Category Archives: Malaysia

Mural

10th month – April Video Blog on You Tube

Below is my video blog on our travels round the world on you tube from April:

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Week 45 – Moving Southwards – Hanoi, Hue & Hoi An, Vietnam

‘The World is for me today; nothing is personal.’

[How this works is, each week, I will write to someone on my list, picked randomly and I will post it online on this blog – just in case the letter doesn’t reach its destination.  The letter includes a card with a random quote, which I hope you will enjoy (at the top of this blog page).]

John and I, I believe, are slow travelers – that’s our favourite way to go.  So, often, I feel like we don’t do much in a week and I fear I’ll have little to write about.  So when I sat down and wrote the list, once again, I’m amazed at how much we have done.  Yes, we would do more in shorter time and filling our days, but that’s just not us.

Lotus Water Puppets

Lotus Water Puppets
Hanoi, Vietnam

So, this week, we left Hanoi, with our India visa acquired, but before leaving we watched another and, in my opinion, better water puppet show.

Then we had a few days in Hue – much quieter than Hanoi.  We took an overnight train which was an experience in itself,

Overnight sleeper train

Overnight sleeper train

as Vietnam is Communist, they have no first class on the trains, so we shared a berth with 2 other Vietnamese men.

Once in Hue, we did an all day tour of the highlights of the area.  This included visiting 2 amazing tombs – Minh Mang & Khai Dinh tombs, a very old Pagoda where the 1963 monk’s car was – who set himself on fire, then we went to a day market and saw how incense is made.  A full, hot day. (Photos of this day of touring can be found at the end of the blog.)

The next day, we had a King and Queen banquet meal and took it a bit easier, as we were off again the next day to Hoi An.

King and Queen Banquet

King and Queen Banquet meal

Our drive to Hoi An included a tour through the countryside so we saw old army bunkers, Red Beach – where the Americans first landed and the beautiful Marble Mountains. (Photos for this tour can be found at the bottom of the blog.)

It’s hard to believe we’ve been here over 2 weeks.  It’s the shoulder season as they head into the low season of summer.  Everyday is very warm with high humidity, at least the hotels rooms are well air-conditioned, so we sleep very comfortably each night.

Vietnam is a great place to be!

Debx

Photos of our tour in Hue:

Tomb of Minh Mang

Tomb of Khai Dinh

Perfum River/Incense making/Dragon Boat/Day Market:

Hue Imperial City

Imperial Museum:

Thien Mu Pagoda:

Photos from Day tour to Hoi An:

Drive through Da Nang – including Marble Mountains, Buners, Red Beach, etc.

Gardens by the Bay

9th month – March Video Blog on You Tube

Below is the link to my video blog on you-tube from March:

Rafflesia

Week 41 – Giant Flower, Tea Plantation, Jungle Walk, Street Murals & Much More – Cameron Highlands & Penang, Malaysia

‘And now, this is the sweetest and most glorious day that ever my eyes did see.’ – Donald Cargill

[How this works is, each week, I will write to someone on my list, picked randomly and I will post it online on this blog – just in case the letter doesn’t reach its destination.  The letter includes a card with a random quote, which I hope you will enjoy (at the top of this blog page).]

Jungle Hike

Jungle Hike

I’ve trekked through jungle, had a tea at a tea plantation,

BOH Tea Plantation

BOH Tea Plantation

seen a centipede in the wild,

Centipede

Centipede

tasted foods I’ve never tried before

Dim Sum

Dim Sum – a banquet of surprises

and, now, fly off to Thailand.

It’s been a brilliant last week in Malaysia.

Cameron Highlands

Cameron Highlands

We went from the Cameron Highlands to Penang – an island in the north known for its excellent food.

John

John trying some of the street hawkers food in Penang

Also, its known for its wall murals which can be quite the challenge to find, but worth the effort. (more photos of the murals at the end!)

Mural

Street Mural

Continuing with the multi-cultural lifestyle of Malaysia, we visited 2 Chinese Clan Houses,

Oldest Clan House

Oldest Clan House in Penang

the Fort Cornwallis,

Fort Cornwallis

Fort Cornwallis – Penang, Malaysia

went to the Penang World Music Festival

Penang World Music Festival

Penang World Music Festival

and visited a variety of temples.

Clan House

Chinese Clan House where they filmed ‘Anna and the King’

Trickshaw

Trickshaw – one form of public transport

One thing I’ve loved about traveling through Malaysia is how easy its been.  Most people speak enough English to easily make travel arrangements, order food and deal with any problems which arise.

I’ve found the people pleasant and friendly.  They’ve given us tips on places to visit and helped when we’ve needed it.  I look forward to when I may have the opportunity to come back and see even more of this beautiful country.

Penang Beach

Penang Beach

It’s funny I’ve always thought of where I come from – Canada, as a young country and my years in Europe have only enhanced that thought process, but, really, Malaysia is much younger, as it wasn’t until the middle of the last century that Malaysia gained its independence from British rule.

Penang Hill

Penang Hill – Cable Car

Clan House

Clan House – where they filmed ‘Anna and the King’

The film ‘Anna and the King’ was filmed in one of the Chinese Clan Houses we visited in Penang. (more photos of the Chinese Clan House are at the end of this blog!) This story is the backdrop for where I am flying to next – another country which has seen many changes over the years – Thailand.  I love Thailand and am off for a weeks holiday in Phuket – the south with beautiful beaches, Thai food, massage and many more beautiful people.

Love Debx

Murals of Penang, Malaysia:

Clan House photos:

Yoga

Week 40 – Tea, Street Food and Buddist Cave – Kuala Lumpur and Ipoh

‘Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add colour to my sunset sky.’ – Rabindranath Tagore

[How this works is, each week, I will write to someone on my list, picked randomly and I will post it online on this blog – just in case the letter doesn’t reach its destination.  The letter includes a card with a random quote, which I hope you will enjoy (at the top of this blog page).]

Seeing as almost every afternoon here in Malaysia has brought thunder showers, today’s quote is very apt for my current lifestyle.

Street Food

Street Food tour Kuala Lumpur

This week started with a stellar food tour in Kuala Lumpur.  We started the tour with the ladies getting jasmine flower bracelets, then to Little India

Jasmine Bracelet

Jasmine Bracelet

and eating with our right hands only,

Tour Group

People from all over the world joined us on this tour.

after that, some delightful treats at some street vendors

Snacks

Some tasty snacks at street stall

with a finish in Chinatown.  All n’ all – yummy!

Chinatown

Chinatown

Twin Towers

Twin Towers of KL

Then we made one final tour of the twin towers of KL to then head off to Ipoh – a place we heard that the food is worth trying and a good way to break up our trip to the Cameron Highlands.

So, our first morning, we tried dim sum.

Dim Sum

Dim Sum

It was delicious and so cheap, especially, compared with what the prices are in the West for this food.

There is more in Ipoh than we thought, as we hired a taxi to take us to Kek Lok Tong Cave and Zen Gardens, a bit like the Batu Caves, but cleaner, less crowded and completely different religion.  I loved this place as it’s so refreshing, cool and quiet.  It was a very beautiful place to find.  The Zen gardens are a great place to take a stroll and enjoy the beauty and sculptures. (some more photos of this spot are at the bottom)

Zen Gardens

Zen Gardens

To help set our mood for the tea plantations in the Cameron Highlands, we went to the STG Tea House Cafe with excellent tea and cakes, plus brilliant WiFi in a nice setting in Ipoh.

STG Tea House Cafe

STG Tea House Cafe

Then, it was a taxi ride to the Cameron Highlands where I am now, on my birthday and the hotel even fashioned me with a lovely cake.  Where has been the most unusal place you’ve spent your birthday or what is the most unusal thing you have done on your birthday?

Birthday Cake

Birthday Cake

Oh, forgot to say, I tried my first steamboat meal – glad I did, it was an experience!

Steamboat

Steamboat Food in Cameron Highlands

Love

Debx

Kek Lok Tong Cave and Zen Garden photos:

Week 39 – ‘Adjusting Sails’ – Kuala Lumpur and Melaka, Malaysia

‘She stood in the storm and when the wind did not blow her way, she adjusted her sails.’ – Elizabeth Edwards

[How this works is. each week. I will write to someone on my list, picked randomly and I will post it online on this blog – just in case the letter doesn’t reach its destination.  The letter includes a card with a random quote, which I hope you will enjoy (at the top of this blog page).]

This week’s quote really reflects my life at this time.

John and I are continuing our explorations of Malaysia. We’ve had some incredible experiences since arriving – things you just can’t plan.

Seat

300 year old seat at Settlement Hotel, Melaka, Malaysia

We love Malaysia, the food is great, the people are friendly and there are lots of interesting cultures all mixed together to make up the modern-day Malaysia.

We started this week in Kuala Lumpur (KL). We’ve fallen in love with the city and its delights, so we are extending our stay.

Merdeka Square

Merdeka Square – lots of different architecture all in one square

So far, we’ve tasted excellent food from all over the world, gone to an historical musical show – MUD,

MUD

MUD – Musical about Kuala Lumpur

been to the beautiful Batu Caves/Temples with the monkeys (more photos at end),

Batu Caves

Batu Caves

went to a Japanese magic show

J & P Magic Show

J & P Magic Show

and went to the Islamic Arts Museum.

Islamic Arts Museum

Islamic Arts Museum – throne

Then we skirted off for a few days to Melaka – an old coastal town – over 700 years old.

Melaka

Melaka – Dutch Square

Our hotel happened to be celebrating its first year anniversary and we were kindly included in the celebrations.

1st Anniversary

1st Anniversary at the Settlement Hotel Celebrations

To get a very good feel for Malaysia’s multi-cultural history, Melaka is a great place to be, as it’s been occupied by the Dutch, Portuguese, Japanese, British and Chinese. So it’s seen in the food and architecture. It was once known as the Venice of the East

River Boat Tour

River Boat Tour

and is now a UNESCO world heritage site. We’ve seen many of the old sites and joined in on one of the river boat tours.

Love & hugs! Debx

Photos from Batu Caves:

Singapore

Week 38 – Now for a bit of the Exotic – Singapore and Malaysia

‘Success is a journey, not a destination’

[How this works is, each week, I will write to someone on my list, picked randomly and I will post it online on this blog – just in case the letter doesn’t reach its destination.  The letter includes a card with a random quote, which I hope you will enjoy (at the top of this blog page).]

Singapore

Singapore Hotel by Gardens by the Bay which has a nightly light show

Currently, I’m in transit to our second destination in Malaysia – Kuala Lumpur, but this week started in Melbourne, flew to Singapore and ended in Johor Bahru, Malaysia.  At least the week has not felt rushed, despite so much movement.

So Melbourne – our friend, Kat took me to see some local gardens and, then, the next day we flew to Singapore.

Arab Quarter

Arab Quarter

This is my third trip to this city and each time I like it more and more.  The temperature is a pretty steady 30 degrees its just the humidity which changes.  Still, I find it very nice and I look to avoid the afternoon heat by taking a siesta.

Flower

Flower at the Singapore Botanic Gardens

This trip we went to the beautiful botanic gardens and walked around. (some extra photos are at the bottom of the post!)  We, also, made it to my first ‘cat cafe’ – something I’ve tried to get to in other cities, but, finally, managed here.

Cat Cafe

The Cat Cafe – Singapore

Gardens

Gardens by the Bay – night

Finally, we went to the Gardens by the Bay – well worth a visit both at night and during the day.  Will definitely go back to the later, as there is lots to see and do.

Gardens by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay – morning sunrise

Then, we headed across the causeway to Johor Bahru – not the most beautiful or interesting of cities, but we were lucky to be here during the coronation of the Sultan.  An event which last took place in Malaysia 55 years ago.

Band

Band playing before the Sultan’s car drives by

Asia is off to a good start, so look forward to our next place.  Where is your favourite place in South East Asia?

Love

Debx

Botanic Garden photos: