Page 3 of Katep Travel Blog Posts

Asia » Philippines » Negros Oriental » Apo Island April 8th 2010

Well El Nido is the kind of place I imagined the Philippines to look/be like. It is part of the Bacuit archipelago; which means it is part of a group of tiny islands, lagoons, secret beaches, palm lined white sand beaches... blue skies, blue seas and endless beaches. We met a lovely Swedish (another one!) girl on the way and the 3 of us hung out whilst there with 2 Canadians (I am still with Julie of course) and so after a relatively pain free journey on a small boat for 8 hours we arrived in El Nido. (I have to say that I had imagined everything to be a lot closer together in the Philippines, and therefore a lot easier and quicker to travel around… this is not the case and travel in the Philippines ... read more
the boat ride
the lagoons

Asia » Philippines » Donsol March 24th 2010

I am sitting in a bamboo style restaurant overlooking a moonlit sea at a resort called Coron. But let me back track a little… I am now in the Philippines… Oh that isn’t far enough is it; I left you the day before I was to dive Sipadan - it was amazing. I am not going to go on and on about it, but I will say it lives up to its reputation and I would recommend using Scuba Junkies if ever you want to dive over there… and definitely stay for a few days on Mabul, which, as it happened I liked just as much (or even more) than Sipadan. However I should mention that Sipadan has a massive Coral wall which drops to well 600 metres (!) and I felt so small and insignificant ... read more
taal volcano
the whale shark..

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Semporna March 12th 2010

Well I believe I left you all at Kuching - what a journey since then, and what a place I’m in! Borneo is … well let me see, it is diverse, full of mediocre food (not nearly as good as india or Thailand) but full of a variety of animals and fish that I have spent the past three weeks trying to see! So. Let me start where i left you, which i believe was hitch hiking back to Kuching from the weird Jong's Crocodile Farm! Well after arriving safely back in Kuching i took a flight to Mulu National Park (and World heritage site) THe flight was amausing as the plane probably only had 40 seats and only about a third of them were occupied and when we disembarked we just strolled across the runway ... read more
the bats at Deer Cave
Outside Lang's Cave
Lang's Cave

Asia » Malaysia February 24th 2010

I did not like Langkawi! I expected it to be beautiful, relaxing, quiet and, i have to admit it, a bit 'posh' but i was disappointed! in fact quite the opposite.. it is large, noisy and incredibly touristy (and therefore not 'posh'!) and not touristy in the thai or indian way that I am used to but in a ‘holiday makers’ kind of way - not nearly so nice!! I did get my visa though and met a lovely American couple on the boat who I ended up sharing a hotel room with and the three of us and the couple who I’d met on the boat to Lipe (and then again on the boat to Langkawi) all hung out together which was really nice. But the food wasn’t spicy or interesting enough and it was ... read more
KL Tower
The Petronas Towers
Kuching waterfront

Asia » Thailand February 15th 2010

Wow, Thailand is very different to India! As soon as I left the airport I was aware of the following; Clean loos, with an actual toilet (!), loo roll, a flush that works, no bucket and bowl! The smell of urine, rotting food and curry had been replaced with the lighter and more frangrant smell of chillies and occasionally the not so fragrant thai fish sauce that is used in all cooking. - No rubbish on the streets. - Signs written in English are spelt correctly and grammatically make sense! - You aren’t harassed into buying something or shouted at to get a tuk tuk or taxi. - When you are harassed if you say no they stop bothering you. - Thai people laugh for (seemingly) no reason at all… in fact they laugh, almost inappropriately! ... read more
muay thai
fishy feet
elephant trekking

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Udaipur January 29th 2010

I left you at Jaipur train station, right before someone very cleverly (and my hat goes off to them because I have no idea how they did it) stole my wallet from the front of my rucksack, which was on my front… they literally stole it from under my nose! Luckily it only had about R350, my credit card, some malaria, anti sickness and anti histamine tablets, my lip salve and a usb stick in it. I was very lucky… my train ticket was in my other pocket and I had back up cash and back up credit cards. So, after taking a deep breath (and telling the man next to me on the train that it wasn’t funny and he shouldn’t smile; poor man!) I called Nationwide and cancelled the card and tried to ... read more
The Fort, Jodhpur
children dancing for money

Asia January 23rd 2010

Ok so the train ride to Varanasi was freezing! But I managed to arrive without falling into a hypothermic coma. I had to use my teachers voice on the tuk tuk driver in Varansi who (and I had been warned about this) told me that my hotel was closed, dangerous and full! The hotel is right on the Meer Ghat and while it isn’t beautiful it is clean and does the job! (although it is a little annoying having to walk through the open air restaurant to have a shower or use the loo!!) But Varanasi is amazing. It is a real cultural hot spot and it just so happened to be a kite festival and a solar eclipse whilst I was there which meant it was full with thousands of people - which was fantastic ... read more
washing in the ghats

Asia » India » Tamil Nadu » Mamallapuram January 14th 2010

I wrote this a few days ago but haven't had a chance to put it up yet! So here it is.. It was whilst sitting on an early morning bus from Mamallapurnam to Chennai airport that I realized how much I love travelling India by train. The trains may be late. You may not always get a seat. You may be surrounded by cockroaches. BUT, you meet the Indian people. You know where you are when you arrive at your destination. You get the best chai and snack food. But most importantly, you can sit in a train doorway and watch the countryside whizz past… and there is very little that I have done so far that beats that experience. I’m sure you’re not supposed to sit with your legs sticking out the train doors. I’m ... read more

Asia » India » Pondicherry January 14th 2010

Well I am now on a train from Kolkata to Varanasi. I would like to say on my own for the first time, and whilst that is true I don’t ever seem to be without a talking companion!! On this journey there is a very enthusiastic 19 year old girl called Kab who is chatting happily to me about how she loves London and Switzerland!! (her mum is also here and has already told her to take my email address for when she comes to England!! Well I left you in Madurai and the beautiful Sri Meenakshi temple and from there Pierino, Flurina and I got a train to Pondicherry. What a place! Pondicherry is the ‘French town’ in India. It is the place where you can eat proper French pastries and where I saw the ... read more
Playing cards
Saying goodbye to Charlie
Sri Meenakshi Temple

Asia January 6th 2010

So I think the last time I wrote I was in Fort Cochin and it was New Year!. So after our rather low key New Years Eve we headed on the train to Allepey. I have to say that I was not that taken with Allepey - a lot of tourists go there, but really only to travel on their fabulous backwaters - fabulous backwaters… not so fabulous Allepey! So after finding a cheap hotel room above a restaurant and booking our boat trip for the following day I headed out to explore the town….. just in time to see a procession of men, women and children walking down the main street in various different uniforms/plain clothes, with a amateur band playing ‘procession’ style music!! The streets here are lined with stalls selling gaudy coloured plastic ... read more
Sunset on the backwaters
The boat ride

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