Posts Tagged‘Asia’

8 can’t-miss sights in Singapore

Planning a trip to the vibrant metropolis? City life is unmatched in Southeast Asia when comparing it with Singapore.  Its fascinating fusion of eastern and western culture offers visitors the world in a 700-square kilometer microcosm. Here you’ll find Malay mosques, shopping malls packed with luxury items, gleaming skyscrapers, and Hindu temples all compactly neighboring each other.

Here are 8 of its best sights if you’re not sure where to start.

8. Universal Studios Singapore

Walter Lim @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Walter Lim @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Worlds in worlds? That’s Singapore’s Universal Studios, complete with 7 movie-themed zones; you’ll be transported from Ancient Egypt to Jurassic Park and back to Madagascar.

7. Jurong Bird Park

_paVan_ @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

_paVan_ @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

8,000 birds of over 600 species ruling the skies over 50 acres. It’s more than just for the birds!

6. Telok Ayer Market

Aussie Assault @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Aussie Assault @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

One of the few remaining heritage sites in downtown Singapore, this market is a flashback to the country’s old, rich street food tradition where you can find anything from fish ball to pig’s organ soup.

5. Singapore Botanic Gardens

Robert Lowe @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Robert Lowe @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Free entry and a welcoming oasis of perfectly kept trees and flowers make this garden a great place to unwind after a hectic day in the city.

4. Night Safari

Night Safari

Night Safari

A nocturnal zoo? Yes! The one and only in the world, the zoo replicates natural habitats of animals from the Himalayan Foothills and the Southeast Asian Rainforest. Seeing the animals under moonglow is its best draw.

3. Singapore Flyer

jh_tan84 @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

jh_tan84 @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Once the world’s largest observation wheel now an iconic piece of the Singapore skyline, the Flyer gives unmatched views over the downtown skyscrapers at night.

2. Singapore’s Chinatown

Mike Cartmell @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Mike Cartmell @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Singapore’s Chinese hub is a colorful mix of garish and grand traditional temples and dainty shophouses. It gets packed, as visitors explore the narrow paths between stalls and alleyways. But if you’re on the lookout you can spot some real bargains!

1. Singapore Zoo

chem7 @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

chem7 @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Singapore’s Zoo was one of the first zoos to offer spacious, natural enclosures to help animals feel like they are in their natural habitat. Visitors are often only separated from the animals by moat, making it an incredible experience to get face-to-face with animals from all over the world.

 

Asia’s 10 most beautiful places

The world’s largest continent is host to some of its most spectacular natural and manmade wonders. With thousands of sights that are an optical feast, which ones should you visit first?

Here are 10 of our favorites for your next voyage to this wonderfully diverse land.

10. Bagan, Myanmar

Paul Arps @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Paul Arps @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Described by Marco Polo as a “gilded city alive with tinkling bells and the swishing sounds of monks’ robes,” Bagan’s overgrown, forgotten temples are still as imposing as they were centuries ago, with over 2,000 temples scattered across the expansive dry landscape flanked by balloons hanging in the distance.

9. Ha Long Bay, Vietnam

Ha Lang Bay

Ha Lang Bay

Gigantic limestone pillars teetering perilously over emerald waters, mostly uninhabited and capped with rainforests, carved out with coral grottos and caves. Ready to go?

8. Petra, Jordan

Petra

Petra

The “Rose City,” carved and built into pink sandstone cliffs, is part manmade, part natural wonder. Emerging after a deep narrow gorge, stumbling across Petra feels like entering another time and place, forgotten by civilization.

7. Borobudur, Java, Indonesia

Frank Douwes @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Frank Douwes @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

The stunning 1,000-year-old Buddhist temple is nestled in an idyllic landscape of rice-terraced hills framed by volcanoes. The grand structure seems to “emerge” – in all its grandeur – in the early morning wrapped in white shrouds of mist.

6. Taj Mahal, India

Gerard McGovern @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Gerard McGovern @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

History’s greatest monument to undying love, the Taj Mahal’s architectural harmony is unmatched in scale and awe. Constructed out of pure, white marble and adorned with precious inlay jewels, it shines in the sun and sparkles in the moonlight.

5. Luang Prabang, Laos

Mills Baker @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Mills Baker @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

The ancient town, a colorful mishmash of Lao and French architecture, sits sleepily at the confluence of the Mekong River and the Nam Khan. Surrounded by verdant mountains, its an unmatched example of a town harmoniously joined with its stunning natural surroundings.

4. Paro Taktsang Monastery, Bhutan

Nagarjun Kandukuru @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Nagarjun Kandukuru @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Perched on the cliffs of the Himalayas in Bhutan, the complex was built in 1692 at the site of a cave where Guru Padmasambhava supposedly meditated for three years, three months, three weeks, three days, and three hours. Ascending the mountainside, one passes thousands of prayer flags, crosses over steep waterfalls to finally stare down upon the Paro valley.

3. The Great Wall of China

NomadFoto @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

NomadFoto @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Winding ramparts stretching over mountains, deserts, and grasslands: this incredible feat of engineering can be seen from space.

2. Chiang Mai, Thailand

Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai

Bursting with gilded temples, flanked by moats and overlooked by Thailand’s tallest mountain, this quintessentially Thai city is a beautifully serene stroll through nature and civilization.

1. Mount Fuji, Japan

Guilhem Vellut @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Guilhem Vellut @ Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Japan’s highest mountain is a place of spiritual and national importance scaled by over 300,000 people a year. It forms a serene backdrop to the idyllic landscape outside of Tokyo best viewed and contemplated from afar.