Hong Kong is a city, and former British colony, in southeastern China. Vibrant and densely populated, it’s a major port and global financial center famed for its tower-studded skyline. It’s also known for its lively food scene – from Cantonese dim sum to extravagant high tea – and its shopping, with options spanning chaotic Temple Street Night Market to the city’s innumerable bespoke tailors.
Dialing Code: +852
ISO Code: HKG
Weather: 28°C, Wind E at 16 km/h, 70% Humidity
Currency: Hong Kong dollar
Population: 7.188 million (2013) World Bank
Indonesia, a Southeast Asian nation made up of thousands of volcanic islands, is home to hundreds of ethnic groups speaking many different languages. It’s is known for its beaches, volcanoes and jungles sheltering elephants, tigers and Komodo dragons. On the island of Java lies Indonesia’s vibrant, sprawling capital, Jakarta, and the city of Yogyakarta, known for gamelan music and traditional puppetry.
Dialing code: +62
ISO code: IDN
Currency: Indonesian rupiah
Official language: Indonesian
Bali, Jakarta, Lombok, Bandung, Yogyakarta
Malaysia is a Southeast Asian country occupying the Malaysian Peninsula and part of the island of Borneo. It’s known for its beaches, rainforests and mix of Malay, Chinese, Indian and European influences. The sprawling capital, Kuala Lumpur, is home to colonial buildings, busy shopping districts such as Bukit Bintang and skyscrapers including the iconic, 451m-tall Petronas Twin Towers.
Capital: Kuala Lumpur
Dialing Code: +60
Currency: Malaysian ringgit
Prime Minister: Najib Razak
Colleges and Universities: University of Malaya, more
Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu, Malacca City, Kuching. Johor Bahru
Bangkok, Thailand’s capital, is a sprawling metropolis known for its ornate shrines and vibrant street life. The boat-filled Chao Phraya River feeds its network of canals, flowing past the Rattanakosin royal district, home to the opulent Grand Palace and its sacred Emerald Buddha temple. Nearby is Wat Pho with its enormous reclining Buddha and, on the opposite shore, Wat Arun with its steep steps and Khmer-style spire.
Area: 1,569 km²
Getting there: 8 h 50 min flight. View flights
Weather: 26°C, Wind W at 11 km/h, 89% Humidity
Population: 6.355 million (2000)
Number of Airports: 2