Out and About


Out and About

Love to travel. Have had some amazing trips - planning several future adventures but 2013 is sadly going to be a year I don't get to wonder.

Asia » Malaysia » Sabah » Mabul May 24th 2012

After our first 9 day rotation at Sepilok, a group of five of us made plans to use our 3 days off to go on an adventure. And as one of the must-sees of Borneo is the diving at Sipadan, that is where we headed. Our plans we too last minute to find beds at Sipadan, so we went for the next best thing and stayed on nearby Mabul Island. The entire trip was absolutely awesome. The hostel/hotel we were staying at had rooms sitting on the water and everyone there was really cool. We spent our days diving and snorkeling, and the evenings chilling out by the water. It was a perfect little getaway and the girls I was travelling with all agreed. We all felt a little more balanced after the trip. Obviously, the ... read more
Mabul (13)
Mabul Reefs (27)
Mabul (1)

Asia » Malaysia May 2nd 2012

At the end of April I took about 10 days to work my way down to Singapore from Thailand. As I knew I would be spending two months in Malaysia while at Sepilok, I didn't leave myself much time to explore the western portion of the country. It was a quick, but fun part of my trip. After spending some time enjoying the beaches in Langkawi (and swimming with the sharks, per my last blog), we headed to Penang to officially start our trip towards Singapore. It was a great introduction to the diversity of Malaysia and to the food (see more discussion about that in my soon-to-be posted Adventures in Food blog on Malaysia. Gotta love when you can shamelessly promote two other blog posts in one paragraph). It was an interesting city to see, ... read more
Penang (3)
Cameron Highlands (2)
Kuala Lumpur (1)

Asia » Malaysia » Langkawi April 26th 2012

There is a little known fact about me and fish: they scare me. A lot. I try not to let people find out about this, as those who do know (including my mother) tease me mercilessly about it when the opportunity arises. Fish freak me out. Not pretty, little colourful fish, but anything larger than my foot generally has me running away in swim form. Despite this fear, I continue to go snorkeling as I'm determined not to miss out on seeing the coral reefs and some stunning (little) fish. With this determination in mind, I pulled up my big-girl pants (also known as a bathing suit) while in Langkawi and headed out to Pulau Payar, and island nearby that has a natural marine park. What was failed to be advertised to me was that not ... read more
Pulau Payar Snorkeling (1)
Shark (7)
Pulau Payar Snorkeling (4)

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Krabi April 23rd 2012

There is a reason that Krabi and its surrounding islands are known as one of the most beautiful places on earth. And this is because when you go there you truly feel like you have entered a parallel universe of beauty. Most Epic Sunset Ever. I've seen some pretty awesome sunsets in my life, from many different parts of the world. But I have to say the sunset I saw on our first night at Krabi is the greatest sunset I have experienced. It went on for around an hour, and was a rainbow of colours. Starting off with red and oranges, the colours heated up until the sky looked like it was on fire. When we thought it was ending it surprised us and the sky turned to bright purples and pinks. I've never seen ... read more
Mangroves (5)
Island Hopping (6)
Most Epic Sunset Ever (3)

Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Bangkok April 20th 2012

So anyone who knows me knows I am a city girl. I love cities, and believe the bigger the better. While I have visited many a city over the years and don't love every city I visit, at the least I like them. I never thought I would come across a city that I disliked. But I have to admit, there is something about Bangkok that just doesn't gel with me. At first I was worried that my time travelling around Asia had turned me off cities (as I own a home in the heart of Toronto's downtown core, this had me very troubled). But after subsequently visiting KL and Singapore and loving them, I realized it really was Bangkok that didn't do it for me. The question became why? Now, no one can deny that ... read more
Wat Pho (3)
Water Market (4)
Grand Palace (2)

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Rai April 15th 2012

Like anyone travelling in South East Asia, I have visited a ridiculous number of temples. Some amazing (Angkor Wat), while many seem blah after you have seen too many. So itis with great surprise that the strangest temple I have seen in almost 4 months of travelling is one that we stumbled upon between Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai. I call it the White Temple because I have no idea what its real name is, but it is way more than its obvious white colouring. While white means purity and peace in the West, it represents death in Asian cultures and death is what was on display at this temple. From hanging heads to demon sculptures, there was nothing pure or peaceful about this temple. It was absolutely fascinating. Unfortunately, we weren't dressed properly to go ... read more
White Temple (1)
White Temple (3)
White Temple (2)

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai April 15th 2012

There are some things you don't plan in your travels. Participating in 3 seperate new year celebrations (western, Chinese, and SE Asia) was never something I anticipated. But my 3rd, surprise new years party is probably one of the most fun times I have ever had. Not just on this trip, but in my life. So, a quick primer for those at home who have no idea what SE Asian New year is (I was one of your masses until recently. I'm going with the Thai New Year (Songkran) explanation, as that where this blog takes place: Per Wikipedia: The Songkran festival (Thai: สงกรานต์, Khmer: សង្រ្កាន្ត; from the Sanskrit word saṃkrānti, or literally "astrological passage") is celebrated in Thailand as the traditional New Year's Day from 13 to 15 April. It coincides with the New Year ... read more
Sneak Attack
Water Fight by the River
The Smile Attack

Asia » Laos » West » Luang Prabang April 14th 2012

My last few days in Laos saw me in Luang Prabang before heading on a boat up the Mekong River as I headed back to Thailand. I was sad to leave Vang Vieng (so much to do that I didn't do, so much fun still to be had), but I'm determined to squeeze as much into this trip as possible and that is what I am doing. I won't have a chance to travel like this again for a long time, and I need to make the most of it while I can. There were 4 key verbs that described my time in Luang Prabang, and the activities I did while there: on, in, around and up. On an Elephant I think that every traveller has a list (mental or officially written down) of things that ... read more
Elephant Riding (7)
Elephant Riding (2)
Kangsi Waterfall (1)

Asia » Laos » West » Vang Vieng April 10th 2012

Long before getting to Vang Vieng, I was hearing stories about Vang Vieng. I had heard stories about other places too, but the Vang Vieng stories were unique as they revolved around the (in)famous tubing pub crawl. I was excited to experience it, although I never planned to go all out as I'm a firm believer that drunkennes and water are a recipe for disaster, especially if you are as accident prone as I am. So when I arrived in Vang Vieng and learned that there was so much more to do that tubing I was pleasantly surprised. While the tubing was fun, and I will never forget it, I think that the other experiences that I had while in Vang Vieng are what made the town so memorable. Everything in Vang Vieng is about the ... read more
Trek to Waterfall
Waterfall (1)
Vang Vieng (2)

Asia » Laos » West » Vientiane April 8th 2012

When we left Vietnam for Vientiane, it was the first day in over a week that the sun was shining and rain was not falling. It was bittersweet leaving Hanoi because there was finally an opportunity to enjoy a place in Vietnam with good weather, and we were nervous that the bad weather had gone ahead of us to Laos. Despite our fears, when we got off the plane in Vientiane the sun was shining (burning) down on us, and there was no chance of rain. I had heard a lot of good things about Laos and its people, and was excited to see if what I heard was true. I knew how true it was even before I got through customs. As a Canadian, we have a much higher visa fee than other nationalities to ... read more
Haw Phra Kaew (1)
Best fish ever.
Haw Phra Kaew (2)

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