5 Best Places to Visit in Asia
1. Mount Fuji, Japan
Although Mount Fuji is an active stratovolcano, it hasn’t erupted since 1708. The stunning snowcapped mountain is one of Japan’s “Three Holy Mountains,” which are traditionally considered to hold a particular power-Mount Fuji has volcanic power.
If this doesn’t sound ominous enough, the base of the mountain is also home to Aokigahara. Also known as “The Suicide Forest,” this dense forest growing on hardened lava is home to ice caves, a combination that absorbs sound and creates an eerie feeling of solitude. While many visitors come here to just photograph this World Heritage List Cultural Site and well-known symbol of Japan, others arrive for the climbing opportunities.
2. Phuket, Thailand
Thailand’s biggest island is also a magnet for visitors and for good reason. Phuket boasts some of the best beaches in the country, with clean, soft, rolling sands and turquoise waters as far as the eye can see.
In between hours of lying under the sun, visitors can head to the white and gold Wat Chalong, the largest and most important Buddhist temple on the island, or climb up a hill to reach the Big Buddha-a 45-meter-tall statue covered with Burmese marble.
The island is also home to a number of unique festivals. The Ghost Festival during the 7th Chinese lunar month is dedicated to ancestor worship, and it entails releasing lanterns into the ocean to help guide lost souls-a sight to behold.
3. Jaipur, India
New Delhi and Mumbai might be India’s best-known cities, but Jaipur takes home the “most beautiful” prize. Known as the “pink city” because of the unique color of the stone used to build many of the structures around, Jaipur is also home to a community of artisans. Here, craftsmen produce everything from block printing and blue pottery to shellac work; stone carvings; and Bandhani, the unique art of decorating tie-dye textile by plucking sections of it with the fingernails.
Many of the most breathtaking attractions in Jaipur are architectural marvels, including the stunning Jal Mahal palace, which sits in the center of the Man Sagar Lake.
Many other monuments and pink structures are located within 10 kilometers of the city, including the ancient temple complex Galtaji, built right into narrow hills and surrounded by sacred kunds (small water pools).
4. Bali, Indonesia
Bali is best known for its stunning golden beaches lined with swaying palm trees and blue-green waters, but this Indonesian island has a lot more attractions to offer visitors. Not that the beaches shouldn’t top your must-visit list-the glorious stretches of sand at laid-back Crystal Bay, the undeveloped White Sands Beach, or the serene Sanur with its untouched village-feel are some of Bali’s best destinations.
In addition to sun, sand, and sea, Bali also offers a unique cultural and historical landscape filled with temples, including the ancient pilgrimage temple Tanah Lot (famous for its sunsets); Gunung Lebah and its scenic jungle surroundings; and Pura Goa Lawah, considered one of the six holiest places of worship in Bali.
Singapore doesn’t have a lot of beaches-unless you count the three beaches on Sentosa Island resort, small but with soft white sands and protected lagoons with clean blue waters-but it makes up for it with themed attractions, lush rain forests, and lively coastal fun.
From its own Universal Studios park and a 50-meter bungee jump from a tower over the beach to the Marina Bay Sands resort and its rooftop, which includes an infinity pool and a skybridge, Singapore has quickly established itself as a thrilling destination.