If you want to escape the hordes of lovey-dovey couples this Valentine’s Day, why not book yourself a solo adventure? Enjoy some quiet time to yourself and you might even meet someone special during your trip. These nearby jaunts will help you enjoy your solitude without burning a hole in your pocket.
1. Halong Bay, Vietnam
A designated UNESCO World Heritage site, Halong Bay in Vietnam is a popular tourist hotspot for its multitude of limestone formations and isles of various shapes and sizes. A great way to explore the bay is to spend a few nights on a junk. You’ll get a guided tour of the area — inclusive of meals — and a chance to mingle with fellow travellers. Look out for the various rocks that are said to be millions of years old; some of them are named after animals they are said to resemble. There are also chances to explore nearby caves on kayaks, go for a swim or buy fruits from one of the smaller boats who’ll approach these junks. Alternatively, if you just want to chill, just lie back on the deck and soak in the scenery.
A stay on the Annam Junk starts from $153 at Hotels.com and includes meals on board (with a view to boot). You might be surprised to learn that the guestrooms on board the Annam Junk hotel have air-conditioning as well!
2. Angkor Wat, Cambodia
The majestic Angkor Wat in Siam Reap will impress you with its grandeur and mystique. Currently under heavy restoration work, this ancient temple — as well as the rest of the surrounding temples — will offer adventurers and archaeological buffs a chance to be acquainted with the lovely architecture and art of the ancient Khmer people. Pack your hiking shoes and comfortable clothes though; exploring Angkor will give you a decent workout, what with all the steep stairs and trails around the area. If you can, time your tour to catch the beautiful sunset at Angkor Wat so you can capture a postcard-worthy moment for your Facebook Timeline. Buy a 3-day pass and check out the rest of the surrounding sights, such as Bayon Temple for the intricate stone-carved motifs, and Ta Phrohm, a location you’d recognise from Angelina Jolie’s movie Tomb Raider.
Need a place to stay in Siam Reap? Book yourself the 3-star Angkor Boutique Hotel. Furnished with ornate Cambodian-style wooden furniture, the hotel’s city location makes it an ideal respite after a day of temple-hunting and dusty trails. Rooms start from $39 on Hotels.com.
3. Ko Phi Phi, Thailand
If sun and sand is more your speed, head to Ko Phi Phi in Thailand for some quiet beach time. Enjoy a dive in the pristine waters and come face-to-face with the marine life and spectacular coral gardens. If you don’t dive, sign up for a lesson at any of the diving schools along the beach. By the time your vacation ends, you could be a PADI-certified diver! Or you can just soak in the rays and enjoy a mojito by the shore.
A hop and skip away from the sandy beaches of Ko Phi Phi, P. P. Erawan Palms Resort will make a good base for your beach holiday with its inviting view of the waters, spacious rooms and amenities. Rooms start from $184 on Hotels.com.
Photos courtesy of Hotels.com