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Hidden Gems Around Asia with One World Adventures

by Mercedesz
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Exploring Asia is like opening a treasure chest filled with a myriad of cultures, landscapes, and experiences. While many travelers flock to well-known destinations, the real charm often lies in the hidden gems off the beaten path. In this blog, we’ll uncover unique spots in Bali, Bhutan, Borneo, Cambodia, India, Japan, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam that aren’t typically found in guidebooks, yet offer enriching and unforgettable experiences.

Bali: Nusa Penida’s Peguyangan Waterfall

While Bali’s Ubud and Kuta are renowned, Nusa Penida offers a tranquil escape with its less-explored treasures. The Peguyangan Waterfall, also known as Seganing Falls, is an extraordinary site that combines adventure and spirituality. Reaching the waterfall involves a steep descent down a set of blue stairs carved into the cliffside, offering breathtaking views of the ocean. At the bottom, you’re rewarded with a serene waterfall and natural pools. This location also features a sacred Balinese temple, adding a cultural and spiritual dimension to the visit. Peguyangan is perfect for those seeking adventure and a deeper connection to Bali’s spiritual roots.

Bhutan: Haa Valley

While Thimpu, Punakha, and Paro are popular among tourists, Haa Valley remains a hidden paradise. Nestled in the southwestern region of Bhutan, Haa Valley is accessible but still untouched by mass tourism. The valley is known for its stunning landscapes, traditional Bhutanese homes, and tranquil atmosphere. Visitors can explore the local villages, interact with the friendly inhabitants, and experience Bhutanese culture firsthand. The serene valley also offers numerous trekking opportunities, with routes leading to ancient temples and monasteries that provide panoramic views of the surrounding mountains.

Borneo: Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary

Borneo is famed for its natural beauty, and while Kinabalu National Park and Sepilok attract many, Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary remains a lesser-known gem. Located in the heart of Borneo, this sanctuary provides a unique opportunity to observe the peculiar proboscis monkeys in their natural habitat. The monkeys, known for their distinctive noses, can be seen swinging from trees and interacting with each other. The sanctuary is a conservation effort to protect these endangered species and their habitat, making it a must-visit for wildlife enthusiasts looking to experience Borneo’s biodiversity up close.

Cambodia: Koh Dach (Silk Island) near Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh and Siem Reap draw crowds with their historical sites, but a short boat ride from Phnom Penh lies Koh Dach, also known as Silk Island. This tranquil island offers a glimpse into Cambodia’s traditional silk weaving industry. Visitors can tour local silk farms, watch the intricate process of silk production, and even try their hand at weaving. The island’s rural setting, with its lush landscapes and charming villages, provides a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city. It’s an ideal destination for those interested in cultural heritage and artisanal crafts.

India: Bikaner’s Karni Mata Temple

India’s Golden Triangle—Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur—captures many hearts, but Bikaner in Rajasthan holds a unique and less-known attraction: the Karni Mata Temple. Known as the Rat Temple, it is home to thousands of rats considered sacred. Devotees believe these rats are reincarnations of Karni Mata’s followers. The temple’s intricate marble carvings and silver doors are worth admiring, but it’s the unusual presence of the rats that makes this site truly distinctive. Visitors can observe the rats being fed and freely roaming around the temple, offering a rare and unforgettable cultural experience.

Japan: Kanazawa’s Higashi Chaya District

While Tokyo, Kyoto, and Hiroshima are tourist magnets, Kanazawa’s Higashi Chaya District offers a serene step back in time. This well-preserved geisha district is less crowded than Kyoto’s Gion, yet equally enchanting. The narrow streets are lined with traditional wooden teahouses where geishas once entertained. Some of these teahouses are now museums or cafes where visitors can enjoy tea while learning about geisha culture. The district also features gold leaf shops, showcasing Kanazawa’s famous craft. Higashi Chaya is perfect for those looking to immerse themselves in Japan’s cultural heritage without the crowds.

Sri Lanka: Ella’s Nine Arch Bridge

While Negombo, Kandy, and Galle are popular, Ella is a treasure trove of hidden wonders, with the Nine Arch Bridge being a standout. This colonial-era railway bridge is set amidst lush green hills and tea plantations. The bridge, built entirely of stone and bricks without steel, is a marvel of engineering. Visitors can walk along the tracks, capturing stunning views of the surrounding landscape, or wait for the picturesque sight of a train crossing the bridge. The nearby hiking trails offer additional adventures, making Ella a haven for nature lovers and photographers.

Vietnam: Hue’s An Bang Cemetery

Vietnam’s cities like Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, and Hoi An are well-known, but Hue’s An Bang Cemetery is a hidden gem that surprises many. Known as the “City of Ghosts,” this cemetery is unlike any other, featuring elaborate tombs and mausoleums that resemble palatial structures. Families of the deceased invest heavily in these tombs, resulting in a stunning display of architecture and artistry. Visiting An Bang Cemetery offers a unique perspective on Vietnamese cultural beliefs surrounding death and the afterlife, providing a fascinating and thought-provoking experience.


Each of these hidden gems offers a unique glimpse into the rich tapestry of cultures and landscapes across Asia. By exploring these off-the-beaten-path destinations, travelers can discover the true essence of the regions they visit, gaining deeper insights and more memorable experiences. Whether it’s the spiritual tranquility of Bali’s Peguyangan Waterfall or the architectural marvel of Vietnam’s An Bang Cemetery, these hidden treasures showcase the diversity and beauty that make Asia a traveler’s paradise.

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