There are ideal getaways on almost any budget in the region
OFTEN travellers seek the same tried-and-tested locations, and getting away means sharing a hotspot with thousands of other tourists. But the alternative — going off the beaten track — can be far more rewarding.
According to a recent Agoda Travel and Tech study, 54 per cent of Malaysians like to travel to lesser-known destinations.
Getting away from the hustle and bustle doesn’t mean giving up great experiences when it comes to Southeast Asia.
The region is dotted with many remote and luxurious locations for travellers who don’t want to compromise on the good things in life but still want a unique holiday.
Malaysian travellers can get a luxury or one-of-a-kind experience on almost any budget, depending on where they want to go.
From the ubiquitous Bali, through to little known islands in Thailand and the Philippines, there are hidden gems dotted all over Southeast Asia for even the local tourists to discover.
Here are suggestions for your next vacation.
1. ALISHAN HOUSE, TAIWAN
Ideally situated near the picture-perfect Alishan National Scenic Area, it means travellers can choose to explore the serene mountains or take the day to relax in front of the panoramic views.
Imagine waking up to the glorious sight of Taiwan’s highest mountain, Yushan. Oh, what a feeling!
While you’re here, visit the top attractions including Jhushan for a hike or go on the Giant Trees Trail. Visit Shoujhen Temple (which is the largest temple in Alishan) or the two scenic ponds in the forest known as the Two Sisters.
2. SIX SENSES CON DAO, VIETNAM
Right on the shoreline of white sandy beaches, surrounded by majestic mountains, this tucked-away resort on the island of Con Dao is the quintessential beach escape.
For privacy, each villa in Six Senses Con Dao has its own pool.
This is perfect for those who want to go somehere quiet and enjoy each other in a romantic island. Details at www.agoda.com/en-au/six-senses-yao-noi/hotel/phuket-th.html
3. PANGKOR LAUT RESORT, MALAYSIA
Another honeymoon spot and it’s located right here.
With only a fraction of the island developed, the multiple award-winning and privately-owned resort island is a perfect getaway spot for couples.
The access to the resort is only available via speedboat or helicopter. It’s the ultimate relaxation spot.
4. MUTHI MAYA FOREST POOL VILLA RESORT, THAILAND
Located in Khao Yai, one of the most scenic and peaceful destinations in Thailand, the resort is surrounded by tropical gardens.
For guests looking for tranquillity plus fun-filled adventure, spend the day by your villa’s private pool or pick from elephant-trekking, river-rafting, kayaking or rock-climbing activities.
There’s more. At Khao Yai, you can experience Italy at Primo Piazza, visit a winery at PB Valley, tour Asia’s Hobitton and many more exciting places.
5. ATMOSPHERE RESORTS AND SPA, DUMAGUETE, THE PHILIPPINES
Set on an old coconut plantation, the venue gives travellers the choice of stepping into the resort’s breathtaking underwater world, surrender to the spa, join a yoga class or simply relax by the infinity pool.
Located in Dumaguete, a small coastal located in the central of Visayan, go to Redrock Falls to see a stunning waterfall and hotspring, tour a geothermal power plant and enjoy the Twin Lakes.
6. LA VISTA HIGHLANDS MOUNTAIN RESORT, THE PHILIPPINES
Nestled in the heart of San Carlos, this is an ideal spot for those looking for seclusion but not isolation.
The mountain location provides an escape from the hustle and bustle of San Carlos City, plus a welcome reprieve from the hot Filipino weather.
Details at www.agoda.com/en-au/la-vista-highlands-mountain-resort/hotel/ san-carlos-negros-occidental-ph.html
7. DEDON ISLAND, THE PHILLIPINES
This private paradise on the southern tip of reef-ringed Siargao is blessed with lush tropical jungles, white-sandy beaches and countless surfing breaks.
No need to open your wallet or sign for a drink or meal. Just pay a single flat rate to cover all expenses.
Details at www.agoda.com/en-au/dedon-island-resort/hotel/ siargao-islands-ph.html