My Favourite Asian Holiday Destination
19 April 2015
I’ve often been asked where my favourite vacation spot in Asia is. Each time I'm asked that question, I find myself rolling my eyes towards the ceiling, searching for words to try and begin my discourse on how much I love travelling in Asia.
For my first attempt to answer I might be inclined to say Japan, for it’s perfect balance between modern conveniences and well-kept cultural traditions. High speed bullet trains can fly you from one cultural heritage site to another in just a matter of a couple of hours. In the morning you can shop beneath the towering sky scrapers in Tokyo’s chic Ginza district, and in the afternoon have a cup of tea and catch a glimpse of scurrying geishas in Kyoto’s Gion neighbourhood.
On a second thought,I am seduced by the colours and tastes of Thailand. The canals and floating markets around Bangkok make for a most pleasurable and succulent day. And an evening at a ladyboy show is unforgettable. Then again a retreat to charming Chiang Mai in northern Thailand is a promising option as well.
But before I can give a definite answer, my memory takes me to Indonesia and the warmth and friendliness of its people. A trip across Java will leave no one indifferent. And a drive through the interior of Bali to see the Jatiluwih rice fields, a UNESCO cultural landscape, and a visit to Mount Agung, an active volcano and the highest point on the island, will leave you totally stunned.
My decision starts to get even more complicated when I think about the Maldives islands. Powdery, white sand beaches, calm blue lagoons and crystal clear water over coral reefs is just about how I imagine paradise on Earth to be.
My last trip was to China, and it was truly the land of contrasts. It would be practically impossible for me to choose just one favourite destination in China. Each area had its own uniqueness. Beijing had its ultra-modern and futuristic architecture. Xian stood out to me for its cultural heritage. Guilin and the Lee River landscapes were breathtaking and unmatchable. Shanghai seemed like a world of its own. And Huangshan made me feel as if I had climbed to heaven.
In any case, and after careful reflection, I believe I can finally say where my favourite Asian holiday spot is: CHI. Yes, the Spa at Shangri-La hotels. No matter what country I’ve visited, at the end of the day a relaxing visit to CHI, The Spa, at any of the hotels is worth going back to.