Travel Inspiration

The Most Beautiful Cities in Asia

The Most Beautiful Cities in Asia

Asia, a continent steeped in ancient traditions and vibrant cultures, is home to some of the most breathtaking cities in the world. From the towering skylines of modern metropolises to the serenity of historic capitals, each city offers a captivating blend of history, architecture, natural wonders and culinary delights. Every street corner reveals a new story and every step uncovers a hidden gem. Read on to learn more about the most beautiful cities in Asia. 


  1. Kyoto, Japan
  2. Jaipur, India
  3. Bangkok, Thailand
  4. Hoi An, Vietnam
  5. Hong Kong, China


Kyoto, Japan

Kyoto is without a doubt one of most beautiful cities in Asia. Situated in the heart of Japan, it’s a futuristic spot that blends centuries-old tradition with modern life. From iconic shrines and imperial palaces to serene gardens and traditional kaiseki dining, Kyoto offers a sensory feast for all. The two must-see temples here are Kinkaku-ji Temple, also known as the Golden Pavilion which is adorned in shimming gold leaf, and Ginkaku-ji, the Silver Pavilion, which is surrounded by meticulously designed gardens. While they each attract millions of visitors each year, they both offer a tranquil retreat for contemplation. If you’re visiting Kyoto in spring, you’ll be lucky enough to see the city burst into colour as the cherry blossoms bloom. Fully immerse yourself in this spectacle by gathering under the trees in Maruyama Park or strolling along the Philosopher's Path which is transformed into a tunnel of pink petals. Make sure to wander through the narrow streets of Gion, the Geisha district, lined with wooden machiya houses and decorated with pretty lanterns. Before you leave, attend a performance of classical music or indulge in a delicious kaiseki meal – a multi-course dining experience that consists of a series of small, meticulously prepared dishes. 


Jaipur, India

Known as the 'Pink City' for its terracotta-colored buildings, Jaipur is a blur of vibrant hues and magnificent architecture. It’s the thrumming capital of India’s princely state, Rajasthan, and has a particularly rich royal heritage to its name. This high-tempo destination is home to a number of opulent palaces that highlight the grandeur and architectural prowess of the Rajput rulers. From the Amber Fort, with its intricate marble and sandstone carvings, to the extravagant Hawa Mahal, with its iconic honeycomb facade, there are so many jewels to explore. Make sure you wander through the labyrinth of narrow lanes in the Old City to see Johari Bazaar, a bustling market renowned for its exquisite jewellery and gemstones. Alternatively, immerse yourself in the vibrant chaos of Bapu Bazaar, where you can shop for Jaipur's famous block-printed fabrics. Want to escape the crowds? Find solace in the Sisodia Rani Garden, a serene spot surrounded by lush greenery and adorned with beautiful murals depicting the love story of Radha and Lord Krishna. 


Bangkok, Thailand

Next up on our picks of the most beautiful cities in Asia is the bustling metropolis of Bangkok. The frenzied capital of Thailand pulsates with energy and offers a vibrant tapestry of colours, flavours and cultural wonders. Whether you’re visiting ancient temples and majestic palaces or strolling through bustling markets and lively streets, there are so many memory making moments to experience. Admire the magnificent Grand Palace, with its intricate golden spires, or Wat Phra Kaew, a temple that’s home to one of the largest reclining Buddha statues in the world. Then spend a few hours exploring Bangkok’s iconic floating markets, such as Damnoen Saduak, where traditional wooden boats are laden with fresh produce, souvenirs and delicious street food. It’s a sensory overload that’s not to be missed.


Hoi An, Vietnam

Nestled on the central coast of Vietnam is Hoi An: a UNESCO World Heritage site with well-preserved historic architecture and an old-world charm. Head to the Ancient Town and you’ll be transported back to the 15th century, when this popular tourist destination once thrived as a bustling trading port. It’s home to a few iconic landmarks, including the Japanese Covered Bridge – an elegant wooden bridge decorated with intricate carvings and Fukian Assembly Hall – an ornate place of worship dedicated to a sea goddess. On the 14th day of each lunar month, the streets of Hoi An are lined with handcrafted lanterns that illuminate the town in a kaleidoscope of colours and floating lanterns are released on the Thu Bon River, creating an enchanting display of flickering lights. Like the thought of swaying palm trees and turquoise waters? Head to An Bang Beach for an afternoon of relaxation, less than two miles from the high-speed city centre. 


Hong Kong, China

We couldn’t complete our list of the most beautiful cities in Asia without mentioning Hong Kong. Nestled on the southeastern coast of China and often referred to as the Pearl of the Orient, this dazzling cityscape offers a unique blend of ancient traditions and futuristic innovation. Each neighbourhood has it’s own vibe in this city of contrasts. Central is home to gleaming office towers and designer boutiques, Sheung Wan is lined with traditional shops and ancient temples, and Mong Kok offers lively markets and street food stalls. If you’re looking for some serenity, you’ll want to explore the Stanley district, with its beautiful beach and waterfront promenade. And don’t miss a trip to Victoria Peak, the city's highest point, for awe-inspiring panoramic views across the surrounding landscape. While you’re up there, keep an eye out for the iconic International Commerce Centre, as well as the Bank of China Tower amongst the sea of towering skyscrapers and space-age modern buildings. If you’re around in the evening, enjoy a cruise along Victoria Harbour and witness the Symphony of Lights, a dazzling multimedia show that illuminates the city's waterfront.


Header image © Jérôme Galland