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Southeast Asia's Best Countries in Heritage Ranked
SOCIO-CULTURE Beyond

Southeast Asia's Best Countries in Heritage Ranked

When it comes to assessing a country's global contribution, it's often the nation's distinctive traditions that come to mind, as opposed to its economic prowess or technological advances. Remnants of a nation’s historical struggles and accomplishments can become almost synonymous with the country’s name, defining the nation’s values and appeal to others around the world. In this way, a country’s past continues to define its present and future. Top countries in the Best Countries  Heritage Sub-ranking are those most readily associated with a unique identity.

World Best Countries Ranking Heritage Category Was Based On Four Sub Ranking Elements, Which Are Equally Weighted Average.

  1. Culturally accessible
  2. Has a rich history
  3. Has good food and
  4. Many cultural attractions

European countries dominate the Top 5, with Italy tops the ranking, followed by Spain, Greece, and France. Mexico trails at #5  as the highest-ranked non-european countries. 

What about Southeast Asia? Here's the rank :

  1. Thailand  (global rank #8)
The Grand Palace, Bangkok | unsplash.com
The Grand Palace, Bangkok | unsplash.com

Thailand, which translates to “land of the free,” is the only Southeast Asian nation that did not encounter European colonization. Located just above the equator, the nation is wedged into the Indochina peninsula with neighbors Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia and has an arm that extends out to Malaysia.

2.  Vietnam (#26)

Food vendor in Hanoi | unsplash.com
Food vendor in Hanoi | unsplash.com

Curving along the eastern edge of the Indochina Peninsula, Vietnam shares long stretches of its borders with Cambodia, Laos and the South China Sea. Occupied by the French until 1954, a communist state emerged in 1975 after the People’s Army of the north and Viet Cong guerilla fighters defeated the anti-communist south. The bitter war garnered international attention and participation, especially from the United States, at a critical juncture in the Cold War era in which communism was gaining ground on the global stage. “Doi moi” economic policy reforms beginning in 1986 have helped The Socialist Republic of Vietnam transition to a more modern, competitive nation.

3.  Indonesia (#30)

Reog dance, East Java | unsplash.com
Reog dance, East Java | unsplash.com

Made up of a chain of thousands of islands between Asia and Australia, Indonesia is the world's largest archipelagic state and the world’s biggest Muslim-majority nation. Indonesia’s people are diverse, speaking more than 300 languages and ranging from cosmopolitan urbanites to rural villagers. There are hundreds of volcanoes in Indonesia, the most famous of which is Krakatoa, whose explosion in 1883 was one of the most catastrophic in history. Hindu-Buddhist and Muslim kingdoms existed before the arrival of the Dutch, who colonized the archipelago but ceded independence to the country after an occasionally violent struggle in 1949.

4. Singapore (#32)

Singapore Harmony Culture Dance | raraproductuons.com
Singapore Harmony Culture Dance | raraproductuons.com

Founded as a British trading colony in the 19th century, Singapore is a bustling metropolis in Southeast Asia and home to one of the world’s busiest ports. The vast majority of its 5.7 million citizens live on the eponymous capital island, and dozens of surrounding islands complete the city state. Gross domestic product per capita is high and unemployment is low, making Singapore one of the wealthiest nations in the world.

5. Malaysia (#36)

Nasi Kerabu, Kelantan | Wikipedia
Nasi Kerabu, Kelantan | Wikipedia

Located in two separate regions in the South China Sea, Malaysia is a small country with a fast-growing economy. Once a British colony, the country is home to about 29 million people, many of whom live in or near the capital city of Kuala Lumpur. Located on an ocean trade route, Malaysia came under the influence of China, India, the Middle East and eventually Great Britain in the late 18th century. The Federation of Malaysia was formed in 1948 by the unification of former British-ruled territories along the Malay Peninsula. In 1963, the former British colonies of Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak, joined the Federation, thereafter known simply as Malaysia.

6. Philippines

Philippine Visayan Festivals: Dinagyang | Adeline's Catering
Philippine Visayan Festivals: Dinagyang | Adeline's Catering

Thousands of islands in the South China Sea comprise the tropical nation of the Philippines. The land of beautiful beaches and abundant biodiversity has long been plagued by political instability, but its resilient economy continues to improve and push ahead of others in the region. The Republic of the Philippines claimed independence from Japan after World War II in 1946 with assistance from the United States, which had exercised colonial rule over the nation earlier in the century. American influence and ties remain prevalent in the Filipino society, although the relationship has become more strained since the 2016 election of President Rodrigo Duterte.

7. Myanmar (#62)

Myanmar traditional dress | fashionmyanmar.com
Myanmar traditional dress | fashionmyanmar.com

The history of Myanmar, also known as Burma, is marked by ethnic violence and widespread impoverishment as it has convulsed between democratic freedom and brutal authoritarian rule. The country, a medium-sized nation in Southeast Asia that borders Bangladesh, India, China, Laos and Thailand, is populated by several ethnic groups, with the Burmese dominating the population, politics, economy and society.

 The 2018 Best Countries rankings were recorded with global marketing communications company Y&R's brand strategy firm, BAV Consulting, and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania partnerships. The whole survey was performed on more than 21,000 people from four continents. All over the best 80 countries with specific attributes. Those attributes are Heritage (3.17%), Movers (10%), OpenForBusiness (11.99%), Adventure (3.24%), Citizenship (16.95%), Cultural Influence (12.93%), Entrepreneurship (17.42%), Power (7.42%) and Quality Of Life (16.89%).

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