We travel for many different reasons, among them, experiencing life in a different culture, eating some great food and seeing beautiful sights. The countries of Asia will fulfill all your expectations in this regard. From the ocean beaches of Indonesia and Oman to the Himalayas of Bhutan and the jungles of Malaysia, you’ll find spectacularly beautiful sights.
But beauty is more than just pretty scenery. It might be a traditional tea ceremony in China, gleaming white mosques in Iran, traditional ethnic dances in Vietnam, religious temples in Thailand or a royal palace in India. Plus, reviews from travelers like you frequently comment on how friendly the people in Asian countries are. An overview of the most beautiful countries in Asia:
With more than 17,000 islands making up the country, finding a few beautiful beaches in Indonesia should be a very pleasant task. Everywhere you look, there are oceans and more than a few mountains. Top scenic sites include fishing villages, Dieng Plateau in central Java with its multi-colored lake and Hindu temples, west Sumatra’s Lake Maninjau with break taking views on a twisty winding road that will take your breath away, and Komodo Island, home to the prehistoric Komodo dragon. And don’t forget about Bali with its famous rice terraces and stunning beaches.
What country wouldn’t be beautiful if it were surrounded by mountains such as the Himalayas that ring the tiny kingdom of Bhutan? The architecture is, well, something else, with amazing engineered buildings clinging to mountainsides. Top scenic sights include Paro valley, with its red-roofed temples. From Paro, you can take a two-hour drive to Chelala Pass, seeing grazing yaks in the field. Or you can visit Chockor Valley, aka the Little Switzerland of Asia, seeing pilgrimage sites on the way.
China is a vast country in Asia filled with scenic beauty from one end to the other. From the northeast where the Great Wall snakes over the mountain tops around Beijing to the colorfully designed rice paddies and picturesque minority villages of Yunnan Province, the county is one big scenic spot. You can also get your beautiful fix boating on the Li River lined with karst formations, cruising the Yangtze through the Three Gorges or the fairy wonderland of Jiuzhalgou in Sichuan.
Iran is re-emerging as a tourist hot spot, due in part to the beautiful things you’ll see there. The nation has many beautiful mosques and former palaces, but Iran’s natural beauty may just outshine these magnificent buildings. One pretty place is Badab-e Surt, a natural hot springs in northern Iran. Iran also has many beautiful formal gardens, including the historic Eram Gardens in Shiraz with its gorgeous reflecting pool. Don’t forget the Maranjab Desert where sunsets give new meaning to “spectacular.”
5. The Philippines
The Philippines has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Since the country is made up of 7,101 islands, that’s a lot of beaches to explore. Sunset is a good time to visit the beaches when the skyline is filled with gorgeous colors and fishing boats silhouetted in the foreground. Moving inland you’ll come across rice terraces filling up the hillsides with glorious shades of green. If you go to Bohol, check out the Chocolate Hills, supposedly formed when giants threw boulders at each other.
Not everything beautiful is above the ground. In Vietnam, beautiful sights can be found underground, such as at Sun Doong Cave, the world’s largest cave. Other caves are home to jungles and lakes. Or take a ride up the Mekong River to see scenic “rice bowl” and floating markets that are fascinating to us but oh so common to the Vietnamese. Wherever you go in Vietnam, you’ll stunning views that are even more spectacular at sunset. Vietnamese food is beautiful, too, from street food to spiky fruits like Durian.
Oman is considered one of the most beautiful countries on the Arabian Peninsula. The Sultanate of Oman, the country’s official name, is located at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, so you’ve got great water views. Turn around and you’ll see mountains in the distance, with desert in-between. Picturesque fishing villages, old towns, white mosques glistening in the sun and lots of green combine to make Oman a scenic place to visit. Friendly people and good food also contribute to the harmony of this Arab country.
Malaysia has breathtaking scenery inside its borders, so if time is short, you need to pick your scenery carefully. If you like beautiful beaches, head to Langkawi in the archipelago. It’s got beaches made of fine sand and beautifully clear water; it’s close to tropical jungles with wonderfully colorful flora. If you want to see historic buildings, check out A Famosa, centuries old fortress in Malacca. And if you’re after green hills and mountains, head to the Cameron Highlands with its large tea plantations.
Beauty takes on many faces when it comes to the mountainous country of Nepal, considered one of the most scenic countries on earth. Colorful prayer flags blowing in the breeze is but one of the awesome sights you’ll find here. Since it’s nestled in the Himalayas, the land-locked Nepal obviously has majestic mountain scenery, from snow-covered peaks to the valleys below. Bring your hiking boots so you can get up close and personal with nature here, from the stunning waterfalls to the forests that are rich in biodiversity.
Armenia, home of the fabled Noah’s Ark, is a uniquely beautiful country in Asia to visit. Back in 301, Armenia became the first country in the world to adopt Christianity as its state religion, so you’ll find some beautiful historic churches here. The scenery is awesome, especially the Armenian Plateau which straddles the Alps and Himalayan mountains. Throughout the country, you’ll find waterfalls, rivers, springs, mountains, valleys, verdant forests and more. Whether you wonder at the blueness of Lake Sevan or hike Mount Aragats, you’ll be amazed at the beautiful sights.
Lush jungles. Sprawling coffee plantations. The Taj Majal in the moonlight. A high saline lake. Artfully draped saris worn by the women. All these sights and more contribute to making India a most beautiful country. This Asian country may be densely populated and many of its people poor, but it is a rich country in terms of natural beauty. It is a country that is rich in culture and tradition too, with beautiful national parks filled with beautiful animals like the sleek Bengal tiger.
Thailand is the most visited country in Southeast Asia and for good reason. You can find almost anything here: Thick jugle, crystal blue waters, stunning islands, fascinating ruins and exotic cities. Many travellers come to Thailand and extend their stay well beyond their original plans and others never find a reason to leave.
A safe haven in a region of conflict, Jordan has delighted visitors for centuries with its ancient sites, friendly towns and inspiring desert landscapes. The large collection of archaeological sites range from important biblical attractions to the famous Petra with its temples carved into the rock. Take a ride through Wadi Rum at sunset and it’s easy to see why Lawrence of Arabia was so drawn to this land of weathered sandstone and reddened dunes.
Russia is a vast country that stretches from Eastern Europe through Siberia to the Bering Sea. From big towns to quaint rural villages, there is a stark, primitive beauty to this harsh land. There is far more to Russia than Red Square. The county has verdant forests, high mountains, stunning red rock formations and rolling farmlands. You’ll want to see everything from Lake Baikal and the Sakhalin Peninsula in the east to the long curved sand dunes along the Baltic Sea to the stone statues on the Man-Pupu-Ner Plateau.
One of the most beautiful sights you’ll see in Japan, the land of geishas and tea, is Mount Fuji. The view is most awesome when you’re flying into or out of Narita international Airport. Of course, you’ll also get great views should you hike to the top of Fuji. Spring is an especially beautiful time to visit this island nation; that’s when millions of cherry blossoms are in bloom. Mountains, lush green farmlands and ancient temples also contribute to the beauty of Japan, where technology is much admired.