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The diverse roots of this diminutive island are reflected in its neighborhoods. Tourists are presented with sleek skyscrapers in the Financial District juxtaposed by neo-Palladian mansions along the Singapore River in the city's colonial center, as well as a vibrant mix of Victorian-style buildings, Hindu temples, Chinese teahouses, and Arabian bazaars. Many shore excursions here include stops in the Little India area and at the Asian Civilisations Museum, where you can explore Asia's artistic history and the ancestral cultures of Singaporeans. Other major draws are the 18 futuristic Supertrees and 420-foot-long skyway at the incredible Gardens by the Bay and the 200-acre Singapore Botanic Gardens, home to thousands of orchids-the country's national flower.

Language: English

Currency: Singapore Dollar (SGD)

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The island of Penang offers golden beaches, warm waters, and luxurious resorts. Visitors will stand in awe at the views of the harbor from Penang Hill and will marvel at the sight of the Penang Bridge – the third longest bridge in the world. The most unusual attraction here is The Snake Temple of Azure Cloud with its resident poisonous pit vipers. Other popular excursions include visits to a batik factory, the Kek Lok Si Temple and Fort Cornwallis.

Language: Bahasa

Currency: Malaysian Ringgit (MYR)


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This island off the southwestern coast of Thailand is referred to as the "Pearl of the South." It is the country's largest island and possesses a varied terrain – forested hills, rocky beaches and a fertile, tropical interior that supports cacao, rubber, pineapple, and cashew production in addition to rice paddies. Motorcycle tours around the island are popular. See alligator, pearl, and butterfly farms as well as all sorts of sea treasures at the Shell Museum. Besides the natural attractions, there are examples of Sino-Portuguese architecture in Phuket Town, harkening back to the island's 19th-century tin manufacturing boom. Thais are extremely proud of their culture and have several venues for showing it off to visitors: Thai Culture Show, Thai Village & Orchid Farm and Phuket FantaSea.

Language: Thai

Currency: Thai Baht (THB)

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Bombay is a rich city of contrasts. Its diversity is manifested in its collection of Western-style skyscrapers and historical buildings and temples. At Chowpatty Beach visitors will find the atmosphere festive and the bright fabrics and crafts tempting. Tours also highlight the 1911 Gateway of India, the Prince of Wales Museum, Marine Drive, the Towers of Silence, and the Jain Temple. Or take the launch to Elephant Island to see the sixth-century temples carved out of rocks.


Language: English, Hindi

Currency: Indian Rupee (INR)

Cochin, the old Keralan spice city, is on the far southern tip of India in an area of dense tropical forests and extensive ridges and ravines. People from far-off lands have been coming to Kerala since ancient times in search of spices, sandalwood, and ivory. Such long contact with people from overseas has resulted in the blending of various cultures and has given Keralites a cosmopolitan outlook. This state is one of the most progressive, literate, and highly educated of all the states in India.

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Language: English, Indian dialect (Malayalam)

Currency: Indian Rupee (INR)

Chan May is a port in central Vietnam that is close to many great attractions. One gem that should not be missed is Hue, the former imperial city. Hue was the capital of Vietnam from 1802 to 1945, and the Royal Palace, named the Forbidden Purple City, is just as mysterious as Beijing's Forbidden City. Chan May is also close to the major port city of Da Nang as well as one of the most beautiful stretches of sand in central Vietnam – China Beach.

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Language: English

Currency: Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR)

This balmy island off the coast of India is called on by only a few ships. Tourists will sense the Oriental spirit behind the colonial architecture. The primary excursions here visit Victoria Park, the President's Palace, the Colombo Museum, and the shrine at Kelaniya. Trips through the tea plantation area where Buddha's tooth is displayed are also popular.

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Language: Vietnamese

Currency: Vietnamese Dong (VND)

The quiet town of Hambantota is a place for travelers to come and explore. Visitors come for the beaches and the hot, arid climate, but Hambantota is also a gateway for those who wish to see Bundala National Park, Yala National Park, and the temples of Kataragama. Learn about the Malay population, see the colonial architecture, and trek through the salt landscapes during your stay.

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Language: Sinhala, Tamil

Currency: Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR)

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