The Berlin based Wonderslist, which has a polished and popular reputation for being the world’s home for just about any kind of list one can imagine recently ran a post citing Sapa among top 10 most magical places in Asia.
1. Kashgar in China
The ancient oasis city of Kashgar was the most strategic place of the Silk Road. Still continues lives the Myth of the Silk Road: in the old town of Kashgar, with its winding streets, hawkers, donkey carts and proud Uygurs that the majority of the population provides.
But above all, on the legendary Sunday market. Early morning thousands of peasants meet here with their carts to the exotic market in the world. Whether saddles, silk, sword, jewelry, pans, clothes, old radios and televisions or fresh fruits and vegetables – here is everything pretty much sold.
The highlight however is the animal market: bulls, donkeys, sheep, goats, camels and horses of all types and price ranges are standing together on a huge area for sale.
2. Siem Reap / Angkor Wat in Cambodia
Hardly a monument of the earth attracts a magical spell like this – even if one of the temples of Angkor now has to share with throngs of tourists, especially the sunrise besiege the main temple of Angkor Wat.
You can still find the peace and mysticism, the researchers must have experienced when they discovered the largest temple complex here in the world in 1860.
And to marvel there are plenty: Besides the main temple of Angkor Wat, the most famous temples such as Ta Prohm, which was almost found original as left by the French or the Bayon temple, that is several meters high carved in a stone.
3. Sapa in Vietnam
The sleepy nest, which was Sapa a few years ago.The village in the north of Vietnam is now in every guide book. The people from the mountain villages have become accustomed to tourism and business-minded sell their goods in their colorful and strange alien-looking costumes.
Nevertheless, Sapa is still a special place – as most Vietnamese are also the mountain rice people: In the steep slopes of the mountains they have beaten narrow layered rice terraces slice by slice that stretch for miles in all directions.
4. Hunza Valley in Pakistan
The Hunza Valley is a lush, green oasis in the barren high mountains of the Karakoram Mountains. Down in the valley, of untamed mountain the blue-gray, river Hunza has dug deep into the sandy bottom.
At the top of Karimabad village are blooming apricot trees, poplars and birch avenues lined with terraced fields which have been reclaimed from nature.
The people of Hunza Valley have created a small idyll, they live in small wooden houses with balconies and colorful flower beds – one almost imagines himself in the Alps. There are over 7,000 meters high snow giants that scoff every mountain in the Alps: Diran, Golden Peak, Muztagh Hispar or Rakaposhi.
Hunza is also termed as a “role model” for Pakistan in terms of its high literacy rate. The school enrollment figures are very high. Virtually every child is educated up to at least high school level.
5.Varanasi in India
Varanasi is one of India’s oldest cities and is regarded as the holiest city in Hinduism According to the 2011 Indian census, Varanasi has 1,201,815 inhabitants. There are approximately one hundred bathing and burning places (Ghats), Varanasi has about 200 important Hindu, Jain and Buddhist temples.
- Vishwanath Temple (also: “Golden Temple”)
- Durga Temple
- Tulsi Manas Temple
- New Vishwanath Temple
- Bharat Mata Temple (“Mother India Temple”)
- Annapurna Temple
The cremation ground is located in the heart of the city. The fires are burning throughout the day, corpses, wrapped in orange towels, waiting for the final journey..
6. Guilin-Yangshuo in China
Guilin and Yangshuo are heaven for tourists. Restaurants, hotels, bars and souvenir shops dominate the picture. Landscape around is astonishing with limestone cone and mist-shrouded peaks which rise abruptly from the ground, pierce rice fields, rivers and meadows.
The river cruise on the Li River, which makes every tourist fall in love with the place. It makes it indeed more beautiful and worth visiting, especially early morning, when the mist hangs over the water you feel like part of an Asian fairy tale. The area around Guilin can be best explored by bicycle.
Here are several thousand pagodas and temples over 40 square kilometers, of which around 2,000 are still preserved. From some you can see only ruins, some have thick cracks from the last earthquake, but many pilgrims and monks still pray daily.
Make sure you visit early in the morning when everything is still asleep, to have a magnificent view.
8. Lhasa in Tibet
Lhasa remains the most mystical place in Asia: the faith and piety of the People here can breathe formally; their devotion and humility are deeply touching.
Take the time to explore the hidden corners and temples of Lhasa, and especially at dawn, together with thousands of Tibetans to the sound of prayer wheels and the murmur of the pilgrims.
9. Luang Prabang in Laos
Luang Prabang is deposited in the heart of Indochina. Tourism is indeed successful here. Crowds are at most only at dawn, when hundreds barefoot monks flock silently from their temples to receive food offerings in a long procession.
10. Bhaktapur in Nepal
Cars are banned here, the streets are paved with red bricks, dilapidated building, rice, women in gorgeous saris carrying large jars on her head, on the houses hanging corncobs and cloves of garlic – the clocks seem to stand still here and have been for centuries.
The feeling of time travel becomes more intense by the magnificent temples, palaces and pagodas, such as the Royal Palace with 55 windows and 99 courtyards.