Comprising 11 countries of impressive diversity in culture and history, Southeast Asia has something for every traveler. Picking the region's most beautiful places is no mean feat!
Southeast Asia's vast territory endows the region with some of the most beautiful natural scenic wonders on earth. Towering mountains, glistening beaches, enchanting lakes, and virgin rainforest parks make up some of the most awe-inspiring natural attractions in Southeast Asia.
Here is our pick of the 30 most breathtaking places across Southeast Asia, including popular tourist hotspots and hidden gems.
1. Ko Lanta, Thailand — A Pristine and Beautiful Beach
If you're tired of the crowds and bustle of Krabi and Phuket, take the ferry to Ko Lanta, a large and largely untouched island with endless views.
Rent a motorbike to explore this pristine island, take a leisurely walk on Long Beach, spend an afternoon snorkeling in the water, or hike inland through dense jungles and visit some beautiful waterfalls.
Whether you're traveling alone, on your honeymoon, or with the family, there's something for every traveler on this gorgeous island.
2. Halong Bay, Vietnam — The World's Most Beautiful Karst Landscapes
Halong Bay is a natural wonder renowned for its towering limestone karsts and tiny islets. It was listed among the New Seven Wonders of Nature in 2011. If you are looking for a place to immerse yourself in nature, don't miss Halong Bay.
The best way to explore the bay is by boat. Take a cruise and spend a few days relaxing on the beautiful beach, exploring caves on the islets, visiting floating villages, or having a go at kayaking.
3. Luang Prabang, Laos — A Blend of Historical Heritage and Gorgeous Landscapes
Luang Prabang is a delicate and quaint ancient town situated in a valley along the Mekong River. It is the oldest surviving town in Laos, with a history of more than 1,000 years.
This town represents Laos's historical heritage, but is also a window onto the enchanting world of the country's Buddhist population in modern times. Monks proceed through the streets lined with golden-roofed temples and magnificent colonial and Lao architecture, collecting alms (offerings)from devout Buddhists.
Head out of town to admire gorgeous waterfalls, go trekking or mountain-biking in green mountains, take a kayaking trip, or watch the sunrise or set over the Mekong River.
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My husband and my Thailand trip was fantastic, stress-free and educational thanks to the amazing team coordinated by Albee at Asia Highlights. The whole team was incredibly accessible, responsive, sensitive to our needs and lovely to work with. End-to-end, the trip was truly remarkable and the knowledgeable and dynamic tour guides and drivers made it especially memorable!More
AndrewsFamily, Oct 2023
Informative & Thorough / Thanks Sharon!
Sharon the advisor that helped me was so thorough & informative and explained the details of the tour including questions about visas and what is included vs what is not included in the tour packages. I would recommend them to explain tour packages that would fit the schedule of your pending travels.More
Chris, Sep 2023
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I worked directly with Monica in Asia Highlights. She was incredibly helpful and answered all of my questions quickly. Working with her made the whole process easy and we are so excited for our trip!More
Diana B, Sep 2023
Stress free Thailand
Alisa has organised our 14 day Thailand holiday for 2024 for my family & I. She has been very accommodating & super quick with all of our requests & we cannot wait for a stress free holiday! Thank you Alisa!More
Alana Mitchell, Sep 2023
Family Trip to Thailand-Cambodia
All of our guides were very nice and knowledgeable, but we have a special mention to our guide in Cambodia, Chan, he was very kind with us and it was very amusing. He went the extra mile for us. We really enjoyed our holidays!More
José Antonio Carrillo de la Pl, Sep 2023
Asia Highlights and Sharon
Asia Highlights, specifically Sharon, has been wonderfully helpful as we get ready for a 2024 excursion to Thailand. We are beyond excited, and much of that has to do with the personalized attention that we have experienced with Sharon. She has been extremely responsive, obliging, and focused as she helped us design a tailor made itinerary. All of our questions have been addressed, our needs have been met, and the path has now been set for a very exciting trip.... thanks to Sharon.More
Marcy Hoenig, Sep 2023
I was planning a trip to Thailand to…
I was planning a trip to Thailand to especially see the Lantern Festival this year for our birthdays!! It’s been on our bucket list, but we were completely lost on how to go about planning for our trip. We’ve never really booked tours before but Alisa was extremely helpful, knowledgeable, flexible and efficient in providing all the information we needed to make our decision on the best tours and tickets to purchase. Thank you so much!!More
https://www.trustpilot.com/reviews/64d9a5a4657e4b39f768a21e, Aug 2023
I would definitely recommend Asia…
All of our guides were wonderful (Mr. Bank - Bangkok and Ms. Kai in Phuket & Khao Sok plus antoher guide who assisted in Koh Samui). Sharon took care of tours, private drivers, flights and hotels within Thailand and our trip went off without a hitch. The hotels were great and the transportation always arrived on time and with a clean,More
Guinevere Provance, Aug 2023
WOW! I’ve traveled Asia some & I must say Sharon & Asia Highlights made this trip so much more enjoyable and easyMore
Stephen Hollis, Aug 2023
Alisa has has been great to work with
Alisa with Asia Highlights has has been great to work with. Very friendly and responsive.More
Ana Rausch, Aug 2023
Using Sharon right now to book our…
Using Sharon right now to book our upcoming trip to Thailand. She has booked everything that we asked for. Has answered all of my inquiries, which has been many! Looking forward to having a great girls trip in ThailandMore
Tracy, Aug 2023
Thailand, Singapore, Bali
In Thailand, Tanny and Nori(Suparp), were both incredible! They were both fun, funny, and full of knowledge and made sure we got the full experience. They went the extra mile and always made sure we had cold bottled water and towels to cleanse our hands. In Singapore, Nicole was an absolute gem. She was so kind and knowledgeable and guided us in the right direction to make our day as enjoyable as possible. She helped us choose a top notch local lunch and coffee spot in China Town and taught us so much about the country! In Bali, Emon was an absolute joy. He was very knowledgeable and kind and absolutely made sure we were feeling comfortable and was willing to be flexible with us. He was fun to converse with and made our time traveling between destinations so enjoyable! I cannot recommend Asia Highlights enough! Accommodations, travel arrangements and guided tours were all a breeze.More
Cassi Thunker, Jul 2023
Very supportive ! I have received eticket for Sky Lattern Festival very fastMore
Chi?n Nguy?n Ng?c, Jul 2023
My experience in Chang Mai with Asia Highlights
I greatly enjoyed my experience with Asia Highlights for a trip I booked to Thailand.All of my interests were catered too. My guide in Chang Mai Gemma was excellent.I truly felt the soul of Thailand culture and Buddhism.More
Richard, Jul 2023
A pleasure to plan with
Well, this has been a painless and pleasurable process to find such a wonderful company. I had specific dates and places to be and Sharon worked with me diligently to refine the schedule and costs to suit my travel needs and budget. She informed me of a special tour on the dates I am to be in Thailand and I added that to my previous plans.More
Chris Williams, Jul 2023
Large multi-generational holiday in Thailand
The holiday was wonderful. Our guides, Mr Monchai (Bangkok), and Ms Tipagorn (Tippy) (Chiang Mai) were exceptional. Travelling in a large multigenerational group with many children requires patience and our guides truly understood that. Mr Monchai and Ms Tippy shared their extensive knowledge of the many wonderful places we visited, and were flexible to take us to additional places along the way based on discussions. While everyday was busy, having them greet us with patience and a smile truly made this a memorable holiday. The hotels we stayed at were equally wonderful and went above and beyond to celebrate not only my parents 50th anniversary but also celebrate 2 milestone birthdays that occurred. We will cherish this holiday for many years to come. We hope to use Asia Highlights again.More
CL, Jul 2023
I never used a travel agent in my life
I never used a travel agent in my life, but Sharon for Asia Highlights did a phenomenal job helping planning and coordination a family vacation. The best part of working with Sharon was that she maintained an open line of communication and provided answers to my question well within 12-24 hours. Additionally, Sharon was flexible and customized our vacation to my families needs. Overall great experience.More
Antione Barry, Jul 2023
Great company to plan a trip to Southeast Asia!
Sharon Haung has been wonderful to work with! Very patient and accommodating. Responds immediately given time change and is prepared, prompt, and professional.More
Debi Hinerfeld, Jul 2023
We took a 15 days trip (10 days Vietnam and 5 days Thailand …
It was an amazing experience the guides and drivers were there awaiting for us at each airoport for a transfer to the hotels also on time for all the tours all the guides were so lovely , very experienced and spoke very good English , one of the days on tour in Thailand I lost my phone in a temple in Bangkok mr chai went out of his way in a middle of thousands of visitors and managed to find an bring it back to me I found that amazing , also while on a trip I contacted Jason li out tour organizer few time via whatup and he replied and helped on the spot I recommend asiahilights 150% The quality of the service hotels the guides the drivers outstanding From start to finish ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT ????More
SIMO el ghobar, Jun 2023
Wonderful Guides and Experience
Our large group arrived in Bangkok with Tanni as our guide. She was wonderful! An absolute joy to spend time with. She is knowledgeable, kind, and extremely funny. I don’t know what we would have done without her! After Bangkok, we traveled to Chang Mai, where Indy was our tour guide. She was a delight! She is kind, knowledgeable, and so patient. Our trip to Thailand was an adventure of a lifetime and these two women helped make it memorable. I would definitely use Asia Highlights for any future travel in Asia.More
Jessica Bennett, Jun 2023
4. Angkor Wat, Cambodia — an Ancient Temple City
Angkor Wat is an ancient city in Cambodia, and it is home to the world's largest religious monument with hundreds of ancient temples and religious structures.
A visit to the site is a fascinating journey into Cambodia's intriguing past. Don't miss a chance to see the sunrise or set at Angkor Wat, jump on a bicycle to explore some of the less-visited temples, or take a helicopter or hot air balloon trip for a birds' eye view of the archaeological park.
5. Bali, Indonesia — Island of the Gods
Bali, known as the "Island of the Gods," is one of the most beautiful places in the world. Blessed with azure seas, golden beaches, diverse water sports, and rich culture, Bali is the most popular island holiday destination in Indonesia, and it isn't hard to see why.
Whatever you want to do, you will probably find an opportunity to do it in Bali, from surfing and diving to wildlife spotting. Take a month off to explore the 'Island of the Gods.'
6. Hoi An, Vietnam — A Relaxing and Peaceful Town
If you are looking for a relaxing vacation in Vietnam, look no further than Hoi An. This UNESCO World Heritage Site offers a quiet, peaceful setting.
The narrow streets of the charming old town are easily navigated on foot, or you can spend time by the river and visit beautiful temples and picturesque French colonial homes.
7. Inle Lake, Myanmar — A Tranquil Water World
Inle Lake is Myanmar's water world, which is unique for its floating gardens, stilt villages, and Buddhist monasteries that tower above the water, and the Intha fisherman rowing their boats with one leg while using both hands to fish.
The best way to explore the vast and tranquil lake is by a boat. It is a special experience to stay in one of over-the-water hotels.
8. Mount Rinjani, Indonesia—An Astonishing Volcano
If you love trekking, consider a visit to Mount Rinjani in Indonesia, which is considered one of the best treks in Southeast Asia.
Towering above the northern half of Lombok, Mount Rinjani (3,726m) is Indonesia's second-tallest volcano. A climb to the top will reward you with a breathtaking view of the crescent shaped lake below, which is one of the best views in the country.
9. Phang Nga Bay, Thailand— A Scenic Marine National Park
Phang Nga Bay is famous for its distinct limestone formations rising out of emerald-green water. It is a huge marine national park, consisting of 42 islands and islets. It became famous following the 1974 James Bond film "The Man with the Golden Gun."
If you are staying in Krabi, Phi Phi, or Phuket, it's worth taking a day trip to the bay. You can take a boat trip to enjoy the spectacular scenery, explore intriguing caves and lagoons, relax on tiny secluded beaches, and ride canoes paddled by locals.
10. Khao Sok National Park, Thailand— Where Nature Meets Adventure
Khao Sok National Park in southern Thailand is an amazing place that will appeal to nature lovers and thrill seekers alike. Natural wonders abound, including the world's oldest evergreen rainforest, huge limestone mountains, hidden waterfalls, and caves.
You can explore the national park by bike, trek through the jungle, or go kayaking and tubing on the river. Organized elephant encounters are another highlight of the park.
11. Phi Phi Islands, Thailand — Thailand's Most Famous Island Paradise
If you are traveling in southern Thailand, don't miss the Phi Phi Islands, just a 45-minute speedboat trip or a 90-minute ferry ride from either Phuket or Krabi.
It is a small piece of paradise surrounded by vivid turquoise waters and fringed with tropical beaches and stunning rock formations. Whether you are looking for some leisure time at the beach, or seeking adventure, these picture-postcard islands will not disappoint you.
12. Mekong Delta, Vietnam — A World Afloat
A trip to southern Vietnam wouldn't be complete without a trip to the Mekong Delta, a stunning maze of rivers, islets, and small villages with rice paddies and fruit plantations.
It is a great place to experience local life. You can take a sampan ride through natural tunnels to visit on-the-water villages with stilt houses, see floating markets and ancient houses, and go bird watching.
13. Sapa, Vietnam — Home to One of the World's Most Beautiful Rice Terraces
For those who want to indulge in idyllic natural beauty, trek through rice paddies, and learn about the unique culture of ethnic minorities in Vietnam, Sapa is a must-see.
The highlight of this area is the awe-inspiring terraced rice fields, which are renowned among the most beautiful rice terraces in the world. Spend several days taking in the rugged scenery and fresh mountain air to escape from the hustle and bustle of modern life.
14. Bagan, Myanmar— The City of Temple
Bagan is one of the most famous archaeological sites in Southeast Asia. It is home to over 3,500 ancient Buddhist pagodas, temples, and other religious structures.
Make your trip to Bagan even more memorable by adding a hot-air balloon ride over temples, a trip to watching the sunset over the Irrawaddy River, or a bike ride to visit the lesser-known temples.
15. Komodo National Park, Indonesia— Among Seven Wonders of Nature
Komodo National Park was selected as one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991. It was recently named among the World's Top 10Destinations by National Geographic.
For nature lovers, Komodo National Park is nothing short of paradise with so much diversity in one site. An walk in the park brings you face to face with some of the most beautiful birds, deer roaming near the beach, and the famous Komodo Dragons.
It is a unique experience, perfect for nature lovers.
16. El Nido, Philippines — A Gateway to the Sublime
El Nido in Palawan is one of the most beautiful places in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia at large. You can spend 3 to 5 days soaking up its beauty: turquoise waters, hidden lagoons, limestone formations, picture-perfect islands, and amazing wildlife. Enrich your experience with some extra activities, such as kayaking, zip lining, and hiking.
17. Langkawi, Malaysia— Malaysia's Coastal Gem
Langkawi is an archipelago made up of 99 islands located off the coast of Penang in Malaysia. It is famous for its natural peace and beauty, and laid back atmosphere. There you will find beautiful beaches, picturesque paddy fields, and lush tropical rainforests.
Explore the interior of the main island by cable car and walk along the sky bridge to enjoy sweeping vistas of the island.
18. Sand Dunes of Mui Ne, Vietnam— A Taste of the Desert
The seaside town of Mui Ne in Vietnam offers visitors a real treat – a desert with a Sahara-like feel.
Some of the dunes are so high, you can hop on a quad bike or a dune buggy and ride your way around the slopes.
19. Taman Negara Rainforest, Malaysia — Explore the Truly Tropical Life
Taman Negara Rainforest is one of the best destinations in Southeast Asia for those seeking to couple a rainforest adventure with some outdoor pursuits.
Known as one of the most fascinating rainforests on the planet, the 130-million-year-old virgin rainforest fully caters for active holidaymakers, including trekking, fishing, camping, and wildlife spotting. It also has the world's longest canopy walkway.
20. Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, Vietnam— A Cave Explorer's Paradise
Caving enthusiasts will do well to visit Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, home to the world's largest cave system.
In this UNESCO World Heritage Site, you can spend several days exploring Southeast Asia's oldest karst mountains and epic caves with underground rivers and enchanting stone formations.
21. The Cameron Highlands, Malaysia— A Lush Green Heaven
For those who want to escape from the heat of Southeast Asia, the Cameron Highlands is a great option, and the most popular of the highland retreats in Malaysia.
There you can enjoy a cooler climate, stroll through tea plantations, hike through lush forests, and relax in a five-star resort.
22. Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park, Philippines — One of the World's Best Dive Sites
Want to experience one of the most diverse and well-preserved coral reefs on the face of the planet? Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park is the place to be!
It is a must-see for diving enthusiasts looking for amazing reef, big schools of jacks and other fish, and big marine life, like reef sharks, whale sharks, hammerheads, turtles, and mantas.
23. Mondulkiri, Cambodia—Elephant Sanctuary and Jungle Treks
Mondulkiri is an enchanting place where visitors can return to nature. Rolling grassy hills, pine-forested mountains, tranquil rivers, gushing waterfalls, and lush tropical forests abound.
Elephant trekking is a particular highlight, which offers you a chance to get up close to these magnificent mammals.
24. Batanes, Philippines — the Home of the Winds
Looking for a dreamy island getaway where you can escape from the hustle and bustle of city living? Batanes, located in the northern-most part of the Philippines, will not disappoint you.
Apart from the beaches, lagoons, and caves, Batanes's biggest charm comes from the unspoiled beauty and the peaceful lifestyle of its people.
25. Koh Yao Yai, Thailand — the Last of Thailand's Untouched Islands
Located 20 km from Phuket in the middle of the Andaman Sea lies Koh Yao Yai, a peaceful island so off the beaten track that it is largely overlooked by tourists who prefer the buzz of Thailand's other islands.
There you can enjoy spectacular crowd-free beaches, rubber and coconut plantations, picturesque sunsets, and amazing sea life, as well as fitting in plenty outdoor pursuits, such as kayaking, scuba diving, and island hopping.
26. The Red Lotus Sea, Thailand—Beautiful Red Horizon
If you are visiting Thailand in the period from November to February, you cannot miss the Red Lotus Sea, which is one of the loveliest seasonal attractions in Southeast Asia.
A carpet of full pink lotus blooms stretches far off into the distance. The best way to enjoy the fairytale-like visions is with a boat ride across the expansive lake. It is highly recommended to get there early for sunrise.
27. Champasak, Laos — An Amazing Land
Located along the Mekong River in the southwestern region of Laos, Champasak is home to some of the most beautiful waterfalls, thick green jungles, French colonial ruins, and an ancient temple thought to be the blueprint for Angkor Wat.
From Champasak you can take a tour to visit the ruins of Wat Phou, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and also cruise along the Mekong.
28. Koh Rong Sanloem, Cambodia— Cambodia's Most Beautiful Island
Cambodia's hidden gem is Koh Rong Sanloem, an island still so underdeveloped that it has no roads – and no Wi-Fi.
Immerse yourself in its gorgeous beaches and crystal clear blue water. Jungle trekking, kayaking, diving, and snorkeling are also on offer on this island paradise.
29. Bai Xep, Vietnam — An Isolated Fishing Village
Bai Xep is a remote fishing village located in central Vietnam, about 10 km(6 mi) from Quy Nhon City. If you are looking for a true Vietnamese beach village experience you can't beat Bai Xep!
It is a great place to relax on a pristine beach, enjoy plenty of fresh seafood, go hiking to contemplate the hidden waterfall, and learn the local fishing technique.
30. Atauro Island, East Timor — An Eco-Traveler's Paradise
East Timor's Atauro Island is a largely undiscovered travel gem lying in the South Pacific. It appears to have the most biodiverse waters anywhere in the world. There are many diving sites around the island, which allow you to witness the underwater treasures firsthand.
Visit These Beautiful Places with Us
Planning a trip to cover all these naturally beautiful places on your own may seem like a daunting prospect. Our travel advisors can help you with an itinerary and personal advice. They can help you choose the best places according to your interests, and plan and arrange the trip you want.
Why Travel with Asia Highlights (98.8% positive customer reviews among 10,000+)
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