Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Bali, Indonesia 2011

" Don't trust words. Trust actions " 

" END is not the end. In fact E.N.D is Effort Never Dies "

" LIFE is short. So you must live by your own values & philosophies " 

" My 4 days in Bali (21-24/10/2011) - honeymoon, romance, beautiful landscape, sunset in Bali beach, health spa, massage, BBQ seafood, ancient Hindu temple, volcanoes, Balinese art & batik, Turtle island & snorkeling - have fun & both my wife & myself had a wonderful time in Bali "

Total expenses incurred: Rm1,110 (Euro$280)

Cost breakdowns:
Air Asia KL-Bali return-Rm480
Ground package arrangement (4 days 3 nights) -Rm528
Airport shuttle bus - Rm18
Departure tax -150,000 rupiah (Rm54)
Tips - 75,000 rupiah + Rm5
Exchange Rate: 100,000 rupiah=Rm36

Travel Highlights:

1) Bali Beach

2) Tanah Lot Temple

3) A cliff on the southern point of Pura Luthur near the Uluwati Ancient Temple

4) Holy Spring Temple of Tampaksiring

I had an enjoyable visit to Yogyakarta and Solo in March 2009 and had always placed Bali as a top priority destination for my future trip to Indonesia. In Nov 2010, I booked our Air Asia promotional tickets (Rm480 return) and in August 2011, I booked a 4 day ground package tour (Rm528) from Discover Orient Holidays Sdn Bhd (Tel 03-21660666) at the Matta Fair. The ground package includes airport transfers, 7 meals , hotel , a free 60 minute massage at the Lavender hotel located near the Kuta beach. Our tour group consisted of 5 people with a tour guide.

Bali is a big island with a population of around 3-4 million people, mainly Hindus. The roads in the town areas and countryside were narrowed and congested. Our 3 day visits focused mainly in the western, southern, central and northern regions of Bali. The tourist places we visited were:

Southern - Uluwatu temple, Garuda Wisnu Kencana statute, Jimbaran beach & Denpasar

Western - Tanah Lot

Central - Taman Ayun Temple in Tabanan, Ubud, Celuk, Mas, Sukawati market Rice terrace in Tegalalang & Holy Spring Tampaksiring temple

Northern - Batriti, Lake Beratan & Mt Batur volcano
Our tour guide could converse in English and provided excellent service throughout our stays in Bali.
1) Welcome to Bali - warmly greeted upon arrival at the Ngurah Rai Airport

2) Uluwatu Ancient Temple (16th century)

3) Garuda Wisnu Kenchana statute

4) Batik making in Ubud

5) Padi Terrace in Tengalang

6) Mengawi Royal's family Taman Ayun Temple

7) Bali Beach - Romantic sunset & BBQ seafood dinner at Jimbaran beach, the beach was packed with holiday makers & tourists, the best place to wine & dine and watching the sun set ......

8) Holy Spring Temple Tempaksiring

9) Beratan Lake Temple - built in the 11th century

10) Coffee plantation - free sampling of kopi luwak or Musang (50,000 rupiah=RM18 per cup)

11) Volcano Batur in Kitamanis (1717m)

12) Tanah Lot - A sea temple built on top of a huge rock surrounded by the seas & high tide

The secret of Life: Ordinary people too can do extraordinary things "

China 2011

" One Day passes, you will lose One Day "

" One Day passes with happiness, and then you gain One Day

" In good spirit, sickness will cure, in happy spirit, sickness will cure fast. In good & happy spirit, sickness will never come " 

" My 23 days in China (Haerbin, Qiqiha'er, Manzhuoli, Changbai Shan, Shenyang, Hohhot, Yingchuan, Xining & Changsa (22/8 -13/9/201 1) - discovering the north east provinces of China ie Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, Inner Mongolia, Ningxia, Qinghai & Chairman Mao's birthplace in Changsa, Hunan "

Total expenses incurred (23 days) : Rm2,370 (Euro$590)

Travel itinerary:

Manzhouli>Haerbin>Jilin>Erdao Baihe
Erdao Baihe>Shenyang>Hohhot>Yinchuan>Xining
Xining>Zhengzhou>Changsa>Guilin>Kuala Lumpur

Air Asia ticket (promo) :
KL>Tianjin (depart KL 08.30 arrive Tianjin 14.35) - Rm175
Guilin>KL (depart Guilin 11.10 arrive KL 15.20)- Rm333
Travel insurance - Rm75
Airport taxi & bus - Rm74
Hostels + booking fee - Y565 + US$24 (Rm72)
Day tour - Y70
Train tickets - Y1,317
Bus - Y60
Airport bus - Y30
Cable car - Y50
Entrance fees - Y425
Food & groceries - Y820
Sundries - Y87
Exchange rate Y100 = Rm48

Travel Highlights:

1) Haerbin, Heilongjiang

2) Changbai Shan, Jilin

3) Shenyang, Liaoning

4) Hohhot & Manzhouli, Inner Mongolia

5) Yingchuan, Ningxia

6) Xining, Qinghai

7) Changsa, Hunan

The Secret of Life: Passion for a goal is the key to fulfilling your dreams"

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Haerbin, Heilonjiang China (2011)

Hostel: Kazy International Youth Hostel - Y80 (dorm x 2 night)
Tianjin City Youth Hostel - Y45
Train: Tianjin>Harebin - Y158 (hard seat)
Airport bus: Y10
Bus: Y8
Boat ride : Y10
Food: Y89
Sundries: Y63

Total cost incurred (3 days): Y463 (Rm222)

1) Haerbin train station

2) Heilongjiang Provincial Museum - free admission, dinosaur skeletons, & historical relic exhibits

3) Church of St Sophia - an iconic site in Haerbin

1) Daoliqu commercial district - dominated with architectural buildings with a strong Russian influence

5) Stalin Park & Flood Control Monument

6) Sun Island Park - boat ride from Stalin Park Y10

" Helongjiang (Black Dragon River) formerly known as Manchuria was under Russia in mid 1880's. Japan occupied Heilongjinag in 1930's until WW11.

Haerbin, the capital of 3.5m people is linked by rail to Vladivostok, the start of the Tran-Siberian train ride from north eastern Russia. Siberian tiger, dinosaur skeletons, germ warfare base, ice scultures, bitterly cold winter of -30c, Russian architecture - I came to Haerbin in August 2011 as a first warm-up visit to this northern province of China....... I love to see Haerbin in January (winter time) but it will probably remain as a dream !

The secret of Life: When you are young, you use your health to chase your wealth. When you are old, you use your wealth to buy back your health "