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India, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia

Discover Green Season In Asia

Consider taking your summer holiday in Asia. Discover greener, less crowded countries with reduced hotel prices in this so-called 'off season'.

Many dismiss Asia in favour of traditional summer holidays in Europe but there are many reasons to visit in July and August.

Firstly, let’s debunk the myth of the rainy season. Downpours are likely to be characterised by short, sharp bursts. Afterwards, in the cool post-rain, enjoy sensational sunsets that light up the receding rain clouds. Natural beauty is much more pronounced in the green season. Paddy fields radiate in neon green, flowers burst into colour and jungles hum with life. At temples, you’ll notice greenery fusing with the ancient architecture for added wow-factor. And with markedly less crowds and reduced luxury hotels rates, you may well discover an Asia at its very best. Here are three great ideas for exploring Asia this summer.

Summer on Sri Lanka's Southeast

The lowdown

  • Getting There

    Fly direct to Colombo in Sri Lanka from Heathrow in just under 11 hours.

  • Don't Miss

    Sri Lanka’s cuisine is addictive – let us organise a cookery class in a private home so you can bring your favourite recipes home with you, giving you a taste of the Ceylon for years to come.

While the monsoon rains down on Sri Lanka’s more visited southwest coast, take time to explore the east coast and find less tourists, glorious beaches, wildlife in lush jungles and Sri Lanka’s aromatic cuisine. Conveniently, the best time to visit the east coast is over the UK summer holidays, so it makes a great opportunity for an exploratory family adventure. A softer entry to Asia than India, Sri Lanka and its people are incredibly friendly and welcoming and travelling around the teardrop isle is easy, always with something exciting to look at out of the window.

What also stands out about Sri Lanka is the sheer diversity you can experience on holiday, which also means there is something for everyone. Children of all ages will love seeing elephants in the wild in Wilpattu National Park alongside sleeping in nature in a safari-style tent. Cultural sightings are high too including exploring cave temples and ancient rock fortresses. Finishing on the beach is a win-win for all the family, staying in a hotel clasped by coconut trees and opening out onto golden sands, lapped by the green-blue Indian Ocean.

Festivals season in Ladakh

The lowdown

  • Getting There

    To get to Ladakh, fly to Leh, which is accessed by direct flights from Delhi. A spectacular flight through the Himalayas.

  • Don't Miss

    The opportunity to stay in comfortable traditional village houses, located in remote locations where you can experience rural life surrounded by stunning mountain landscapes – go trekking, cycling, rafting, meet a monk, learn to make momos…

Although technically the monsoon season, visiting Ladakh in July is actually a great time to experience this mystical Buddhist kingdom. Firstly, the roads open up after winter, and although snow starts to melt, white-dusted peaks are still visible. Short bursts of rain bring a carpet of wildflowers to the valleys, and with sunny blue-sky days, trekking this region is a delight.

However, it’s the colourful local festivals which really bring the mountains alive in July. Traditional methods of storytelling show the enchanting customs of Ladakh. In early July, a high-altitude heritage polo festival takes place accompanied by music and dance, then mid-July sees the famous Hemis cultural festival at the Hemis monastery to celebrate the birth of 8th century Buddhist master Guru Padmasambhava. Expect devil dances and plenty of masked monks. At the end of July, the Phyang Tsedup Festival, smiling monks are in brightly coloured costumes join a vibrant dance drama at the monastery.

Cambodia and Vietnam Discovery

The lowdown

  • Getting There

    You can fly to Siem Reap from major SE Asian cities – Bangkok, Singapore, Hong Kong. There are then direct flights from Danang to either Hong Kong or Singapore to get back to UK

  • Don't Miss

    For an evening's entertainment in Siem Reap, visit the acrobatic wonders of the Phare Circus, which in turn empowers the lives of young Cambodians.

We’ve been advocating for a while travelling to Angkor Wat over summer months.  The moat around the main temple complex fills up, offering even more impressive and mesmerising reflections. Crowds are noticeably thinner, so you’re more likely to have some time alone to explore the carved stone temples. The jungle springs into life, entwining with the temples, giving it a real undiscovered feel. Nearby, the Tonle Sap lake is full, so you can glide around the floating villages by boat.

Becoming ‘templed-out’ is a real phenomenon so we recommend a beach break afterwards. Fly direct from Siem Reap to Danang in Vietnam. There are some gorgeous hotels with fantastic low season deals that roll out onto the beautiful sandy beaches. You’re just a stone’s throw from Hoi An, a beautifully preserved ancient riverside town. Sample the town’s noodle specialities or enjoy a street side DIY BBQ before discovering its differing styles of architecture from China, France and Japan.

Thailand's Treasure Trove

The lowdown

  • Getting There & Around

    Fly direct to Bangkok in Thailand from Heathrow in just under 12 hours, internal flights to Surat Thani then ferry to Koh Samui.

  • Don't Miss

    If you have snorkelling and diving fans in your family, let us arrange a boat trip to Thailand’s best dive spots around Koh Tao, accessible by day trip from Koh Samui.

With three parts to this trip you’ll experience buzzy Bangkok, evergreen rainforests and emerald lakes plus island life on Koh Samui. Start in Bangkok where culture clash will stave off any jet leg as you explore gold-glimmering buddhas and temples, busy markets, street eats and roof top bars which give amazing views over the urban metropolis. Stay in a comfortable hotel with pool to cool off after exploring Thailand’s capital.

Fly down to Surat Thani and enjoy the all-natural paradise of Khao Sok where you can trek the pristine jungle, swim in lakes and spot wild elephants, monkeys and tapir among many others. Sleep in a jungle lodge surrounded by the sounds of nature. Onwards to Koh Samui, an island on the east coast of Thailand which you will access by ferry. Here enjoy the pleasure of a tropical island, staying at stylish hillside villas Samujana which will be a luxurious and relaxing finish to your holiday in Thailand.

Need to know more? Call our consultant Sophie on 0207 359 3938 and start planning your adventure in Asia this summer.  Let’s start with a chat to find out your requirements then let us craft your perfect holiday, where you can experience Asia at its best.

Catherine Foxon

Catherine Foxon

Travel Planner

I'd love to arrange your family trip to Asia this summer. Call me and I can tell you my insider tips for secret beaches and where to find the best food in Asia.