15 Best Countries to Visit in Asia

by Aiden Ethan

Asia, the world’s biggest continent, runs from the Mediterranean Sea to the Pacific Ocean. Its huge territory includes both lush, verdant regions and barren, arid deserts like the Arabian and Gobi. Not only is Southeast Asia home to stunning beaches and idyllic islands, but it also has a steamy jungle.

More than half of the world’s population lives in Asia, which is remarkable given the continent’s already massive size. The continent’s stunning variety, with so many distinct cultures and languages to explore, defies easy categorization. Natural beauties and hidden riches abound across Asia, but uncovering their true value might take a lifetime due to the diversity of the region’s cultures.

15. Maldives

Tropical beach in the Maldives Islands

Indulge in the paradise of the Maldives Islands with its pristine tropical beaches. Image source: Altug Galip/Shutterstock.com

The Maldives, a collection of around 1,200 islands and atolls, is home to some of the world’s best and most magnificent beaches. Hidden in the Indian Ocean, the opulent resort is well-known for its five-star hotels, several of which have their own private island.

The undersea treasures of the Maldives are just as well known as the picturesque islands that dot the archipelago. And since there are so many coral reefs and fish to see, scuba diving and snorkeling here are great.

This peaceful and remote location is great for a honeymoon, and you won’t want to miss out on the opportunity to visit any of the area’s numerous stunning white-sand beaches.

14. Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur city skyline in Malaysia

Experience the vibrant cityscape of Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia. Image source: Patrick Foto/Shutterstock.com

Part of the oldest rainforest on Earth can be found in this incredible country, which consists of Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia. In addition to the spectacular landscape and natural beauty on display, its national parks are also home to a wide variety of interesting plants and animals.

Multiethnic and cosmopolitan, Malaysia is home to Chinese, Indians, and ethnic Malays in its bustling cities and the capital, Kuala Lumpur. Historic and cultural sites stand out among the city’s contemporary skyscrapers, and there’s no shortage of great places to eat.

Even though Malaysia is home to many beautiful islands and beaches, for most people, the highlight of their trip is certain to be an up-close encounter with a wild orangutan.

13. Cambodia

Aerial view of Angkor Wat at sunrise in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Witness the breathtaking beauty of Angkor Wat at sunrise in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Image source: Intarapong/Shutterstock.com

Cambodia, a small Southeast Asian country sandwiched between Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam, is home to several impressive archaeological sites and historical ruins.

During its reign from the 9th to the 15th century, the Khmer Empire left behind a wealth of magnificent architectural feats all around the country. The magnificent Angkor Wat stands head and shoulders above the rest of these structures.

Cambodia is home to a wide variety of beautiful landscapes in addition to its bustling urban cities like Siem Reap and the capital Phnom Penh. Cambodia is a wonderful travel destination since it offers so many different types of landscapes and activities.

12. Sri Lanka

Aerial view of Colombo, Sri Lanka

Discover the captivating cityscape of Colombo, the commercial capital of Sri Lanka. Image source: Madrugada Verde/Shutterstock.com

Sri Lanka is a beautiful island off the southern coast of India that is becoming an increasingly popular tourist destination. The island is known for its beautiful beaches, but there is also a wealth of history and culture to explore.

Sri Lanka has a rich history dating back some 2,500 years; therefore, there are many fascinating archaeological sites and other historic and cultural attractions to explore. Anuradhapura, Galle, and Kandy are three fascinating places where you can see a wide variety of them, from ancient temples to colonial-era forts.

The natural beauty and abundance of animals in Sri Lanka are additional attractions. Sri Lanka is a paradise for those seeking a blend of beach vacations with cultural and historical immersion and breathtaking natural scenery.

11. Oman

Riyam Heights in Mutrah, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman.
Title: Riyam Heights, Mutrah, Muscat, Oman

Experience the charm of Riyam Heights in Mutrah, Muscat, Oman. Image source: Baiju Jose/Shutterstock.com

It is impossible to visit the Sultanate of Oman without being exposed to its rich history, culture, and customs. To be sure, the country’s endearing qualities include, in no small measure, the pride of its people and the warmth of its hospitality.

Oman has not drastically modernized like some of its neighbors or built any skyscrapers. This has meant that the beautiful historic buildings and skyline of Muscat, the capital, and the desert oasis towns that surround it have been preserved for generations.

The stunning beauty of the country’s deserts is just as striking as the souks and medinas. Oman is a very beautiful country with breathtaking mountains, a stunning coastline, and several picturesque sand dunes.

10. The Philippines

Makati City skyline at night in Manila, Philippines

Marvel at the illuminated skyline of Makati City, Manila, in the Philippines. Image source: r.nagy/Shutterstock.com

It’s hardly surprising that the Philippines is a favorite beach vacation spot, given that it has more than 7,000 individual islands. Its warm waters are perfect for water activities like surfing, scuba diving, and snorkeling; Boracay and North Palawan are especially good spots to do so.

Some islands are covered in rice paddies or tropical rainforest, while others include hidden lagoons and active volcanoes. Cities like Cebu and the country’s capital, Manila, dot the country’s many terrains, and both are hectic and vibrant.

There are several different cultural influences at play in the country, including Spanish, American, and more traditional ones. To sum up, the archipelago is not merely a place to soak up the rays and swim in the sea.

9. South Korea

Downtown view at Gangnam Square, Seoul, Korea

Discover the dynamic ambiance of Gangnam Square in the heart of downtown Seoul. Image source: sayan uranan/Shutterstock.com

South Korean popular culture, which includes such exports as K-Pop and kimchi, is enjoying a moment of global prominence right now. Given its history of being overshadowed by China and Japan, this is a significant development.

The peninsula’s rich history, tradition, and culture make it an interesting destination for tourists. But it has progressed quickly into the present day. Skyscrapers and enormous commercial complexes coexist with ancient temples and palaces dating back hundreds of years.

South Korea is surprisingly hilly, yet it also boasts several wonderful national parks, as well as gorgeous islands and beaches along its coast. Locals and foreigners alike go to Jeju Island more than any other of these destinations.

8. Vietnam

Hoi An, Vietnam

Journey into the enchanting streets of Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Vietnam. Image source: Hien Phung Thu/Shutterstock.com

Vietnam is a must-see destination in Asia due to its rich history, vibrant culture, and beautiful landscapes. The South China Sea borders the country’s picturesque coastline, which contains a wide variety of scenery.

It is common for tourists to hire motorcycles and travel the Ho Chi Minh route alone. Hanoi, Vietnam’s vibrant and turbulent capital, is the starting point for your trip to Ho Chi Minh City, South Vietnam. Along the route, you’ll see Hue, Vietnam’s historic capital. Because of its beautiful seascape and gorgeous limestone islands, Ha Long Bay is another must-see attraction.

Hoi An, a charming fishing town on the coast, and the hill tribes in the region of Sa Pa are also well worth your time. It doesn’t matter where in Vietnam you find yourself, you’re certain to enjoy some of the country’s delicious food.

7. Jordan

Roman ruins in the ancient citadel park of Amman, Jordan

Explore the historic charm of Amman, Jordan, with its well-preserved Roman ruins. Image source: mbrand85/Shutterstock.com

The Middle Eastern country of Jordan has always attracted visitors and merchants due to its convenient placement on the trade routes connecting Africa, Europe, and Asia. Over the centuries, several rulers and their armies passed through, leaving behind crusader castles, Roman amphitheaters, and, of course, Petra.

The ancient Nabataean city is a sight to behold, and it will be unlike anything you have ever seen before. Its location in the desert and its rock formations make it the most memorable part of any trip to the country.

The Dead Sea and the desert expanses of Wadi Rum are all fantastic places to visit, but Petra is perhaps the most famous sight. Jordan, the region’s safest country to visit, will captivate you with its enchanting culture and warm Middle Eastern friendliness.

6. Nepal

Male backpacker enjoying the view on a mountain walk in the Himalayas

Experience the awe-inspiring beauty of the Himalayas through the eyes of a backpacker. Image source: Olga Danylenko/Shutterstock.com

When it comes to outdoor adventures like trekking and climbing, Nepal is hard to beat. The land is just stunning. The Himalayas dominate and define this mountainous country, which is home to some of the world’s highest peaks. Out of all of them, Mount Everest is clearly the most impressive.

Many visitors travel to Nepal to walk the Annapurna Circuit, but the country also has a vibrant cultural scene. There are several religious buildings dating back hundreds of years all around the nation, the most well-known of which is the Maya Devi Temple in Lumbini. The Buddha was born at this location about 2,500 B.C.

Kathmandu, the capital, has so many temples that it earned the nickname “City of Temples.”

5. Indonesia

Jakarta downtown skyline at sunset

Witness the mesmerizing beauty of Jakarta’s high-rise buildings as the sun sets. Image source: amadeustx/Shutterstock.com

Indonesia is a massive country, stretching over 4,700 kilometers from east to west over more than 18,000 islands. People, cultures, and dialects, as well as landscapes and animals, all contribute to making this country one of the most varied on the planet.

The archipelago is difficult to categorize for various reasons. In contrast to the bustling and frenetic metropolis of Jakarta, for example, many of the country’s smaller, more remote settlements are peaceful and quiet. The habits, traditions, and cuisine of one of the world’s most populated countries vary greatly from region to region.

They are located between the Indian and Pacific oceans, and their island ecosystems reflect this proximity. While Bali is known for its stunning beaches, Borneo is renowned for its incredible wildlife, including the amazing orangutans. Given its reputation, the “Emerald of the Equator” is well worth the trip.

4. India

Taj Mahal at sunset in Agra, India.

Behold the iconic Taj Mahal, a masterpiece of love, bathed in the warm hues of sunset. Image source: AlexAnton/Shutterstock.com

India, which is home to one of the world’s richest and oldest civilizations, is a melting pot of people, beliefs, and customs. This variety is what makes exploration of the area so fascinating.

The Himalayas dominate the northern part of the country, while the remainder is home to steamy jungles, lovely tea plantations, and beautiful beaches. Ancient monuments dating back millennia and vibrant, turbulent cities like Mumbai and New Delhi can be found hidden within the region’s many different landscapes.

The world’s second-most populated country is also home to a wide variety of cultural attractions. The only difficulty is deciding where to start.

3. Japan

Yasaka Pagoda and Sannen Zaka Street in the morning, Kyoto, Japan

Immerse yourself in the tranquil beauty of Kyoto’s Yasaka Pagoda and Sannen Zaka Street. Image source: Patrick Foto/Shutterstock.com

While Japan is made up of about 7,000 islands, the majority of the country’s top attractions can be found on the islands of Hokkaido, Honshu, Kyushu, and Shikoku. To give you an idea, the four biggest are these.

The island country, located to the east of the Asian continent, is a fascinating site where the past and present constantly meet. Kyoto and Nara, in contrast to the modern cities of Tokyo and Yokohama, are home to historic palaces and ancient temples.

The country is mostly mountainous and forest-covered, making it home to some beautiful natural landscapes. Because of this, the bulk of its massive population lives in the densely populated cities that border its winding coastline.

2. Thailand

Loh Samah Bay view, Phi Phi Island, Thailand

Discover the breathtaking beauty of Loh Samah Bay, a paradise on Phi Phi Island. Image source: Serenity-H/Shutterstock.com

Thailand is a popular vacation spot because of its beautiful beaches, ornate temples, and friendly locals. It is appropriately referred to as “the Land of Smiles.”

Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai are home to some of the nation’s most renowned temples, while Bangkok is known for its superb food and lively nightlife. Away from the city, you’ll encounter untamed jungle, lovely paddy fields, and sleepy, remote towns and villages.

Golden sands and underwater wonders draw hoards of tourists to this area, which is sandwiched between the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. Partying in its coastal towns, sightseeing on paradisiacal islands like Ko Tao, and taking in Krabi’s breathtaking landscape are additional popular reasons for tourists to visit the region.

1. China

Guiyang skyline at Jiaxiu Pavilion on the Nanming River, China

Enjoy the picturesque view of Guiyang’s skyline from the enchanting Jiaxiu Pavilion. Image source: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock.com

China is the largest and most populous country in Asia and is home to one of the world’s oldest cultures. This means that amazing cultural and historical sites can be seen all over the place.

China’s biggest draw is the Great Wall, although the Forbidden City in Beijing and the Terracotta Army in Xi’an are also popular tourist destinations. Others go to China for its breathtaking landscapes, which include snow-capped mountains, verdant rice terraces, and the desolate Gobi Desert.

Cities in China, the world’s most populous country, are fascinating to visit because of their quick pace of modernization. Its ancient practices and rituals, however, are being practiced today. China, the size of a whole continent, has a landscape, cities, and civilizations that could take a lifetime to discover.

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