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Bali is a living postcard, an Indonesian paradise that feels like a fantasy. Soak up the sun on a stretch of fine white sand, or commune with the tropical creatures as you dive along coral ridges or the colourful wreck of a WWII war ship. On shore, the lush jungle shelters stone temples and mischievous monkeys. The “artistic capital” of Ubud is the perfect place to see a cultural dance performance, take a batik or silver-smithing workshop, or invigorate your mind and body in a yoga class.
Phuket offers a rainbow spectrum of spectacular holiday sights from blue lagoons and pink sunsets to orange-robed monks. Three wheeled-Tuk Tuks, taxis, buses and long tailed boats transport visitors between these marvels. Phuket's south coast offers its most popular beaches. The north is more tranquil. Koh Phi Phi, Phang Nga Bay and Patong Beach are popular spots. Diving, snorkeling, wind surfing and sailing are just a few active options. Inland, forested hills, mountains and cliffs wait to be explored.
You’re on a gorgeous island off the coast of Thailand—it doesn’t get much better than this. Spend the day on a lively, popular beach, or explore the Ang Thong National Marine Park’s secluded lagoons. Looking for romance? Choose a luxurious five-star resort, a simple, secluded bungalow or pretty much anything in between.
Drifting serenely in the Gulf of Thailand, the palm-fringed island of Ko Tao takes its name from the abundant sea turtles that reside on its shores. White sand beaches sheltered by steep hills – some only accessible with four-wheel drive vehicles – and 300 days of sun per year invite long afternoons of lounging.
Gili Trawangan is the hub of the Gili Islands dive industry. There are about a dozen dive shops and schools, all eager to show you the stunning underwater scenery. Après dive, cozy up in a beach bungalow and sip on a tropical drink. Want a teetotaling way to decompress? Twist and pose your way to tranquility in the sacred sanctuary of the Gili Yoga centre.
At only 4.5 miles long, Boracay is small enough to navigate by rented bicycle or motorbike. But don't let its small size fool you—you'll have several excellent beaches to choose from. Yapak Beach is known for beautiful white shells; White Beach has picture-perfect sunsets; and Balinghai Beach is a secluded spot, perfect for honeymooners. As long as you visit during dry season, you'll agree this is one of the best beach destinations in the world.
Forested hills, romantic white-sand beaches and crystal-clear waters greet visitors to tropical Palau Langkawi, the largest of the 99 islands in Langkawi archipelago. Known mysteriously as "Legendary Island" because of myths associated with its ancient geological formations, it drifts serenely alongside Malaysia in the azure Andaman Sea. Sample local cuisine at the night markets, hike to dramatic waterfalls or dive into an underwater marine park to take a guided glimpse at life beneath the sea.
Premium scuba diving and snorkeling are the highlights of the gorgeous Havelock Island, the most popular of the Andaman Islands. Glass-bottomed boats provide a similar up-close marine life experience. Jungle treks and camping are popular landlubbing activities, though the more delicately dispositioned can choose to retire to one of several luxury resorts. Refuel with fresh coconut milk and succulent, just-caught seafood, which dominates every meal.