7 Strange and Unique Things in Southeast Asia that You Might not Know

map of southeast asia 03

Southeast Asia is a region in the southeast Asian continent. This area includes Indochina and the Malay Peninsula and the surrounding islands. Southeast Asia is bordered by the People’s Republic of China to the north, the Pacific Ocean to the east, the Indian Ocean to the south, and the Indian Ocean, the Bay of Bengal, and the Indian subcontinent to the west. (wikipedia)

Southeast Asian countries are Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Brunei, the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Timor Leste.

Do you plan to visit one of the countries in Southeast Asia in the future? If so, maybe you need to know this 7 strange and unique facts in some of these countries.

1. Bangkok The Hottest City in the World

bangkok city hot weather
Bangkok city (agoda.com)

The World Meteorological Organization said that Bangkok, Thailand as the hottest city in the world, with an average temperature of 30 degrees Celsius.

Although there are many desert cities in the world that have higher temperatures, they usually get colder at night and winter. While Bangkok continues to warm throughout the year and never gets cold, it means you have to bring a hat while on vacation to Bangkok.

2. Prohibition of Feeding Pigeons in Singapore

dont feed pigeons in singapore city
Don’t feed pigeons in Singapore (tempo.co)

Seeing a group of pigeons, some people might not be able to stop themselves from feeding them. But, don’t do it if you are in Singapore. Feeding pigeons or other birds is prohibited in this country, and there are fines for the violation.

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According to the info, the reason for the ban, is so that these birds do not breed in that country so that it will be inconvenient for the country in cleaning their droppings. In addition, chewing gum is also banned in this country.

Bonus:  Super Duper Hero

Batman-Bin-Suparman (1)
Singaporean Batman bin Suparman

Back in 2008, a Singaporean ID card belonging to a man name Batman bin Suparman began being viral shared on social media.

Batman bin Suparman’s family appear to be originally from the Indonesia island of Java – where the name Suparman is very ccommon.

3. Free Meals for All Citizens and Foreigners

istana darul iman sultan palace of brunei darussalam
Istana Darul Iman Sultan’s palace of Brunei Darussalam (reddit.com)

There is a unique tradition in Brunei Darusalam. This small, oil-rich country, every year, precisely at the time of the Eid al-Fitr holiday, invites its people to come to the State Palace for banquets. Anyone in this country may come to the Palace, including foreigners. No invitation is needed to come.

In addition to banquets, guests also had the opportunity to see the splendor of the Sultan’s palace. This banquet lasts for three days. After eating, guests were given the opportunity to meet and shake hands with the sultan and his family.

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When returned, the guests did not return empty handed, they were given gifts in the form of cakes wrapped in beautiful boxes and holiday greetings from the sultan. You can come there many times, if you want. According to information, there are tens of thousands of people who come to the palace every day at this banquet.

4. McDonalds has Never Set Foot in Cambodia

mcdonalds never set foot in cambodia
Mcdonald’s has never set foot in Cambodia (mcdonalds.co.id)

Who would have thought, Cambodia is one of three countries that McDonalds has never touched, along with Ghana and Yemen. This country has their own version of burger restaurant, which is Lucky Burger.

5. The title “Tun”

tun Mahatir muhammad
Tun Mahathir Mohamad, the former prime minister is one of those few people who received the honorary title “Tun”  in Malaysia (dunia.rmol.id)

Tun, is the highest title in Malaysia. The title is only given by the Supreme Leader. Only Malaysians can receive this title and no more than 25 persons at one time! Mostly, the recipients of this title are those who have led
country and has many services to the country, for example the Prime Minister.

6. Steering Right, Go Right!

right hand driving wheel in myanmar and right lane
Right hand driving wheel in myanmar (polarsteps.com)

Just like any other countries in the world, cars in Southeast Asian countries use steering wheels some on the right and some on the left, and use the lane opposite to the position of the steering wheel.

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But unlike Myanamar, the position of the steering wheel in this country is on the right, but the lane used is also on the right, “right steering wheel, right lane”. However this does not apply to large cars that use the steering position on the left.

7. Squat Toilets and Clean Up Using Water

toilet sprayer
Majority of Muslim countries use water after using the bathroom (tokopedia.com)

In Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei Darussalam and countries with a majority of Muslims in general, cleaning up after using the bathroom does not use toilet paper but uses water instead, this activity is also called istinja.

So do not be surprised, if you go to these countries you do not find tissue in the bathroom, especially in the homes of local residents. In addition, the majority of people use squat toilets, not toilet seats.

However, nowadays many public facilities are starting to provide toilet seats and toilet paper, especially in places that are visited by foreign tourists, such as airports, shopping centers, tourist attractions, and others. Although today many people have switched to using the toilet seat, but they keep cleaning up using water.

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