Blogs from Asia


Asia » India » Kerala » Kochi November 18th 2099

Arriving in Cochi city from Kottayam, we exited the bus and took a rickshaw to the boat jetty. Leaving the mainland (Ernakulam) behind, we boarded the boat (for just 5 rupees each) and made our way to Fort Cochin - a beautiful and relaxed sea town. Departing the boat we took yet another rickshaw to Princess Road (the main backpacker district), where we were greeted by a young gentleman and taken to his beautiful homestay (Fort Residency), equipped with a living room and kitchen free for cooking. Whilst staying in this funky homestay, decorated with Banksy images and other inspiring images, a cafe area was also in progress and soon to open ... a must-go if you visit Fort Cochin! After settling in and getting our bearings the next 2-3 days were spent wandering the beautiful ... read more

Asia » India » Karnataka » Mangalore November 18th 2099

Day 1 - Waking bright and early in Cochi we gathered our belongings and headed to the boat jetty to catch a ferry back to Ernakulam (the mainland). Departing the boat we took a rickshaw to the train station to board the train and embark on an 8-9 hour journey headed north to Mangalore. Once aboard and in our reserved seats/sleepers, we watched as 100's of people piled onto the train station after station which made for a very hot and uncomfortable journey. It was at this point we decided never to purchase over-priced reserved tickets for a day train due to the fact that the locals, having hold only general tickets, just sat wherever they liked including our seats (7 people squeezed onto 2 seats)! Finally as the train rolled into Mangalore around 10pm we ... read more

Asia » India » Kerala » Varkala November 18th 2099

Checking out of Wilson Hotel, Kovalam, we took a rickshaw back to Leela Resort where we caught the local bus back to East Fort Bus stand, Trivandrum. To escape the burning heat, we then took a rickshaw across town to the KSRTC bus stand where we were to catch a 3hour bus rattling up north to Kollabalam. Stepping off the bus in Kollabalam we opted to take a rickshaw 12km to Varkala Beach (a lovely slither of sand set beneath a cliff-top lined with restaurants and guesthouses) where we were greeted and led to our accomodation-to-be. As per usual, having just arrived, we went out in search of food heading in the completely wrong direction, over barren headlands to a secluded beach where we found ourselves scrambling over huge boulders to avoid the incoming tide. Eventually ... read more

Asia » Indonesia » Bali » Canggu October 20th 2080

For those of you who have been reading our blogs and knew our itinerary, you will all know that we have been to Malaysia BUT I'm going to return to this fabulous country as we are actually going back for a another couple of weeks. In the meantime our jet-setting (well mainly a combo of driving and flying) took us to Singapore and Bali, Indonesia. Singapore was the official end of our overlanding trip, most of our group were either off in different directions so our time in the city was limited. I have been to Singapore many times and it doesn't seem to change. It is so well organised, clean and everything you would want from a modern city. What it makes up in cleanliness and order, to me it always seems it lacks just ... read more
Temple monkeys!
Cute but naughty
Photo 5

Asia » Thailand October 1st 2080

For once on this trip, I can talk about a country that I had actually been to before. Unfortunately I have to admit that the first visit in question was a ten day package holiday to Thailand (Phuket to be exact) and included as much cultural appreciation as a visit to your local pub, although I'm sure I had better cocktails than the pub. So I can't really say that all we did in Thailand wasn't new to me as we got the chance to visit most of the 'must see' places the country had to offer. Where does one begin with Thailand? Do you start with its history - the country that was once Siam but changed its name to Thailand meaning 'Land of free people' thanks to its claim to being the only South-East ... read more
Cute gecko
Group star jump
Time for dinner

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh September 13th 2080

If ever you were to say a country moved you, I would be prepared to put good money on big odds that you were talking about Cambodia. As the title of this blog suggests this is a country that has had a past that has taken it to hell and back, but they still smile. They still welcome you to their country. They still fight the demons of their past, and they still work hard everyday to remember that past so that it doesn't happen again. We drove an easy, luxurious six hours from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh over what could easily be described as the nicest border crossing since driving through them in Europe. A smile and a stamp and we were in! Immediately we knew we had just changed country. Instead ... read more
DId someone say bone?
A new chapter
I see the sea

Asia » South Korea » Seoul August 31st 2015

It's officially been a week since I arrived in Korea! I'm kind of proud to say that I've pretty much mastered the transportation system (well, at least the bus and subway)! Yesterday night we spent hours just watching videos together and it was a lot of fun. The only bad part is that today we had to get up early to get to Korean class and I was pretty tired at first. We had class, went out for lunch and then Mr. Kim took us to a bank so we could open bank accounts. We were all really stressed out because we had to sign so many papers and there was nothing written in English and we were all pretty inexperienced in these things and yeah... We got home about an hour ago and since then ... read more

Asia » Nepal » Kathmandu » Thamel August 31st 2015

Aaaaa Day 43 - Final goodbyes, hello solo at Shankar Palace We all got up to see our first group member leave this morning at 7.30. It's goodbye to Bernie from Germany. The taxi arrived on time, it was hugs from everyone, then she was gone! Bernie had been a good companion throughout the tour. She had a very even balanced personality. She loved her food, and her drink too! Bernie was always ready and eager to join in with every activity that came her way. She was quiet and unassuming, always showing positive participation with all of the group members. The thing I enjoyed the most with Bernie, was sitting back and watching her come to life, when meeting new people, she positively, visually flourished at those times. Thank you Bernie. I enjoyed sharing my ... read more

Asia » China » Beijing » Wangfujing August 30th 2015

Yesterday I went clubbing. And by clubbing I mean I partied till I didn't feel homesick anymore. It was a very weird experience because I had never been to a nightclub in my life. Usually the partyscene is not really my thing. I enjoy having a drink with friends once in a while but I rarely go anywhere I can't hear what other people are saying. Before we entered the club, we decided to grab a drink at a cafe located in a touristic street. It seemed a stripclub, but after like three minutes the stripper got the hell out of there and three guys took her place. They whipped out their karaoke kit (the Chinese really dig karaoke) and started singing Chinese lovesongs. It was actually way more entertaining, but a surprising twist nonetheless. When ... read more

Asia » Indonesia » Java August 30th 2015

Started coaching volleyball again this semester for grades 7-9. There were several girls who tried out. Since not cuts are made at this level, two teams were formed. I coached the A Team whereas my colleague the B Team. My birthday. A bunch of us went out for dinner that night. We frequently go to this restaurant and the staff wanted to take photos with me it’s common for strangers to want to have their photo taken with you – it’s because of the white skin, or so I am told. Part two of the birthday celebration was going to be at a water park but since we had a heavy rainy season this year, conditions were poor to do something like that. It was rescheduled but then canceled again so part two never happened. ... read more

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