With a couple of months left in the year, now is the ideal time to embark on a holiday that will leave you revitalised and ready to face 2024 head on. Digital travel platform Agoda shares five destinations that encourage reflection on the year gone by, and usher in the coming year with renewed vigour and positivity.
Food for thought in Taipei, Taiwan
According to a Spanish proverb, the belly rules the mind. For a foodie adventure with a difference, give exuberant Taipei a visit, boasting a plethora of culinary delights to nourish not just your body, but mind as well. In the bustling streets of Taipei or the charming villages of the countryside, you’ll find a feast for the senses as you explore Taiwanese culture. Savour local specialties like beef noodle soup or the delicate flavours of xiao long bao (soup dumplings). Dive into night markets for a sensory overload of street food or escape to a traditional tea house for a moment of slow-paced peace. Taiwan‘s rich culinary scene offers more than just meals; it’s a journey of healing and rejuvenation, one delicious bite or sip at a time.
Ditch the bad juju for Jeju Island, South Korea
Discover serenity on Jeju Island at Seogwipo Healing Forest, an 11 km-long forest trail winding through dense cypress and cedar trees, where sunlight filters gently through the canopy. Beyond the forest, Jeju’s other natural wonders provide a sweet escape away from life’s worries. This includes the vibrant flower fields of Camellia Hill and Jeongbang Falls – the only waterfall in Korea where the waters flow directly into the sea, a rare spectacle shared by just a few places worldwide.
For those with more adventurous desires, the Wind 1947 Jeju Extreme Circuit offers thrilling rides and panoramic views of Mount Hallasan – a surefire way to shake off the troubles of 2023.
No zen quite like Wakayama, Japan
Discover Wakayama beyond its capital city as you venture into an enchanting prefecture where nature reigns supreme. Explore the ancient Kumano Kodo pilgrimage routes, revealing temples, shrines, onsens, ryokans, waterfalls, and breathtaking viewpoints. Wakayama’s allure extends far beyond these historic trails, offering adventure activities like kayaking and caving, all under some of Japan’s clearest and most pristine skies, creating a stargazer’s paradise.
Forget all your troubles in Phuket, Thailand
Enjoy a sawadee-cup of tea and bury your feet in the sand on one of Thailand’s many breathtaking beaches, where your worries seem to almost drift away with each gentle wave. Phuket, one of Thailand’s prime destinations, invites you to bask in the warm sun and immerse yourself in the island’s beauty. Whether you’re lounging by the Andaman Sea, exploring vibrant street markets, or indulging in authentic Thai cuisine, Phuket offers a serene sanctuary to ponder the highs and lows of the year.
Pedal through time in Perlis, Malaysia
For those seeking a unique and contemplative adventure to reflect on the year gone by and quite literally gear up for the opportunities and challenges of 2024, consider embarking on a cycling adventure through Perlis, Malaysia’s smallest (but often underrated) state.
Known for its laid-back charm and rustic beauty, Perlis is characterised by its quaint paddy plains, verdant villages, limestone outcrops, serene lakes, and a welcoming multiracial society. Pedal through serene and picturesque landscapes and immerse yourself in the region’s idyllic culture and traditions. As you ride along peaceful backroads in Perlis, culminating at the Wang Kelian Viewpoint, where breathtaking panoramas and a tranquil space for reflection await, take moments to ponder your journey and leave behind any lingering worries with every turn of the pedal.
As the year draws to a close, it’s time to seize the opportunity to rejuvenate and set the stage for an exciting new chapter in 2024. Whether you’re enjoying Taipei’s food, relaxing on Jeju Island, exploring Wakayama’s beauty, unwinding in Phuket, or cycling in Perlis, let Agoda be your guide to a memorable year-end journey filled with inspiration and unforgettable experiences.