Looking to impress your partner with an over-the-top romantic Valentine’s Day? You’ll be the envy of your online dating club when you announce you’re going to Asia. Why not? Air fares are more affordable than ever and February weather is perfect in tropical climes. Check out these romantic options.
You can’t go wrong with a visit to Hong Kong. You can pamper your boo with some of the world’s best restaurants and the most luxurious hotels in all of Asia. Plus, dim sum for brunch the morning after – what could be more romantic?
Hong Kong is expensive but unforgettable. The city boasts an enviable selection of luxurious modern hotels, but for a special romantic treat, why not try the Peninsula? This very traditional luxury hotel dates back to 1928 and it still serves a full British afternoon tea.
The Peninsula hosts Gaddi’s, the opulent French restaurant that many identify as the most romantic eatery in the city. But if you’re in the mood to get out of the hotel, give Aqua a try. You’ll sit on red velvet couches, taking in the view of Hong Kong Harbor through floor-to-ceiling windows as you ponder the options: fresh, innovative Japanese food or traditional-with-a-twist Italian dishes. You’re a winner either way.
In the morning, hit the streets and find a dim sum shop for a traditional Hong Kong brunch.
For a spiritual take on romance, try the Hanging Gardens of Bali hotel in Bali, Indonesia. You’ll have your own thatch-roofed villa at this spa retreat overlooking the Ayung River, rice fields, and dense tropical rain forest. It’s no wonder numerous magazines and websites have identified the Hanging Gardens as the world’s number-one honeymoon destination.
Indulge your senses with a romantic Valentine’s dinner at the CasCades restaurant. You’ll enjoy open-air dining, impeccable service, and unforgettable views. The menu includes a mouthwatering mix of Indonesian and European specialties.
Every visitor to Japan explores Tokyo, but Kyoto merits a special trip. The traditional capital of imperial Japan, Kyoto blends natural beauty with historical sites and architecture. On Valentine’s Day the streets are adrift in pink and white blossoms from the city’s countless cherry trees.
Kyoto has plenty of modern, Western-style hotels, but for a real romantic adventure, try a ryokan, a traditional Japanese inn with personal service like an American bed-and-breakfast. Ryokans offer comfort and a real taste of Japanese culture, including bathing in natural hot springs. The top-rated Shiraume ryokan is a perfect blend of culture and comfort.
For dinner, seek out Kitcho for a traditional Japanese meal. Kitcho holds three Michelin stars, and you’ll dine on elegant, sensual dishes served in a private tatami room.
Boracay Island, Philippines
For a real tropical paradise, you can’t beat Boracay Island in the Philippines. This island features white sand beaches and turquoise water that’s perfect for diving, snorkeling, parasailing, and windsurfing. It’s no wonder it’s been rated the world’s top beach year after year.
Boracay has plenty of resorts and villas catering to travelers. For a romantic Valentine’s Day, try Casa Mika, a hilltop villa whose windows offer a 360-degree view of beaches and endless ocean. The outdoor hot tub is the perfect place to unwind after a day at the beach.
You can cook your own meals at the villa, but book a table instead. Try Kasbah, a Moroccan restaurant that’s right on the beach. You’ll enjoy hummus, lamb tangine, Moroccan kabab, and baklava for dessert. After the sun goes down they start the music so you can end your day with some dancing.
Known as the “Venice of the East,” Bangkok is home to historic Buddhist temples and cultural delights for tourists. Take a couples cooking class to learn how to make local delicacies, take a couples massage, or sign up for a biking tour of the city’s historic sites.
Get a taste of traditional Thailand with a comfortable room at Ariyasom Villa. This boutique hotel started as a private residence in the 1940s and opened up to guests in 2008. Ariyasom includes a first-class restaurant and a full-service spa, so there’s really no need to leave the hotel!
Hoi An, Vietnam
Old Hoi An is a UNESCO World Heritage site because of its well-preserved port and market, which date back to the 15th century. Hoi An was an important marketplace for the world spice trade for hundreds of years. Today, Hoi An is known for its museums, its distinctive cuisine, and watersports.
The Villa Orchid Garden Riverside is an affordable, luxurious hotel where you’re sure to spend a comfortable Valentine’s Day. Treat yourself to dinner at Ancient Faifo, where you’ll dine in a working museum of traditional and contemporary Vietnamese art. The menu is a fusion of traditional Asian dishes with modern techniques and ingredients.
Located in the state of Kerala on India’s Malabar coast, Cochin has become a must-see destination for ecotourism, beaches, and romance. Cochin is an ideal place to explore Indian culture, including food, music, dance, mythology, religion, crafts, and more.
The aptly named Villa Romantica is the ideal place to spend your Valentine’s Day adventure. When hunger strikes, head for Vivanta, which serves traditional Indian vegetarian and seafood dishes on a stationary rice boat. Take in the view and enjoy a glass of champagne on your perfect romantic Valentine’s Day.