Ever since Marco Polo returned from his 24-year trek to China at the end of the 13th century, Asia has beckoned travelers from around the world to explore its enchanted lands courtesy of an Asia cruise. Befitting of a continent that is the largest on Earth, the mesh of countries that make up this landmass embrace some mind-blowing extremes. The thickest forests, highest mountains and longest coastline on the planet all belong to Asia, as do some of the world's most varied wildlife and plant species. .
Few places on Earth can offer cruise visitors such a varied and dramatic experience. From the vestiges of ancient China to the modern day wealth and opulence of Singapore and Taipei, an Asia cruise encapsulates thousands of years of history and diverse cultures in a single voyage. . .
When choosing an Asia cruise, tourists are presented with a variety of cruise routes to pick from. Many Asia cruises offering a taste of the Orient depart from Beijing in China, taking in Hong Kong and ports of call in Japan and along the Chinese coastline. The more exotic Asia cruises may include stops in Korea, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. . .
Other Asia cruise options include routes around the Bay of Bengal, and routes that follow in the footsteps of Marco Polo's return sea journey from China in 1293. The typical duration of an Asia cruise is 12-16 nights, although extended cruise vacations that take in a voyage through the South China Sea and Bay of Bengal can be arranged. . .
China: Beijing - the capital of China - is a ‘must see’ destination on every Asia cruise. The fabled Forbidden City and Temple Of Heaven, both of which are accessed through the vastness of Tiananmen Square, reside in Beijing. Only a short distance from the city is the Beijing section of the Great Wall of China.
A city on an island, Hong Kong is the antithesis of Beijing. Gleaming towers of power exude a modern wealth that contrasts sharply with the older districts of the Chinese capital. Hong Kong is one of the wealthiest places in the world - something that is very much in evidence as you walk the numerous districts on this thirty square-mile chunk of rock.
Singapore is the ultimate exotic destination on an Asia cruise. Situated at the southern tip of the Malaysian Peninsula, it represents the furthest point south an Asia cruise is likely to extend to. Here all year round warmth, stunning architecture and cuisine that is truly out of this world combine to make it a stop not to be missed.
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