Follow the travel monkeys here!!
We are Tom (22) and Emily (21), two students from the UK embarking on our first backpacking trip!
(...and our first ever blog!)
Over a 2 month period we will journey across Malaysia and Indonesia taking in everything there is to offer. We'll try and keep you posted as often as possible!
Ciao for now! see you when we're back. Love you all x
This blog is predominantly for Family and Friends, but if any other bloggers would like to comment/post/advise feel free!
September 19th 2011
We were unsure whether to write another blog or not... but decided that we should to let those who don't know, what we've been up to and just for future reference. Firstly, we should have said sooner but we noticed when travelling into Indonesia from Malaysia, and even more so since we've come back again, just how friendly and helpful the Malay people are. They're genuine and actually want to help you out and just nice people in general; whereas our experience of Indonesia was that they were your friend if you had money that they could squeeze out of you, and could get quite intimidating if you weren't willing to cough it up. We arrived in Kuching, or "The Cat" as it's translated, about a week ago now and headed straight for 'Jong's Crocodile Park ... read more
September 10th 2011
What an incredible couple of days! So after a lazy afternoon of writing blogs and watching The Discovery Channel in Sandakan, we continued where we left off from Kinabatangan with more wildlife. We were up and on a boat across to Selingaan (Turtle) Island - a tiny tiny island just across from the Philippines, and we thought Gili T was small! After landing on the island and finding our accommodation we headed out to the beach - armed with snorkel equipment. Geared up and ready to jump in the water something caught our eye - a large snake like head was bobbing about just off shore. After a mild panic attack, under closer inspection (and a lot of deliberation) we realised that the creature was a large monitor lizard having a lovely morning swim. We watched ... read more
September 8th 2011
The last few days have been absolutely incredible. Firstly we made the half-day bus journey to Sepilok Orang Utan Sacntuary, where we were able to watch a family of Orang-utans at feeding time. They were adorable and such show offs! Including tight rope walking, hanging upside down, using buckets as helmets and more. Really amazing. Following this was an interesting video about the efforts of the sanctuary. And although generally Sepilok is meant to be FULL of people (even a few days before we went) we must've just hit the post holiday lull as it worked out cheaper, and there were only 20 people there - as opposed to the norm of a hundred or two. A night at the lodge just round the corner, then the next day we made our way over to the ... read more
September 4th 2011
Arriving late at night in KK we crashed at Borneo Backpackers lodge. The next morning we made a horrifying discovery. My external hard drive with 1,500 - 7 weeks worth - of photos had been stolen. We searched everywhere but to no avail. Guessing that it must've been taken on one of the various forms of transport we had made since Thailand - the last place we used it. Obviously this was a MAJOR bummer. We literally could've got on fine with anything else being stolen. It was devastating and made us feel sick. After a moment's (hour's) silence in memoriam (rage/depression), many 'shoulda woulda coulda's', and a few 'at least's' we slowly began coming to terms with our loss. Booking our Jungle trip for the next few days helped a lot, not just because it ... read more
September 3rd 2011
Having spent a week on the beautiful island of Gili Trawangan we really started to settle into the slow and easy lifestyle. Wake up each morning to the sounds of relentless cockerels and men chanting over loudspeaker from the mosque, then enjoy pancakes and fruit salad for brekkie before taking a walk around the island - we figured since we were beach bumming around we should at least do some exercise! After this a lazy lunch on the beach with a few hours soaking in some rays with the odd dip in the crystal clear sea before eating again and watching a film along the beachfront (we even found one 'cinema' that was literally a huge projector on the beach with sunbeds so you could watch a film under the stars). We had considered doing a ... read more
August 27th 2011
Hey fans!! Back again (after another week or more! - oops!) and lots to tell. We wrote you last from Koh Tao, the downscaled version of Phangan. Following a great last night, and another ladyboy show - this time a lot of our guys got involved for the finale! Very funny indeed - We took a boat over to Koh Samui. Immediately you got a feel for how much bigger this island was, and much more advanced. Having checked into our room for 3 at Ark Bar - the hub for beach/party life - and had a little nap we jumped in a cab to meet Adam at his local, an authentic Irish Pub, and a few of his friends including the one and only Clayton. A couple of pints later and we drove back to ... read more
August 18th 2011
Don't worry, the full moon party didn't kill us. We thought you might be getting worried since we haven't blogged in over a whole week!? So..what have we been up to...? To be honest it is a little hazy to say the least but we'll give you some rough details. Our flight to Phuket in Thailand went fine and we met this American guy called Parker (one of those effortlessly cool guys who had just finished a 6 week, 3 dives a day stint as a research assistant in the middle of nowhere, and manages to snowboard over 100 days a year) so anyway we got a room with him for the night after sampling some authentic pad thai, some dumplings from a street vendor and grabbing a chang or two. The next morning we caught ... read more
August 9th 2011
After making a few small purchases at Ubud market (wanting to make many more - a good place for pressies - but not enough room in our bags) we said a sad farewell to Ubud and journeyed to the west coast to a little town called Amed. This really was a little fishing village. We soon discovered that their primary source of income, aside from the odd incredibly lavish hotel (we stayed in a cosy bungalow homestay next door to one and managed to persuade them to let us use their pool!), is sea salt. Within minutes we were accosted by a gang of kids; "Hey sis what is your name?" and "Mister you wan buy salt?" - and those who hadn't learnt to say that in English had a paragraph written about how our purchase ... read more
August 6th 2011
Surfs up in Bali! After a couple of days of relaxing on the beach, (attempted) surfing and wandering the streets of Kuta we headed out of town for an afternoon. First stop Dreamland. Finding ourselves amongst many over excited Chinese tourists on the picturesque Dreamland beach, surrounded by more professional surfers than we found in Kuta. This beach is beyond beautiful. It had everything - rockpools, boats way out to see, golden sand, and surfers carving up the crystal clear waves. The one not so beautiful site, but a serious entertainment factor, was a portly Chinese fella working the speedos. Following a quick dip we ventured on to Ulu Watu. Having been given sarongs and a firm warning about the monkeys we had a tight grip on our possessions as we entered the temple's clifftop grounds. ... read more
July 31st 2011
We made it to Bali!!! On our last day in Penang (and Malaysia for the time being...) we visited the Kek Lok Si Temple - the most renowned in Malaysia for it's HUMONGOUS statue of Kuan Yin, and just the sheer size of the Temple itself. It was incredible. Probably the best we've seen so far. Snake Temple on the other hand... not so great. It was on the way to the airport so we popped in, carrying all our things with us. We expected it to be slithering with snakes all over. We were disappointed to see just a couple of pythons and what seemed to be a lot of fake plastic snakes. We even laughed at the signs which read "All snakes are live snakes but visitors are requested not to prod or harm ... read more