Travel in Southeast Asia and visit cultural landmarks you need to see before you die

Wat Mahatha

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Blessed with lush tropical islands, metropolitan cities and majestic historical sites, Asia is a travel destination beaming with various offerings of all that wanderlusts crave for. When you travel in Southeast Asia, you not only open your doors to amazing local people and a plethora of delightful cuisines but also to numerous rich cultural sites.

So today we are helping you check something off your travel bucket list as we round up remarkable and historical places you must visit before you die!

Sukhothai Historical Park, Sukhothai


One of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Thailand, the Sukhothai Historical Park is a prominent tourist place in Sukhothai – the capital during the Sukhothai Kingdom from 1238 to 1438.

The vast area of Sukhothai Historical Park houses over 190 historical ruins and temples. Located right at the center of the park is Wat Mahathat which serves as the spiritual center of the kingdom. It is also believed to be the most photographed temple in the historical park and is often included in most tourists’ travel itinerary.

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, Chiang Mai

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep

Wat Phra That Doi Suthep is the highly revered temple in Chiang Mai and also among the most holy Buddhist temples in Thailand. It stands 24 meters tall and is designed with gold plated from top to bottom. Up until this day, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep serves as a pilgrimage destination during Buddhist holidays such as Makha Bucha and Visakha Bucha.

Wat Phra That Lampang Luang, Lampang

Wat Phra That Lampang Luang

Located about 20 kilometers from Lampang is Lanna-style Buddhist temple called Wat Phra That Lampang Luang. Its name literally means “Temple of Lampang’s Great Buddha Relic” and as told by legend, around 2,500 years ago, Buddha visited and left a hair which is now being kept in the temple’s large chedi. The temple buildings were built in the 15th century and unlike those in Chiang Mai, these were preserved to maintain their original structures.

Ta Prohm Temple, Siem Reap

Ta Prohm Temple

The magnificent Ta Prohm Temple dates back to late 12th century with bas-reliefs and well-preserved stone carvings similar to that of Angkor Wat in Siem Reap. It is also referred to as the jungle temple because of the fact that it looks like it’s been swallowed by a jungle. It was dedicated to the mother of Jayavarman VII and is one of the temples that gives information about those who have inhabited the temple.

Bayon, Jayavarman’s Temple, Siem Reap

Bayon Jayavarman’s Temple

If you plan to spend your holidays at Siem Reap, you cannot miss to visit Bayon, a popular tourist attraction in Siem Reap. If you decide to tour around this incredible temple, you need to ready yourself as it can be quite tiring. You will be walking through narrow corridors and going up and down flights of stairs. Bayon Temple has over 50 towers where you’ll find four faces carved on them. The bas-reliefs on some of the walls represent sea battles from centuries ago.

Pak Ou Caves, Luang Prabang

Pak Ou Caves

Inside the Pak Ou Caves are dramatic limestone cliffs, more than 4,000 Buddha icons and caves that act as a shrine to the Lord Buddha and river spirit. The name of the two caves you can visit are Tham Thing and Tham Theung which miniature Buddhist figures made from wood can be found.

The name translates to “mouth of the river” and the entrance to Tham Thing is visible from the water. You can get to the higher cave Tham Theung by climbing up the stairs. Most of the tourists flock Pak Ou Caves in the month of April in celebration of the Lao New Year.

Atumashi Kyaung, Mandalay

Atumashi Kyaung

One of the things you’ll realize when you travel in Southeast Asia is that it never runs out of beautiful architectures and historical insights just like Atumashi Kyaung – one of the attractions in Mandalay.

As one of the places to visit in Mandalay, Atumashi Kyaung sees a flock of tourists everyday. This religious construction was actually the last project by King Mindon and was built in 1857. It serves as a great example of a Burmese monastic construction with a wooden building at the top while it features a masonry base.

Uppatasanti Pagoda, Naypyidaw

Uppatasanti Pagoda

Uppatasanti Pagoda also called the peace pagoda is a prominent attraction in Naypyidaw. It is said to be a replica of Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon and is 99 meters tall. Some of the important displays inside are the Maha Hsutaungpyae Buddha Image, holy Bo trees garden, and illustrations of Buddha.

Batu Caves, Kuala Lumpur

Batu Caves

As we end our list of places to visit when you travel in Southeast Asia, we present to you Batu Caves in Kuala Lumpur. This famous landmark in the city is a 400-million-year old limestone hill with a 100-year old temple inside it. It is the center of the Hindu festival of Thaipusam which is celebrated yearly. Thousands of devotees pay their respect by bringing with them “kavadis” or frameworks and skewers for ear, skin, tongue and cheeks piercing.

Ready for some culture hopping as you start your travel journey in Asia? Visit Bangkok Air and check out flight booking offers available! Other exciting travel destinations are also featured in Bangkok Air blog!

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