We Singaporeans are some of the most avid travellers in the world – thanks to our strong passports, abundant flight connectivity and love for working hard and partying harder. If you are starting off 2019 planning your holidays for the year, here’s some sound advice, based on some extensive number crunching we did on last years trends.
Short is sweet
It is just the beginning of the year, and if you haven’t looked at the long weekends available in 2019, we suggest you do it right away. And that is because we like our holidays short and more! According to the HomeAway Asia 2019 Trend Report, Singaporeans preferred taking shorter trips (around 4-5 days) over longer ones in 2018. So, starting with Chinese New Year’s long weekend, you have plenty to choose from this year again.
Psst: There will be colleagues already requesting for leave around these days, so jump right in and stake your claim.
Feel at Home
No place like home, eh? Well, that’s clearly quite how you enjoy your vacations. The biggest inconvenience while travelling, especially with kids, is missing the warmth your home radiates. So, when our trends showed that Singaporeans are leaning towards booking holiday homes instead of hotels, we weren’t surprised. With welcoming HomeAways across the world blending the luxurious amenities of hotels with the comfort of homes at affordable rates, let’s say, we have you covered!
Our homes come with fully-functional kitchens, convenient laundry equipment and are pet-friendly, facilities that rank high on your list of must-haves. Being kid-friendly and conveniently located, we give you really no reason to not stay with us. With cabins to cottages to treehouses — HomeAways sure are upping the EQ (excitement quotient) of your holidays.
Love Thy neighbours
Since we love our short breaks, we can’t head too far. And here’s where our friendly neighbours score! And our favorites are……drum roll……Bangkok (Thailand), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) and Seoul (South Korea).
Now if you are a traveler, this may come as little surprise! But if you aren’t, here is why these cities should rank right on top.
Bangkok’s vibrant shopping scene, varied food options, pulsating nightlife, abundant sightseeing and activity spots for children, and unending spa options attract Singaporean couples, families as well as groups of friends. Moreover, the heady mix of culturally-enriching visits to Chinatown, traditional long-tail boat rides and the mind-boggling tour of the Forensic Museum or Wat Pariwat aka David Beckham Temple is something only Bangkok can offer. We suggest you move away from mainstream and experience the off-beat, when you are in the city to taste its authentic flavour.
It is almost impossible to not be smitten by Kuala Lumpur’s vivacious spirit. Maybe that’s what fascinates us. Of course the Malaysian capital offers a lot more than that. From Kuala Lumpur’s well-manicured botanical gardens, innovative architecture, scrumptious local delicacies and expansive theme parks to historical spots such as Batu Caves, Chinatown and Sri Mahamariamman Temple, what’s not to like? The perfect family vacation spot, affordable shopping options don’t hurt either!
Seoul, the best break from the ever-sunny Singapore, offers an impressive variety of weather you can enjoy. From snowy winters to aromatic springs, Seoul treats Singaporeans with seasons they don’t generally experience back home. Apart from this, Seoul’s museums, palaces and parks promise to keep visitors engaged at all times. The city gives you a chance to experience the life of a Buddhist monk by staying at the ancient Jogyesa Temple overnight or attain complete relaxation at one of the authentic bathhouses.
Looking for some emerging, offbeat locations? Here are some suggestions!
Tempted to book an opulent or off-beat HomeAway yourself? With 2019 bringing with it around 5 long weekends, there are plenty of opportunities to escape the mundane. Here are some fabulous destination ideas for a perfect getaway:
- Fukuoka, Japan
Attracting millions of foreign tourists each year, Fukuoka is emerging as one of the most exciting Japanese vacation destinations. Whether you are interested in museums, cherry blossoms or ramen, Fukuoka will make you fall in love in the blink of an eye. This city is a paradise for foodies – from piping hot and delicious tonkotsu ramen to crispy egg-flavored crackers – it has them all. Of course, don’t forget to wash it all down with some authentic sake. If your vacation is incomplete without a dose of history, a visit to the age-old Jotenji temple and Fukuoka Castle Ruins is a must. For those who love to appreciate the beauty of nature, a trip to the pretty island of Nokonoshima should definitely be on the cards.
Kids will particularly enjoy a visit to the Marine World Uminonakamichi, an aquarium with a wide variety of colourful underwater creatures. All in all, a few nights in Fukuoka will leave you rejuvenated enough to get through your fast city life with a smile for at least a few months.
- Taichung, Taiwan
Taichung, with its rainbow villages, stunning glamping opportunities and artsy streets, seems to be pulled right out of a modern Taiwanese fairytale. So, for those craving an off-beat vacation this year, Taichung must surely be a preferred option. If you appreciate art or are interested to learn, head to the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, Asia Museum of Modern Art, Asia University or Taichung Culture & Creative Industries Park. Adventure lovers can hop on a bike and ride through the scenic Dongfeng Bicycle Green Way. If that does not appeal to you, how about dipping your feet in some comforting natural hot springs at Guguan?
A shopaholic? Then make time to visit the vibrant Feng Chia Night Market. And yes, don’t forget to include unique places such as the Audit Village – a place packed with creative stalls and Rainbow Village – an inspiring and beautifully painted area.
- Cebu, Philippines
How can any travel inspiration list be complete without the inclusion of a gorgeous island? However, let’s not reduce Cebu to just its beautiful beaches and incomparable snorkeling and scuba diving spots. The island also boasts of the serene Simala Shrine and Taoist Temple, the interesting Museo Sugbo and Casa Gorordo Museum, and the grand Aguinid Falls and Tumalog Falls. If you love to indulge in adrenaline-pumping activities, Cebu is the best place for you. Try canyoneering, shark diving and mountain climbing. Your best memories of Cebu will be enjoying some mouth-watering sea food and roasted pig with a chilled beer and an unforgettable sunset.
HomeAway is the world leader in vacation rentals. The HomeAway network of sites represent more than 1.2 million listings of vacation rental homes in 190 countries and is part of the Expedia group family of brands. Visit www.homeaway.com.sg or download the HomeAway Asia app to choose the ideal holiday homes and homestays for your next holiday.