Long weekend getaway destinations where you can drive or fly to … with ease
Since 2016’s National Day falls on a Tuesday (9 August), you can have an unofficial long weekend by taking a day leave before the holiday. But where to go? Where to travel to next? Plan a long weekend getaway in one of the following destinations where you can drive or fly to easily.
With many direct flights to Bangkok daily, you can plan your trip easily. Not to mention that Bangkok is also one of the least expensive destinations for two and it has plenty to offer to anyone. Thus it’s really not hard to understand why it is a popular long weekend getaway destination. Find out where to stay in Bangkok.
Pattaya is not just backpacking, nightlife and entertainment. Over the years, it is also undergoing a transformation to become a more family-friendly destination, with lots of fun activities for mum, dad and the kids. With AirAsia flying direct to Pattaya, take time to rediscover this top destination in Thailand. Find where to stay in Pattaya.
Phuket has always been one of the top tourist destinations in Thailand. With several direct flights to Phuket daily, it is becoming a popular destination for a short long weekend getaway. Koh Phi Phi, Phang Nga Bay and Patong Beach are popular spots in Phuket. For the adventurous, you can go diving, snorkeling, wind surfing and sailing, or explore forested hills, mountains and cliffs. Find where to stay in Phuket.
4. Chiang Mai
Chiang Mai is an alluring alternative to the traffic-congested Thai capital, Bangkok. It is also much greener and quieter. Travellers are treated to cleaner air and cooler climate. A short bike or scooter ride out of the town leads to a densely rainforested countryside interspersed with waterfalls. In addition, readers of US magazine Travel + Leisure have rated Chiang Mai as the second best city in the world. Moreover, several direct flights to Chiang Mai make it a relatively inexpensive and good long weekend getaway destination. Find where to stay in Chiang Mai.
5. Hua Hin
Hua Hin is a charming beachside town located only a short distance from Bangkok. It is family friendly and more laid-back, thus making it an ideal location for a short respite from the Thai capital. Once a small fishing village, Hua Hin was transformed into a royal resort, and it’s these close links with Thai royalty that ensure Hua Hin won’t become overdeveloped or lose its small-town beauty. Find where to stay in Hua Hin.
6. Kuala Lumpur
A long weekend getaway to Kuala Lumpur can be a self-drive (about 4-hour) adventure. However, if you do not want the stress of driving, it is just a short flight away. There are also numerous bus trips daily which take about 5-6 hours. It’s no wonder that Kuala Lumpur is a popular and convenient long weekend getaway destination. You can literally shop til you drop in the numerous huge shopping malls. There are also many interesting sights and attractions like Merdeka Square, Chinatown, Petronas Twin Towers etc, and many dining options. Find where to stay in Kuala Lumpur.
Penang is regarded as the food capital of Malaysia and entices visitors with its beautiful coasts and scrumptious cuisines. In addition, located in the heart of the city is one of South East Asia’s largest collections of Pre-war buildings, some of which are built more than 100 years ago. Not only that, state government and private investors have put in lots of effort and money to preserve the beauty of these structures. As a result of that, Penang was formally inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site on 7th July 2008.
8. Johor Bahru
Just across the causeway, Johor Bahru is a convenient long weekend getaway and short break from the hectic pace in Singapore. You can go to Legoland, Hello Kitty, and KSL City using public buses. You can also take buses from Jurong East Bus Interchange to Bukit Indah, another popular destination with shopping and many dining options in its vicinity. Find where to stay in Johor Bahru.
Just about 2-hour drive away from Singapore is Malacca, where you can still see the imprints of British, Dutch and Portuguese forces left behind in forts, museums, churches and towers. Malacca City, the administrative capital of Malacca, is a historical city which has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 7 July 2008. It is also home to the newly-relocated Eye on Melaka as well as the two biggest shopping malls in Malacca – Mahkota Parade and Dataran Pahlawan Melaka Megamall. In addition, Malacca City serves some of the most sumptuous cuisines in the region. Find where to stay in Malacca.
10. Kota Kinabalu
Kota Kinabalu, the capital of Malaysia’s Sabah state, is a gateway to Kinabalu National Park, the home of 4,095m Mount Kinabalu. It is also known for its bustling markets, modern boardwalk, beaches and waterfront Kota Kinabalu City Mosque. There are several direct flights to Kota Kinabalu thus making it a possible long weekend getaway destination for travellers seeking adventure. Find where to stay in Kota Kinabalu.
If you can afford to have an extended long weekend getaway, you may also consider these destinations
There are a number of attractions in Tokyo that should not be missed. First of all, there are large-scale downtown areas, including Ginza where famous shops from around the world stand side by side. Secondly, the sleepless Shinjuku that has become the “new city center of Tokyo”. Thirdly, Asakusa which is reminiscent of the traditional Edo (the former name of Tokyo). Finally, Shibuya that starts the trends for the young people. Another unique area is the computer town Akihabara, a dense retail area where numerous electronic shops compete against each other. There is also Tsukiji, an open-air wholesale food market catering to shops and consumers everywhere in Japan. Find where to stay in Tokyo.
Osaka is known for its modern architecture, boisterous nightlife and hearty street food. It is also an ideal base for exploring the Kansai region. Kyoto’s World Heritage Sites, Nara’s temple and Koya-san’s eerie graves are all within 90 minutes by train. Top city attractions include the aquarium, Osaka Castle, Universal Studios Japan and the futuristic Floating Garden Observatory. Find where to stay in Osaka.
Kyoto, former capital of Japan, is famous for its thousands of Buddhist temples, gardens, imperial palaces, Shinto shrines and traditional wooden houses. It is also well known for its festivals. Kyoto’s three major festivals are Aoi-matsuri Festival in early summer, Gion-matsuri Festival in mid-summer and the Jidai-matsuri Festival in fall. Find where to stay in Kyoto.
Okinawa is a southern paradise where you can enjoy colourful flowers in any season. The emerald-green sea surrounds 57 islands and the coral reefs are among the world’s finest. These natural attractions have given rise to world-class beach resorts catering to sun-loving vacationers. Various festivals and events are held in Okinawa throughout the year. During winter and spring, enjoy flowers and whale watch. In summer, marine sports and traditional performing arts. Come fall, cultural events and field sports. Find where to stay in Okinawa.
Read 12 Top things to do in Okinawa, Japan’s undiscovered gem
Fukuoka is said to be a gourmet paradise. It’s right on Genkai Sea, and the seafood is fresh and abundant. So is Fukuoka-style ramen, which you can find at the city’s famous yatai (outdoor stalls) as well as modern restaurants. Walk off your meal at Ohori Park and the nearby Fukuoka Castle ruins. Singapore Airlines flies direct to Fukuoka and there are also a number of other airlines with indirect flights. Find where to stay in Fukuoka.
Still undecided on where to go?
These are definitely not all the long weekend getaway. There are also Hong Kong, Bali, South Korea and it can go on and on. You’ll be spoilt for choice. Check all cheapest direct flights from your location to decide where to go.
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