Two Vietnamese towns, Da Lat in Lam Dong province and Sapa in Lao Cai province, have entered the new list of the top 10 rising destinations in Asia in 2017 by popular travel booking site Trip Advisor. The list recognised 43 destinations around the world based on travelers’ review ratings for accommodation, restaurants, attractions and increasing booking interest. The towns are described by Trip Advisor as the best vacation choices for 2017.
Da Lat, situated 1,500 meters above sea level in the Central Highlands, came in at number four in the top 10 list of rising destinations in Asia and Sapa in the northern highlands at number six. Given various nicknames such as the city of eternal spring, the city of flowers and the city of love, Da Lat is recommended for providing a cool respite from Vietnam’s year-round hot weather.
The former colonial resort town is full of beautiful French-era buildings and surrounded by pine trees, flowers and vegetables farms. In January, the New York Times also recommended Da Lat among 52 places to visit in 2016, describing it as “an agricultural El Dorado” with unique scenes of pine forests, locally grown avocados, and artichoke tea.
Meanwhile, around 2,000 kilometers to the north is Sapa, known for its trekking trails. The colourful town is recognized as a perfect oasis for travellers interested in mountain trekking or visiting the terraced rice paddy’s. Tourists can visit the Saturday night “love market,” the Gothic stone church at the town center which is a reminder of the French missionary influence, and many downtown Vietnamese and European restaurants.
Other top ten ranking destinations included Baku city (Azerbaijan, first place), El Nido (Phillipines, second), Jodhpur (India, third), Jeju (Republic of Korea, fifth), Hualien (Taiwan, seventh), Kuching (Malaysia, eight), Kota Kinabalu (Malaysia, ninth) and George Town (Malaysia, tenth).