5 Vacation Spots to Visit for a Unique Cultural Experience

If you’re pondering where to book your next vacation, look no further. These five locales not only boast comfortable and luxurious lodgings, but each one offers a unique and unforgettable cultural experience. Whether you’re looking for a rejuvenating spa experience, a culinary journey or something entirely new, we’ve found the spot for you.

Gaya Island Resort, Malaysia


Seated atop Pulau Gaya, one of the five islands that make up Malaysia’s Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, is the Gaya Island Resort. Lush rainforests surround the resort, and the towering Mount Kinabalu looms in the distance. Aside from the expert-led nature-treks through the island’s flora and fauna and guided snorkelling activities, the resort’s spa is a highlight worth noting, with an array of treatments made with homemade products.

Each of the resort’s offerings honours an aspect of the island’s land or history: the Tadau Kaamatan is a spa treatment that utilizes rice, a grain with many legends and stories surrounding; the Sabah Scent Adventures is a guided tour that takes guests to the spots where plants are grown for their essential oils—their scents and benefits explained along the way, and the Deru Laut uses marine finds such as seaweed and Sabah pearls in its body wraps, facials and hair masques.

Library Hotel, New York City


If you’re the type of person who thinks a vacation is the perfect excuse to dive into that great summer read everyone has been talking about, but find that once your destination has been reached, the peer-pressure to engage in tourist activities takes precedence, this hotel is for you. New York City’s Library Hotel whole-heartedly encourages a holiday spent buried in a book. Each floor of the hotel is dedicated to a specific topic (from art to literature to science), and each guest-room is well-stocked with its own highly-recommended tomes. Spend a night under the sky’s constellations in the astronomy room, live happily ever after (for a night at least) in the fairy tale suite, or enjoy the sartorial arts in the Vera Wang-curated fashion design room. During the day, explore the Reading Room, enjoy a glass of bubbly in the Poetry Garden and take a moment to reflect in the Writer’s Den.

Castello di Vicarello, Tuscany


Experience the vacation of your childhood fantasies at this 12th century Medieval castle resort. Amidst the rolling hills and olive groves of Tuscany, this hotel is the ideal spot for a romantic getaway. Less than an hour’s drive from the city of Siena, Castello di Vicarello is accessible, yet maintains a romantic air of seclusion. If the word “castle” brings to mind dark halls and damp walls, don’t fret, because the hotel’s owners have completely revamped the interior, for comfortable and modern accommodation. Castello di Vicarello is owned and managed by Aurora and Carlo Baccheschi Berti, a couple who both have a history working in the fashion industry, but have now transformed their mutual love of hospitality and gastronomy into a family-run business. Aurora, who is the author of a bestselling cookbook on Tuscan cuisine, offers custom-designed cooking classes for guests. Not only will you return home rejuvenated and relaxed, but with the skills to whip up a homemade pasta or focaccia loaf for your next dinner party.

Royal Malewane, South Africa


If you’re looking for a truly wild experience, a safari trip is the way to go. The Royal Melewane offers luxurious lodges in Kruger National Park, a hotspot for South Africa’s safari experiences. The lodges host a maximum of 20 guests, rendering it an intimate vacation spot that feels secluded, aside from the African wildlife that surrounds the resort. Lions, elephants, buffalo, leopards, rhinos and over 500 species of birds roam free in the area, so venturing out on one of the Royal Melewane’s two daily game drives is an unforgettable experience. Afterwards, visit their wildlife rehabilitation and endangered species centres to learn more about the wild creatures up close, and finally, dine under the stars and among the crickets while being entertained by a group of traditional dancers.

Paradis Plage, Morocco



Escape the hustle and bustle of city life for a yoga retreat at the Paradis Plage resort in Morocco. The resort is situated right along the shoreline and offers stunning views of the blue ocean expanse reaching out into the horizon. Yoga sessions are led in two pavilions that are surrounded by a basin of water lilies. The open-concept studios allow the soothing sounds of the lapping waves and warm sunshine to assist in relaxing, and rejuvenating yoga sessions. Classes are taught throughout the day, beginning with a sunrise routine and ending with another at sunset, all taught by knowledgable yogis. Immersive yoga holiday packages are also available to keep devotees engaged in the practice throughout the duration of their stay.