Top 10 countries of South and Southeast Asia: History Culture Nature Tours

25 Apr 2024 Umesh Paneru

direct flights to south asia and south-east asia

South and Southeast Asia have abundant historical, cultural, and natural attractions which are diverse and unique. These attractions are the identity of the nations in South and Southeast Asia. The history, culture, and nature tours of South and Southeast Asia are guaranteed to mesmerize travelers with their rich and diverse offerings. Travelers have multiple choices and flexibility to explore the tours (history, culture, and nature) of their preferences. 

Asia Experiences has designed a suitable itinerary including selective nations from South Asia and Southeast Asia. These itineraries are sort of flexible, customizable, and private which travelers can choose according to their time and preferences. They can combine the history, culture, and nature tours or only prefer to go for history and culture or nature tours. During these history, culture, and nature tours in South and Southeast Asia, get ready to embark on a phenomenal journey to the ancient traditional region, explore hidden gems, archaeological marvels, architecturally aesthetic cultural landmarks, iconic historical sites, and natural wonders (mountains, beaches, lakes, caves, etc.)

Visit the UNESCO World Heritage sites, and ancient beautiful villages, and try exotic cuisines. Walk past diverse flora and fauna in the vicinity of amazing National Parks. Not only tour these destinations but also perform or participate in fun or adventure activities. South and Southeast Asia boast several adventurous activities for all types of travelers such as Trekking, Hiking, Paragliding, Rafting, Bungee Jumping, Jungle Safari, Hot air balloon rides, Water Sports (Rafting, Sea Kayaking, Kite Surfing, Scuba Diving, Snorkeling, etc.) and many more.

We have prepared a list of South Asia and Southeast Asia prime tourist destinations to ease you in planning and making essential preparations for unforgettable travel experiences to these amazing destinations.

Similarities and Differences between South Asia and Southeast Asia for Travelers


Nepal is a small land-locked country in South Asia that is unique as a multi-lingual, multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, multi-religious country. The nation is rich in its history, culture, and natural biodiversity. From century-old temples and stupas to architectural wonders, the tallest mountain ranges including the world’s highest Mt Everest to UNESCO Heritage sites such as Lumbini (birthplace of Lord Buddha), and diverse flora and fauna in National parks (Chitwan, Sagarmatha, etc.) at different elevations, various ethnic culture, lifestyle, and festivals, etc. Nepal boasts all. Not only this phenomenon but the fun and adventurous activities in Nepal also attract travelers. 

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Durbar Squares (Kathmandu, Bhaktapur, Patan), Swayambhunath, Pashupatinath, Boudhanath, Lumbini, Janakpurdham, Gorkha Palace, Changu Narayan, 
  • Natural Attractions: Mountains (Everest, Cho Oyu, Annapurna, etc.), National Parks (Chitwan, Sagarmatha, Bardiya, Shey Phoksundo, etc.), Base Camps (Everest, Annapurna, Manaslu, etc.), Lakes (Gosaikunda, Panch Pokhari, Phewa, Tilicho, Gokyo, etc.), Pokhara (Poon Hill, Sarangkot, Ghandruk, etc.), 
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Trekking, Hiking, Paragliding, Rafting, Bungee Jumping, Jungle Safari, etc.
  • Festivals: Biska Jatra, Gai Jatra, Rato Machhindranath, Dashain, Tihar, Losar, etc.
  • Best Months: March to May, and September to Novembermt. everest jpg e1714043719566


Bhutan is a land-locked South Asian nation widely popular as the ‘Land of Thunder Dragon’. Only carbon-negative nation in the world that has ‘Happiness’ as a unique parameter to determine a nation’s well-being. Buddhism is a deep-rooted religion here in Bhutan with environmental biodiversity and well-preserved culture as a prime highlight. Bhutan mesmerizes travelers with the iconic Tiger’s Nest Monastery, several ancient and historic Dzongs and monasteries, welcoming happy locals, stunning Himalayan ranges, fun and recreational activities, beautiful landscapes, natural greenery, vibrant festivals, and unique local cuisine.

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Tiger’s Nest Monastery, Dzongs (Punakha, Thimphu, Rinpung, Drukgyal, etc.), Kyichu Lhakhang, Chhimi Lhakhang, Buddha Dordenma, etc.
  • Natural Attractions: Jigme Dorji National Park, Royal Manas National Park, Phobjikha Valley, Haa Valley, Bumthang Valley, Dochu La Pass, Chele La Pass, Mountain ranges, etc.
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Hiking, Trekking, White Water Rafting, Kayaking, Archery, Mountain Biking, etc.
  • Festivals: Tshechu (Thimphu, Paro, Gangtey, etc.), Black Necked Crane, Matsutake Mushroom, Haa Summer, etc.
  • Best Months: March to May, and September to Novemberbhutan tigernest jpeg

Sri Lanka

An island country Sri Lanka is renowned for its rich history and culture lies in the Indian Ocean. The incredible UNESCO sites, ancient ruins, attractive beaches, lush tea plantations, colonial-style ports, naturally diverse national parks, overwhelming times at elephant orphanages, and wildlife safaris with some fun and adventurous activities get a memorable travel experience. 

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Cultural Triangle Tours (Anuradhapura, Kandy, and Polonnaruwa), Sigiriya Rock, Tooth Relic Temple, Dambulla Cave, Galle Dutch Fort, etc.
  • Natural Attractions: Nuwara Eliya, Little Adam’s Peak, Royal Botanical Garden, National Parks (Wilpattu, Udawalawe, Yale, etc.), Beaches (Bentota, Mirissa, etc.), Ella Rock, Kandy Lake, Turtle Hatchery, Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, etc.
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Adam’s Peak hike, Bicycle Tour, Mountain Biking, Whales and Dolphins watching, Safari Tours, Water Sports (Sea Kayaking, Kite Surfing, Scuba Diving, Snorkeling, etc.)
  • Festivals: Sinhala, Tamil New Year, Vesak, Poson, Pongol, Perehara (Duruthu, Navam, etc.)
  • Best Months: December to Marcheverywhere coconut in srila jpg

Tibet, China 

Tibet, the autonomous region of China is a hidden destination that captivates travelers with its numerous historical and cultural attractions. Popular as ‘Roof of the World’ this spiritually significant destination boasts unique heritages, ancient fortresses and monasteries, unique traditional festivals, and intriguing architecture. Naturally too, Tibet lures travelers with holy tranquil lakes, vast grasslands, awesome landscapes, and phenomenal views of snow-covered mountains including Everest.

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Potala Palace, Norbulingka Palace, Jokhang Temple, Monasteries (Sera, Drepung, Tashilhunpo, Pelkor Chode, Rongbuk, etc.)  
  • Natural Attractions: Lakes (Yamdrok, Namtso, etc.), Everest Base Camp, Mount Everest, Drak Yerpa, etc.
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Lhasa Biking Tour, Trekking, Rafting, and Kayaking.
  • Festivals: Tibetan New Year, Shoton, Butter Lamp, Saga Dawa, Ongkor, etc.
  • Best Months: April, May, September, and Octobertibet tour jpg


India is a rich nation with diverse historical and cultural attractions. Numerous tourist destinations in India mesmerize travelers with its aesthetically marvelous architecture, ancient structures, sacred landmarks, holy rivers, pristine beaches, amazing sun-kissed deserts, lush tea plantations, and breathtaking jungle safaris. Explore the destinations with great historical and cultural significance, and naturally beautiful hill stations, relish vibrant unique festivals, and enjoy several local delicious cuisines.

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Agra (Taj Mahal, Fatehpur Sikri, etc.), Delhi (Qutub Minar, Red Fort, etc.), Jaipur (Hawa Mahal, etc.), Kolkata (Victoria Memorial, etc.), Amritsar (Golden Temple, Jallianwala Bagh, etc.), Madhya Pradesh (Khajuraho), Jaipur (Amber Fort, Jantar Mantar, etc.), Karnataka (Hampi, Halebid, etc.), Maharashtra (Ajanta and Ellora Caves, etc.), Tamil Nadu (Great Living Chola Temples, etc.), Rajasthan (Chittogarh, Kumbalgarh, etc.), Bihar (Nalanda University, Bodh Gaya, etc.), and more.
  • Natural Attractions: Loktak Floating Lake, Borra Caves, National Parks (Ranthambore, Corbett, Valley of flowers, etc.), Marble Rocks, Yana Rocks, Living Root Bridge, Sam Sand Dunes, Magnetic Hill, Barren Island, Hide and Seek Beach, Goa Beaches, Krem Dam, Tea States and mountain ranges in Northeast region, etc.
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Paragliding, Sky diving, Rafting, Horse Riding, Surfing, Rock climbing, Jungle Safari, Abseiling, Trekking, Hiking, etc.
  • Festivals: Diwali, Holi, Navratri, Ganesh Chaturthi, Eid-Ul-Fitr, Onam, Pongal, Gurpurab, Regional festivals (Saga Dawa, Ugadi, Gangaur, Chhath, Hemis, etc.)
  • Best Months: December to March (East, West, and South regions), April to July (North and Northeast regions)agra fort jpg


Cambodia is one of the most visited destinations in Southeast Asia and is popular for its century-old remarkable temples. Travelers get enthralled with the sights of a diverse range of historical, cultural, and natural attractions while in Cambodia. From iconic Angkor Wat to an attractive Khmer village, the ruins of Tha Promh to the splendid Cardamom Mountains, serene lakes and beaches to lively Phnom Penh streets experience diversity and create memories.

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, Preah Vihear Temple, Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda, Wat Phnom, National Museum of Cambodia, Bayon Temple, Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, etc.
  • Natural Attractions: Bou Sra Waterfall, Islands (Koh Rong Samloem, Koh Tonsay, etc.), Cardamom Mountains, Tonlé Sap, National Parks (Kirirom, Phnom Kulen, etc.)
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Zip lining, Horse Riding, Camping, Kayaking, Skiing, Surfing, Scuba Diving, Cycling, Quad Biking, etc.
  • Festivals: Khmer New Year, Meak Bochea, Water Festival, Vesaka Bochea, Royal Ploughing Ceremony, etc.
  • Best Months: November to MaySiamReap Angkor Wat sunrise jpg


Once upon a time, Vietnam was known for its War and now time has changed and this beautiful nation has come a long way. In Southeast Asia, Vietnam is among the top destinations where tourist inflow is high. The country rich with its numerous historical and cultural attractions boasts remarkable natural attractions as well. From several UNESCO Heritage sites to scenic landscapes, stunning islands, and beaches to unique culture, lifestyle, tradition, and foods, travelers have diverse options to choose from. 

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Khai Dinh Tomb, Cu Chi Tunnels, My Son Cham Ruins, Hue Imperial Citadel, War Remnants Museum, Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, Cannon Fort, Temple of Literature, etc.
  • Natural Attractions: Limestone Islands (Ha Long Bay), Islands (Con Dao, Phu Quoc, etc.), Son Doong Cave, National Parks (Cuc Phuong, Ke Bang, Tram Chim, etc.), Sand Dunes (Mui Ne), Fansipan Mountain (Sapa), Silver Falls, Mekong Delta, etc.
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Trekking, Sandboarding, Canyoning, Kayaking, Motorbike Tours, Mountain Rappelling, Scuba Diving, Cave Tours, Cliff Jumping, etc.
  • Festivals: Lunar New Year (Tết), Ghost, Xến Xó Phốn, Hùng Kings Temple, Huế Festival, Oóc Om Bóc, etc.
  • Best Months: March & April, and September to November [North Vietnam (Hanoi, Ha Long Bay)], February to August [Central Vietnam (Hoi An, Hue)], December to May [South Vietnam (Mekong, Ho Chin Minh)]Temple of Literature Hanoi jpg e1714045801163


Thailand is one of the most popular and most visited tourist destinations in Southeast Asia. Numerous travelers travel to Thailand annually to explore its historical, cultural, and natural attractions as well as for recreational activities. The incredible Buddhist stupas and temples, primeval royal palaces, wildlife adventure, exotic beaches, water sports, breathtaking islands, nightlife, Thai spas, and Thai foods all entice travelers around the world. The warm hospitality of the locals and the unique culture & lifestyle in each destination (Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket, Chiang Mai, etc.) is sure to mesmerize everyone.

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Sukhothai, Ayutthaya, Wat Pho, Phu Phra Bat, Ban Chiang, Muang Sing, Phimai, Wat Rong Khun, Wat Plai Laem, Ancient Siam, etc.
  • Natural Attractions: National Parks (Khao Yai, Doi Suthep, Ko Tarutao Marine, etc.) Sea Life Ocean World, Islands (Kho Phi Phi, Koh Lanta, Similan, etc.), Phang Nga Bay, Nong Nooch Tropical Botanical Garden, etc.
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Wakeboarding, ATV Ride, Skydiving, Kiteboarding, Hiking, Mountain Biking, Surfing, Snorkeling, etc.
  • Festivals: Songkran, Phi Ta Khon, Lantern, Rocket, Buffalo Racing, Vegetarian, Candle, etc.
  • Best Months: November to February and March to May (Beaches Tours)

Convenient nonstop or single-stop flights for your travel to South Asia and Southeast Asia


One of the most stunning nations in Southeast Asia with thousands of gilded pagodas and gorgeous landscapes. The ancient civilization, art, culture, tradition, and history of Myanmar are unique and full of wonders to explore. The hot air balloon rides over majestic pagodas are not to be missed. A visit to a tribal village, a monumental garden in Bagan, exploring breathtaking Inle Lake and beaches, and indulging in adventure activities (kayaking, biking, etc.) sums up the phenomenal tours to Myanmar.

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Bagan (temples), Golden Rock Stupa, Mrauk U, Mount Popa, Shwedagon Pagoda, Mahagandayon Monastery, Kawgun Cave, Pindaya Cave Complex, Inwa, Sagaing, Mingun, etc.
  • Natural Attractions: Anisakan Waterfall, Nat Ma Taung National Park, Macleod Island, Myeik Archipelago, Ngapali Beach, Inle Lake, National Kandawgyi Botanical Garden, Popa Mountain Park, etc.
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Trekking, White water rafting, Rock climbing, Biking, Kayaking, Hot Air Balloon Rides, Wildlife Safari, etc.
  • Festivals: Ananda Pagoda, Thingyan, Taunggyi balloon, Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, Elephant Dance, etc.
  • Best Months: November to Aprilmyanmar jpg


Laos is a rich destination to explore its historical, cultural, and natural attractions. The nation with its ancient Buddhist architecture, rolling mountains, enthralling temples of Luang Prabang, diverse local cultures, magnificent 4000 islands, breathtaking Kuang Si Fall, and fun activities (tubing, river cruise, etc.) are sure to attract travelers and create unforgettable memories. There is no doubt that travelers will have a fabulous time during their visit to Laos.

Tipping (Gratuities) Guidelines in South Asia and Southeast Asia

  • Historical and Cultural Attractions: Luang Prabang, Wat Phu, Plain of Jars, Pha That Luang, Buddha Park, Patuxai, Laos National Museum, COPE Visitor Centre, etc.
  • Natural Attractions: 4000 Islands, Kuang Si Fall, Vang Vieng, Kuang Si Butterfly Park, Mount Phousi, Elephant Village, Kong Lor Cave, Tad Sae Waterfall, Huay Xai, Bolaven Plateau, etc.
  • Fun or Adventure Activities: Hiking, Trekking, Climbing, Trekking, Kayaking, River Rafting, Tubing, Zip Lining, Boat Trip, River Cruise, etc.
  • Festivals: Boun Pi Mai, Boun Pha Vet, Boat Racing, That Luang, Boun Khoun Khao, etc.
  • Best Months: October to AprilLuang Prabang Wat Ho Pha Ba jpg

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