I spent a good amount of time running around Asia when I was twenty one. I studied abroad in Beijing for three and a half months, then headed south to do the classic South East Asia loop. I, of course, took a TON of photos while traveling. How could I not? Asia is so photogenic. I may not be a world class photographer, and have a unique artistic vision, but here are my twenty favorite photos from Asia (in no particular order):
1. Great Wall of China at Jin Shan Ling. The Jin Shan Ling section of the Great Wall is not visited very often, since it isn’t preserved like the other sections. it is crumbling in some sections, but that is why i love it! It reminds you of how truly ancient the wall is.
2. Snow on Lanterns in Jing Shan Park. It doesn’t snow that often in Beijing. The city gets very cold in the winter, but it is very dry, making snow a rarity. It started snowing while I was walking around Jing Shan park, and I just really loved the way the snow fell on these bright red lanterns, decorating the park for Chinese New Year.
3. Labrang Monks Praying. I loved how their prayer involved movement. There was something special with the way the mountains fell in the back drop. To read more about my time at the Labrang Monastery, go here.
4. Monk playing with our camera. I just loved the cliché of this photo.
5. Wat Pho Stupas. I loved the colors on the stupas, and they way they all complimented each other. I love this photo so much, that it’s been my computer background for years!
6. The Bund in Shanghai. Pearl of the Orient, indeed. I loved all the shapes and colors you could see while walking along the bund.
7. The Top of Emei Shan. Emei Shan, a sacred Buddhist mountain, has these very large, and very cool statue at the very tip top. Watching the sunrise on the mountain is a sacred Buddhist tradition.
8. At the Royal Palace in Bangkok. The colors! I couldn’t get enough of this place, and this window sill was specifically one of my favorite spots.
9. Ha Long Bay in Vietnam. The karst mountains rising out of the water really is unlike any other place on earth.
10. Temple of Heaven in Beijing. China really has beautiful architecture and the Temple of Heaven is the crown jewel of all their ancient masterpieces.
11. A Monk at the Labrang Monastery. All of the colors and wall paintings here are so beautiful.
12. Elephant Kisses. I received a very wet and sloppy kiss from the elephants trunk, and Anna managed to capture my shock from the feeling of having my face suctioned by a trunk.
13. The Dragon’s Backbone in Guilin, China. The Dragon’s Backbone is a classic hike. The hills and the little villages are picturesque.
14. Mini Buddhas. The temple’s walls were lined with mini Buddhas.
15. Lake Tianchi, Urumqi, China. Lake Tianchi means “Heavenly Lake” and it obviously is just that.
16. On the roof of Angkor Wat. If you want to read about how I bribed a security guard to get up here, go here.
17. Playing Indiana Jones at Ta Prohm. Who wouldn’t want to play Indiana Jones for a day? There is no better place than Angkor.
18. Trying to find shade at noon at Angkor. 110 degrees and no shade.
19. Puppies on the side of the road. I obviously had no choice but to pull my moped over to play with them.
20. Being one with the Elephant in Chiang Mai, Thailand. There are no words.
BONUS PHOTO: Me looking like a canine hanging from a zipline harness. I was attempting to do some kind of super man pose.