatering dishes that are both delectable and delicious. There are countless varieties of delicious and tasty food to be tried including beef, chicken, lamb, seafood, vegetable and fruit rich dishes. In addition to this the hospitality and excellent service of the South Asian cuisines make them more tempting and appealing to a tourist’s travel palate.

There are numerous famous South Asian cuisines in India to choose from, but the most delicious and popular is the Mughlai food. It is not just one of the most delicious food variety but it is also one of the oldest. The mughlai is a type of rice cooked in a special type of oven called “mulka”. This unique method of cooking preserves the taste and the aroma of the food and this has made it a popular choice among tourists who want to try some authentic South Asian food.

There is another famous and exotic cuisine from the subcontinent of South Asia, the Teestaak cuisine. This type of cuisine originated with the people belonging to the state of Assam, which is located in India’s far east. This delicious dish is a mixture of different spices. Among these the regular ingredients include mustard seeds, red chili powder, cardamom, fennel seeds, cumin, ginger, and turmeric powder.

Another type of delicious South Asian food worth trying is the Kashmiri food. It is a mix of vegetables as well as lentils. The Kashmiri dishes are mainly vegetarian and they contain chick peas, green beans, potatoes, coriander, carrots, potatoes, onions and garlic. The taste of this exotic food depends on which variety is used. Sometimes the spices are mixed with tomato sauce or milk and then fried in coconut oil.

If you love the taste of Indian food, then you should try the delicious Pahari. This type of food is mainly vegetarian and it contains beans, rice, and grated cheese. They are cooked in coconut oil. The spices used for preparing Pahari include black pepper, cinnamon, and cardamom.

You can also try the delicious seafood delicacies from the east. You can try the eastern Indian delicacies like prawns, lobsters, shrimps, Angus cubes, and mussels. If you have never tasted these exotic foods, then you should try them. You should make sure that you buy these food from reputable restaurants. The restaurants usually deliver the food so you do not have to worry about this. There are many restaurants that serve food from east and you can choose the one that suits your taste.

Beautiful Places To Visit In South Asia

There is no shortage of amazing places to visit in South Asia. From pristine natural beauty to ancient landmarks that have stood the test of time, this magical land offers something for every traveler. Here are seven of the most beautiful places to visit in South Asia.

Taman Negara, Malaysia

This stunning rainforest is over 130 million years old, sprawling over 4,300 square kilometers in the central and northern parts of Malaysia. While at Taman Negara, you can discover a wide network of cave systems, explore the ancient Orang Asli settlements, go on a night safari, and much more. Kuala Tahan is the most popular home base when visiting this jungle paradise.

Con Dao Archipelago, Vietnam

Once a political prison, this group of gorgeous islands is both beautiful and historic at the same time. You will get a glimpse of the distinct history of these 16 islands by touring the old structures. The natural beauty includes welcoming beaches, sparkling water, and lush hills. Vietnam heroine Vo Thi Sau is also buried here with people visiting the tomb every day at midnight to pray and make offerings.

The Red Lotus Sea, Thailand

You will not believe the pictures that you get when you visit the famous Red Lotus Sea in Thailand. Located in the Udon Thani province, this lake features millions of pink lotus flowers that bloom between November and February. In addition to the stunning beauty, the lake also signifies the special meaning of the lotus flower to the Buddhist religion. This beauty will take your breath away.

Mount Kelimutu, Indonesia

The island of Flores is home to a volcano that boasts three distinct crater lakes. All of these lakes change colors as the volcanic elements transform the water. The three lakes are known as the Lake of Old People, Tiwu Ata Bpau; the Lake of Young Men and Maidens, Tiwu K’o Fi Nuwa Muri; and the Bewitched Lake, Tiwu Ata Polo. Legend has it that the colors change with the mood of the spirits that haunt the waters. 

Son Doong Cave, Vietnam

Do not miss your chance to visit the world’s largest cave. This beauty is located in Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. What is most surprising is that this cave was only first discovered in 1991. The cave is now open to the public for touring. Along the way, you will discover unique beaches and a subterranean river. The cave is also home to campsites, allowing you to immerse yourself overnight in this special corner of Vietnam.  

Borobudur, Indonesia

You cannot visit South Asia without taking in the splendor and majesty of the Buddhist temples. This complex is the world’s most comprehensive tribute to Buddha. The temple was restored in the 1970s, welcoming visitors to learn more about this way of life. You can visit the complex for a short time or make the traditional pilgrimage, carrying you over five kilometers through the jungle on your journey.

Mataking Island, Borneo, Malaysia

When you want to surround yourself with crystal waters, be sure to consider Mataking Island in Borneo. This island situated off southeastern Sabah is known for its great diving and snorkeling opportunities. Under the water, you will find sea turtles and a myriad of fish, and other marine life. Be sure to check out the underwater post office located in a sunken fishing boat. You can even mail a postcard from the sea. You can also kayak or hike through the green jungle when visiting this island oasis. 

A Path For Permanent Peace In South Asia: Is It Possible?

While there are different opinions about which countries make up South Asia, there is little debate over the region’s challenge for permanent peace. Recent wars and assorted conflicts have punctuated the historical prevalence of turmoil.

The reasons for conflicts that have befallen South Asia vary across the centuries. At the core of many of these disputes, have been differences in religion or cultural ideology. It would be easy to contend that peace in the region if ever truly realized, would be temporary at best.

With new peace initiatives on the horizon, let’s look at a brief history of conflict in South Asia and then address the potential for a path to permanent peace in an oft violence-torn part of the world.

What Constitutes South Asia?

South Asia is the southernmost part of the vast continent of Asia. There are a few geographical definitions for the region. Modern definitions of South Asia include eight countries. India is the largest of these eight, which include Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Maldives, and Pakistan.

South Asia has the largest population of five cultures. Over 98 percent of the Hindu population and nearly one-third of the world’s Muslim faith live in South Asia. There is also a vast number of Sikhs, Jains, and Zoroastrians. Over 25 million Buddhists and another 35 million Christians call South Asia their homeland.

Centuries of Conflict

Study the wars and conflicts across South Asia reveals a region plagued by turmoil across millennia. India has dozens of conflicts spread across centuries. There are rare moments of extended peace.

Many of these result from conquests in the name of religious ideology. It may seem ironic that the part of South Asia most notably in today’s news has a limited history of actual wars. Bhutan seems to be spared the tendency for strife, experiencing only Ten Great Campaigns during the latter half of the 18th century.

Nearly all the conflict in Sri Lanka has occurred from the beginning of the 20th century, with over half, including the 26-year Sri Lanka Civil War between 1983 and 2009, having occurred in the last half-century.

Likewise, conflict and turmoil in Bangladesh started with Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971. Conflicts and coups throughout the country have remained constant, the most recent a border conflict with Myanmar.

Pakistan and Afghanistan are the two countries most notably discussed because of ongoing, seemingly endless military conflict. Afghanistan has experienced four civil wars since the first official Afghan Civil War in 1928. Three of these multi-year conflicts have occurred since 1989.

Two conflicts referred to as an insurgency are ongoing in Pakistan, one in Balochistan and another in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Both insurgencies started at around the same time in 2004. It is the continued conflict in neighboring Afghanistan that has been most troubling to the region.

The War in Afghanistan has its roots in the Afghan Civil War that started in 1978. After a coup in 1973, Pakistan began to exert a persuasive yet subtle influence to trigger violence with their neighbor. The Soviet Union was a prominent player in the country, prompting a standoff with the United States.

In the early 1990s, the Taliban began to exert influence across Afghanistan. Using their fundamentalist view of Islam, the Taliban created turmoil in the country. They received military support from Pakistan and financial support from neighboring nations.

On a dark day in world history, the view of Afghanistan’s turmoil entered the world stage. The September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States triggered the most notable modern conflict in South Asia. It has produced a time in which peace has been elusive.

Is Permanent Peach Possible in South Asia?

To gain any hope of sustained peace in the region, peaceful resolutions to centuries of ideologically driven turmoil must be reached. There is hope that peace, at least compared to the violence and conflict that has plagued parts of South Asia could be attainable.

The current focus is on Afghanistan and Pakistan, but there have been limited uprisings resulting in violence in other countries as well. South Asia is a culturally diverse region. Many of the spiritual beliefs inherent to certain countries harbor extremes.

It has been these extreme viewpoints that have fostered much of the violence. As long as these factions, albeit limited in numbers, continue to exert a violent agenda, any attainment of peaceful relations will be less than stable.

South Asia has a history of being plagued by violence and war. While other parts of the world are not immune to conflict, cultural diversity has been a driving force behind many of these conflicts. This is something that is not going to change soon.

Many of the peoples in South Asia fall woefully below the global poverty line. A poverty rate that nears 85 percent of the citizens is another problem for peace. Often, the lure of any type of life better than the day-to-day sustainable living conditions attracts people to nefarious organizations.

Healing the wounds of war is only one key to the promise of peace. There should be a sustainable effort to help improve the conditions still evident, situations that are ripe for conflict. The countries that makeup South Asia have a history of violent turmoil and war.

Peace in a visible part of this region has attracted attention across the world. Can any peace attained be sustained? What the future holds for peace in South Asia will be written through progress. To make peace permanent in South Asia, progress must be realized.