The 8 best places to travel in Asia in 2020

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The northern Indian state of Rajasthan is one of Travel & Leisure’s best places to visit in 2020. Getty Images/Sean3810
  • Travel & Leisure released its list of 50 Best Places to Travel in 2020.
  • The list is compiled by Travel & Leisure editors as well as travel writers, advisors, and other experts.
  • Destinations were chosen based on their prominence in the “global conversation” as well as “perennial favourites that are reinventing themselves in exciting ways,” according to a press release.
  • Eight Asian destinations made the list, including Sri Lanka, Singapore, and Kyoto, Japan.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Travel & Leisure has released its list of 50 Best Places to Travel in 2020.

The list, which is compiled by Travel & Leisure editors as well as travel writers, advisors, and other experts, includes places that are “at the forefront of the global conversation” as well as “perennial favourites that are reinventing themselves in exciting ways,” according to a press release.

In Asia, eight destinations made the list, including Sri Lanka, Singapore, and Kyoto, Japan.

Here are the best places to travel in Asia in 2020, according to Travel & Leisure.


Beijing, China

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In the past year, China’s capital has seen the opening of a $US25 billion, 7.5 million-square-foot new airport designed by Zaha Hadid as well as a new Mandarin Oriental Wangfujing, which “has a boutique hotel feel, with 73 capacious rooms, yet offers big-time amenities like a state-of-the-art spa, a sleek fitness centre with a lap pool, two on-site restaurants, and a library,” Scott Bay wrote for Travel & Leisure.


Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

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“Travel to Malaysia, and you’re likely to be headed to its alluring beaches or the historic Straits cities of Penang and Melaka,” Carey Jones wrote for Travel & Leisure. “But a recent explosion of chic hotels and restaurants has put Kuala Lumpur in the spotlight.”

Chic boutique hotels as well as Four Seasons and the W opened locations in Kuala Lumpur in 2018, and the dining scene is having a moment, Jones reported.


Kyoto, Japan

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“As visits to Kyoto continue to climb, a trend that will only intensify when the Olympics come to Japan this summer, innovative hotels and museums are opening,” Lawrence Osborne wrote for Travel & Leisure.

These openings will include an Park Hyatt Kyoto, an Ace Hotel, and Aman Kyoto, which sits in the forested foothills northeast of the city, according to Osborne.

“The Aman’s guest pavilions, all minimalist in style and largely made of cedar, are set along a mountain stream,” Osborne wrote. “The surrounding garden is landscaped with monumental stone walls and pathways … The whole effect is one of simplicity and understatement.”


Singapore

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In 2019, Singapore’s iconic Raffles Hotel reopened after a two-year renovation, and next year the city-state will introduce new green spaces, pedestrian walkways, and reconstructed railway stations, Lila Harron Battis reported for Travel & Leisure.

Then there’s Changi Airport, which has consistently been ranked among the best airports in the world and which Battis describes as having “the feel of an enormous botanical garden, thanks to lush plantings and a towering central waterfall.”


Songyang County, China

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Rural Songyang County in China’s eastern Zhejiang province has been experiencing an architectural renaissance, according to Battis.

“Since 2014, architect Xu Tiantian has been radically overhauling the region’s villages, bringing over a dozen serene, striking buildings that serve as both tourist draws and community hubs,” Battis wrote for Travel & Leisure.


Sri Lanka

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“Sri Lanka has long been popular among surfers and adventure travellers,” Madeline Diamond wrote for Travel & Leisure. “Though the country is still on the mend after last Easter’s bombings in Colombo, a new crop of resorts opening in 2020 make the island nation a luxury destination to be reckoned with.”

These openings include Haritha Villas & Spa and new sustainable resort Alila Koggala, Diamond reported.


Rajasthan, India

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“The colours, creative traditions, and opulent palaces of Rajasthan are what many of us picture when we think of India – but this coming year, even those who think they have been there and done that should plan a return trip,” Flora Stubbs wrote for Travel & Leisure.

In 2020, luxury hotel operators Six Senses and Raffles will both open their first properties in India, according to Stubbs.


Taiwan’s mountains

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Travellers should look beyond Taipei to Taiwan’s mountains in 2020, Chadner Navarro reported for Travel & Leisure.

“Seventy per cent of the island is covered with craggy peaks, but until recently, red tape made hiking permits tough to come by,” Navarro wrote.

Now, the government has streamlined the application process, Navarro writes, making it easier for travellers to visit “the very best of the island’s scenery, such as the Lake Jiaming National Trail, which runs through a hemlock forest, and the Nenggao Cross-Ridge Historical Trail, an ancient trade path used by the indigenous Atayal and Seediq tribes.”