From islands for nature lovers in Japan to secret waterfalls, these holiday destinations in Asia make for a dream getaway.

Asia is a beautiful continent filled with rich cultures, diverse landscape, and unforgettable adventures. Although we’re familiar with The Great Wall of China and the Taj Mahal in India, there’s so much more to Asia than meets the eye. If you’re looking for some hidden gems, here are 10 holiday destinations in Asia you should visit on your next vacation.

Yakushima Island, Japan

Popular for its wildlife and cedar forest, the beautiful island of Yakushima is a nature lovers’ paradise. Yakushima is a subtropical island, located off the southern coast of Kyushu and part of Kagoshima Prefecture, with some of the oldest trees in Japan. In fact, most of the trees are over 1000 years old and the most ancient trees are over 7000 years old.

The top attractions that you can find in Yukashima is Shiratani Unsuikyo, which is a luscious, green nature park. Most people come here for hiking or for a relaxing nature walk. There’s also a high chance that you can spot different animals around this island dominated by 2000 m high mountains. For example, you will most likely encounter the Yakushima deer and monkeys. Also, if you’re looking to amplify your Instagram feed then this nature filled island is a great Instagram booster.

Yakushima Island, Japan

Photo: Kimon Berlin via Flickr

Mount Wudang Shan, China

The Wudang Mountain is located in the northwestern part of Hubei, China. The sacred mountain is popular for the its Taoist temples and monasteries. In fact, the Ancient Building Complex in the Wudang Mountains was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. There are countless cultural activities that you can experience in this beautiful location.

For example, if you’re someone who admires martial arts then consider learning the traditional Chinese Wudang kung fu or tai chi. Also, it’s good to keep in mind that autumn is the perfect season to visit Mount Wudang. In autumn, they have the Wudang Tourism Festival, which is a great festival to go to if you want to learn more about Wudang culture. Other time frames that you should visit Mount Wudang is March-May, September, and November.

wudang mountain china

Photo: 火*人firemen via Flickr

Bantayan Island, Philippines

Bantayan Island consists of three municipalities: Bantayan, Madridejos, and Santa Fe. The largest municipality is Bantayan, which covers the central portion of the island. It is popular for many attractions such as the Obo-ob Mangrove Garden. This garden offers visitors a lovely tour through the manga forest. Next is Madridejos and it covers the northern portion of the island. It is most popular for its country side, fishing village, and nature-focused activities.

Last, is Santa Fe and it covers the eastern portion of the island. Santa Fe is popular for its beautiful beaches and lovely sunset views. Some activities that you can enjoy in this area is snorkeling and exploring the Ogtong Cave. This unique and beautiful cave can be found near Sugar Beach and Paradise Beach. If a trip to an island is on your bucket list this year, then Bantayan Island is the perfect spot for you.

at Lawis Bay Bantayan Island, Philippines

Photo: Juliethepearl via Wikimedia Commons

Coonoor, India

Coonoor is one of the three Nilgiri Hill stations in the state of Tamil Nadu that sits above the southern plains. It is small, tranquil, and offers perfect mountain views. In fact, it is cooler in climate, it has some of the best spots for hiking, and it has wonderful scenery too. Some of the places you can visit in Coonoor is Sim’s Park. This lovely park is great to go for a relaxing afternoon with the family. Finally, don’t miss out on a walk through tea gardens and a ride on the toy train! If you’re searching for a location that has an endless amount of Instagram-worthy shots, then Coonoor is the perfect place to visit on your next adventure.

Beautiful nature and clouds in Coonoor, India

Photo: Shankar Karthikeyan via Pexels

Kuang Si Falls, Laos

Described as a beautiful three-layered waterfall, this stunning location near Luang Prabang in Laos captures every tourists attention. It’s a refreshing area that’s perfect for swimming and taking Instagram-worthy shots. On top of that, this lovely waterfall is peaceful too, which means it makes a great spot for a relaxing afternoon.

What makes this spectacular waterfall so interesting is the local legend behind the waterfall’s name, which is Tat Kuang Si. According to the legend, an old man had summoned the water from the Nam Xi River. Apparently, this old man dug a hole into the Earth that led to a burst of water flowing. Then a golden deer made its way back to its home under a rock where the new water was bubbling out. According to multiple resources the rough translation of Tat Kuang Si is “Waterfall (Tat) Deer (Kuang) Dig (Si).”

Photo: Anne Dirkse via Wikimedia Commons

Con Dao Islands, Vietnam

This beautiful national park, off the southern coast of Vietnam, offers one of the most relaxing locations with a beautiful beach views. Its 16 islets are perfect for hiking, outdoors adventures, and capturing the best sunset views. Some of the popular activities that you can try in Con Dao are island hopping and diving. Other than the outdoors activities, you can find yourself learning a lot about the Vietnamese people and culture. They have many historic activities and attractions that talks about the Vietnamese people fighting against French colonialism and American imperialism.

For example, the Con Dao museum on the main (and only inhabited) island, Con Son, holds some of the most valuable documents and photography during the colonial and imperialism period. There’s also the Con Dao Prison, which is one of the most brutal prisons in the world. According to multiple sources, this prison used to be called “the living hell on Earth.” There’s many dark stories and histories behind this prison. If you’re interested in visiting Con Dao Island, the best time to visit is between November to February.

Con Dao Islands in Vietnam

Photo by Thutruongvn via Pixabay

Haedong Yonggung Temple, South Korea

This historic Buddhist temple is located in Busan, South Korea. Haedong Yonggung was built in 1376 by a reacher named Naong during the Goryeo Dynasty. Originally this temple was named “Bomun Temple.” However, during the Japanese invasions of Korea from 1592-98, the temple was destroyed. Later it was rebuilt in the 1930s and it was renamed to Haedong Yonggung Temple.

It’s located on the cliff which displays the lovely view of the sea. Also, there are some nearby street food spots if you’re looking for something tasty and convienent to eat in the area. If you come during the right season, you can find yourself enjoying the cherry blossoms too.

Haedong Yonggungsa, Busan South Korea

Photo: via Wikimedia Commons

Miho Museum, Japan

This beautiful museum is located southeast of Kyoto, Japan. This museum was designed by a renowned architect named IM Pei. Miho museum was named after Koyama, the founder of the museum. This museum exhibits consists of a variety of work from Egyptians, Romans, and various Asian cultures.

As of May 2019, their current exhibits is the “Living in Zen and the Daitokuji Ryōkōin Heritage” and “In Quest of Eternal Bliss Ancient Collection of Miho Museum.” If you’re searching for a modern artsy museum in Japan, then this museum is the perfect place to visit. It’s also located in a fairly calm and relaxing area and design to blend in with its natural surroundings so, you can avoid the hustle and bustle of the city by enjoying this beautiful museum.

Miho Museum in Japan lesser known holiday destinations in Asia

Photo: Party Lin via Flickr

Rabbit Island, Cambodia

Koh Thonsáy, aka Rabbit Island in Cambodia is located off the southern coast of the Gulf of Thailand, 20 minutes by boat from Kep. This small island is a calm, relaxing spot for anyone who’s looking to escape the city life for a more simple island vacation. Also, it’s good to keep in mind that it’s not a typical tropical island with loads of activities, thus making it the perfect spot for someone who wants to kick back and simply relax. Rabbit Island is quite small compared to other islands around the world.

Koh Thonsay Beach via Cambodia lesser known holiday destinations in Asia

Photo: Peter Merrett via Wikimedia Commons

We hope you love these holiday destinations in Asia as much as we do!

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