From large booming metropolisis to smaller more tranquil locations, you really have a lot of choice no matter which part of Asia you venture to.

If you would like to visit Asia and are keen to explore some of the best cities below we have highlighted 10 of the favourites you should add to any itinerary...


1. Singapore

Singapore is one of the most popular destinations in south east Asia, a super modern city which will make you feel like you've been living in the dark ages.

There are lots of things to know before visiting Singapore, this country is small in size but there are so many diverse neighborhoods to explore like Chinatown, Little India, Kampong Glam, and Tiong Bahru.

Some of the main attractions to see include the Gardens by the Bay, Singapore Botanic Gardens, National Orchid Garden, Cloud Forest, National Gallery Singapore, Kampong Glam and The Intan.

If you have the money stay at the famous Marina Bay Sands Hotel which has an incredible hotel infinity pool with views over the city skyline. Or if funds are limited, view these tips for visiting Singapore on a budget.

Also Jewel Changi Airport where most international flights arrive is one of the best airports in the world, you could spend a day here exploring the shops and features like the huge indoor waterfall.


2. Hong Kong

Hong Kong skyline night

If you like big cities you will love Hong Kong.

This city is sprawling and looks amazing from the air when flying into the city, there are skyscrappers packed tightly between stunning mountains.

Hong Kong is a great destination for food and shopping, there are thousands of restaurants and shops here with options for all budgets.

Although on the pricey side, there are lots of free attractions in Hong Kong, including the daily famous harbour light show. There are some also great day trips and excursions you can do here to see temples, beaches and local islands.


3. Bangkok, Thailand

Khao San Road, Bangkok

Bangkok is the huge capital of Thailand and a city you will likely visit or pass through on any trip to Asia.

Lots of popular Asia gap year programs are located here, from teaching to volunteering.


4. Siem Riep, Cambodia

Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Tourism in Cambodia has been growing over the past decades and the main highlight of visiting is the world famous Angkor Wat temples.

This temple complex is really amazing, with lots of ancient ruins. Be sure to wake up early for sunrise - this is a magical experience.

Siem Reap itself is fairly relaxed compared to Phnom Penh you will find lots of local attractions and ways to experience local Cambodian life. You might want to stay need Pub Street, a popular lively nightspot.

View Cambodia tours to discover Siem Riep and the other highlights of the country for yourself.


5. Luang Pra Bang, Laos

Luang Pra Bang, Laos

Luang Pra Bang is of the most beautiful and relaxed cities in the world and one of our top choices for cities to see in Asia.

This city isn't comercialised and mass tourism and globalisation hasn't yet ruined the authentic experience you can enjoy here. We highly recommend watching sunset with local monks from one of the hills or going to see nearby waterfalls.

Be sure to learn some basic travel phrases for Laos before arriving, not only will you impress the locals but you'll find not many people speak English here. 

View our tours in Laos to discover the highlights of this lesser-known gem.


6. Kyoto, Japan

Japan budget

Japan is a facsinating country to travel in, and one of the most popular destinations for foreigners in Kyoto.

Kyoto mix of modern life with old temples where you can sample the local culture and learn about the history and people who inhabit this region of Asia.

There are lots of places to go in Kyoto, including Rjdsjsj, one of the most impressive temples in Asia.

View Japan tours or check out our guide to teaching in Japan if a career here appeals to you.


7. Chiang Mai, Thailand

Elephant Sanctuary Thailand

Chiang Mai is located in northern Thailand and it is a relaxed and beautiful altternative to the hectic capital Bangkok.

Chiang Mai is the gateway to lots of hilltribe treks and adventure trips through the mountain region near the border with Myanmar. On a Thailand adventure tour in this region you can visit temples, relax in one of the many cafes or just watch monks in fascination.

Thousands of foreigners join wan to volunteer in Thailand join projects in Chaing Mai, helping at elephant sanctuaries is really popular. 


8. Agra, India 

Taj Mahal

Home to the world famous Taj Mahal which is a magical building with a true love story behind the scenes - you can't leave India without getting a picture here.

Home to thousands of Tibetan refugees, Dharamasala is also worth a visit in the north of the country. This whole region is spectacular and there are photo opportunities around every corner and the mountain backdrop is incredible.

Find India tours or for something more rewarding view volunteer programs in India.


9. Beijing, China

Temple of Heaven, Beijing, China

Beijing offers a mix of old and ultra new - there is something for everybody. You could wander around the old Hutongs to get an insight into life a few decades ago or check our impressive places like the Forbidden City, Summer Palace ad Great Wall.

Explore the country on one of our China tours or view our guide to teaching in China and stay a little longer.


10. Kula Lumpur, Malaysia

Kula Lumpur, Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur is a modern and fascinating city to explore with thriving food markets and sightseeing activities including the impressive Petronas Towers which loom high over the landscape. Be sure to visit one of the modern shopping centres.

Search Malaysia tours or for something really special check out volunteer programs in Borneo.


If you would like to see as much of this region as possible search Asia tours.


Asia Trip Planning Help

If you need some inspiration for things to do these pages will help: