Agoda's latest Travel Smart study revealed the top ten fast rising destinations in Asia. The study, based on booking traffic on the travel reservation site, indicates an increasing popularity of lesser-known destinations with potential for new experiences amongst travellers. Niseko in Japan caps the list as a highly sought-after ski destination, followed by many islands in Southeast Asia. Get to know about these places before the hordes really start pouring in.
Khao Lak is a fine example of bouncing back from tragedy. Located in Phang Nga province in Thailand, the series of villages known as Khao Lak were the hardest hit during the tsunami in 2004. With much of the landscape decimated by deadly waves, Khao Lak makes the Travel Smart list at number 10, providing visitors with a tranquil alternative to the often brash crowds that fill the traveller scene in Phuket just 88 kilometres away. Now, boutique hotels dot Khao Lak's beachline, providing the perfect jumping off point to experience sealife around the Similan and Surin Islands, in addition to all the trappings of Southeast Asian small-town charm. On land, Khao Sok National Park features lush rainforests, limestone formations and incredible wildlife.