Luxury travel simply doesn’t get more luxurious than travelling by private jet! And in a huge continent like Asia, with so many remote destinations, it’s often the best way to travel, particularly if you are pressed for time. With many areas poorly served, or not served at all, by scheduled flights, private aviation is sometimes the only option. Here’s our pick of 6 Asian destinations that are perfect for private jet travel…
India lends itself well to private aviation because many amazing destinations such as Agra (for the Taj Mahal), Jaisalmer, Darjeeling and the wildlife parks of Ranthambore and Bandhavgarh lack commercial airports and typically require long car rides to reach. Very few towns are linked by nonstop flights, so connecting flights are required through hub cities like Delhi and Mumbai. The ideal India holiday includes a combination of private jets as well as helicopters to land at resorts like Amanbagh and Wildflower Hall in Shimla where the closest fixed-wing runways are hours away by road.
Indochina & Thailand
Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia & Laos may be close geographically but travelling between them can be time-consuming and impractical, whilst poor infrastructure means that internal road journeys can be unduly long and arduous. Private jets make travelling between popular Thailand/Indochina destinations such as Siem Reap, Saigon, Hanoi, Luang Prabang, Hoi An, Chiang Rai, Phuket and the Mekong Delta quick and easy, whilst also opening up more remote areas such as Southern Laos, the Cambodian coast, and Vietnam’s Central Highlands, and providing quick access to regional hubs such as Bangkok and Singapore.
Some of our favorite destinations in Indonesia such as Kalimantan (Borneo), Raja Ampat, Papua, Sulawesi and Sumba are quite difficult to reach, and overnights in connecting cities such as Bali, Jakarta and Banjarmasin are often required. Commercial flights within Indonesia are generally rather unreliable, so flying privately is the answer, and can save hours or even days of travel by flying nonstop on routes such as Pangkalanbun to Labuan Bajo, Torajaland to Sumba, Yogyakarta to Sorong in Raja Ampat.
Mongolia is a fascinating country to visit, but the long car rides can be stultifyingly dull in this vast country the size of western Europe but with only a few airports. The good news is that chartering is relatively inexpensive, and airstrips can be set up almost anywhere with a few artfully arranged flags. Instead of driving all day to a fascinating places like Ikh Nart National Park or the Onon River where serious anglers fish for the massive taimen “megafish”, a helicopter or turboprop plane can whisk you there in a tiny fraction of the time.
In Myanmar, many Remote Lands clients like to venture off the beaten path to places like Kengtung, Mrauk-U and Putao where flights are infrequent and inconvenient. Private jet travel also makes coastal areas such as Ngapali & the Mergui Archipelago much more easily accessible. Commercial flights within Myanmar, which are often delayed or cancelled, utilize one-class aircraft which many of our clients do not favor. For these reasons, we often charter Bangkok-based jets and Myanmar-based helicopters to transport our clients in comfort and convenience within Myanmar.
Most major cities of eastern China are connected by nonstop flights. However, once you go off the beaten path or go west of Xian, commercial flight routing and schedules become far less convenient and charters are a major timesaver. Urumqi to Lhasa, Lijiang to Kashgar, Shangri-la to Guilin and Harbin to Hohot are but a few of the routes that would otherwise require connections. Helicopters are now available for flights over the Great Wall of China but few other places in China.