Survival guides, insider secrets, top things to do, eco-tours, independent hotel reviews, family-friendly itineraries: fire your imagination with the South China Morning Post’s travel guides and must-

see lists for holiday destinations across China and the rest of Asia. 

Travel bans fly in the face of WHO recommendations
After decades of experience in dealing with global disease outbreaks as deadly as Aids and Ebola, the World Health Organization has forged a series of guidelines on how to deal with epidemics.  Most countries are now ignoring them in the face of the coronavirus pandemic. It has specifically advised against imposing travel bans on countries with Covid-19 outbreaks and warned that international restrictions can be “ineffective” during public health emergencies. Over the past week, places from Hong Kong to Europe have dramatically tightened their travel restrictions. On March 17, the European Union sealed its borders to most foreigners. More curbs are being announced daily. Experts say such act
Coronavirus travel ordeal: quarantine, detention, more quarantine
What started as a potentially lucrative business trip for one Hongkonger and a dream honeymoon for another ended in a Russian detention nightmare for both after they were accused of breaking the country’s quarantine laws. In an ordeal lasting three weeks, a businessman trying to buy surgical masks and bring them back to Hong Kong, who gives his name as Sky, describes being held in a dirty, crowded cell in Moscow before his deportation to mainland China. He was briefly detained in the mainland before he returned to Hong Kong, where he had to undergo a compulsory quarantine. A similar trauma befell another Hong Kong resident – a newlywed who is also now back in the city after visiting Russia
Hong Kong and Macao are ramping up global travel restrictions
Travelers arriving in Hong Kong from any foreign country from Thursday will be put under 14-day home quarantine or medical surveillance, the city’s leader has said, as she extended a red travel alert to cover all overseas nations.  The new restrictions will not apply to arrivals from Macau or Taiwan. People arriving from mainland China were already required to isolate at home for the past month. Meanwhile, the Macau government announced it would block entry of all non-residents except those from the mainland, Hong Kong and Macau from Wednesday. A mandatory 14-day home quarantine measure for city residents remains effective. Hong Kong and Macau are Special Administrative Regions (SAR) of Chin
Temperature checks have a terrible record of failing to detect coronavirus
Temperature checks have become the new normal in airports, offices and even some residential buildings as authorities rush to contain the spread of the new coronavirus.  (Where did the coronavirus come from? How to prevent infections? Here’s what we’ve learned so far about the coronavirus.) Despite their widespread use, medical and public health experts have said temperature checks are unlikely to detect infected people. Are ‘temperature guns’ reliable and accurate? Handheld, non-contact infrared thermometers, or “temperature guns,” have emerged as a popular device to screen people for fevers during viral outbreaks. The guns can quickly measure surface temperature without touching people’s
Getting home for Lunar New Year
It is the 2020 Lunar New Year holiday, and 11-year-old Xiaoxiao and her little brother are at home with their grandparents in a remote part of central China. They are anxiously waiting for the Spring Festival reunion dinner when their parents return from their jobs in southern Guangdong province. Like hundreds of millions of rural migrant workers in China, Chen and Liu travel home only once a year. The travel rush over the holiday period, which lasts up to 40 days, is considered the largest annual human migration in the world.
Here are some tips to find China’s hidden travel gems
The United States sends the most tourists to China, and almost all of them go to Beijing. Tibet is high on many bucket lists, but few Western tourists ever actually visit. China virtually empties of Western tourists during November, December and January. These are some of the takeaways from the third annual report on popular travel destinations in China by The China Guide, a travel agency in Beijing that develops customized tours for travelers from the US, Germany, France, Spain, Britain, Canada, Australia and elsewhere. What immediately stands out from the report – compiled from surveys of 2,300 travelers from across the globe – is that Beijing dominates almost every foreign traveler’s iti
Man must pay $17,200 for throwing ‘lucky coins’ at an airplane
A 28-year-old man in China was ordered to pay $17,200 in damages to budget carrier Lucky Air for throwing coins at one of its planes in the hope of a safe journey last year. A court in Anhui province, in southeastern China, handed down the order in July, but it was only made public recently when the court posted the ruling online. Lu Chao, who was a first-time flier, admitted to throwing the coins at the plane for good luck as he boarded on February 17, 2019. The flight was canceled after airline staff found two 1 yuan coins on the ground near one of the plane’s engines. All passengers had to leave the plane and it was grounded while it underwent safety checks. Lucky Air had to arrange acco
Blade Runner and beyond: Hong Kong is the city of cyberpunk
Nearly 40 years ago, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner hit the silver screen and changed cinema forever. The 1982 film imagined November 2019 as a dark, gritty, dystopian world dominated by inequality and technology, as it introduced a new generation of fans to cyberpunk culture. Bridging the science fiction and neo-noir genres, its cultural impact continued to resonate in films ranging from The Dark Knight series to Ghost in the Shell. And while the Blade Runner story was supposed to be located in Los Angeles, the cult film drew massive influence from 1970s and 80s Hong Kong, referencing its distinctive streets and urban panoramas in nearly every scene. We take a look at Hong Kong's enduring leg
Welcome to China’s ‘Valley of the Cats’
Located on the Tibetan plateau, Namsei Township in China’s Yushu Prefecture, Qinghai province is home to endangered species including snow leopards.  The big felines have earned the district the name “Valley of the Cats."  It is inside Sanjiangyuan Park, one of the first wildlife areas to be included in China’s new national park system. 
How to travel as a vegan in Asia
Visiting foodies in search of gratification are spoiled for choice in Asia.  From dim sum in Hong Kong and pho in Vietnam to sashimi in Japan or tom yum goong in Thailand, there is no shortage of taste-bud tingling experiences to write postcards home about.  But what about vegan and vegetarian visitors? Can a region best known for its meat-based offerings cater to those living on a purely plant-based diet? Increasingly, yes. 9% of the Asia-Pacific population identified as vegan in 2016, which means abstaining from consuming food, wearing clothes and using products that come from animals, according to online statistics portal Statista.  The region has the largest share of plant-based consumer