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Sa Pa, Ninh Binh named in Asia’s up-and-coming destinations by TripstoDiscover

US travel site TripstoDiscover has named Vietnam’s popular destinations Sa Pa (Lao Cai) and Ninh Binh among the 14 Up-and-Coming Destinations in Asia to Visit.

According to the site, Sapa is located in the far north, surrounded by dramatic beauty with its world-famous rice paddies.

“It sits high up in the Hoang Lien Son Mountains and makes a great base for trekking or mountain biking tours with routes that will bring you past magnificent waterfalls, through rice paddies, and around charming mountain villages home to families known for making fantastic local handicrafts.”

Travellers can see how handicrafts are made and purchase everything from traditional weavings to carvings for gifts or souvenirs in local villages, the site says.

Meanwhile, picturesque Ninh Binh, lying southeast of Hanoi, boasts hundreds of limestone monoliths that topped by vibrant greenery that rise from the ground, scattered throughout the city with rivers flowing through.

In Trang An, visitors can take a boat tour through some of the many caves in the limestone mountains, the site suggests.

“There are many pagodas here too, including Bai Dinh and Bich Dong, the latter of which is built right into a cave. Bai Dinh pagoda serves as the Buddhist Centre of Vietnam and is Southeast Asia’s largest pagoda,” it adds.

Apart from Sa Pa and Ninh Binh, the list also include Sarawak village on Borneo Island (Malaysia), Bagan (Myanmar), Sumba Island, Nusa Lembongan and Belitung Island (Indonesia), Champasak (Laos), and Koh Kood (Thailand)./