Top 10 Must Try Drinks In South East Asia

Drinks are a delight in South East Asia and it is a tradition amongst the locals and even foreigners.

From the coffee to the buckets, you’ll definitely find something that will tickle your taste buds. Below are top 10 must-try drinks you can find in South East Asia.

1- Coconut Juice

Coconut Juice

This is by far one of the most natural drinks in can find in the world.

You know it’s the real deal when you drink straight from the coconut. If you’re looking for a way to rehydrate after the scorching heat of the sun in Asia then this is the best way to do that.

And did you know that coconut is the best source of natural electrolytes? And even more, the coconut water can be more rehydrating than water?

Well, now you know. The white liquid inside the coconut will not only quench your test but it will also help detoxify your system.

2- Sugar cane juice

Sugar Cane Juice

Extremely cheap, yet surprisingly sweet and refreshing.

Popularly called ‘Nuoc Mia’ in Vietnamese, the raw juice of a sugar cane is extracted right in front of you.

This juice is popular amongst the people of Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Cambodia. If you happen to visit any of these countries any time soon and you’re interested in trying out this delicious drink, look out for a pile of sticks and an old looking metal contraption with a powered crank handle in stalls. This is a clear sign that the stall sells the sweet sugar cane juice.

3- Vietnamese Filter Coffee

Vietnamese Filter Coffee

Are you a lover of coffee?

Then I am confident you’re going to enjoy this drink. You will see vietnamese coffee with a small cup with a metal filter covering the top like a little hat.

The thick liquid drips through, allowing you savor the distinctive aroma. This filtered coffee is best-enjoyed ice cold. You can pour the coffee over ice and mixed with condensed milk for better taste. First introduced by the French in 1957, coffee has now become a major source of income for the people of Vietnam.

4- The Bucket

The Bucket

The bucket is Sangsom or Mekong whiskey, gin or vodka, missed with M150 and a dash of fruit juice.

This is famous among backpackers, as you see the streets of south Asia lined with the notorious “bucket”.

Be careful though, as this drink can get you easily intoxicated. And don’t be fooled by vendors “Buy one get one free” slogan. However it is recommended that every backpacker tries out this drink but be careful, you can share with friends to lessen the impact.

The bucket is so famous that there’s even a bar named after it. It’s called the ‘The Bucket Bar’. You can find it in Vang Vieng, Laos.

5- Bai Hoi

Bai Hoi

This is famous amongst the people of Vietnam.

You can enjoy this local brew with your friends.

Usually, you can find this drink at bustling streets corners in Hanoi and some other cities in Vietnam. Then, sit by the roadside and enjoy a liter of Bai Hoi with friends and fellow backpackers. It doesn’t cost much too. At 10,000 VND, which is roughly about 50 cents you can get a liter.

6- Bright orange ‘orange’ juice

Bright Orange Orange Juice

You should try these luminous orange cartons when you’re hot and sweaty.

The bright orange juice is an instant dose of vitamin c to carry you through the rest of your day. They are sold for 15 baht for a small carton and 25 baht for a large carton.

7- Homemade Lao-Lao Whiskey

Homemade Lao-Lao Whiskey

Made from fermented stick rice, this is a powerful homemade whiskey found in Laos.

This alongside sacred bear Lao is the national drink of the people of Laos. And did you know that Lao actually means alcohol in English? Bet you didn’t know that. This beautiful liquor is unregulated amongst the Laos people and it has the capacity to blow your head off. So drink responsibly.

8- Cobra & Scorpion Whiskey

Cobra and Scorpion Whiskey

Addressed as the most powerful aphrodisiac, this specially made whiskey infused with a scorpion or real Cobra is not for the faint-hearted.

It peppery, spicy and at the same time, revolting. You can find bottles of the famous whiskey in Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia. Affirmed to cure various kinds of illnesses.

9- Teh Tarik

Teh Tarik

The Teh Tarik is made from black tea and condensed milk. It is the national treasure in Malaysia. You can find Malaysians sipping this beverage from a mug at any time of the day. Sellers of the Teh Tarik require the skill of a cocktelier to serve this drink as it is lifted high above the head and poured back and forth two jugs to create a thick, frothy top. The name ‘the Tarik’ means ‘pulled tea’ in Mandarin.

10- Fruit Shake

Fruit Shake

Made with pineapple, orange, mango, coconut, dragon fruit, watermelon and apple, this fruit shake is popular among South East Asian backpackers. Made separated with each fruit mentioned above or made with a combination of the fruits. And of course, a dash of condensed milk is added to give a rich taste.

This shake is always a safe and reliable option for travelers and can be found in popular spots along the South East Asian backpacker trail. Try the fruit shake on your next trip and you’ll be glad you did.


I know right now you’re mentally planning your next trip to other parts of South East Asia. You can’t wait to try out some, if not all of the delicious drinks mentioned above. Take note of this important tip though. As soon as you book your trip, the next thing on your ‘to do list’ should be to buy insurance cover as soon as possible. This is important because anything can happen before you take the trip. Buying a travel insurance won’t just cover you while you’re away, it’ll also cover you for cancellation or anything else that might go wrong before you make your trip.