China is vast. Off-the-scale massive. Regarded as the oldest continuous civilisation in the world by historians, China is an amazing country to visit with attractions that will keep you intrigued. Spend a week exploring China’s best preserved wall city, Pingyao. For the adventurous, trek your way up the Tiger Leaping Gorge, hike Jiangxi and cycle around Yangshuo. Go on a never-ending culinary adventure around the country sampling food ranging from Peking Duck to Tibetan momos and tsampa. This is a country with varied culture, traditions and experiences that will keep you mesmerised.
The capital of The People’s Republic of China, Beijing is the most important port in China. If ancient monuments are your cup of cha, this is the place you should start exploring. Ponder the legends and myths of the Forbidden City, spend the day climbing the Great Wall of China, and admire the impressive imperial architecture of the Temple of Heaven. A shopping destination, visitors to this city will be spoilt for choice, from luxury brand names to cheap bargain market places. Beijing Capital International Airport operates many domestic and international flights to major cities within China and around the world.
For history buffs, head to the ancient capital of China, Xi’an. Be amazed by the architectural monuments and temples housing important ancient relics and steles, some dating as far back as 3,000 years ago. Walk the ancient city walls of Xi’an which also gives you one of the most impressive bird’s eye view of the city. The South gate offers one of the more attractive views of the city and is popular among tourists. Reserve a day exploring the Army of the Terracotta Warriors. Be amazed by the sheer size of the excavation sites and relics uncovered. If you’re observant enough, you will soon realise that no two Terracotta warriors have the same face. Xi’an’s Xianyang Airport is one of the best connected airports in China. Hop on the domestic China Eastern Airlines which operates most flights around China to the city.
Be prepared to have your socks knocked off in Yangshuo, perhaps the most beautiful town in China. The landscape is gorgeous with dramatic limestone karsts that will keep you intrigued. The best way to enjoy the incredible work of Mother Nature is by cycling around this verdant valley and through paddy fields. If you’re feeling lazy, take a leisurely ride down the Li River on a bamboo raft. The adventurous will enjoy their time in the town climbing fairy-tale karst pinnacles. To get to Yangshuo, Air China and China Airlines operate domestic flights to Guilin, the nearest airport to this town followed by a three-hour bus ride.
From China, Air China and Thai Airways offers cheap flights and discounts to the beautiful land of smiles, Thailand. Thailand is perhaps one of Asia’s most captivating kingdoms offering great island getaways and masterfully preserved temples, palaces and traditional homes. Head to the islands and beaches of Phuket, Phang Nga and Krabi for an amazing time in the sun and great beaches to relax and chill on. If you aren't a beach person, head to the ancient capitals of Sukhothai and Ayutthaya, both offering a wealth of evocative ruins to explore.
Find bliss in Bali, by hopping onto Garuda Indonesia from China to Denpasar. Be prepared to be dazzled by Indonesia’s fine sand beaches, breathtaking natural landscapes to amazing food options. Take a short boat ride to the nearby islands of Nusa Penida and Nusa Lembongan where there are several excellent dive sites. For picturesque rice paddies and scenic countryside, head for Ubud.
For a completely different experience, hop on Malaysian Airlines to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Trek up 272 steps to the Batu Caves which is an awe-inspiring natural cavern. Be sure to visit this place during the festival of Thaipusam when pilgrims carry milk pots and wooden Kavadis up to the temple. Do take the picture of the towering statue of a Hindu deity, Lord Murugan located just outside the cave. Malaysia also offers a great shopping experience for those wanting to splurge in exclusive designer shops. It is a world-class shopping destination. What is visiting Malaysia without taking the touristy shot of Petronas Towers, the tallest building in the world before the Al-Burj came along.
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