August 17, 2016

 

Don’t write summer off just yet! You still have time to enjoy a refreshing late summer vacation. And where else to spend it but glorious Asia? Make this your best summer ever when you vacation in amazing Sri Lanka, Japan, or Indonesia.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Beach

August thru September marks an ideal time to visit Sri Lanka, because it’s outside of the monsoon season. Even if you experience some rain, it’s normally short lived enough that the entire day isn’t compromised.

If you’re looking to enjoy the beach, Sri Lanka offers numerous choices. You’ll definitely want to visit the southern coast to see the Tangalle and Dikwella area. Expect gorgeous, clean beaches with palm trees and amazing blue skies. Definitely the place to sunbathe or take a walk.

Another lovely choice lies on the southeast edge of Sri Lanka, and it’s called the Unawatuna. Due to its being surrounded by reefs, swimming is great in that region.

While in Sri Lanka, be sure to visit Colombo. Spend a wonderful afternoon on a train ride, which will take you to another lovely beach called Mount Lavinia. Or for an up close and personal visit with nature, explore the nearby Talangama Wetland. This oasis provides the perfect opportunity to view over 100 species of birds, as well as numerous butterflies and dragonflies.

Another must see in Sri Lanka is the amazing Galle, located in the southern province. See the 300 year old Dutch Fort in the city, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. If you enjoy historical buildings, Galle has an abundance of them.

In fact, if you’re a lover of all things historical, be sure to visit the Historical Mansion Museum, in Galle, which houses an abundance of British memorabilia. Expect to see maps, guns, demonstrations of lace-making, and other types of crafts. You can even visit a shop to pick up souvenirs to take home with you. Definitely an enjoyable experience.

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Japan

Japanese Festival

The grandest Japanese festivals take place during the late summer months, so you can enjoy the local culture when you visit during this time. In Aomori, see giant floats travel through the city. Or see the Kanto Matsuri, in Akita, which features performers balancing giant poles and paper lanterns on parts of their bodies. Sandai celebrates Tanabata Matsuri, with much dancing and other entertainment.

If you want to travel south, you can enjoy the Awa Odori Matsuri–the largest dance festival in Japan–on the Shikoku Island. If these options aren’t enough, there’s the Obon festival, Kyoto’s Daimonji fire festival, and so much more! Plenty of opportunities to celebrate and enjoy being immersed with the local people!

Other spectacular activities for late summer in Japan include scuba diving. Some of the world’s best scuba diving opportunities exist in the Okinawan archipelago, where you can look for the manta rays, sea turtles, and gorgeous coral reefs.

One amazing dive site is off the coast of Yonaguni, where some speculate that the unusual rock formations are the ruins of an ancient city. Enjoy exploration of the underwater stairs, columns, plazas, and passageways.

Other places for awesome scuba diving include Yakushima, the Izu Peninsula, (close to Tokyo), or the Ogasawara Islands. Definitely plenty of places to explore the water!

When you’re not scuba diving or going to festivals, Japan offers some great hiking opportunities, especially on Mt Fuji. Climbing season begins in July and goes through September. It would be considered a challenge, but doesn’t require mountaineering experience in order to hike.

You can also hike in the Japan Alps, Kamikochi, and in the Kii Peninsula. In the summer, everything is at its most lovely state. These are some of the most stunning geographical areas of Japan.

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Indonesia

Indonesia Temple

Beautiful Indonesia makes a perfect place for your late summer vacation. Indonesia’s charm expands to thousands of islands; it’s the largest archipelago in the world.

Indonesia, and especially Bali, creates an image in most people’s minds of gorgeous beaches and lovely sunsets. You’ll definitely find this to be a true picture of Indonesia! But there’s even more charm.

If you’d love to get up close and personal with wildlife, Indonesia has plenty to see. Kalimantan is a haven for about 50,000 orangutans, living in the wild. If you’d love to see them up close, you can visit Camp Leakey. This research and conservation agency can be reached by a wooden boat, called a Klotok, which you ride up a river for about four hours. Getting there is half the fun! And you’ll definitely have plenty of photo opportunities and great memories.

Other wildlife in Indonesia includes the Komodo Dragons. These creatures live on a few small islands in southern Indonesia, in the Komodo National Park. A ranger will accompany you to see them. They generally lie in the sun, because they’re cold-blooded. Do be cautious though! They are occasionally aggressive.

If you visit the outskirts of Yogyakarta, you can see Prambanan, which is a huge Hindu temple from the 9th century. Named a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it’s definitely worth a visit. At night you can see the Ramayana Ballet in front of it. Their performance about demons, heroic animals, and royal quests will absolutely thrill any visitor. With the temple right behind it, you feel as if you’re actually part of the performance.

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