COVER

Best of Asia (Best of Asia 2004)

The insider's guide to the very finest Asia has to offer

Most Romantic Meal (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Soul)

The Floating Market
DAL LAKE, KASHMIR

Best Buddhas (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Soul)

Pagan
BURMA

Best Public Art (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Soul)

The Sogetsu Ikebana Installations
TOKYO, JAPAN

Best Urban Oasis (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Soul)

Lodi Garden
NEW DELHI, INDIA

Best Urban Hike (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Body)

The Dragon's Back Trail
HONG KONG

Best Market (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Body)

Panjiayuan
BEIJING, CHINA

Best Park for Kids (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Body)

Kuala Lumpur City Centre Park
KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA

Best Bookstore (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Mind)

Eslite
TAIPEI, TAIWAN

Best Film Festival (Best of Asia 2004 | Best for your Mind)

The Pusan International Film Festival
SOUTH KOREA

The Worst of Asia (Best of Asia 2004)

It is a Chinese custom to end the most lavish banquets with a simple bowl of rice. The reason? To teach humility. In the same way, we conclude our tour of the Best of Asia with a look at the worst. Here's one man's list

ASIA

GLOBAL ADVISER

The Thrill of the Chase (TIME Global Adviser)

Avid British hunters cross the channel to track wild boar in Burgundy

Dada's Birthplace (TIME Global Adviser)

The famous Cabaret Voltaire has been revived as a showcase for quirky art

Songs of Freedom (TIME Global Adviser)

Compilations of traditional South African music energize the mind and soothe the spirit

Tech Watch (TIME Global Adviser)

A Guidebook for the Wrist

Wheels and Deals (TIME Global Adviser)

Women buy more new cars than men do. But many could negotiate better

British Cuisine, Seriously (TIME Global Adviser)

It's no longer a punchline: quality British food can be a pleasure—and can also be ordered online

BUSINESS

China's Shadow Banks

Illegal lenders are siphoning money from state-owned banks, but they may do more good than harm

BRIEFING

Breaking the Ice (Notebook)

Were Korea's speed skaters subjected to beatings by their coaches?

Playing it Straight (Notebook)

An expert panel suggests exonerating controversial cricket bowler Muralitharan

TIME/CNN Poll (Notebook)

Four More Years: the Asian Perspective

Milestones (Notebook)

Iris Chang, noted historian, dies

Milestones (Notebook)

Iris Chang, noted historian, dies

Verbatim (Notebook)

Quotes of the week

Letters (Notebook)

Visions of Tomorrow