Top 5 Off the Beaten Track Internship Destinations

Top 5 Off the Beaten Track Internship Destinations

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off the beaten track

If our reasons you should intern off the beaten track have you convinced, you might be wondering where to look next. To help you get started in choosing the best place for you, we’ve put together a list of the top 5 destinations for a rewarding internship outside of the popular Asian metropolises.


1. Nepal

intern in NepalThis multi-ethnic, multi-religious landlocked nation, is perhaps best known as being home to the snowy peaks of Mount Everest. Nepal’s mountainous terrain and stunning landscape have long since attracted bold adventurers from far and wide, helping the country develop a robust tourism sector. Despite this, Nepal is a very poor country whose economy relies heavily on the agricultural sector and is threatened by natural disaster. Frequent earthquakes, floods and avalanches have contributed to the underdevelopment of Nepal, where 25% of the population lives below the poverty line.

Nepal’s lack of industry causes it to be somewhat overlooked by people looking to gain professional experience abroad, but that’s not to say opportunities don’t exist. Students interested in education, social development, public health or medical care would be wise to consider this unique destination where it’s possible to gain hands-on, rewarding experience that will not only have a positive effect on your employability, but also real people’s lives. If Nepal sounds like the place for you, get in touch with Internship Nepal to discover how they can help you plan an unforgettable internship.

2. Myanmar

work in myanmarSandwiched between India and Thailand, Myanmar, or Burma as you may know it, is a unique destination shrouded in mystery. Following 50 years of brutal military rule, Myanmar opened its borders to tourists in 2012 and has since made it onto the bucket list of many a traveller. Though it’s been named as one of the fastest growing emerging economies, a quick tour of the nation’s capital, Yangon, reveals just how far behind the rest of Asia it has fallen. The effects of 5 decades worth of isolation aren’t only apparent in the country’s infrastructure; the Burmese education system is severely lagging behind the rest of the world, and the population has missed out of years-worth of knowledge.

work in a buddhist monastryAs the country looks to make up for missed time, foreign skills and expertise are welcomed. Today, internship positions in human rights, education, tourism and careers advice are available to foreigners wanting to contribute to an important period of development in a country that’s been subjected to years-worth of repression. For those looking for a truly immersive and rewarding experience, Buddhist Monastery teaching positions are available. 

3. Vietnam

work in VietnamVietnam has become an increasingly popular stop on the backpacker trail around South East Asia and a popular holiday destination for those looking for something a bit different. Though the country has enjoyed strong economic growth over the past two decades, it remains a less obvious internship destination that’s overshadowed by Asian giants China, Japan and South Korea. In light of Vietnam’s rapid economic growth and impressive transformation from one of the poorest nations in the world to a lower-middle income country, it would be a shame to miss out!  

Economic growth has laid the foundations for strong finance and technology sectors and turned heads around the world. Career boosting opportunities in these fields are readily available to forward-thinking students who want to get a taste of life in the up and coming cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh. Despite promising signs of development, life is very different for those in rural areas. Outside of the cities, foreign interns can gain rewarding experience teaching the next generation the new lingua franca, and healthcare and dental students will have the chance to make a real impact on the lives of those affected by chemicals used during the Vietnam War.

4. Cambodia

work in cambodiaSince the end of the brutal Khmer Rouge reign in 1979, Cambodia has been playing a game of economic catch up with its South East Asian neighbours. This period saw the execution of the educated classes and the destruction of all existing infrastructure, leaving the nation to completely rebuild. Over 1.7 million Cambodians lost their lives during the genocide, and today over 50% of the population is under 25. While the country is making an admirable recovery from such devastation, many sectors remain underdeveloped and in need of foreign help and expertise, which is warmly welcomed by the friendly Cambodian people.

Interns in Cambodia will get to contribute towards building a better, stronger Cambodia for the future and help propel the nation into the next phase of development. Internships are available across several different sectors, the main ones being public health, teaching, community development and youth leadership, and orphan care. Working alongside people that have been affected by such devastation will be an emotional yet rewarding experience that is sure to leave its mark on both you and them.


5. Malaysia

work in Malaysia

You might be wondering why Malaysia has made it onto our list given that it’s one of the top 5 internship destinations in Asia. While it’s true that many students flock to Kuala Lumpur to intern, few look beyond this financial and commercial hub for alternative internship opportunities. Outside the city, much of the country is underdeveloped and without access to quality education, healthcare or even running water. As Malaysia strives to achieve its goal of becoming a first-world country, the need for help in these areas is great, meaning that rewarding internship positions are available in teaching and community development.

Owing to its unique geography, Malaysia boasts a varied natural landscape and a variety of unusual internship positions, making it the perfect place for students looking to gain real experience in environmental research and protection. Here you can work alongside local communities in Borneo on rainforest conservation projects, help protect sea turtles from poaching, or conduct research on the coral reef and sea grass of one of the many beautiful Malaysian islands. All of these opportunities combine to make Malaysia an incredible destination with so much to offer, and one that should certainly not be overlooked!

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