Asia | Travel Tips

Top Five Underestimated Tourist Destinations in Asia

By on March 6, 2013

For those that are perhaps a bit bored with the regular vacation destinations, Asia is your go to. It offers a wealth of idyllic, and unique, vacation spots. There are many locations with beautiful beaches, remote islands with tropical palms.

Unexpectedly, there are a lot of fascinating centers of cultural and historical significance. Travellers can reach any of these five underestimated tourist destinations in Asia with excellent cheap air flights.

 

Shodoshima, Japan

Japanese tourists taking a home vacation love the ‘Island of Little Beans’. However, this land of hot springs, lush olive groves and wild monkeys is still a well-kept secret when it comes to foreign tourists. The second largest island in the Seto Inland Sea, Shodoshima (pictured above) enjoys a Mediterranean climate. As a result citrus groves are a feature here. Hikers readily take the trails across the rocks. They enjoy the scenic views from the cliffs or those across the Kanka Valley. The island’s many hot springs provide a welcome respite for those tired feet.  Specially after a long day of walking and sightseeing.

Ubud, Indonesia, Asia
Rice Terraces, Ubud

Ubud, Indonesia

The home of the Balinese royal family, Ubud is a relatively small town. With an impressive number of galleries, museums and a lively art scene, Ubud is such a delight. For example, visitors can try the craft of a silversmith at Chez Monique. They can take home some personalized jewelry they have created. For a wildlife treat, the lush greenery of the Monkey Forest must be seen. It is home to a lively bunch of monkeys that are fun to watch.  They will swoop down to steal food or anything that looks like it could be food, so beware!

Goa, India
Goa Sunset

Goa, India

In South Goa, there’s the surprisingly quiet and beautiful Agonda Beach. It has smooth, soft sand, stunning sunsets and charming beach huts where visitors can stay. Sea turtles nest at the beach. And there are lifeguards on patrol to ensure that it is safe for children. Definitely, Goa is a destination for those seeking peace and quiet. It is never crowded, the locals are very friendly. Tthere are enough shops and good restaurants to make going about interesting. Hire a scooter to make the most of visits to the other beaches and the local towns.

Xi’an, China
Palace Xi’an, China

Xi’an, China

The Tang Palace walls and those of the Ming dynasty are clues to the glorious past of Xi’an. One of the oldest cities in China, which has many ancient tombs and ruins. Outside the city, at 25 miles to the east, the 7,000 statues of the Terracotta Army can be found. This represents one of the most significant archaeological finds in the world. The life-size warriors, their horses and chariots, depict the armies of Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China. And they date from 210 BCE. Xi’an city has many important historical sites, including pagodas, royal mausoleums and towers.  While outside the city walls, the southern area offers shopping, bars and some nightlife.

sea turtles beach
Sea Turtles

Penang Island, Malaysia

The “food paradise” of Malaysia, Penang’s rich multicultural history makes it a divine place to enjoy an extensive range of cuisines. It boasts of a splendid mix of  Indian, Chinese and Malay foods. These are allegedly some of the best cuisine in Southeast Asia. Gurney Drive in Georgetown, Penang’s capital, is a coastal promenade with restaurants and bars. Alongside the huge variety of carts serving some of the best street food available. There are also upscale eateries and some Western chain restaurants. Take a break from all that eating and enjoy a trip to the Penang National Park – Malaysia’s newest park. See nesting sea turtles in the turtle sanctuary. Also, explore the trails across the pristine beaches or above the jungle canopy from the elevated walkway.

For those that are perhaps a bit bored with the regular vacation destinations, Asia is your got to. It offers a wealth of idyllic, and unique, vacation spots. There are many locations with beautiful beaches, remote islands with tropical palms. Unexpectedly, there are a lot of fascinating centers of cultural and historical significance. Travellers can reach any of these five underestimated tourist Asian destinations with excellent cheap air flights.
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Asia | Singapore

Sunny Singapore – Hubby’s second home

By on January 20, 2010

When we’re out, I’m often looked at by the older people and later on asked if I am the mother of the kids I’m with…or if I take care of them. 😀 I don’t take offense because I admit that my kids resemble their Dad a lot. They took on more of his Singaporean look. Thus, people get confused  why they have chinky eyes but I don’t.

While the reason why we go home was not a pleasant one. We took a side trip to Singapore to let the kids get acquainted with their Dad’s second home. Also, to meet his older sisters and get the kids introduced, too.   It was a sweet reunion although we forgot to take photos with her.

I actually forgot to bring our dslr for this trip. lol. I was only able to bring the chunky SonyCybershot F717…which I also enjoy using. It has a wider format than the Canon ones but the colors are crisp and i do get sharp images, so no complaints.

Sunny Singapore - Hubby's second home 1

Clean and Pleasing

It’s no secret that Vienna has spoiled us. Whenever we visit other cities, we would unconsciously compare how clean it is to what we’re used to. Singapore fares in this regard really well. While the overall atmosphere is different, Singapore feels as safe as Vienna is.

There may be a long queue for taxis but it shows a big deal of organization.

Sunny Singapore - Hubby's second home 2

 

Child-friendly

Aside from the many parks scattered in the whole of the city, there are a lot of amusing things kids can do in Singapore. There are many museums and galleries catered to the curiosity of children. Gardens that invoke the love for flora and fauna abound. Children can bring bread to feed fish and ducks. And actually keeping the city really green with all the plants and trees around impacts them at a young age. With the grass-carpeted lawns, having a picnic with the whole family is a breeze.

Sunny Singapore - Hubby's second home 3

Funny and Diverse

While waiting for our gondola that’s taking us to Sentosa, I found this funny t-shirt at a souvenir shop. It lists the things one should avoid while inside the gondola and the “no durian” rule made me guffaw.  I bet it’s not a smell anyone would want to stick to their clothes and nostrils. 😀

Tourists flock to Singapore so much, migrants as well. I believe this has made the city diverse and attractive, culturally speaking.

Sunny Singapore - Hubby's second home 4

Superb Transportation System

Singapore is a joy to walk around at. However, for our short city break, we were able to experience the efficiency of the transportation system. The buses and train wagons are also clean and very rarely miss the schedule. If you are going about with the trains and buses, get a tourist pass to save on expenses.

Not to forget the cable cars, an exciting way to get to Sentosa Island from Mount Faber. It costs SGD 33 for adults and SGD 22 for children for a round-trip ticket (price updated 2019).

Sunny Singapore - Hubby's second home 5

cable car view
Cable car view as it passes by the metro

sentosa island, singapore

merlion, singapore
Merlion, taken from the same spot in the morning and at night.

There were a lot of things we saw and did at Sentosa. The first thing was to see the 37-metre-tall Merlion statue a bit upclose.

Let’s tackle the other things to do and things to see in Singapore on the next posts. ^_^

 

Sunny Singapore - Hubby's second home 6
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