Spanning greater than 17 million sq. miles, the world’s largest continent is dwelling to over half of the earth’s inhabitants. This is Asia: a gorgeous, various, dynamic place that’s dwelling to lots of the world’s oldest civilizations — and a few of as we speak’s most influential, culturally wealthy cities.
Every yr for our World’s Best Awards survey, Travel + Leisure asks readers to weigh in on journey experiences across the globe — to share their opinions on the highest cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airways, and extra. Readers rated cities on their sights and landmarks, tradition, delicacies, friendliness, purchasing, and general worth.
Related: The World’s Best Awards 2019
The nation best-represented among the many finest cities in Asia is Japan, with three cities in the highest ten — no shock, to our editors at the very least, contemplating it was Travel + Leisure’s Destination of the Year for 2018. Two of them, Tokyo and Kyoto, are well-known, common stops for U.S. guests on the Japan “tourist circuit.” But one is a more recent improvement: Osaka, a metropolis of three million that, although dwelling to temples, museums, markets, and nightlife, hasn’t made the checklist in latest years. Many respondents famous the pleasant folks (“more so than Tokyo”), the purchasing, and, in fact, its distinctive delicacies. Wrote one reader, “The food is where Osaka shines!”
But in contrast to Japan’s main metropolises, many city facilities on this yr’s checklist of finest cities in Asia don’t bear a lot resemblance to the bustling, concrete jungle concept of “city.” Udaipur, last year’s No. 1 City in Asia, is best identified for its historic palaces and interconnected lakes than it’s for skyscrapers. Ubud, in Bali, is dotted with farms and temples, and Chiang Mai, whereas the most important metropolis in northern Thailand, is skilled by most guests as a gateway to the area’s dense forests and mountains. Siem Reap, a fundamental cease for vacationers headed to Angkor Wat and different Khmer empire complexes, was additionally a favourite; wrote one customer, “There are always festivals and events happening, and we love the market and street food stalls. Having the most famous temples in the world just a few miles away is a giant bonus.”
Travel + Leisure readers’ selection for this yr’s No. 1 is a vacation spot we’ve seen blossoming in latest years — in truth, we named it one of many Best Places to Travel in 2019 — rising from the fifth place spot on final yr’s rankings.
Read on for the complete checklist of the very best cities in Asia.
9. Siem Reap
WBA Hall of Fame honoree. Score: 86.21
WBA Hall of Fame honoree. Score: 86.52
WBA Hall of Fame honoree. Score: 88.42
WBA Hall of Fame honoree. Score: 88.95
2. Chiang Mai
1. Hoi An
There’s rather a lot to like in this central Vietnamese port city, however the outlook hasn’t all the time been so sunny — a decade in the past, many feared Hoi An was on its approach to turning into a glorified vacationer entice overrun with rowdy teams and trinket sellers. Lately, although, the town has been experiencing a resurgence of regionally rooted arts and tradition, manifesting itself in the type of new, regionally centered eating places, experimental cocktail bars, young-gun designers, and boundary-pushing boutiques. Young folks from Hoi An are staying in Hoi An — and a few are even transferring there. It’s even making its title as a seashore resort space, spearheaded by the 2016 renovation of Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai, on an undeveloped stretch of shoreline simply outdoors city. Our readers don’t have anything however love for this place; one respondent wrote, “People are friendly and ready to share their culture,” whereas one other wrote that they had “the best food in Vietnam” throughout their keep.
See all of our readers’ favourite resorts, airways, cruise traces, and extra in the World’s Best Awards for 2019.