Finally, a game designed to get people outside into the real world. Avid Pokémon trainer in the early 2000s or not, curiosity has the better of all of us…. and our phones. Pokémon Go uses your phone’s GPS to detect your surroundings and make Pokémons virtually appear. For example, hang around parks and you’ll find grass-type Pokémons, or lakes for water-type Pokémons.
The free app isn’t available in Asia just yet — slowly but surely — which gives us just enough time to plan our travels in the direction of a Poké Ball (which you throw at them to catch one) because you know, wanderlust. The rarest Pokémons are rumoured to be lurking in exotic locations because Pokémons stay true to their elements. So the further you fly, the more likely you are to catch all 151 featured.
#1 The Airport, Where There’s Still WiFi
Elements: Electric and steel
There’s the possibility of missing your flight, seeing as how the game is reported to be VERY addictive. But can you think of anywhere else with plenty of electricity and steel? Oh, a shopping mall. Well, we do most of our shopping online, like this Luxe Nomad Beach Starter Kit, (or at Duty-Free). Something tells us they’ll be stuck at customs like the rest of us.
Catch ’em: Pikachu, Farfetch’d, and Scyther; the flying-type.
#2 Loire, France
It’s a scenic ride along France’s longest river, but you’ll probably miss all of it while on high-Pokémon-alert. Once you’ve lured all the water-types in, spare a bit of time to visit the grand chateaus, manicured gardens and vineyards. Otherwise, you could have just hung around swimming pools back home.
Catch ’em: Dratni and Staryu which seem to hang around ponds, lakes and other rivers. But remember you get to take a picture of all your adventures on the app, and any dingy old pond just doesn’t cut it.
#3 Mount Agung, Bali
So err, it’s an active volcano with fair warning. Although the last eruption was back in 1964, clouds of smoke and ash sometimes belch out — and the fire-type creatures love it. Mount Agung is the highest point on the island, so you’ll probably love it too. Just don’t turn it into a playground because the most important temple in Bali, Pura Besakih, is located high on the slopes.
Catch ’em: Ponyta and Charmander
#4 The 7,107 Islands in the Philippines
Elements: Water and rock
Get yourself a local SIM card so you don’t miss out on the fun. Obviously in this context, “fun” refers to walking around catching
imaginary Pokémons that drain your battery. There’s time for surfing and beers later. Of all the islands in the Philippines, take the road considerably less travelled to Ariara and Bicol where there’s amazing coral life; a consolation if you don’t manage to nab a good one.
Catch ’em: Squirtle, Staryu and Omanyte; found in wild tropical settings.
#5 Yala National Park, Sri Lanka
Elements: Grass and bug
Sri Lanka has its own version of Africa’s famous “Big Five”: Asian elephants, leopards, sloth bears, blue whales and sperm whales. For the time being, they might consider adding Pokémon-spotting as an attraction too. Yala is one of the most prided safaris in Asia with the largest leopard density in the world. Some things are worth putting down your phone for until suddenly, a wild Sandshrew appears.
Catch ’em: Tangela.