Discovering the different cultures of this region is a fascinating experience – and in places such as Singapore, the lively mixture of contrasting cultures is itself the attraction. The postcard images of mist-shrouded hilltop shrines, perfect white sand beaches and dense green rainforest can all be found in glorious reality, often just a couple of hours away from the cities. The tranquillity of cruises or rafting trips on mighty rivers, the mystery of the jungle and the beauty of tropical islands can all be experienced.
You’ll discover hidden lakes and awesome volcanoes, a world away from the tumult of the city. You can watch traditional dances in remote villages and see age-old crafts practised in tiny workshops. There’s adventure, too – want to take that raft over white water, trek up a mountain or ride an elephant? You can do it all, and more.
The cities of the Far East are steamy, exciting places full of energy, where shopping is a thrill, be it in enormous air-conditioned retail complexes or at open-air markets, where the challenge of haggling adds a frisson of mystery to your every purchase. You can dine on some of the world’s tastiest food, be it from a street-side stall selling local favourites, or in a world-class hotel restaurant overseen by a famous chef. You’ll see extraordinary buildings, such as the Petronas Towers of Kuala Lumpur, and visit top-class museums. A Far Eastern holiday really is a feast for the senses.
Meanwhile South East Asia boasts some of the world’s finest beaches in exotic places like Thailand, Bali and Malaysia, as well as the increasingly popular shores of Vietnam and the Philippines. Throw in an incredible variety of delectable cuisines and an array of stunning historic sights and its little wonder this fabulous region entices us so easily.