Check out the cherry blossoms and ski fields of Japan, stroll the Great Wall of China and hunt down South-East Asia’s best street food by tuk-tuk on a street-eats tour.There’s plenty of time to refresh body and soul, too. Wander through the ancient stone temples of the Angkor Wat in Cambodia, relax on the jade waters of Halong Bay in Vietnam or be a little cheeky in the Ubud Monkey Forest of Indonesia. Another tick on your bucket list… done!
Kuala Lumpur is a bustling city that serves as the capital of Malaysia. The country’s most populous city, it has a landscape filled with innovatively designed skyscrapers, including the iconic Petronas Twin Towers, the world’s tallest twin towers. The city also boasts an outstanding Islamic Arts Museum; the Bukit Bintang pedestrian bridge and tunnel that connects the downtown area, and a bird park that is the world’s largest walk-in aviary.
It is the former capital of Burma and Myanmar’s largest city. Once a small fishing village, Yangon was ruled by the British at one time and has the most colonial buildings of any city in Southeast Asia. Top tourist attractions include the Shwedagon Pagoda, an ancient Buddhist shrine surrounded by parks, a war cemetery, and the city’s only synagogue, Musmeah Yeshua.
18.KO PHI PHI
Phi Phi is a beautiful archipelago located in the Krabi Province not too far from Phuket. The island is the only one in the group with permanent inhabitants. Travelers go here enjoy the beaches and to participate in a variety of water recreation activities, such as snorkeling, scuba diving and kayaking. The island was devastated by the 2004 tsunami, but is bouncing back with new construction.
When it comes to archeological sites, travelers won’t want to miss Angkor in northern Cambodia. It contains some of the world’s most important cultural remains. These include the enormous Angkor Wat temple, the Bayon temple with its multitude of massive stone faces and Ta Prohm, a Buddhist temple ruin entwined with towering trees. Historically, Angkor served as the Khmer capital from the ninth to 14th centuries, which influenced art throughout Southeast Asia.
Located on the island of Java, 40 km northwest of Yogyakarta, the Borobudur is the largest and most famous Buddhist temple in the world. The Borobudur was built over a period of some 75 years in the 8th and 9th enturies by the kingdom of Sailendra, out of an estimated 2 million blocks of stone. It was abandoned in the 14th century for reasons that still remain a mystery and for centuries lay hidden in the jungle under layers of volcanic ash.
WHEN TO GO
January to March and June to September. Malaysia straddles the equator, so it's hot and humid year-round but these months have the lowest average rainfall. Rainy season: October to December, though monsoons continue through to February in Borneo.