Don’t have a whole year to travel the world? How about a couple days. Here are some two, three, and four-day getaways to satisfy your time starved wanderlust around Asia.
Flights from Hong Kong to Tokyo take only 4 hours so it's a great stop for a long weekend. Cathay Pacific flies to Tokyo every Thursday at 4:30pm and returns on Sunday at 6:20pm. Either in the form of sukiyaki or the more exotic sushi, Japanese cuisine in recent years has taken the world by storm. Metropolitan Tokyo is a great choice for a four-day city stop.
Airfare can sometimes seem pricey, but it's worth the trip with one of the most pristine natural landscapes in Southeast Asia. It has a diverse animal kingdom where leopard cats, Javan mongoose, rare species of gibbons and linger could be found. And you'll want to check out the traditional Laos massage therapy in a setting of tropical orchids, mango and coconut trees.
You might think you know Macau, but it's changed hugely in the past few months. If you haven't checked out the new casinos, shopping and plethora of top class gigs and events, now's the time. Macau is close enough for a day trip from Hong Kong, as it takes less than an hour by catamaran, which runs 24/7, or a zippy 15 minutes by helicopter. Or stay overnight in one of the luxurious hotels and split the sightseeing over two days. Nicknamed as the Asian Las Vegas, it's a gambling destination with gigantic casino hotels such as The Venetian, Wynn, and MGM Grand. The mixture of Chinese and Portuguese culture is evident everywhere not least in its one-of-a-kind cuisine.
You can fly to KL in 4 hours from Hong Kong so a long weekend is a perfect fit. For just under $2,000 the Hong Kong Express can fly you out Thursday at 4pm returning Sunday at 9pm. A melting pot of multiculturalism, people from many different backgrounds live alongside each other, highlighting the diversity and richness of its heritage and culture. And there's nothing like a view from the top of the Twin Towers for a breathtaking look at the Kuala Lumpur skyline.
Flying out of HK, a short 2-hour flight on Thursday at 9am, returning Sunday at 8pm, by Philippine Airlines will have you in the water sports capital of the Philippines. Close enough to go for a weekend and enjoy some sun and snorkeling, wreck diving, scuba diving, surfing, sea kayaking and sailing all of which are easy and affordable in Cebu. For nature lovers, it's home to the biggest eagle in the world, the smallest mammal in existence, and 1,600 species of butterflies.
Singapore calls itself "the Red Dot" because that's about all the space it takes up on most world maps. But the small size of this country makes it easy to experience in a long weekend. Singapore Airlines flies inbound at some of the best rates, but do look around. Be it sightseeing, getting fabulous in a spa, working on your tan, or partying in the most luxurious club in town, Singapore is a great city break. Relax in serene gardens alongside sleek skyscrapers and tuck in to such delicacies as chili crab, nasi goreng or satay and taksa.
You haven't seen Asia if you haven't hit the bustling streets of Seoul, South Korea. Jinhae Gunhang Festival from March to April each year floods visitors from all over Asia to witness the spectacular cherry blossom-filled streets. The festival also features assorted cultural and artistic events for visitors to enhance their Korean experience.
Going to Taiwan is a breeze. China Airlines gets you to Taipei at 11am on Friday and returns at 4pm on Sunday. Good food, beautiful coastlines, mountains and friendly people contribute to making Taipei one of the world's favorite holiday destinations. Its historical background also provides a multifaceted culture rich with traditions that no longer exist anywhere else.
In light of the recent upheavals, the one thing the common folks in Bangkok need is your visit. You should have no problems, as a weekend will suffice for a glimpse of one of the world's most popular holiday destinations with more to offer than just beaches and sea. Departing at 9am on Friday and returning at 11am Sunday, flights by Hong Kong Express cost as little as $1,100. Bangkok is home to several Thai historic buildings including The Grand Palace, Wat Pho, and Wat Arun. Splurge at Asia's largest shopping mall - Siam Paragon and bargain hunt at the world's biggest outdoor market - The Chatuchak.
HO CHI MINH CITY