A trip to Asia is a bucket list item for many people and one that, unfortunately, many people will not be able to check off. If you are fortunate enough to be one of the 300+ million tourists that do make it to Asia, it is essential to make that trip count. So, check out this list of where to go and what to see when making your dream trip across the continent of Asia.
Eight places to go and things to see when traveling in Asia
From some of the biggest cities in the world to remote tropical islands offering fun and sun, Asia provides tourists with adventure, history, and culture. If Asia is a continent on your list of places to visit, but you don’t know quite where to start, consider this list of amazing destinations.
- The Maldives are well-known as one of the best places to visit in Asia. This far-away destination is made up of approximately 1,200 islands and offers a tropical paradise that is hard to match. If you are into surfing and sun, the Maldives are an excellent vacation destination.
- Tokyo, Japan is a major metropolis that has delighted foreign tourists for ages. From fantastic food to bright lights and tons of history, you can take in the culture during the day and enjoy the night-life if you have the energy left after a long day visiting Japanese palaces and gardens. Be sure to take a trip to the top of Tokyo Tower so that you can take in the entire city. The Sensoji Temple is the oldest religious site in Tokyo and welcomes 30 million visitors each year, and so it should be sure to make your list of places to see as well.
- If you have some time after your visit to Tokyo, take one of the bullet trains to Kyoto, Japan to continue your Japanese adventure. Kyoto is absolutely breathtaking and provides a plethora of shrines and palaces that will boast culture and beauty. Be sure that Fushimi Inari Shrine and Kiyomizu Temple are on your list.
- Agra, India is the famous home of one of the most amazing structures in the world. Often referred to as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, the Taj Mahal palace was commissioned back in the year 1632 by the Mughal emperor by the name of Shah Jahan, to house the tomb of one of his wives (who was known to be his favorite), Mumtaz Mahal. The structure is made of ivory-white marble stone and is visited by two to four million people each and every year. UNESCO has designated this beautiful palace as a World Heritage Site.
- Phuket, Thailand is about a one-hour plane ride from Bangkok and is truly an island paradise. Spa treatments and boat tours are relatively affordable in comparison to other tropical islands, making it an economical destination for some fun in the sun. If you are into island cuisine inclusive of lemongrass, lime leaves, and chilies, then you will not be disappointed.
- If you are looking for more than just an island paradise in Thailand, then be sure to head inland to Chiang Mai. This city brings the buzz of Bangkok but is surrounded by mountains to offer a very different experience. A wander through the breathtaking and lovely Doi Suthep-Pui National Park or a visit to one of the elephant sanctuaries will provide travelers with a unique experience that will go down in the memory books.
- Seoul, Korea is often not on the list of tourists when they think of Asia, but this amazing city should not be forgotten. Seoul offers a lovely juxtaposition of old and new with historical relics that are situated in close vicinity to the new office towers of concrete and steel. Namsen Park and N Seoul Tower is a great stop for those not afraid of heights who would like to take in the views of the city from nearly 1,600 feet above the ground. If you want to understand how the Koreans live, make a visit to Bukchon Hanok Village and admire the hanoks, or traditional Korean homes that date back to the Joseon Dynasty (1392 – 1910).
- Of course, China tends to be on the list of those planning a trip to Asia. And Shanghai should be one of the places that you won’t plan to miss. One of the most populated cities in the world, Shanghai is a place where you should expect the unexpected. The Oriental Pearl TV Tower will let you take in the sites from a height of over 1,100 feet off the ground. And the Jade Buddha Temple boasts beautiful sculptures of you guessed it, jade. This particular temple is an active Buddhist monastery, so many monks find their residence here, making it a unique place to visit.