Sally and Johns SE Asian Adventure

Sally and John

Sally and Johns SE Asian Adventure

Yes... you read correctly. We're going away on holiday, and its not to Spain! Actually it's about as far from our Spainish holiday as you could get as we are heading to Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and India for 7 weeks a la our back-packing children, nieces and nephews, minus the backpack of course. Read on as we add blog entries (providing my lesson with Em has sunk in) from around the globe to keep up with our retirement adventure.

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaipur March 5th 2013

Well we are home at last !!! Our trip has been amazing but before we sign off we need to tell you a few things about our “Golden Triangle Tour”. (Sorry no computer to record there!) First we found India a country of massive contrasts- real poverty with families living on rubbish dumps with any available material for roofs etc to very modern large houses. It is still very male dominated in some areas so Sally’s blonde hair caused quite a stir, especially when we stopped at traffic lights!!!! We toured from Delhi to Agra to Jaipur and back. Our favourite place was Jaipur with its colourful shops and wide streets with camels, oxen and horses all travelling on the roads with the cars and bikes, even sometimes just nibbling food in the middle of the ... read more

Asia » India » Uttar Pradesh » Agra February 21st 2013

Bet you weren't expecting us back this quickly!! Well we had to pay for an hour and it doesn't take that long to check your emails now does it! Mind you what a first afternoon in Delhi. Picked up by a crazy rickshaw driver who offered to take us to The Red Fort for 100 rupees and 2 hours later not only had we seen this great piece of ancient architecture we had also been through most of the bazaar, seen a tiny but gorgeous and ancient temple tucked away in the backstreets, had a tour of the spice market literally from the groundfloor to the roof; had a go at making red chilli paste, bought a serious stock of spices to bring home, run over an unfortunate pedestrian's foot, learned several new Indian oaths and ... read more

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Ko Samui February 19th 2013

Back again avid reader and now reporting from second island paradise. Not that much to say as we have been spending the last few days listening to the gentle surf on the sand, watching the coconut trees sway in the light breeze and slapping on the sun cream!! Our balcony where we are forcesee joy a continental breakfast has gorgeous views along the bay and across to Koh Phangan - clearly visible in the distance. Lots of activity on the beach - well from other people that is - boats in and out of all shapes and sizes and a small water sports "bit" which has provide some amusement but probably not for the group of testosterone fuelled 20somerhings that hired jet skis for the seconds time and had a minor bump!! Deposit and presumably a ... read more

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Ko Tao February 15th 2013

Hi lovely readers - well this is paradise here. Our wooden house overlooks the beach and sea - just right for sundowner cocktails and Singhas. We have two verandas, one with a lovely bed and even an al fresco bathroom - so cool. We did however hear some strange pattering noises running over our rooftop at night - you can imagine how I felt about that!!! Finally tracked it down to a cheeky tree squirrel who I now have words with every night. Apart from relaxing we did book a 'Shark Watch' to look at 'leef sharks' as the Thais call them or black finned reef sharks as we discovered courtesy of trip advisor!. Got up early and had a long tail boat all to ourselves, feeling all relaxed and looking forward to seeing and perhaps ... read more

Asia » Cambodia » North » Siem Reap » Knar February 12th 2013

Hello gentle reader - firstly apologies for the uncharacteristic delay in bloggers' corner but computer station at hotel in Siem Reap was well hot and stuffy! Rest of hotel was fantastic though. Boutique hotels in Cambodia are no more than 2 storeys high and suppposed to have very lush tropical gardens and lovely pools - well this baby did not disappoint. Prettiest hotel and best pool to date and a superb restaurant which was very reasonable. This was particularly useful cos when you're 'templed out' (and they are amazing) and you will be(!), it's really nice to have a good dip, force down a cold beer or, if you're Sally a Mai Tai or Singapore Sling, and then slip into the restaurant. Particularly good after the 05 am start on day 2 to check sunrise at ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City » District 1 February 3rd 2013

Back again faithful readers just chilling down after hectic two days of touring around HCMC. Long long trip to Cai Dao Holy See and Cu Chi tunnels but well worth it. Temple area undoubtedly biggest yet - 22 hectares - but after a quick jog round (likely!!!)you got the hang of it. Amazing fusion of big five religions (I feel a blog fact coming on) - Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Confucianism and Taoism. So sensible it was bound to fail and note (with apologies to all left footers) only major religion that refuses to acknowledge Cai Dao is Catholocism (check out catholic in the dictionary and you'll get the irony!) Cu Chi tunnels fascinating and made more interesting by our other tour party member (very select tours we're booked on) being an ex serving marine who was ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » North Central Coast » Thua Thien - Huế » Hué January 31st 2013

John back in the blogging saddle again so hold tight! Thank the Buddha, Confucius and Tao Di that we have only one train journey to do on this trip and we've done it!! A two hour train journey from Hue to Da Nang delayed by over an hour, seats that were either bolt upright or completely horizontal and a loo I'm not even going to attempt to describe - and this blog addicts was First Class...and in comparison with the rest of the train it was!!! Still it got us there and Sally enjoyed a bit of 'living on the edge' although I noticed she didn't go to the loo. However scenery was dramatic and gorgeous and we met some nice fellow travellers on the way. As rough as the train was, Hoi An is beautiful ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » North Central Coast » Thua Thien - Huế » Hué January 29th 2013

Hi again! We are now about to leave beautiful Hue. We have been to the Imperial Palace- beautifully restored and even had a drink in the Queen Mother's pleasure garden! It was really hot and we thought yes- this is hot weather nowbut the next day was grey. You were right Em about those skies!! But great for walking so arranged a day city tour which visited 3 famous emperor tombs. The first very regal and all decorated in red and yellow with poems and paintings on the walls and pillars. Blog fact coming up- it was cleverly built and if you go to google earth ( Minh Mang tomb) you will see it is built in shape of a man!!!Next tomb was on 3 levels with loads of huge statues guarding it all in stone ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi » Thuy An January 25th 2013

Back again at last avid readers. Slight delay as it took us some time to find a computer that we could understand but we are now on our last ful day in hanoi after some more superlative adventures. Last day in Chiang Mai went to Orchid Farm and humongous waterfall in national park - lovely. Walked our socks off first day in Hanoi. Fascinating and crazy city (cue amazing Blog Fact - Hanoi has 9 million inhabitants and 6 million motorcycles!!...and they are everywhere. If Ho Chi Min City is "worse" ...can't wait!!). Went to oldest temple in Hanoi - closed on Mondays! Ho-hum. Temple of Literature beautiful - 5 courtyards with gorgeous flowers, ancient architecture including tablets of stone set on stone turtles with the names of the the scholars/graduates from the temple. All based ... read more

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai January 18th 2013

Back again and now to our elephant training!! First we learnt 8 commands in Thai like forward back foot up (to get on) etc. This was like being at school because we were then going to prectise with our elephants!! We strolled down to meet them, stoke them feed them ect then had to climb on using commands and practise with our elephants. Getting on was quite a challenge as they are big and wide !!! We then went on trek 2 per elephant,and guess who had to lead -yes me giving commands like left right very exciting and bit scary !! We even had a baby elephant in tow as we were riding mum and she was BIG!! Will John's thighs recover!!!? We then swapped and John took control!!!!! We then led them down to ... read more

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