Blogs from Asia - page 6


Asia » Vietnam April 12th 2014

1stApril Chan May, Vietnam We arrived here very late because of a technical issue with the ship. We were booked on a tour to the city of Hue some 90 minutes away. More of that later. The port of Chan May is between two cities, Da Nang and Hue. Da Nang was America’s major strategic base during the Vietnam War and in 1968 during the Tet offensive, Hue was soon under the control of the communists. Hue was reduced to rubble with over 4000 civilians killed during this time. Hue became a World Cultural Heritage Site in 1993 (UNESCO). Hue has been the subject of an extensive rebuilding programme for many years with sights like the Citadel, Imperial City, pagodas and mausoleums must see attractions for tourists tha visit the city. Now onto our tour, in ... read more

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jodhpur April 12th 2014

I’ve been to Rajasthan’s famed “Blue City,” Jodhpur, three times now, and I find that on each visit some different aspect or feature that the city offers captivates me. On my first visit to the desert city I was mesmerized by Jodhpur’s centerpiece: the mighty Mehrangarh Fort. Towering 122 meters above the city, it is one of the largest forts in India. For much of modern history, Rajasthan has been ruled by clans, or Rajputs, that have remained relatively independent from the central state or Raj. It was only in 1971 that Indira Gandhi officially abolished the Rajputs’ titles and many of their special privileges. It is from the open courts and walkways of Mehrangarh Fort that one can truly appreciate the blue splendor of Jodhpur’s Old City. Blue is the color that traditionally demarcates the ... read more
Me on the rooftop terrace of my hotel
The Blue City viewed from the Mehrangarh Fort
Matt, Leanne, and I in the Blue City

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Ko Samui April 12th 2014

Abandoned on a crowded pavement, the scorching early afternoon sun blazing down on us, we’d just about avoided the notorious “travel agent” scam by the skin of our teeth. Research about the long journey from Khao Lak to Koh Samui had warned us about it but everything just happened so incredibly quickly. Luck was with us though the moment of realisation occurred just before we parted with any hard earned cash – a close shave! Our day had started at 6.30am as we needed to traverse from the extreme west of Thailand right across the country to an island off the East coast. Things had gone reasonably well; our taxi to the main road was waiting for us outside the hotel, the infamous 465 public bus did actually stop when we flagged it down and even ... read more
Ignorance Is Bliss
Plain Sailing
"Should It Stay or Should It Go?"

Asia » Vietnam » Mekong River Delta » Vinh Long April 12th 2014

h2 style="border: 0px; -webkit-transform: translate3d(0px, 0px, 0px); margin: 0px 0px 4px; padding: 16px 0px 0px; outline: 0px;"weiter geht es, raus aus der stadt, ins mekong delta nach vinh long. zu fuß machen wir uns auf zur central bus station, mit dem bus zur großen station mien tay und dann mit einem langstreckenbus bis nach vinh long. und das alles: völlig komplikationslos! nach unserem gestrigen taxi-desaster sind wir nur noch am staunen, wie hilfsbereit die leute sind, während wir immer nur “vinh long?”, “vinh long?” erfragen. auch mit dem zeitmanagement haben wir heute glück und können zehn minuten nachdem wir die busstation erreichen bereits unseren bus besteigen. der local bus ist nicht nur größer, sondern auch mit einer funktionierenden klimaanlage ausgestattet, im gegensatz zu den touri open busses! in vinh long handeln wir noch zwei motor taxis ... read more
girls in front
markus liiiebt papayas
mr vu takes a bath

Asia » Hong Kong » Hong Kong Island April 12th 2014

I am pinching myself right now because I am finding it a little hard to believe that I am sitting in The Lobby Restaurant of the The Peninsula Hotel in Hong Kong. (See photo) I just ordered a Tsing Tao beer - it was either that or a gin and tonic - and I will have dinner here in a little bit. The Peninsula is a grand old hotel built during the height of the British rule. There is a live four-piece band up on the mezzanine. There are several shops that open onto this large room and the names I can see are Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpel, and Prada. I just saw an Arab sheik walk past. Oh, my beer has arrived. (See photo) I'm sorry to say that Tsing Tao doesn't taste any ... read more


Asia » Philippines » Baguio April 12th 2014

I've been compiling this to-do list for a while, but here's my first go at ordering it: 1. Bohol, both Panglao Island and the chocolate mountains, including Danao Adventure Park and the Philippines Tarsier and Wildlife Sanctuary. From there, I can head down to Camiguin White Islands and nearby Katibawasan Falls. Time: one full week minimum 2. Palawan, both Puerto Princesa with its underground river, San Vicente and Tubataha Reef, and El Nido Time: one full week 3. Mt Pulag climb Time: 4 days 4. Calaguas Island Time: 3-4 days 5. Sagada including Banaue and Vigan, via Baguio via La Union Time: 4-5 days 6. Tacloban to see first-hand the devastation Time: day trip 7. Mt Mayon, Bicol 8. Batanes 9. Batangas 10. Return to Zambales: Nagsasa Cove, Mt Pinatubo, Anawangin Cove, Subic Town and Olongapo ... read more

Asia » Cambodia » North » Siem Reap April 11th 2014

My stomach lurched as soon as the curry hit my tongue. Bad chicken. I spit the mealy mouthful back onto my plate and headed for the bathroom, hacking like a fur-balled cat. We were halfway to Siem Reap and stopping for 'lunch' at a restaurant located in a dusty hamlet. We should have stayed on our Giant Ibis bus. Giant Ibis is a relatively new company offering shiny vehicles at slightly higher fares. We paid $16 each to get from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap. Giant Ibis advertises that it has free WIFI on its vehicles. I guess it would be free if you were able to connect to it. They also talk of a toilet on the bus but I never found it unless it was that half-full jug of hazy amber-colored fluid under the ... read more
Too Cute For Words
Excited to Finally Be Here

Asia » Indonesia » Bali » Ubud April 11th 2014

It's all started by my friend, Tissa, who suggested that I joined Yoga Bali Spirit Festival which happened yearly and this year, it was held on March 19-23, 2014 in Ubud, Bali. I am not a true blue Yogi but the thought of attending a yearly global event of Yoga in Bali was exciting, so I booked my flight and bought the five day pass to the festival. A few days before I left, my friend told me she was not able to come, and the rest of my friends were not able to join me either. Determined, I went ahead with my plan and left for Bali on March 19. Upon arrival at noon, I was greeted at the airport by my car rental agent from whom I regularly rented a car, and got my ... read more
Balinese family
Happy kids
Making Ogoh Ogoh

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City April 11th 2014

h2 style="border: 0px; -webkit-transform: translate3d(0px, 0px, 0px); margin: 0px 0px 4px; padding: 16px 0px 0px; outline: 0px;"heute bricht uns ho chi minh's china town. nach frühstück in einer sehr europäischen bäckerei durchqueren wir die noch erträglich schwüle stadt richtung war remnants museum. obwohl uns lonely planet ob der schweren kost dort gewarnt hat, sind wir nach zwei stunden fotographie der kriegsverbrechen im american war beide fassungslos. die bilder über massaker und die auswirkungen von agent orange bis heute verursachen eine übelkeit, die sich den ganzen tag halten soll. das schlimmste an den, wenn auch recht einseitig dargestellten, artefakten ist die gewissheit, dass etwas sehr vergleichbares gerade jetzt in afghanistan und irak passiert. natürlich sind die wunden des zweiten weltkrieges in europa noch zu finden, aber die geschichte des 30-jähr... read more
china town

Asia » Indonesia » Bali » Padangbai April 11th 2014

Feeling rejuvenated from my earlier Yoga trip at Ubud, I headed towards Padang Bai, a small port town in the North of Bali on Friday, March 21, 2014. I had taken it for granted that road in Bali was relatively easy to navigate, and it should not take that long to drive from Ubud to Padang Bai (if you know the way). The last time I went to Padang Bai was more than 20 years ago, and I had no idea there was a new road linking Sanur to Padang Bai which took only an hour! Relying my poor navigation skill and guts, I finally reached Padang Bai from Ubud in three hours (to a non-local who didn't know the way and didn't have map or GPS, this was an achievement), which was supposed to take ... read more
Old Pier
View of Padang Bai
Prayers for the safety of Bob Marley

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