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Asia

Asia

Szechuan – more than spicy food!

  Okay about five years ago as I was planning what I call our years of “Endless Summer” (we managed – through travels – to have two years without winter and very little autumn – I highly recommend it!) I discovered that – very pitifully – I had hardly seen any of the wonderful UNESCO World Heritage sites around the ...

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UNESCO: The Great Wall

The Great Wall - Mutianyu section

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UNESCO: Imperial Palaces of the Ming and Qing Dynasties

The Hall of Supreme Harmony

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UNESCO: Historic Town of Sukhothai

Buddha at Sukhothai

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UNESCO: Hoi An Ancient Town

Hoi An

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UNESCO: Ha Long Bay

Halong Bay

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UNESCO: Angkor

Angkor wat

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The Rama Phala Resort & Spa

Swimming Pool

Rama Phala Resort & Spa is a pretty little resort located right near the yoga barn – ideal for those who have come to Ubud to escape the rat race – whether its their busy life back home or the craziness of Kuta. The hotel itself is set in lovely, landscaped gardens and the decor is in traditional Balinese style, the rooms ...

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Goa Gajah – The Elephant Cave

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If yoga and vegan food become all too much during a stay in Ubud, the surrounding countryside is scattered with a number of attractions to occupy your time. Goa Gajah, or the Elephant Cave is located in the village of Bedulu, about 2km south-east of Ubud.  The centre-piece is undoubtably the ornately carved entrance to the cave, dating back to ...

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Clear Cafe – Ubud, Bali

foodclear

People from all over the world converge on Ubud, in the lush, green centre of Indonesia’s island of Bali for rest, rejuvenation and healing. It is a arguably a global hub for new age, alternative health, yoga-practicing fanatics (Yes I’ll admit I’m prone to some super-food smoothies, a yoga class or two and maybe some crystal healing) And after all ...

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Quad biking in Ubud

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Well, I did say before we left on our latest trip to Bali that this time we would do a bike ride while in Ubud… Of course I was picturing a leisurely  cycle through the rice paddies….. What I got was an off road quad biking adventure. Nothing like disturbing the peaceful, fresh mountain air tranquility of  the Balinese countryside ...

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Cat Poo Coffee Anyone?

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While this is primarily a trip about relaxing, we are rarely a couple to sit around and do nothing for too long and after a week or so we tend to find relaxing, not so relaxing. Not being our first trip to Bali, we’ve already seen many of the typical highlights – Tanah Lot, Uluwatu, Mt Batur, The Monkey Forest, ...

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Silence is Golden

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The sound of silence… No horns beeping… No bustle of the morning markets… No local shopkeepers shouting to each other as they open for the days tourist trade….. No men shouting “Taxi” or “Transport” to tourists wandering the streets. In fact no tourists. At least not on the streets of Bali. Not today. Today is Nyepi. Nyepi is arguably the ...

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Eat, Pray, Love…Really?

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The pre-holiday holiday is about letting go of work, our day to day lives and recharging, in preparation for the big adventure, which is what has led us to Ubud in the first place. Ubud seems to have become the mecca for Yoga acolytes and alternative health types from all over the world as well as those on a “journey ...

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The “Pre-Holiday” Holiday Philosophy

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Many people have laughed and given Scott and I grief about taking a pre-holiday holiday. There is however “method in the madness” as they say. Our big adventure (or endless summer – as we’ve nicknamed our five month sojourn around North Africa, Middle East and Europe) is not so much a time out as an opportunity to cram as many ...

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Feeding the Monks?

Statue Mt Phousi

A couple of days in Luang Prabang   The morning started early with a walk into the main part of town at 5.30am to watch the alms giving ceremony (or as Paul so unceremoniously put it –  feeding the monks!). Monks walk through the town in single file from oldest to youngest, carrying their alms bowls so that the local ...

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Row Row Row Your Boat…

A long climb to Pak Ou Caves

Down the Mekong to Luang Prabang The next morning saw us dragging those heavy bags back down the hill to the boat, ready for another day cruising down the Mekong. It was still another 6 hours till we would reach Luang Prabang, so we settled back in with our books and Ipods for a relaxing day. The Mekong is one ...

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This Way to Laos

This way to Laos

Anyone for Cricket? We set out early, Molly keeping us in order like a mother duck, to get a jump start on the backpackers and tour groups that would be queuing at the border. Once we’d completed the departure paperwork, it was down to the waters edge to grab a long boat, across the river to Huay Xai. This bustling ...

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On the Road to Chiang Khong

Pretty fancy toilets!

Cabbages and Condoms Our next destination was the border town of Chiang Khong, located on the banks of the Mekong River, directly opposite the town of Huay Xai in Laos. Armed with snacks, water and charged iPods we set off from Chiang Mai in our mini-vans, for the six hour drive to the border. We were headed first to the ...

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Chang Mai

View from the temple at Doi Suthep

(Bootcamp Thai style!) I’ll start by saying that holidays are presumably for rest and relaxation, not 30km bike rides and stair drills with no less than 306 stairs.  My personal trainer would be proud. To date, the majority of exercise had been lifting beer glasses.  That was about to change. We arrived in Chiang Mai around 8am on Tuesday morning ...

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Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Wat aun - Temple of the Dawn

An Aussie Guide to Thai Transport 1st Edition   Monday the 11th of October is the first full day of our Intrepid Tour.  The previous night we had met up with the the other members of the tour for the first time and had an orientation session with our tour leader Molly, who was a local from Lampang in northern ...

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The Art of War

Nancy Chandler's Market Map (photo courtesy of Fox News)

Chatuchak for Dummies Now any one who knows me, knows that I am market mad. Chatuchak is the market to beat all markets. (Actually, there are four others that beat it, in size at least but what in the small details right?) My long suffering husband knew it would only be a matter of time before I managed to get ...

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Scott & The Flesh Eating Fish

Erawan Falls Tier 3

OR… Part 2 of Interesting ways to torture your husband Day two of our trip to Kanchanaburi finally saw us at Erawan Falls, a place we had wanted to visit since our previous trip five years ago.  The falls are located in a national park in Kanchanaburi Province near the Thai/Burmese border.  Erawan falls are named after the three headed ...

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Time to Kill In Bangkok

scottmassage

(Otherwise known as “Interesting ways to torture your husband”)   So I promised everyone I would get Scott to do some stupid things (ie things I wouldn’t do but needed a volunteer as they would provide good photo opportunities!) Our next cuple of days provided some wiling animals and a husband resigned to helping the cause! Before our Interpid Tour through ...

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SE Asia – Our First Blogging Adventure!

viengtai

Oh the dramas of getting ready for an overseas trip!!! How many ways can we possibly procrastinate about packing? hmmm Guitar Hero, breakfast with the rellos, more Guitar Hero…..last weeks washing…..a tiny bit of Guitar Hero….shopping…… Robin Hood on BluRay….Nickleback ( on Guitar Hero of course)…..Da Vinci Code on TV… maybe one more Guitar Hero session (cant let Bon Jovi ...

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