From retail therapy at the trendiest malls across Asia to some of the best sporting activities this side of the planet, AirAsia brings you the best of shopping and sports within its network of destinations. Here’s how you can indulge in some of the most exciting activities around while saving big on baggage and sporting equipment.
Words: Adli Syahril
One of the leading shopping destinations in Asia, Hong Kong has taken the art of shopping to amazingly lofty heights.
CAUSEWAY BAY Great place to find independent retailers selling fashionable goods at low prices. Notable shopping malls here include Times Square and the 13-storey department store, SOGO.
MONGKOK Experience the best of Hong Kong’s open-air street bazaar with hawkers selling almost everything from fashion to electronics.
THE LANDMARK Home to prestigious international brands and designer labels with luxury being the catchphrase of the day!
GETTING THERE AirAsia flies to Hong Kong from various destinations. Go to www.airasia.com for flight details.
From high end department stores to warehouse buys, Bangkok makes your hard-earned cash work extra hard for you!
CHATUCHAK WEEKEND MARKET Chatuchak Weekend Market is home to more than 8,000 booths in over 27 sections. It is one of the largest markets in the world selling almost everything from clothes to antiques and collectibles at ridiculously cheap prices.
SIAM A sprawling shopping hub teeming with international brands with flagship stores, almost every designer label can be found at Central Chidlom, Siam Paragon, Gaysorn Plaza, Siam Square and Discovery Centre. The surrounding area houses wholesale and cheaper shopping options that are equally exciting like MBK and Platinum Mall. Pratunam Market here is also a major street market selling fashion goods and souvenirs at wholesale prices.
SUKHUMVIT ROAD The longest street in Thailand with countless side lanes (soi), Sukhumvit is packed to the rafters with great shopping hotspots such as the Emporium, Terminal 21 and L’Arcadia. Stalls selling all kinds of things line the street at night.
GETTING THERE AirAsia flies to Bangkok from various destinations. Go to www.airasia.com for flight details.
Singapore’s great claim to fame is arguably shopping. The best time to shop is during the annual Great Singapore Sale (mid-May till mid-July) where prices are slashed drastically to make way for the latest season. But all year round, shopping is simply superb in Singapore!
ORCHARD ROAD With over 22 malls and six department stores featuring about 2,000 brands on a 2.2-km stretch, Orchard is the main shopping district in Singapore that will not disappoint the avid shopper.
THE SHOPPES AT MARINA BAY SANDS Part of the lifestyle complex that includes a hotel, convention centre, casino and museum, The Shoppes is a humongous mall with some of the most notable labels from around the world.
MUSTAFA CENTRE & LITTLE INDIA Located in Little India / Serangoon Road, Mustafa Centre is a gigantic, 24-hour department store that sells literally everything under the sky.
BUGIS STREET, ARAB STREET & KG GLAM From indie-labels to textiles to street-wear and ethnic jewellery, you get your money’s worth here.
CHINATOWN Bordered by Eu Tong Sen St, New Bridge St and South Bridge St, this is the spot to get your fill of things Chinese – from authentic food to antiques and medicine.
QUEENSWAY MALL One of Singapore’s best kept secrets, Queensway Mall is the place to go for cheap sportswear and last season’s leftover at bargain bin prices.
GETTING THERE AirAsia flies to Singapore from various destinations. Go to www.airasia.com for flight details.
HO CHI MINH CITY
Ho Chi Minh City is one of the new shopping capitals of Southeast Asia and an exciting place to shop for bargains. Local craft and silks are popular but remember – you’ve got to bargain hard!
BEN THANH MARKET The largest and oldest in the city, Ben Thanh Market is a popular shopping spot, selling touristy goods apparel, local craft and souvenir items.
BINH TAY MARKET For great bargains on local and Chinese goods, Binh Tay is a great place to soak up the local vibes too.
SAIGON SQUARE For local and Chinese imported sportswear, and budget fashion boutiques, the massive Saigon Square houses many contemporary products such as Crumpler bags, Columbia jackets and Nike shoes.
GETTING THERE AirAsia flies to Ho Chi Minh City from Bangkok, Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur. Go to www.airasia.com for flight details.
Many shopping venues have sprouted over the years in Kuala Lumpur, vying for top spot while offering visitors the chance to shop for wide range of products for local and international brands.
CENTRAL MARKET & PETALING STREET A complex dedicated to local arts and crafts, Central Market (centralmarket.com.my) sells loads of colourful batik, cultural souvenirs and traditional Malaysian items. Nearby Petaling Street is the city’s Chinatown.
BUKIT BINTANG The ultimate shopping area in the city with malls catering for all budgets. Notable shopping malls include Pavilion, Starhill Gallery, Lot 10, Fahrenheit 88 and Sungei Wang.
MID VALLEY CITY One of the largest malls in the country, this mall is packed with mid-range labels while the adjoining Mid Valley Gardens caters for well-heeled shoppers.
1 UTAMA A little outside the city area, this is another huge mall with major tenants such as AEON Jusco and Isetan from Japan, Tangs from Singapore and Parkson Grand.
GETTING THERE AirAsia flies to Kuala Lumpur from various destinations. Go to www.airasia.com for flight details.
With some of the biggest malls in Asia, shopping in Manila is a serious business that’s not to be taken lightly. From cavernous malls to fantastic street bazaars, your pesos will work super hard here!
TIENDESITAS A market complex with over 450 shops that sells local products such as art, antiques, handicrafts and clothes.
AYALA CENTRE Manila’s shopping district with renowned malls like Glorietta and Greenbelt that offer international brands at low prices.
Expert or amateur, you’ll find a stunning green just about anywhere in Asia. Set in beautifully landscaped environment, golf allows its enthusiasts to enjoy the great outdoors as much as the game.
BALI GOLF & COUNTRY CLUB, BALI, INDONESIA Voted as “One of Asia’s 5 Best Golf Courses” by Fortune magazine, the 18-hole course located in Nusa Dua is surrounded by tropical palms and coconut groves.
CLEARWATER BAY GOLF & COUNTRY CLUB, HONG KONG This club provides premier golf, yachting, recreation, and dining services.
BLUE CANYON GOLF CLUB, PHUKET, THAILAND The course is championship-class and regarded as one of Asia’s best.
SENTOSA GOLF CLUB, SINGAPORE Undisputedly, this is Singapore’s most exclusive and beautiful golf club.
EMPIRE HOTEL & COUNTRY CLUB, BRUNEI Brunei’s most prestigious and luxurious golf resort.
In Southeast Asia, surfing is fast gaining popularity, as more and more tourists are visiting to ride spectacular waves. Surfing in these tropical countries promises warm waters and excellent weather all year long. One of the world’s most noteworthy surfing destinations in Asia is Indonesia due to its challenging surfs and relatively unknown locations. For hardcore surfers, Australia continues to be the spot to catch a wild ride.
PADANG PADANG, BALI, INDONESIA Well-known for waves of consistent quality and size.
MENTAWAI ISLANDS, WEST SUMATERA, INDONESIA Indonesia’s very own surfer’s paradise with excellent waves all year round.
NIAS, NORTH SUMATERA, INDONESIA Sorake Bay is a well-known surfing spot with peak swell season from May to September.
SURFERS PARADISE, GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA A top holiday spot with renowned surfing schools.
ARUGAM BAY, SRI LANKA One of the best surf points in the world situated on the Southeast side of Sri Lanka.
KALIM BEACH, PHUKET, THAILAND The best surf spot in Phuket with swells of up to three metres.
CHERATING, PAHANG, MALAYSIA Malaysia’s own surf retreat. Great for beginners.
Fancy an underwater adventure? Go scuba diving or snorkelling to view beautiful corals and colourful marine life. Southeast Asia has many great diving spots due to the warm waters that enable marine life to thrive in profusion.
SIPADAN ISLAND, SABAH, MALAYSIA World-renowned diving spot with extraordinary diving conditions and crystal clear waters.
PHI PHI ISLAND, PHUKET, THAILAND One of the most stunning diving locations with lush, colourful corals.
DERAWAN ISLAND, BALIKPAPAN, INDONESIA A fishing island that has been developed into an international-class diving spot in Indonesia.
RAJA AMPAT ISLANDS, PAPUA, INDONESIA Known as the diving spot with the highest recorded marine life diversity on earth.
KARIMUNJAWA ISLANDS, SEMARANG, INDONESIA A chain of 27 islands with 21 of them designated as national marine parks.
SAMAL ISLAND, DAVAO, PHILIPPINES An exotic diving spot with underwater caves, Japanese ship wrecks and marine biodiversity.
NHA TRANG, VIETNAM A famous seaside resort-town and the scuba diving centre of Vietnam.
Biking is a great recreational activity that allows you to stay fit even when on a holiday. There are many biking-friendly destinations in Asia that enable you to visit and experience the heart and soul of the country.
BATUR, BALI, INDONESIA Explore the heart of Bali when you mountain bike through tranquil villages.
AMPHAWA, BANGKOK, THAILAND Get in touch with the simple life while experiencing how the locals go about their daily lives in Amphawa.
BEIJING, CHINA The capital of China may be a megalopolis but the city is also one of the friendliest biking cities in the world. Explore hutongs and quaint back lanes while enjoying the history of the imperial city.
PERTH, AUSTRALIA With wide open spaces and a very relaxed lifestyle, Perth is Australia’s top biking-friendly city.
HANOI, VIETNAM Cycling through Hanoi’s villages and terrain ranks amongst the best modes of adventure and recreation in Vietnam.
A ski vacation is the perfect way to chill and relax, while enjoying the winter wonderland. But don’t be misled into thinking you need to visit the French Alps to enjoy the best powder. Asia and Australia offer some unusually exciting winter holiday spots!
Slide On Snow
JISAN FOREST RESORT, INCHEON, SOUTH KOREA A 40-minute drive from Seoul brings you to one of the very few resorts worldwide to offer midnight skiing.
NANSHAN SKI VILLAGE, BEIJING, CHINA The largest skiing resort in North China.
SNOW TOWN YETI, MOUNT FUJI, JAPAN A ski resort with an excellent view of Mount Fuji.
THREADBO VILLAGE, NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIA A well developed downhill ski area in the heart of the Australian Alps.
MOUNT HOTHAM, VICTORIA, AUSTRALIA It has outstanding ski and snowboarding terrain for your winter holiday.
XILING, CHENGDU, CHINA You’ll think you’ve landed in the most magical European snowscape!
SHOP TILL YOU DROP!!
Save on baggage fees when you prebook! AirAsia has reduced baggage check-in fees for the 15 kgs and 20 kgs weight categories by RM5 on both domestic and international routes, while AirAsia X has reduced baggage fees for the 25 kgs and 35 kgs. Both airlines have also introduced new weight categories for domestic and international flights. All these means you can save up to 50% when you pre-book baggage check-in online. That can only mean one thing – more shopping!! For sports enthusiasts, you can now bring your own sporting equipment such as golf bags, mountain bikes or surf boards to your destination of choice with AirAsia’s reduced Sports Equipment pre-book options. You’ll no longer be charged flat rate fees and need pay only for what you take on board.