Asia offers families the chance to immerse themselves in another culture. From the tropical beaches of Bali and Thailand to the ski fields of Japan – this region really does have something for every family.
But which countries are the best for families? We asked our readers for their top family-friendly holiday spots in Asia. There are the top six as voted by you in our Best of Family Travel Awards.
6) Hong Kong
Hong Kong has Disneyland and the Victoria Harbour light show. You can get a great view of the city from Victoria Peak or from the top floor of the Ritz as you have high tea. Kids love to cruise on the harbour and to explore the cobblestone streets and markets of Centra.
One of the best things about Hong Kong is the food. Many Australian chefs have emigrated here because the food culture is so good. For great places to eat, try Ho Lee Fook, Hong Kong Social or one of the many food stalls in the markets. When in Hong Kong you must try the egg tarts and the stong traditional tea.
We highly recommend checking out Hong Kong’s backcountry. Did you know Hong Kong is mostly green space? You can hike through the hills to gorgeous beaches.
Click here for a list of family-friendly hotels in Hong Kong.
Vietnam has surged in popularity this year, thanks to the large amount of family-friendly accommodation, package deals and budget prices for luxury holidays. The best thing about Vietnam is that it is so diverse.
Head to Ho Chi Minh City for culture, history and delicious street food such as bnnh ktot and banh da cua. From here you can travel to the Cu Chi tunnels – a network of underground used by Vietnamese soldiers to evade the American Army in the war. The tunnels are extremely narrow in some places.
The Mekong Delta in Southwestern Vietnam offers a riot of colours and sound. At the floating market, you can watch boats jostle for prime position as their owners attempt to sell fresh fruit and produce harvested from local orchards and gardens.
Head to Nha Trang on the South Central coast and you will find sandy beaches with calm waves. Families who stay here will love island hopping, scuba diving, flyboarding and waterskiing. This is also the home of Vietnam’s famous birds’ nest soup.
Most families will end up in Hoi An, an ancient and beautiful town filled with temples, great shopping and great food. Cruise along the Thu Bon River at night and marvel at the brightly coloured floating lanterns. From here you should also check out Da Nang. About 30 km from Hoi Ann, this town has pristine beaches, a dragon bridge and loads of pagodas.
Ha Long Bay, with its limestone cliffs, mysterious caves and fishing villages is another family favourite. If you really want to get away from it all – head inland to Mai Chau, about 140km southwest of Hanoi. Here you will find rice terraced mountains, caves, stilt houses and friendly locals.
Japan is undoubtedly one of the best places in the world to ski. Many of the ski resorts here have “powder guarantees” and an abundance of ski package deals coupled with cheap flights make it an affordable destination for families.
In Spring, if you’re lucky, you can see the incredible cherry blossom bloom. Imagine whole streets bathed in a sea of pink.
Families seeking culture will love Kyoto with its abundance of temples and bamboo forest. Head to Osaka and you can experience Harry Potter World. For technology, you can’t go past the capital Tokyo. Make sure you check out the science museum here – it has to be one of the best in the world.
Long sandy beaches, delicious food and ultra-cheap resorts. It’s no wonder families love Thailand.
Australian families mostly love Thailand’s beaches – Phuket, Phi Phi and Krabi. But we’ve found an increasing number of families are looking to get off the beaten track in Thailand. Some are adding a stopover in Bangkok or heading for the hills to explore the ancient ruins of Ayuthaya or the bustling night markets of Chiang Mai.
Thailand is a great destination for teens, with some travel companies running teen-specific Thailand tours.
No matter which area you choose, Thailand is a winner for families.
It’s no surprise that Bali made this list. The Indonesian Island has been a hit with families for years. Why? Bali offers cheap luxury accommodation and you can get cheap flights to Bali from Austalia.
Bali is the perfect place for a multi-generation or multi-family holiday. You can rent villas with up to five bedrooms, private pools and butler service. Really, in Bali, you can live like royals and do it for dirt cheap.
If you choose a resort, you’ll find the same incredible level of service and some pretty spectacular hotel pools both for the kids and the grown-ups.
Outside of the resorts and villas, you will find plenty to keep the kids amused. Try Waterbomb Bali for great waterslides, go mountain biking or visit the monkey temple. Click here for a list of things to do in Bali with kids.
1) And the winner is…. Singapore
Singapore is Family Travel readers’ number one place to go with kids in Asia. Ex-pats call Singapore “Asia light”. It’s brilliant for families because it allows you to dip in and out of a bunch of different cultures while still being clean and offering great transport options.
This city is busting with things to do. A few days will not be enough – Singapore Zoo, Sentosa waterparks, beach clubs, the Botanic Gardens and incredible shopping. Check out this story for our full list of sensational things to do with kids in Singapore. Warning: it is huge.
And if you are looking for a family hotel room in Singapore – check this link. They can be tricky to find. We did all the research for you.