Encounters Spring 2013
From the blue waters of the Maldives to the natural bounties of Mozambique, SCMP's regional travel magazine, Encounters, takes readers on rich journeys that are up-close and personal.
Ready to spring
Regional hot spots offer a stunning variety of attractions for adventurous travellers, writes Tracey Furniss
Get your spring travel plans into gear with some hot regional destinations that made the list at the recent Travellers' Choice Awards for Destinations on the Rise, organised by TripAdvisor.
Cosmopolitan Osaka (right) is a shopping hub with great dining and nightlife. Osaka is also an ideal base for exploring the rest of the Kansai region, such as Kyoto's world heritage sites and Nara's temple, just 90 minutes away by train. Popular sites in the city itself include Osaka Castle, Universal Studios Japan and the futuristic Floating Garden Observatory.
The dynamic city (below) in Tasmania overlooks a bustling harbour filled with yachts and fishing boats, viewed best from waterfront cafes and restaurants housed in old converted warehouses. With a lively arts scene, vibrant nightlife and a leisurely daytime pace, it is hard not to enjoy Hobart.
Kathmandu (below) is a whirlwind of sights, sounds and smells. Surrounded by a valley bursting with ancient history, religious architecture and fascinating villages, this city is diverse and unique.
Trek through the untouched nature and riveting history of the Maori and Polynesian culture. Adventure seekers can get their fix from a wide range of outdoor activities such as kayaking, sailing and bungee jumping.
Port Vila is humming with activity, delighting visitors.
Refresh yourself in the South Pacific heat at the 45.7-metre Mele Cascades waterfall or glimpse the real Vanuatu culture and traditions at the Ekasup Village.
TripAdvisor is the world's largest travel site with more than 60 million travel reviews and opinions from travellers around the world.