Cute or Creepy: Top Southeast Asian Animals

Travelling around South-East Asia you get to see a bunch of mind-blowing things, from breath-taking landscapes to perspective changing culture. But as a biologist you can bet it is the local fauna that has me captivated! Imagine trudging through the dense Bornean rainforests, the air hot and humid, a chorus of wildlife buzzing all around, when a giant cloud-like butterfly glides gracefully above your head – more of a mirage than reality. It doesn’t flap its wings, instead it simply floats, levitating. After a day of hard work, you crawl into bed under your bug net, only to have a firefly rest inches from you, a tiny light in the pitch-black rainforest.
Southeast Asia is the place to be to see next-level wildlife, and today I bring to you my 10 favourite fauna friends that I made on my own travels. 
10. Old-World Porcupine (Hystricidae) Where to find: Throughout Europe, Africa and Eurasia. I met my porcupine friends when I was treking through the caves of Mulu National Park, and our guid…

AirCon Culture in Malaysia

Picture this. You've travelled for 14 hours on a plane from the UK. You have watched the last 5 years’ worth of Marvel movies back to back, you've drunk water from a sealed plastic cup and maybe, if you’re lucky, you squeezed in a couple hours sleep. And finally, you have arrived, having travelled a quarter of the way round the world and you can finally step foot on Malaysian soil.
And what’s the first thing you notice?
Oh boy, it is hot.

You start to sweat instantly, in fact there's no point worrying about sweat patches because you will be drenched within minutes no matter what you do. This is going to be a sticky couple of weeks.
And then you get into your air-conditioned taxi and forget all about it. 

Until you get out at your accommodation, and you are again met with a wall of heat. 'How do people tolerate this?' you think. You are reluctant to even pick up your bags in this heat, and you eyeball your emergency raincoat with disgust. Why would anyone willingly put o…

Kuala Lumpar Survival Guide

So if you read my last post on 'Medicine in Malaysia', you will know that I have recently spent some time travelling around South East Asia. And the first stop on my grand adventure was the vibrant city
of Kuala Lumpur. So of course that means its time to share another 'City Survival Guide', so you too can know what to do, what to see and what to avoid!

Kuala Lumpur is a sprawling, multicultural city dripping in influences from its three major populations: Malay, Chinese and Indian. If you aren't used to the bustle and heat of Asian cities then be prepared for a bit of culture shock, but compared to the likes of many other parts of South-East Asia (here's looking at you Bangkok) KL is actually pretty tame. Whatever your stance KL is a city of two faces, I'm certain everyone will find something they love and something that makes them want to grab the first flight home. So to help you avoid the rough and find the gems, here is your one stop shop on survival in…

Medicine from Malaysia... An Accupucture Annecdote

Malaysia, a beautiful country with beautiful culture - and the first destination of my post-graduation travels. Back in July I (finally!) graduated after 4 long years of study, so following in the footsteps of many a recent graduate, the time has come for me to travel the world. Thus on 9th August 2018 I hopped on a plane set for Kuala Lumpur.

15 hours later we arrived, and oooooooh wow was I in a different part of the world. Thick forests of palm trees line the sides of the road, a haze of dirt hung in the air, and the humidity filled my lungs, each breath heavy and hot.

Perhaps it was because I still had thoughts of biology exams not too far in the back of my mind, but for me one of the most fascinating differences between Malaysia and home was the attitudes towards science and medicine. Every single street had some shop selling a form of traditional Chinese medicine, and acupuncture is as common as visiting your GP. And despite my recently acquired biomedical degree, I knew next to n…