Exploring lush, beautiful and exotic alien nations far from home need not be the sole preserve of the proud owners of bulging bank accounts. No – you don’t have to be a billionaire to dive deep into the world and the exciting and diverse plethora of countries it contains! It’s not only Dan Bilzerian who gets to live it large touring the globe.

Traveling, especially backpacking can easily be done well by those of us on a budget. When money is tight you just need to plan a little bit more thoroughly. Some destinations may need to be avoided due to their eye-watering prices and (arguably) bad value for money. Places like Dubai, Norway, and Switzerland may be better avoided if being frugal is necessary for you.

So, for all you backpackers on a budget out there who are eager to see the world despite having barren, cobweb-filled, dried-up, shriveled bank accounts, here is our BUCKiTDREAM list of 5 ideal countries for backpackers on a budget to visit. Don’t forget to put the reasonably priced regions that most appeal to you in your BUCKiTDREAM planner!

Thailand Can be Explored on a Shoestring Thailand is a large and diverse half-horseshoe with tons of beachy Koh (islands), giant swathes of exotic animal-packed jungle and star-reaching mountains. It also has a gargantuan, steaming, spicy and diesel-scented capital city in Bangkok, and a plethora of much smaller cities, towns, and villages with their own unique and exciting buzz.

Certain areas that have been almost completely given over to the tourist industry, such as parts of Phuket in the south, are relatively expensive and so best to be avoided if you are on a budget; but the vast majority of the country is extremely cheap.

Street food meals are uniformly 40 baht, or just over $1, and good accommodation can be found in most areas for between $5 and $10 per night. Sleeper trains that rumble all over the country are very cheap and will provide you with both transportation and a comfortable bed for the night. All of this makes Thailand an ideal country for backpackers on a budget. 

The Balkans is the Most Inexpensive Region of Europe Deep in southeastern Europe, the Balkans is a region comprising several relatively newly-formed nations, most of which gained their independence after the fall of Yugoslavia in the early 1990s. The area is very culturally diverse and oozing history from every pore. The countryside is mountainous and lovely, there is cheap skiing and there are numerous hot, sandy beaches on the Adriatic and Black Sea coasts.

There are also many exciting cities in this part of the world including Belgrade, Zagreb, Sofia, Skopje, and Sarajevo. Travel by rail and bus between these settlements is inexpensive and reliable. Food, drink, and accommodation all across the region are very reasonably priced, which makes The Balkans an ideal region for exploring on the cheap.

Vietnam is a Long Country That Won’t Leave you Shortchanged Vietnam is an ideal country for road tripping. It is common practice for travelers to purchase a (cheap) motorbike at one end of the country, drive it to the other end of the country and then sell it with little or no financial loss incurred. The drive between south and north Vietnam takes you through spectacular countryside, plenty of fun beach towns and resorts, and some major metropolis’ in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. The street food is excellent and cheap – a tasty fusion of Asian and French influences. You can explore Vietnam very well on a tight backpacker’s budget.

Peru’s Mountains are Far Higher Than Its Cost of Living Peru is a small South American nation with a big heart. Its rainforests sing with birdsong, its mountains are home to the most spectacular and famous Incan ruins (Machu Picchu being the most well-known) and its beaches are alive with people and sunshine. Lima is a heaving mega-city, and Cusco is a historical hotbed. Peru is cheap and very suitable for budget backpacking.

Nepal is a Stunning Value for Money Nepal is a famously good location for budget backpacking. It is a small Himalayan nation with a lot of cool stuff crammed into it. Mount Everest is its most iconic attraction, but it is also home to many temples and delightful lower-lying hiking locations. Kathmandu is a bustling city of over one million inhabitants, and it’s also a bit of a backpackers Mecca, so it’s easy to meet fellow travelers and have some cheap fun!

That was our BUCKiTDREAM list of 5 ideal countries for backpackers on a budget. Whether you are saving money on a Thai sleeper train, partying for a pittance in the Balkans, or munching dirt-cheap bánh mì in Vietnam, don’t forget to share your budget backpacking experiences on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and add these epic spots to your ultimate travel bucket list!