New and Unmissable Destinations to Discover the Essence of Asia with Secret Retreats in 2024
We hope this newsletter finds you in good spirits and ready for a new year of exciting adventures and fascinating and rejuvenating travels with Secret Retreats in Asia. As we bid farewell to 2023, we’re thrilled to share with you the latest additions to the Secret Retreats family—spectacular destinations that promise to captivate all of your senses, fill your travel dreams with wonder, and create memories that will last a lifetime.
Set on the banks of the Preaek Tuek Chhu River, Kampot is a charming town known for its French colonial architecture, surrounding natural beauty and, renowned by foodies, it’s famous Kampot pepper plantations. Explore the famous Bokor Hill Station, where French colonial buildings stand frozen in time, visit the pepper plantations and discover this chef favourite for yourself, and take a boat ride along the river to witness the mesmerizing firefly display after sunset.
A land of mysticism and spirituality, Tibet beckons travellers to the roof of the world with its ancient monasteries and breathtaking Himalayan vistas. Visit the iconic Potala Palace in Lhasa, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and immerse yourself in the serene and timeless ambiance of the Jokhang Temple.
Nubra Vally, India:
As a resting point for birds migrating across the Himalayas the Nubra Valley is renowned for the diversity of its birdlife. Grab a pair of binoculars and learn more about the incredible avi-fauna with a local shepherd as your guide. Breathtaking and unique, the almost otherworldly scenery of the Nubra Valley is so spectacular that it was chosen by Hollywood to be the setting for the climax of the sixth installment of the ‘Mission: Impossible’ movie franchise, and when you visit the Kyagar Hotel in Nubra Valley it is easy to see why.
Considered the ‘Yoga Capital of the World’, Rishikesh offers travellers a serene escape steeped in lush, green, natural surroundings located as it is on the banks of the holy river Ganges. Take a dip in the Ganges, embark on a spiritual journey at the Ashram that once shone a light on the path to enlightenment for the Beatles, and explore the wonderful countryside of Rishikesh that surrounds the unmissable Atali Ganga Resort.
Sumba Island, Indonesia:
Escape to the untouched paradise of Sumba Island, where pristine beaches, world-class surf breaks, and traditional villages await. Marvel at the ancient megalithic tombs, dive into crystal-clear waters, surf some of Indonesia’s best and least crowded waves, and experience the warm hospitality of the Sumbanese people on this beautiful and off the beaten path Indonesian island.
A truly delightful haven of hot springs and incredible natural beauty. Only a short drive from Tokyo, Hakone is the perfect place to relax and rejuvenate and enjoy Japan’s beautiful countryside. Enjoy a relaxing soak in an onsen, cruise on Lake Ashi with a backdrop of Mount Fuji, and stroll through the Hakone Open Air Museum.
Koh Chang, Thailand:
Get ready for unspoiled tropical bliss on Koh Chang, Thailand’s second-largest island. Explore lush jungles, snorkel over vibrant coral reefs, unwind on the island’s soft sandy beaches, and nourish yourself on one of the refreshing and reviving wellness programs at the Spa Koh Chang.
Immerse yourself in the cultural and spiritual heart of Nepal, where ancient temples and bustling markets combine to create an enchanting atmosphere. Visit the historic Durbar Square, sway with the prayer flags at the Swayambhunath Stupa, and embark on a walk or trek in the foothills of the magnificent Himalayas.
Chungcheongnam-do, South Korea:
Experience the charm of Chungcheongnam-do, a region known for its picture-perfect landscapes and cultural heritage. Explore the historic Gongju Gongsanseong Fortress, stroll through vibrant flower fields, and savor authentic Korean cuisine.
Yala National Park, Sri Lanka:
Sri Lanka’s Yala National Park is home to this island nation’s apex predator, the Sri Lankan leopard. With an unconfirmed 650 leopards living wild in Sri Lanka, it has the highest density of wild leopards in the world. That said, these elusive and endangered creatures take a trained eye to spot them. It is only by knowing their habits and employing tracking skills learned over many years of following Sri Lanka’s wildlife that will put you in the right place at the right time to see this beautiful big cat. A professionally guided Leopard safari booked by Secret Retreats will ensure this for you.
Venture to the hidden gem of Timor Leste, where rugged landscapes, rich marine life, and warm-hearted locals await you. Explore the historic sites of Dili and stay at the heritage boutique hotel, the 17th century Balibo Fort, where guests are rewarded with commanding views of the surrounding hills and mountains, with the waters of the Ombai Strait and Alor Island of Indonesia to the north, and the mountainous land border with Indonesia to the south and west.
Each of these destinations holds a unique allure, promising a tapestry of experiences that will enrich your travel stories. We invite you to explore the extraordinary with Secret Retreats in 2024 and create memories that transcend the ordinary.