HANOI OLD QUARTER, VIETNAM
Attractive French colonial architecture, narrow shopfronts and commercial frenzy combine to create urban Asia at its most romantic, and most exciting. Hanoi, the political and cultural capital of Vietnam, is a huge, sprawling place, but the old French quarter slows the pace down with tree-lined, villa-dotted streets where many of the city’s most thoughtful sights, including the Temple of Literature and the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, are located.
ANGKOR WAT, CAMBODIA
One of the world’s premier ancient sights and the high point of classical Khmer architecture. This massive temple, unsurpassed by any other monument of its kind, is surrounded by a square moat. The scale of Angkor Wat and the detail of its carvings are breathtaking and a trip here is a must for anyone’s bucket list.
This beautiful island, with probably the highest-profile of any of the 7,107 in the Philippines, has a deserving reputation for powder-fine white sand of crushed coral, tall swaying palms and an aquamarine sea where diving is a sheer delight. Located off the northwestern tip of Panay Island in the Sulu Sea’s waters, Boracay is the quintessential tropical paradise, even now it is well on the international radar.
LUANG PRABANG, LAOS
The former royal capital of Laos on the banks of the Mekong, Luang Prabang is a beautiful city crowded with temples – notably the winged-roof Wat Xieng Thong – and quiet streets lined with colonial buildings. Don’t miss the Royal Museum. Our Historical Laos trip takes in a visit to this magical UNESCO World Heritage Site, one of the most romantic cities in Asia.
Capital of the ancient kingdom that first unified what now constitutes Myanmar, Bagan is one of the richest archaeological sites in Asia. The dusty plains are strewn with thousands of ancient stupas and temples that testify to the religious devotion of the Pagan kingdom that reined from the 9th to the 13th centuries. Of the 10,000 religious monuments that were originally constructed here, over 2,000 survive today. That’s quite a lot to try and cover on the ground and so one of the best ways to experience the scale and mystery of this incredible site is by hot air balloon. Nothing beats sailing above the stupas enjoying a bird’s eye view.
TAMAN NEGARA, MALAYSIA
Taman Negara is a national park located in Malaysia’s Titiwangsa Mountains. It’s one of the best places to visit in Southeast Asia for eco tourists and travelers who want to get up close and personal with a tropical jungle. Popular activities include walking through the jungle, sometimes on rope bridges through the forests; hiking, whitewater rafting, rock climbing, fishing and camping. Travelers will need a high level of energy to tackle all the activities the park offers.
The Gili Islands are three small islands located in northwestern Indonesia off the coast of Lombok. The islands are perfect for travelers who want to get away from the hustle and bustle of modern life. Cars aren’t allowed on the islands, with people using horse carriages or bicycles to move about. Relaxing may be the primary activity here, but the islands also are popular with divers and snorkelers.