Thursday, May 30, 2013

Dalat - MuiNe - Saigon (Hồ Chí Minh City) Costing

Normally I will only update the costing towards the end of the trip entries but since a few have asked (as they will be traveling soon) hence I thought this will help.

Notes :
1. To lower the cost further, please do not travel from Mui Ne to Saigon on weekend as the bus fee is slightly more expensive.
2. There is no train ride from Dalat to Saigon.
3. When I was arranging this trip, I have difficulties in staging which city comes first due to transportation issues (do plan well to reduce cost).
4. Ideally to visit this 3 cities, one should plan a minimum of 6 days instead (5days is too rushing).
5. You can rent a bike for both cities but take note on the traffic manners as it's different from our own country.
6. Mui Ne - Saigon is reachable via both train and but, do take note on the train station locality. It's not in Mui Ne town itself

Other tips will be shared in sperate entries :)

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Teaser | Mui Ne, Vietnam

Mũi Né is a coastal resort town in the Binh Thuan Province of southeastern Vietnam. The town is close to the city of Phan Thiết. Tourism has transformed Mui Ne into a resort destination since 1995, when many visited to view the total solar eclipse of October 24, 1995. Mui Ne has many resorts on the beach, as well as restaurants, bars and cafes. Mui Ne is a popular destination for Russian tourists, and many of the restaurants and resorts are Russian-owned.

Mui Ne Beach is a popular tropical beach. Strong sea breezes make it very popular for kitesurfing and windsurfing. The tourist season is from December to May. The average temperature is 27°C, and the climate is hot and dry for most of the year. ~ From Wikipedia

PS : Sorry colour tengau, tapi kat sini memang panas terik pun.

Teaser | Dalat, Vietnam

Đà Lạt or Dalat, is the capital of Lam Dong province in Vietnam. The city is located 1,500 m (4,900 ft) above sea level on the Langbiang Plateau in the southern parts of the Central Highlands. In Vietnam, Da Lat is a popular tourist destination.

Da Lat’s specific sights are pine wood (forming the name: “City of thousands of pine trees”) with twisting roads and tree marigold blossom in the winter. The city’s temperate weather stands in contrast to Vietnam’s otherwise tropical climate. Mist covering the valleys almost year-round leads to its name “City of Eternal Spring” ~ From Wikipedia.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

#TSDayOut | SIM Flight what???

Needed to pass the book Alid bought, Byya and I agreed for dinner last week, I guess it’s easy for us both as her office and my house is less than 10minutes away.

Our meeting was the usual update of each other’s travel activities, work or CSR. No different this time around, Byya asked how was the #TSDayOut held the week earlier. Nonchalantly I replied that it was ok; after all Skypark was small and there wasn’t any Firefly ride or anything. “You didn’t miss a thing” I remembered telling Byya this. She nodded her head ‘Oh! That’s it then?’, adding that I couldn’t find any angle to blog about (Especially I'll know I never win nor won anything before #foreverlost #eh). Sigh….

Explaining to her (with my poker face of course) what we did and saw; basically the check-in counter, the operation room, the pilots (NO! Not Adam Eben, I meant REAL pilot ok!) the hot stewardesses (Yeah, stop drooling Fariz) the plane blah blah blah… Oh yah! We did the SIM flight as well (Obviously I have to explain to Byya on the SIM flight).

‘Here’s the thing, there’s 2 SIM flight that we get to try for about 20mins’ I told her, further describing in detail how the cockpit looks like. “Macam cockpit betul lah, kecik aja. Dan Arif was our pilot, RaW sat on the floor tengah-tengah and Fariz was next to him, MasZuber belakang Dan (Mana lagi dia nak berdirikan? Hehehheh…), Adam next to her (Pilot to be), I was behind the REAL pilot and 2 other participant which I ‘successfully forgotten their name (Sorry guys!!!).

‘Oh yah! They allowed us to choose the airport, cool giler Byya!’ suddenly I was all EXCITED to tell her the whole story (This is the same person who “NONCHALANTLY” [another word for “eksen”] said the trip was “OK”). The pilot then said 'Any airport in the world, we have Singapore, Hong Kong, Bangkok, semualah’, my eyes lighted up ‘Which Hong Kong airport?’; my heart was screaming please say you have Chiang Kai Shek International Airport (Hong Kong old airport). He utter ‘Both, Kai Shek and Lantau’ and I quickly said ‘Kai Shek please!’. There you go, I am all happy with this trip. FINALLY.

The pilot chuckled and continued ‘You can choose the time as well’. WHAT??? ‘SUNSET!!!’ I said (I lied, I actually screamed!) and guess what? He said ‘Lepas Maghrib ke? Nak pukul berapa?’. Cis!!! Pandai pulak pilot nih loyar buruk, hehehhehehee…. ‘7:23 malam’ said I, not wanting to lose.
He set everything up and guided Dan Arif to fly us. Taking off was kinda easy I think and I clearly remembered Fariz said “Adam, nih aja yang you belajar ke? I can do this in 2 hours”. We all burst out laughing, hahhahahah….

Here comes the tough part, landing.

He told Dan Arif to do this and that and blah blah blah, I didn’t pay much attention obviously. And suddenly, Dan Arif keyed-in the wrong speed or something which we all got into panic mode and the pilot have to pause or freeze us. Eh! Like this also can ah? Boleh freeze freeze, giler gempak. Hahhahahah…. Again we laughed (Perkara ini hanya boleh berlaku dalam SIM flight sahaja ya tuan-tuan dan puan-puan).

Panic mode kicks-in.

‘Can you see the airport? The one with lights blinking in between the 2 building’, the pilot ask. ‘WHERE? Mana ada’ we said in unison.

You see guys, Kai Shek Airport is one of the toughest airport in Asia for pilot to land aside from Kathmandu in Nepal. Reason being, it is located in the city with all the high rise building surrounding it and it is also next to the sea. And the pilot have to use his laser pointer to show us where the “blinking light” is. You can hear the ‘Oh!’s and ‘Ah!’s followed by ‘Giler apa, macam mana nak land?’. Yup! It was that scary.

Dan Arif piloted the plane between the buildings, prepared for landing and guess what; he was not on track. We screamed “Dan! Dan! Dan! We all don’t want to die!” (Or was it just me screaming? Hem…).

Anyway, he landed the plane with few hard bumps and almost crashes to the airport. You should hear the sound of relieve from us ‘Phew…..’, a brave encounter indeed.

Byya was laughing so hard while I recap my experience with SIM Flight, and she finally said ‘So, you guys DID have fun lah’.

Yeah! I guess THAT was my #TSDayOut experience with Skypark and Firefly. FUN!

PS : Moral of the story? Choose a tough airport, that’s where all the fun begins! (But first, participate in Tourism Selangor #TSDayOut lah, else it would not be fun kan *wink*).

Note : Pictures will be added later as I am currently out of country.

Friday, May 10, 2013

#TravelTips | How best to travel light

While browsing thru my Pinterest yesterday, I stumbled across this Spend, Save, Splurge website which showcase an article on how to pack lightly. It actually guides you on how to think logically, practically and wisely. So, I seek permission to use this visual as I simply think its great (visual impact works best!) and he approved it today. Yippee!!! Thank you Mochimac!

It covers almost everything even gadgets and first air kit. Perfecto!!!

Hope you find it helpful.

Other Travel Tips (travel light):
Travel Tips/Fashion | 1 Shirt, 8 Ways (#Travellight)
Travel Fashion | 3 Weeks 1 Carry-On Suitcase (#Travellight)

Have a nice weekend and enjoy your packing!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

From Diving to Flying. I've Done It Again!

And I thought taking diving class was adventurous enough... now flying too?

Will tell you more about it after this weekend, I am so flight-cited.

Cool much?

A Tourism Selangor Day Out Event.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Another NEW Burger? SMASHIES Burger in Setapak

Whats with all this burger craze???
I have been hearing so many of them gourmet burger joints such as BurgerLab, Junkyard Burger, Crayon Burger and Volks Burger all over town and I am sure there are many more which we are unaware of. Oh yah! I've learnt that there are 2 "styles/types" of burger joint ("seller") - street burger and gourmet burger (someone, correct me please). And all the above falls under the gourmet section whereby the patties are homemade (or do we call it own-made)?

OK, let's do without the technicality and talk about the food itself! First things first, I am no foodie but Smashies Burger suits my taste bud, perhaps because it is not that salty or maybe not too oily or possibly because they serve just the right portion. Maybe.

Come on, who will not be tempted with menu like this?
You think this is cool, they even have an 'I am Single' burger for those looking for a special burger partner :)

By the way, do you know why is it call Smashies Burger?
Apparent, it comes from the grill cook’s process of “smashing” the burger with a steel mold, locking in the flavors and juices. Feel wiser now? Hehhehehe.... I know I am.

I remembered those days back in A&W time where my cousin and I will go and we will get a baby burger, mama burger and papa burger (those days burger name was simpler). Imagine how cute I find when they say they have a baby burger, hahhahahha.... (must inform my cousin about this).

I guess the uniqueness and they individuality would be they custom made bun, where one would see the charcoal bun in BurgeLab but here the offer more than that. There are 5 types of buns available mainly charcoal, red (red yeast rice), green (pandan, limited edition), yellow (lentils) and orange (orange). Creative heh.

As we did not choose 'I am Single' burger, we requested to taste just the charcoal bun (and they agreed, wow!). The taste is definately yummy. Err... Can we get just the bun? Hahhahahha....

I ordered this - Happy Cow.

Hot Chicks! Order me! I meant, this burger is called 'Hot Chicks'.

Twillight Bella! Anyone wanna guess this is named after???

Game for a new try?

126-G-5, Metro Genting
Jalan Genting Klang
Setapak, Selangor.
Operating Hours
6:00 pm - 11:30pm
(last orders at 10:30pm)

PS : After all this GE13/PRU13 heat, I just feel hungry hence the need to do a food post (alasan nak makan je sebenarnya). Hahahahhahah....

Friday, May 3, 2013

Pha That Luang & Patuxai In Vientiane, Laos (UNESCO)

Hemmm..... Looks familiar. That was my first thought.

Similar to Arc de Triomphe in Paris right?

This is the weirdest trip I ever made in my whole traveling career plan! I woke up one day, feeling angry, depress, remorse, annoyed, sad and every negative words you can imagine; and what better way but to call your darling friend right?

So, call Anna I did! Asked her what she will be doing just after Christmas and guess what - NOTHING! And the best is she agrees with my wackiest idea - Laos for 3D2N (leaving in 3 days time), to rejuvenate our mind & soul. Well, mine mostly (or at least I think so) hahahahaa...

Just one thing, Do.Not.Ask.Me.The.Flight.Cost. Hahhahhahahahha

The first glimpse, very impressive I must say.

Trying to do a symmetrical shot.

From wikipedia :

Patuxai (Meaning Victory Gate or Gate of Triumph, formerly the Anousavary or Anosavari Monument, known by the French as Monument Aux Morts) is a war monument in the centre of Vientiane, Laos, which was built between 1957 and 1968. The Patuxai is dedicated to those who fought in the struggle for independence from France. In romanising the name from the Laotian language, it is variously transliterated as Patuxai, Patuxay, Patousai and Patusai. It is also called Patuxai Arch or the Arc de Triomphe of Vientiane as it resembles the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. However, it is typically Laotian in design, decorated with mythological creatures such as the kinnari (half-female, half-bird).

Entrance fee : 3,000Kip / USD0.39 / RM1.19 (staircase or lifts to the top floor viewing area)
Opening Hours : 8am-4:30pm on Mondays-Fridays, 8am-5pm on Saturdays & Sundays.

You can walk up to the top but we chose not to, just being lazy for no obvious reason but I do suggest to try and share it with me the pictures.

Do you know what the above is? 
It is a place where the 'photographer' print and frame you pictures to sell. Yup! It's mobile! Creativity at large here heh.

Not only 1 van, but many vans.

So here is how it works, we chartered (pau) the whole tuk-tuk for USD50 to take us to 8+1 places. the +1 being a homemade grocery store where we purchased 12 bottles of them yummy jams (Yeah, we are weird like that). You can take as long as you like at each places and stop anywhere at anytime. We thought it was a good deal, due to communication problem we got the hotel to bargain it for us :)

From Wikipedia

Pha That Luang (Great Stupa) is a gold-covered large Buddhist stupa in the centre of Vientiane, Laos. Since its initial establishment suggested to be in the 3rd century, the stupa has undergone several reconstructions until the 1930s due to foreign invasions to the area. It is generally regarded as the most important national monument in Laos and a national symbol.

Entrance fee : 5,000Kip / USD0.65 / RM2.00
Opening Hours : 8am-noon and 1pm-4pm from Tuesday-Sunday

I tried googling about this and guess what I found, it is on UNESCO tentatively. OK, so it is a UNESCO declared site as yet but still... I went before it gotten it's 'approval/certification'. For UNESCO hunter like me, I have to say that I am contented.

I have only one MUST DO list and that is to catch the monks' alms procession.

It my mind, I've painted that my pictures going to be so fantatstic and the talk of the town (I know, I know, dream much!?). Here is what I imagine :- at the break of dawn; all the monk in their bright orange robe collecting alms from locals and tourist. And what I plan to do is edit it in black and white except for the orange robe, can you visualise how awesome my pictures will be?

Oh yah! I failed to wake up early both morning. Hahhahah.... so much for my MUST DO list heh! Maximum. Epic. Failure.

But worry not, I did manage to get what I want but at noon instead :)

This is however not and alm possesion but good enough for me to get the feel, and best of all; it's at Pha That Luang Temple, thus making my trip perfect. Saya happy.


Next entry will be how we got con at Friendship Bridge.

For more pictures, please view it at Globetrotter Facebook Page HERE.

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