DestinAsian - - CONTENTS -

un­til you’ve seen it through the eyes of a res­i­dent, which is why we asked Si­mon Ostheimer, who traded the bright lights of Bangkok for the trop­i­cal shores of Phuket three years ago, to pen our cover story about Thai­land’s most pop­u­lar hol­i­day is­land. Of course, you’ll also read about Phuket’s new­est ho­tels and beach clubs and such, but for me, it’s his anec­dotes of life on the is­land that linger on my imag­i­na­tion, par­tic­u­larly his vivid, grue­some de­pic­tion of the lo­cal Veg­e­tar­ian Fes­ti­val. An­other well-trod­den (at least by lo­cal stan­dards) tourist des­ti­na­tion fea­tured in this is­sue is Myan­mar’s Inle Lake, the mere men­tion of which should con­jure im­ages of stilted houses and leg-row­ing fish­er­men. Pic­turesque it is—just look at the im­ages cap­tured by New York-based pho­tog­ra­pher Matt Du­tile, start­ing on page 96—but there’s a more press­ing story to tell about what you don’t see: en­vi­ron­men­tal and so­cial con­cerns that could ei­ther be ame­lio­rated or ex­ac­er­bated by con­tin­ued tourism de­vel­op­ment. On the other side of the globe, Rio de Janeiro has been tack­ling is­sues of its own in the lead-up to this sum­mer’s World Cup and the 2016 Olympics (page 106). Judg­ing from the pic­tures that ac­com­pany Robert Turn­bull’s words about Brazil’s one­time cap­i­tal, the “Mar­velous City” (Ci­dade Mar­avil­hosa) cer­tainly seems to live up to its moniker, and vis­i­tors should have plenty to keep them en­ter­tained on and off the sports field. Lastly, we cel­e­brate a game of an­other sort in Ra­jasthan, with a visit to a ma­haraja-hosted polo tour­na­ment in Jodh­pur (page 114). Chukkas, camels, and clas­sic cars? Sounds like a jolly good ex­cuse for a party to me.

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