Our experts reveal the Asian destinations where you can escape the crowds...
The rule of thumb is the slimmer the Lonely Planet guide, the more reason to go. I was once talking to LP founder Tony Wheeler who said he admired one traveler he'd met whose modus operandi was to go wherever was not mentioned in Lonely Planet.
Check out Hong Kong-based Odyssey Illustrated Guides, they are usually ahead of the curve and remarkably well put-together. Its latest is on Kazakhstan, with due mention of Borat!
Consider Phu Quoc, a former penal colony off Vietnam, which is already developing. The far reaches of Nepal are now back in reach, and watch out for up-country Burma. Planning is in place for a bigger airport for Luang Prabang in Laos.
I'd say nowhere is difficult to get to if you enjoy travelling. For example, there are no non-stop flights to the kingdom of Mustang on the border of Nepal and Tibet and that's the joy of the place.
When visiting countries that are unused to tourists, always be respectful. Use a phrase book and make sure you spend wisely, so that local residents see some of your cash. Read up on where you're going - and something more in-depth than Wikipedia.
In the next few years places such as North Korea, East Timor and Christmas Island will be changed forever, so you should visit now if you can get there.
For general travel tips, I say don't follow the herd, shopping is dull, anywhere labelled "paradise" is probably anything but and walking round with a camcorder affixed to your eye is plain daft.
A relatively undiscovered place in Asia is Taiwan. Actually, it's a popular destination for Asian travelers but this beautiful island seems to be off the radar for the rest of the world. There you can still find some of the oldest Chinese rituals, many of which no longer exist in China or among overseas Chinese communities.
Apart from preserving those Chinese traditions, Taiwan has a colorful culture with a number of diversified ethnic groups. The stunning Yushan Mountain in central Taiwan and Toroko Gorge in the east are well worth a visit.
China will be in the spotlight in the next year and travel is still relatively cheap. It also offers diverse landscapes and activities. Most people only speak Chinese but they're usually friendly to foreigners, and college students are so eager to practice English they will help show you where you want to go.
China's railway system is well developed and reaches most places. If you are looking for more interesting or adventurous means to enter the country, try the Tran-Siberian Railway - a classic route between Europe and Beijing. A jeep or coach along the Karakoram Highway from Pakistan to Xinjiang, or from Kazakhstan via Torugart Pass, allows you to see the most stunning mountains in the world.
Always remember to be open-minded when traveling. Be prepared to speak a few local words in greeting and you will find it breaks down the barriers by making an effort to talk in the local language. After that, you will usually find the locals incredibly hospitable.
There are still so many areas yet to be discovered by travellers in Asia. Mae Sot, for example, is a quiet city located in Thailand's northwest. The major attraction is Wat Phra That Doi Din Kiu, located on a forested hill with views of Burma and the Moei River.
You can check out the local gems and Burmese handicrafts at the nearby Moei River market. The colorful lifestyle of the hill tribe communities, stunning waterfalls, beautiful rock formations and the underground stream of the Mae Usu cave ensure there is plenty to keep you entertained.
Hainan is the only tropical island in China, and it's just a short flight from Hong Kong. This beach resort area has long been popular with mainland residents but is set to attract more and more international tourists with its blue skies and sandy beaches.
Lombok in Indonesia has beautiful unspoiled beaches, varied landscapes and great diving, snorkeling, hiking and surfing without the crowds of neighboring Bali. It won't be long before the crowds follow the surfers and divers who have already discovered this beautiful spot.
Tourism is growing so quickly in Asia that everywhere is changing quite rapidly. One place you should visit as soon as you can is Cambodia. With the introduction of the new combined tourist visa system with Thailand, tourism is set to increase which is sure to result in changes and larger crowds.
Before traveling, be sure to visit a doctor before you go to have the necessary injections and get all of the medication you may need. Having a good medical kit with disinfectant, painkillers etc., could be the best things you ever pack. And carry a change of clothing in your hand luggage, just in case.
See lots of sights but don't pack too much into your itinerary or your suitcase. Be flexible so you always have room for spontaneous side adventures.
One place I would recommend is Bhutan. It is still one of the few undiscovered places in Asia and the world. Then there's the Island of Sumba, in Indonesia, and the backwaters of Kerala in India, where you will find ayurvedic treatments and friendly local people.
Bhutan is still difficult to get to, and hopefully will continue to be so. In India, there are interesting train journeys such as the Palace on Wheels in Rajasthan, and also drives out of Bangalore to Coorg, or to the hill station of Ooty.
My advice for traveling is to be sensitive to the local culture, community and customs. Wear appropriate clothing and be respectful to their ways. That is the enjoyment of being somewhere different. It is their home and you are the visitor.