Most geopolitical experts contend that with China’s meteoric rise as a leading economy and exporter, Western Europe and North America will eventually lose their primacy as the world’s cultural and economic leaders to countries located in Asia, the world’s largest continent.
East Asian countries such as Japan, South Korea, China, Singapore, and Taiwan among many others, are leading the way when it comes to technological advancement and economic activity and other countries such as India, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines seem to be following close behind. What this means is more people from other parts of the world will have to make the move to an Asian country in order to be at the cutting-edge of their field, or simply to find the type of employment that will be impossible to have back at home.
If you’ve never experienced Asian culture firsthand, you’re definitely in for a treat – or perhaps the shock of your life. Chances are you will experience plenty of both. With the exception of the leading economies, much of the continent is still in transition from a time where economies and values were primarily agrarian and traditional by nature.
Even in developed Asian countries, these ties are still apparent in the present-day, in contrast to Western European and American countries that experienced their own industrial revolutions almost 100 years prior. Combined with the fact that these countries also have their own unique cultures, you will be able to do things that are simply not possible in your home country.
Here are some of the things you should try if you find yourself working and living in an Asian country.
Unusual local delicacies
Every single Asian country has delicacies that would be unheard of in the West. From live frog sashimi in Japan to sheep penis in China, all the way to the dreaded balut in the Philippines, there are plenty of foods that you probably haven’t tried that the locals love. If you’re up for it, you should definitely give your host country’s delicacies a try.
A motorbike tour
While you can take motorbike tours elsewhere, motorbike rentals tend to be cheaper and much less of a hassle in most Asian countries. Compared to a car rental, a motorbike can help you be more in touch with the surroundings you’re traveling in, making you more attuned to the sights, smells, and sounds of your host country. Just be sure to use a helmet.
Make friends with the locals
It’s a terrible fact of life that most expats don’t make an extra effort to be friends with locals, either due to the lack of any opportunities, or the culture shock many expats suffer after a few months of living in their host country. However, having a group of local friends can go a long way into helping you maintain your mental health while allowing you a wider perspective into an exciting period in our planet’s ongoing history.
Alternative and traditional medicine
If you have a local friend you can trust, have them take you to a traditional medicine store or ask them to hook you up with someone in local alternative health practices that may not be familiar in your home country. In most Asian countries, these local practices often complement more familiar Western medicine, and are often encouraged by doctors as well. While not all alternative medicine may be effective, a lot of these practices have later gained recognition as legitimate medicine in the West.
In any case, we recommend that you get yourself international health insurance from Now Health International or some other firm that specializes in insurance coverage for foreign workers in Asian countries.
Explore the world’s biodiversity
Most Asian countries are still host to incredible biodiversity, and this is especially true in Southeast Asia. As a matter of fact, the seas in the region boast a wider diversity of species than the Amazon Rainforest. The different forests of the area are similarly packed with a wonderful array of plant and animal life as well, and you won’t find them anywhere else in the world.
As these countries develop, it’s entirely possible that the flora and fauna of the region will suffer as well, similar to what happened to the native animals of Europe and North America. Exploring the biodiversity of Asia through accredited groups and agencies will also help conserve it for future generations as well.