Check out this guest post from Lisa Fox of Town Bubble. Thanks for sharing Lisa!
If you are someone who loves to visit exotic places and gets that itch to travel, Asia is certainly one place you are apt to want to visit. But which countries should you go to? Asia is made up of numerous countries, some big and some small, and you may even want to visit all of them at some point in your life. What do you choose now though? While we can’t actually make that decision for you, we can help you out some. We’ve compiled a list of five Asian countries that you have to visit, no ifs, ands or buts about it.
China is home to many marvels, the most famous being the Great Wall of China. Several billion natives call this country home, and with good reason! The country is rich and detailed, with a history that spans many hundreds of years. Plus, you’ll get the best of both worlds during your travels: China is modern enough that tourists will never be inconveniences, yet much of China’s ancient culture is alive and prosperous in today’s world.
Besides the fact that you obviously must visit the Great Wall of China, you should also check out The Forbidden City in Beijing. This is the site of the world’s largest city of ancient buildings, and while you’re at it, make sure you take a look at the thousands of two-millennium old life-sized Terracotta Warriors. If you’re in need of some good luck, make sure you pick up an authentic Chinese lucky charm!
2. Hong Kong
Although Hong Kong is best known for its fantastic shopping, there are a lot of other activities tourists can partake of. The most different thing about visiting Hong Kong and anywhere else is the ability to haggle for items you wish to buy. This is actually a very exciting endeavor,so make sure you don’t take the first price named or you’ll miss out on all of the fun!
Oh, and there is also a Disneyland theme park in Hong Kong for those families traveling with younger children. Some of the rides and sights will be reminiscent of the US Disney parks, but they have a lot of different parks, rides, and attractions that you can only find in Hong Kong.
Thailand is sometimes known for its seedier sides. Places like Bangkok and Phucket have a very hedonistic side. Yet this isn’t all that Thailand is made up of. Quite to the contrary, most of Thailand is the opposite. There are tons of wildlife sanctuaries, shopping, and cultural experiences for tourists to experience.
A few key places you may want to work into your Asian adventure include: Chiang Rai, Wat Rong Khun, and the Royal Palace. Just remember that while visiting Thailand, you must never, ever touch anyone on the head or point with your foot. The consequences could be dire, as this is very un- traditional and extremely rude.
Japan is a country in which many things are interesting, unique, and special. The clothing worn by some Japanese is one thing tourists find so amazing. You may see traditional clothing worn for centuries side by side with the radical new clothing worn by the younger generations. Japan is home to a slew of strange vending machines (they appear to have a slight obsession with them), anime,and manga characters. If you want a very real, very extreme culture shock, go to Japan. Trust me, you won’t regret it.
Japan is also home to Kyoto City, which is the place you really want to go if you are on the search for some peace, quiet,and a bit of awesome historic sight seeing. Kyoto City is considered to be the most important historical tows in all of Japan, with over 300 Shinto shrines, 1,700 Buddhist temples, gardens, imperial palaces, and traditional wooden homes. So make sure you incorporate this city into your trip to Japan!
5. South Korea
South Korea has finally begun to move from an all agricultural country to a more modernized economy, yet, despite this fact, there is still a gorgeously rural side. If you enjoy fantastic rural settings and adventures, South Korea is one of the places you certainly must visit. There are also plenty of spicy native foods and locally brewed firewater of many flavor variations to add to your adventure.
One thing you must not forget on your trip to South Korea is a visit to Jeju Island, also known as the “Island of the Gods.” Amongst other things, this island is a true tropical paradise. It boasts beautiful scenery, sandy beaches, subtropical forests, numerous craters, the Hyeobje caves, Mountain Halla, and also two different waterfalls-the Cheonjiyeon, and the Chenjeyeon.
Have you visited any of these fantastic Asian countries yet? What were your favorite things you did or saw while traveling? If you haven’t visited any of the above mentioned countries yet, which one do you most want to visit? Let us know in the comments below!
Author Bio: Lisa Fox is a writer for TownBubble.com, which recently featured an article about Safe Areas for 2013. Aside from writing about travel, Lisa enjoys cooking and going on walks with her dog. If you have any questions or comments for Lisa, feel free to connect with her @TownBubble on Twitter.