Memos from Asia

5 Asian Countries You May Not Have Heard of

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There are over 190 countries in the world recognized by the United Nations. The Asian map is very diverse in terms of development and culture. The economic giants like China, Japan, and India are located in this region.

However, there are several Asian countries that the majority of people in the world never heard of. Notably, the article does not greatly pay attention to the GDP rates, population, or size of the country, instead, you will become acquainted with the interesting information and facts.


The Sultan Omar Ali Saifudding Mosque, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei, Southeast Asia

Brunei is a small country located in the northeast of Malaysia. The country is one of the wealthiest economies in SouthEast Asia thanks to large oil and natural gas resources. There are many interesting facts about Brunei mentioned below.

The formal residence of Brunei’s Sultan is the largest residential area in the world. The palace has 1,788 rooms, 257 bathrooms, a mosque, a garage with available space for 110 automobiles, 5 swimming pools, banquet halls, and so forth. It is also involved in the Guinness World Records.

The Sultan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah is the longest-reigning current monarch after Queen Elizabeth II of Britain. He ascended the throne in 1967.

Oil and natural gas account for 90% of the country’s economy.

Brunei is the first Asian country that banned shark finning. The global organizations applauded the move in 2013. (World Atlas).

Timor Leste

tropical exotic paradise coastline beach of dili in east timor at dawn

Timor Leste (formerly East Timor) is another southeastern country of Asia. The country shares borders with Indonesia to the north and Australia to the south.

The official currency is US dollars. However, the coins of the country are minted in Portugal.

Portugal occupied the country for centuries until 1975. Around 4 months later, when Portugal withdrew from the country, Timor Leste was invaded by Indonesia until 1999.

The main food of inhabitants is corn, not rice like in many other southeast Asian countries. (Travelling East).


a war monument on Lang Xang Avenue in the centre of Vientiane, Laos.

Laos is a small, fascinating but least known country by tourists. The country has an interesting history, spectacular scenery, and welcoming residents. Here are the things you should know about Laos:

The most heavily bombed place by US forces and its allies is Laos. Over 2 million tons of bombs were dropped by the US during the Vietnam war. Interestingly, around 30% of the bombs did not explode, making the land of the country unusable for agriculture and farming.

Laos is one of the 5 “communist” countries in the world. The official name of the country is The Lao People’s Democratic Republic.

Laos is the only landlocked country of Southeast Asia with the largest waterfall. The Khone Phapheng is a waterfall with the highest point of 21 meters. It is also known as “The Niagara of the East”. (12GO).


Golden takin on a rock, symbol of Bhutan

Bhutan is located in Eastern Himalayas. It is the country that tries to promote and preserve traditional values, clothes, and rituals. The national dress of Bhutan is mandatory to wear in most public places.

Bhutan established a ban on plastic in 1999, which failed due to the absence of alternatives. However, it is introduced again in 2019. For instance, currently, many people use homemade and woven bags.

The roads of Bhutan are very dangerous with steep curves and free-roaming animals. People drive cars very slowly. Besides, there are no traffic lights in the country.

Bhutan’s national animal is called ‘Takin”. It looks like a cow or a goat. Takin was considered as a mythological creature until discovered by Englishman. (Holidify).


View over the mountains in the Issyk Kul area in Kyrgyzstan.

Kyrgyzstan is a Central Asian country with a highly mountainous area. The country is famous for its beautiful landscapes, national games, and traditional cuisine. However, many people in the world know nothing about the state.

Except for Kyrgyzstan, almost all countries of Central Asia: Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, and even Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan are the least known in the world.

Their tourism sector is improving rapidly, so it is highly feasible that they will become among the most-visited destinations for tourists in the following decade.

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