My Preferred Asian Short-Haul Holiday Destinations



Until yesterday I thought Zanzibar was the only place I hadn’t visited. I kept it on the side of the heart where only love resides. I dreamt about it. I envisioned myself walking late in the evening, alone, on its sandy beaches.

I fantasied about its turquoise blue waters, its shallow sandbars and its tiny fishing villages.

But that’s before I google Asian travel destinations and found Patong of Thailand.


Its photos were amazing. I looked at them for hours. I read about its crescent beaches lined with cafes.

Its raucous nightlife scenes.

Its famous go-go bars.

I read a review which said, Patong is a shopping paradise. It almost replaced my Dear friend Zanzibar.

Do you want to know why it didn’t?

Because in the same street where it swirled its sexy beaches, other beautiful destinations paraded their faces. Places as beautiful as the: –

The Angor Wat of Siem Reap – Cambodia

Angor Wat

Which were very nice in pictures. Its towers looked like drying/withered acacias in a Kenyan semi-arid desert – old and shrunk and rusty beautiful.

I dug its secrets from random posts.

In one, a reviewer said, Angor Wat is the biggest temple in the world and there is a God – called Vishnu who lives within. He went ahead saying that besides the temple’s religious importance, it has a rich archeological history dating to the time when Cambodian suburbs were part of a larger religious empire – 900 years ago.

His comment moved me. Written in broken Indian English. I loved it.

And a few minutes of research made it top my Asian list of short haul holiday destinations. Not for its rich historical foundation or to feel the presence of the God who dwells in it, but to confirm if indeed it is a heritage for humanity and if its walls are stronger than the antique Vasco Da Gama pillars in my own country.

The Forbidden City

The forbidden city

What good would it be if I was in Asia and didn’t stop to marvel at China’s Forbidden City? Would you consider it normal? I don’t know! But one thing which I’m certain about is, to crack my skull in self beating until I’m allowed to walk into this building where emperors lived.

I would hate me if I wasn’t a witness of the 5oo years of political and ceremonial antiquity confined in one compound.

I would hate me if I was the only Governor of the lake side city of Kisumu who hadn’t been to China. In the near future.

Bali Island

Bali Island

And if I get married, officially, in a beautiful ceremony like the recent Royal wedding, I will go to Bali Island for my honeymoon. The wedding will be beautiful. I will post it everywhere. I’m sure you’ll love the photos.

Photos of an Indonesian Island, mountainous and volcanic at peaks and forested. Surrounded by rice paddies with beaches blended in iconic coral reefs.

I will share my photos kneeling in a famous temple – the Uluwatu – in the morning and later, dancing to the cozy drums beats of the south, in the city of Kuta.

I will liter my Instagram page with photos of my yoga and meditation in southern Islands.

All when I become rich.

But I won’t be content if I don’t visit the

The Tiger Cave Temple

The tiger cave temple

to crawl its strenuous stairs to its sacred summit.

I would love to sit in a full lotus posture – across a Buddha and mediate with him.

I would love to touch the tiger paw prints in its cave walls and fly back to time. And if possible, to bow to the golden Buddha statue at the top of the temple

Wouldn’t that be fun?