At around this time every year, everyone in the travel industry awaits the Lonely Planet’s announcement of the countries they think are primed to be ‘hot travel spots’ for the coming year. It’s not that the LP is the definite authority on travel tends by any means but the guys behind the famous travel books do always seem to have their finger on the pulse when it comes to emerging trends. This year is no different.
Sri Lanka, one of our current best-sellers, has come up tops of the pops for 2019 and we couldn’t be happier. This glorious little island has been playing the quiet achiever for some time now and it’s about high-time it was recognised for the fantastic travel hub it is. In Lonely Planet’s eclectic list of top 10, we’ve also bagged two other favourites, namely Kyrgyzstan – the heart and soul of the historic Silk Route – and Indonesia, a sensational island-nation that has so much to offer outside of its uber-popular hub of Bali.
Having Lonely Planet award 3 of our stellar destinations for 2019 is satisfying and totally inspiring.
And here’s why…
One of our Chimu Adventures team members recently took a family trip to Sri Lanka and, even though she’d heard all the hoohaa about the place from us here at Get About Asia, was left gobsmacked by the experience. We TOLD you this place rocks for family vacations!
Sri Lanka is a jewel of a place because it offers the best of Asia in a relatively compact area. Drop-dead-gorgeous beachside resorts, incredible jungle safaris in search of wild leopards, elephants and bears (all the while staying in luxury tented camps), ancient cities brimming with temples, stupas and religious significance, UNESCO-sites galore and some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet. We rate Sri Lanka as one of the top destinations in Asia for the over-55s because the infrastructure is sound, services excellent and options varied. Plus, Sri Lanka is unique in that you could be feasting your eyes on high-altitude tea plantations in the morning, pop into a national park for a stunning safari in the afternoon and enjoy a delicious sundowner on a dreamy beach, all in the same day if you so wish.
But we suggest you take your time in Sri Lanka – the country has much to offer.
See our collection of 10, 12 and 14-day Sri Lanka Adventures.
The legendary Silk Road through the Stans has received a lot of press in the last few years and certainly rising ranks swiftly in tourism circles as an unrivalled, adventure-filled destination. What’s not to love? Ancient walled cities drenched in history, enigmatic nomadic cultures not found elsewhere and astonishing natural wonders you’ve probably never heard about. Kyrgyzstan is the most arresting Stan of all in many ways, home to a spectacular mountain range reminiscent of Switzerland, dotted with sparkling sapphire lakes and brimming with traditional yurts and grazing yaks. It’s another world, out here, so far removed from the one we all know and live in. Wild Kyrgyzstan is a visual feast like no other and we’re thrilled to see Lonely Planet finally recognise this part of the world and this destination in particular.
A journey of discovery around Lake Issyk-Kul and the Fergana Valley is the stuff one travels half-way around the world to experience and Kyrgyzstan, as far as we’re concerned, is totally deserving of all the accolades.
See where Wild Kyrgyzstan can take you
Everyone who’s been to Indonesia thinks they know Indonesia even if they’ve only ever been to Bali. But less us tell you: combined, we’ve been to Indonesia over two dozen times on two dozen different trips to two dozen destinations and even we realise we don’t know Indonesia. One of the most magical yet misunderstood destinations in all of Asia, Indonesia is an incredible cultural hub with a wealth of historical and natural splendours to offer. Get off the well-trodden tourist trail in Indonesia and you’ll discover a stunning world you never even knew existed.
Get About Asia’s co-founder, Greg Carter, recently took his family on an 8-day voyage to the magnificent Komodo islands and we haven’t stopped hearing about it since the moment he returned. This is an incredible journey through one of the world’s most unspoiled marine parks, defined by its rich coral gardens teeming with unique marine life not to mention a wealth of spectacular islands and fascinating tribespeople. When Lonely Planet decided to include Indonesia in its top 10 most inspiring destinations for 2019, it’s these remote clusters of paradise on earth that they were thinking about.
See our Dances, Dragons and Magical Lakes adventure to understand what the fuss is all about.
Three stellar destinations in Asia all perfectly suitable for the over 55s and all offering a mind-blowing array of captivating travel experiences.
Author: Laura Pattara
“After spending years taking short vacations in Asia, Laura finally managed her dream, travelling extensively through Central Asia, China and Southeast Asia on a 3-year-long overlanding adventure that she describes as “SIMPLY EPIC”. Following in the footsteps of ancient traders, Laura meandered along the famed Silk Road through the Stans, delighted her tastebuds for 8000km across China (no mean feat) visited an insane number of temples in Southeast Asia, all the while snorkelling, diving and beach-bumming along the way. Tickled pink by history and culture, Laura loves off-the-beaten-path destinations in Asia and anything that isn’t gift-wrapped for tourists”