Asia boasts some of the world's most stunning destinations, showcasing a culture rooted in Buddhism and Hinduism as well as delicious cuisine, untapped jungles, breathtaking temples, ancient ruins, and timeworn architectural works - among the best places to visit in Asia!
Miyako Island in Japan and Koh Samui in Thailand offer some of the world's pristine beaches. Travelers looking for cultural immersion should head to Kyoto or explore Hangzhou's West Lake, an UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site.
Lhasa, Tibet's capital and spiritual heart of the Himalayas, is an astounding city. A UNESCO World Heritage site featuring Buddhist temples, palaces, monasteries and monastera stand against an impressive mountain backdrop in Lhasa's vast valley landscape; of particular note are Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple from 7th Century AD as highlights.
Temple Plain should not be missed! Administered by UNESCO, once more than 10,000 ancient temples and pagodas spanned 100 square kilometers here - today only 3,500 remain. Their spires create an unforgettable skyline which transforms into an extraordinary canvas at sunrise and sunset - take a hot air balloon ride for an amazing aerial perspective of this incredible sight!
Lhasa stands at an elevation of 3,656 meters and it takes several days for visitors to adjust. Oxygen levels tend to be lower at this height than at sea level and it takes time for their bodies to fully adjust.
Although situated high up, the city remains lively and offers many accommodation options for visitors. Most travelers opt to stay near or in Old Town; here you'll find hotels featuring both Western and Tibetan styles; in particular the latter features several eye-catching Tibetan designs that boast of impressive decor features. Outside the city boundaries you can admire lush jungles or breathtaking karst mountain landscapes while trekking, mountain-biking or kayaking can also be done freely in these scenic regions.
Udaipur, often considered India's most picturesque city, is often known as the "City of Lakes," due to its tranquil blue waters. At the center of Udaipur is Lake Pichola - often described as appearing to float upon the surface - which features stunning palaces dotting its surface and can best be explored by foot along its various ghats - Ambrai offers magnificent views of Lake Palace for instance!
Udaipur was established by Maharana Udai Singh II and has long been celebrated for its historic forts and palaces, natural settings and gardens, architectural temples, festivals, handicrafts and artisanal workshops that specialize in block printing, blue pottery, shellac work, stone carvings and Bandhani--an ancient form of tie-dyeing textile decoration using fingernail plucking to embellish sections with colored dye.
At the core of city is the City Palace, which dominates Lake Pichola and appears to float upon it. Over four centuries, various maharajas have added palaces, courtyards, gardens and more palaces onto this structure. Furthermore, Jagdish Temple stands out with its unique blend of Hindu and Muslim architecture.
Luang Prabang is a Unesco World Heritage Site known for its glittering temples and grand royal palaces, its historic center remaining mostly intact and offering visitors a feast for the eyes. Don't miss its daily alms giving ceremony when monks walk around collecting donations from locals before dawn each morning!
Asia, an immense continent, boasts an expansive landscape filled with breathtaking vistas and remarkable attractions - epic mountain ranges, stunning beaches, vibrant cities, and cultural centers make Asia a traveler's delight.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia's capital city, is an energetic metropolis with gorgeous high-rise buildings and an unparalleled shopping scene. The Petronas Twin Towers are undoubtedly its most iconic structure and must-see attraction - however the best time to visit is between May and July when temperatures are more moderated and conditions drier.
Luang Prabang, a UNESCO World Heritage city, should not be missed as well. With its ornate temples and stunning royal palaces, Luang Prabang boasts some of the world's most exquisite structures. Visitors will want to witness its daily alms ceremony when monks walk the streets collecting offerings from residents.
Contrasting Indonesia and Thailand, Bali's city life is more relaxed. While this may put off travelers who prefer an active vacation experience, there's plenty to see and do on this "Island of the Gods." Apart from its beautiful natural landscape with lush rice paddies and dense tropical jungles, this legendary destination boasts incredible street food offerings as well as Instagram-worthy buildings. Furthermore, Bali boasts several top yoga retreats and spas as well as abundant marine life to explore shipwrecks on.
Japan is one of Asia's most breathtaking locations, boasting diverse culture and stunning natural beauty as well as modern cities like Tokyo. From bustling Tokyo streets to peaceful temples in Kyoto and everywhere in between, Japan has something special to offer everyone.
Kyoto, a UNESCO World Heritage city, is a cultural mecca where ancient Buddhist temples and gardens sit alongside elegant wooden houses and teahouses. Kyoto is also famous for formal traditions like Kaiseki dining (multiple courses of specific dishes served over an extended period), Geisha female entertainers, wild deer roaming freely through streets as visitors can relax in hot spring baths or watch traditional Noh performances.
From May through July, 3,000 cherry trees in the city bloom into vibrant pink blossoms; later maple leaves take over with vibrant orange and red colors that transform the cityscape. Obon, an annual festival honoring our ancestors is especially festive during autumn season.
The Himalayas span India, Nepal and Tibet and are among the world's most stunning mountains. Offering stunning vistas and trekking excursions - including to Mount Everest - Sri Lanka attracts tourists looking for less touristy options than popular Thailand or Indonesia; especially Sigiriya with its 600-foot-high fortress and temples of Polonnaruwa that entice travelers looking to discover historical relics without large crowds.
Angkor Wat has become such an icon of Cambodia that it even features on their flag! A UNESCO World Heritage Site covering 162 square kilometers, originally dedicated to Hindu god Vishnu but later converted to Buddhism; exploring this enchanting complex can be both captivating and bewitching at sunset when its illuminated spires light up. For an aerial perspective on these sprawling ruins book a sunrise hot air balloon ride!
Maya Bay is one of Asia's most picturesque beaches, known for its turquoise water and rugged cliffs. Made famous by Leonardo DiCaprio's The Beach movie, Maya Bay offers visitors an idyllic retreat.
Are you searching for an unforgettable spiritual retreat? Consider visiting Bhutan's Tiger's Nest - an iconic pilgrimage site and place of self-discovery located high in the Himalayas. Its glittering monastery rests precariously atop a sheer cliffside while murals and statues depict various deities and saints from local folklore.
Kyoto is an iconic destination in Japan, especially during cherry blossom season (also known as Hanami or Sakura in Japanese). Once known as the Imperial Capital, Kyoto now features stunning gardens and elegant palaces reminiscent of their former glory days as former imperial seats. Take the 4 km avenue of bright orange gates at Fushimi-Inari Shrine or head towards Nijo Castle which was home to Japan's former ruling class; or join a tea ceremony or attend an authentic koukai performance!
Asia is home to some truly breathtaking locations, from ancient temples and palaces to picturesque beaches and lush mountains. This vast continent provides something for every traveler - be it peace and tranquility or adventure-seekers alike. These 10 destinations in Asia will leave an indelible mark.
Jaipur, India's charming capital city, has come to be known as India's "pink city" due to the unique pink hue of its stone architecture - particularly that found at Jal Mahal palace - as well as being an arts and crafts hub, with workshops producing everything from block printing and blue pottery production, Bandhani techniques, tie dye textile decoration by puncturing designs into them, block printing block, Bandhani tie dye textile decorating processes (or just banding), blue pottery production, block printing block and Bandhani tie-dye textile decoration techniques;.
Angkor, Cambodia's premier archaeological site and religious monument, boasts hundreds of ancient temples that make up this vast religious monument. Best explored at sunrise or sunset when its towering spires are lit up by the sun's light, be sure to visit The Cambodia Landmine Museum and Relief Center during your stay for further insight into land mine threats across Cambodia.
Banaue in the Philippines offers picturesque terraced fields that rival any in Asia, owned by Ifugao tribe members who welcome visitors with traditional cuisine and hospitality. Water falls, hiking trails and breathtaking natural scenery. Sri Lanka also boasts lush rainforests without heavy tourism crowds like other Asian nations.