The year ahead is predicted to set records for travel as millions of people make visiting new places a top priority.
While Europe and the Caribbean have traditionally been the favorite international destinations of Americans, Asia is beginning to become a top tourism destination.
Recent travel reports have shown trendy countries like Japan and Thailand attracting record numbers of tourists and being rated among the best destinations of the year.
So where is everyone going in Asia?
The first month of the year is behind us, and the numbers are in; these are the 5 most popular Asian cities right now.
While Malaysia may not be as popular as tourist favorite Thailand, you certainly should not count its capital city out.
This cosmopolitan hub of a city is a mix of cultures, and you’ll discover classic Asian markets alongside modern monuments like the iconic Petronas Twin Towers and ornate Muslim religious sites.
The Hindu temples of the Batu Caves are a popular cultural attraction, and nature lovers can spot wildlife at the KL Bird Park or the National Zoo.
Kuala Lumpur is easily navigated, and when wandering the city, you will find abundant street art, examples of Art Deco architecture, and top-quality Malaysian restaurants.
Korean culture has swept across the globe and enamored millions with K-Pop, film, and signature Korean barbeque.
Seoul is an eclectic city that blends Korea’s cultural advances in technology and design with traditional culture and nature.
You can visit the tallest building in the world in this city and stroll through ancient Buddhist temples on the same day.
Seoul is also a great outdoorsy destination, as it is framed by mountains, and a number of majestic hikes are easily accessed by the subway.
When you need a break from all the exploring, you can chow down on authentic Korean barbeque or kick back in one of the city’s quirky, themed cafes.
Japan is the place to be in 2024, and Osaka is one of this incredible country’s must-visit cities.
Osaka is famous for its street food, and is nicknamed the country’s kitchen destination.
You’ll find a number of unique Japanese dishes to try here, including Okonomiyaki (a savory pancake that is often described as the Japanese pizza), and takoyaki, (fried octopus balls).
Wandering through the food markets and sampling the myriad of cheap exotic dishes is a must-do.
Aside from food, Osaka is also renowned for Japanese comedy.
You’ll also find affordable and lively nightlife here, as well as ample shopping opportunities.
Thailand’s beautifully chaotic capital is one destination you just have to experience for yourself in Asia.
Bangkok is one of my favorite cities anywhere; everything about it captivates and overwhelms the senses and makes you feel alive.
Vendors selling everything from slacks to jewelry to fried alligators pack the sidewalks.
Their tents shade you from the scorching sun, and the city's aroma hits you in the face, a mix of foods I was never able to name.
This bustling city is home to some of Thailand’s most luxe, awe-inspiring temples, including the lavish Grand Palace.
Once you’ve gotten your fill of temples, you can wander the local markets for all kinds of exotic food and affordable shopping.
Aside from abundant opportunities to discover what makes Thai culture so beloved, this city also boasts wild nightlife.
Japan’s capital was Asia’s most visited city in January, according to popular accommodation platform Agoda’s numbers.
Endless shopping opportunities, beautifully designed green spaces, and fish markets that provide amazingly fresh seafood are just a few of the city’s draws.
Tokyo is home to gorgeous temples and shrines, the most popular of which is Asakusa, the location of one of the oldest Buddhist temples in Tokyo.
Traditional culture blends with the new here; you can visit ancient religious sites or nerd-out shopping complexes specializing in all things manga, anime, and gaming.
The glittering city brings all kinds of entertainment, from lively nightlife to traditional Kabuki shows and popular sumo wrestling tournaments.
Film fans can spend an afternoon at the Studio Ghibli museum.
And If you’re lucky enough to visit during spring, the city comes to life with Sakura cherry blossoms washing the city with vibrant hues of pink.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com
Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.