Travelogue: Malacca, Malaysia – A’Famosa Resort

During Chinese New Year, we decided to visit A’Famosa Resort. Sadly, I don’t remember anything good about it.

If you are not with kids, don’t bother visiting A’Famosa. It’s not for adults.
The moment we reached the resort, we are already on the wrong step.

The cab driver alighted us at the clubhouse instead of the hotel lobby. Luckily it was nearby so we walked. BUT that’s not the end!

I actually booked a condotel and a hotel room. Without realising, it is two separate building! AND it’s far! 😦

First night was dinner and chilling. Those pretty fireworks made the night better.
Dinner food was just average.

The next morning, we ordered breakfast. But it was rubbish! We didn’t even finish it because it was so bad! Next stop, Water Theme Park.

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I don’t know when is the best time to visit. Probably during the weekday. But that day, it was very crowded! SUPER CROWDED.

No room for bath and change! We ended up bathing in our room instead. 😮

After the change and a little rest, we visited Old West at night. That was so much better than the water theme park. But still not good enough. Old West is a funfair.

Games and rides for kids, animal show etc… Again, the nephew sure had his fun!

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In a nutshell, if you not driving, it is definitely a little hard to move around. Till they improve many aspects, I don’t think I’ll be visiting that place again.

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Travelogue: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Last year, I remember telling myself that I should keep myself busy on all the public holidays in 2015. Just because of the long holidays. Many of the public holidays either falls on fridays, mondays or sometimes thursdays and tuesdays.

So on New Year, my first holiday was to KL. It was actually planned between some ex-colleagues. But the siblings decided to crush my trip. I ended up spending 70% of my time with the siblings.

Since we are all on budget, we decided to travel via JB, Senai Airport. We reached our hotel approx. 2pm. Checked-in and went to grab some snacks for midnight.

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We actually stayed at Mid Valley Boulevard. A nice and pretty hotel, I must say. Apart from the location, nothing else is great about the hotel. I preferred Seri Pacific for the facilities and food. AND prices is definitely cheaper. Anyway, I booked this hotel because it was supposed to be a trip with the ex-colleagues, remember?

First night was a walk at Bukit Bintang. The next day, we went to KLCC and Aquaria KLCC. The nephew sure had fun there!

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Out of the Aquaria KLCC, we took a ride to Subang Jaya to Joe Flizzow’s barber for the boy’s haircut. Unfortunately the place is so known that there’s no slot for him. 😦 Then we ended up eating at some burger cafe. I swear the food is delicious. But I can’t remember the cafe’s name! Argh!mibrxCp

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I managed to alight them at Berjaya Times Square for shopping before I join the ex-colleagues for dinner. Another must-visit restaurant when you are in KL. Las Vacas Beef It Up!

Great steak! Importantly, it’s halal! Their salmon is good too!

We drop by Chocolate Kingdom on the 3rd day. It was rather disappointing if you ask me. I was expecting a KINGDOM of chocolates. But no, it was just a small kingdom.

We definitely got our chocolates!

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Of course, we did not left KL without visiting Petaling Street! It’s like going Singapore without going to Orchard Road. Petaling Street is infamous for pirated clothes and accessories. You sure get the best deals if you can bargain well!

Travelogue: Bandung, Indonesia

Bandung has always been one of the places I wish to visit from young. So without thinking much, I squeezed 3 days 2 nights in my calendar. I remember it started bad. And all I thought was, “how worst can this get?”

First, we almost missed our flight. We literally ran to the counter to check-in. Phew!
Then trust me, I was busy searching for the airport. I couldn’t figure out that the small building I saw was actually an airport.

So we happily walked towards it, with a plane moving beside us! That’s how dangerous and unorganised the airport is. AND there is not even a direction and a signboard on where to go.

And we just walked towards the nearest door. Amazingly, we entered the departure area! *FAIL*
So we had to get out again and walk further and join the long queue. 2 words. Messy and chaotic. That’s not the end. Waiting for the luggage was another disaster. No words can describe that.

We couldn’t wait to leave the place. When we finally got out of the custom, all we saw was the crowd. Even before we could figure out where is the taxi stand, a stranger approached us, quoting his price to be our chauffeur.

Following our gut feeling, we accepted and reached our first destination. Our hotel, Aston Braga Bandung.

It’s actually a new hotel. So, no complaints! 😉

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Next day got better and was well-spent. We head to Tangkuban Parahu for sight-seeing. BEAUTIFUL!

Tangkuban Parahu is actually a volcano area, last erupted in 1983. It is a must-to-visit place when you are in Bandung. Tourists can hike or ride to the edge of the crater to view hot water springs and boiling mud ip close.

And yes, we did just that! We hike! Lol. No one will believe I hike.

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Kawah Domas. It is compulsory to hire a registered guide to walk you down to this active crater. It took me approx. 1 hr 30 mins to complete the hike. But trust me, the effort paid off!

It is a must-do experience. You can indulge yourself in mud massage and egg boiling. You can even smell the sulfur or watch the hot water springs closely. Don’t worry, you don’t need to walk back when you are done. 😉

Take note that the people selling souvenirs will possibly hassle you. Tell them not to follow if you are not going to buy anything.

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Another thing that you should not miss every time you visit Indonesia, will be the food.
Nasi Padang is a must-try!

I like how unique the concept of serving is. The idea is to serve everything on the table. They will only charge you for whatever you eat. 🙂

Before we ended our trip, another must place to visit is their factory outlets and snacks outlets! Unfortunately my trip was not long enough to visit all 😦

We definitely managed to buy souvenirs back home!

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Just a little tip, if you are going to Bandung, do consider the flight timing. Try to get the earliest flight to Bandung and the last flight back.

For this trip, I actually wasted my 2 days. Technically I was only there for a day. No worries, this is definitely not going to be my last trip!

Cheers! xoxo

Travelogue: Genting Highlands (Pahang) & Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

This was a trip in 2013 if I’m not wrong. I remember it was back in May because of the Pesta Buku in KL. So the plan was to head to KL because I wanted to get myself malay novels!

Until someone asked, “shall we go Genting Highlands first before KL?”
And I answered, “why not? Let’s do that!”

That was how easy my trips are. All my concern was BUDGET.
If it fits well, why not? Lol.

We took the bus in the morning. 5-6 hours bus trip is no joke. That’s the only thing I hate about travelling. I usually opt for flights whenever I can.

So first destination was our hotel, First World Hotel & Plaza.
Please don’t expect so much from ‘First World’ Hotel. It is just an ordinary hotel. The only reason why I booked this hotel is because of the location.

One thing I like about the hotel; self-check in and check out.
There are many kiosk waiting for you to check in. All you need to do is scan your passport or booking confirmation. Then your room cards will be out! Magic!

For those who are unsure on how to operate those kiosk, don’t worry! There are staffs standing around kiosks to assist you. However if you insist, you can always go for those counter. 🙂

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Right after lunch, we hopped to a cab for a strawberry farm. Those cabs are EXPENSIVE! 😦

BUT on a brighter note, the strawberries are beautiful! And we had this picking sessions too. Pick as many strawberries to bring home! Apart from the strawberry farm, there’s lavender and mushroom farm too. Pretty flowers!

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We ended our first night, singing our lungs out. Not a bad place at all! They sure have updated songs to play 😉

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Second day was well-spent in the theme park. Despite my high expectation, I sure had fun too. Those who wants to visit Genting Highlands for the theme park, I suggest you go somewhere else. The theme park is not for adults. Rides are not as challenging compared to many other theme parks I’ve went to.

A lot of rides for kids too.

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We continued our trip to KL via bus. In approx. 1 hour, we reached our next hotel. The best hotel I’ve went in KL!

Seri Pacific Hotel. I love the room and I love the food. Yummy!

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Side track, those who wish to get malay novels, Pesta Buku Antarabangsa is open yearly from 24th April to 3rd May at Putra World Trade Centre! 🙂

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Travelogue: Bangkok, Thailand – Places to Visit

I’m so sorry for the long and overdue post! 😦 Let’s not waste time and start looking into recommendation below. First, I always believe it is best to ask what is the purpose of this trip? Are you a shopaholic, foodie or you love sight-seeing?

You definitely need to plan your trip well. Here are some of the places you should visit 🙂

1. Bangkok Dream World

Dream World is perfect if you are travelling with your kids. Enjoy every single shows and rides in its four themed land of dreams. I’m sure you and family will be able to experience the spectacular atmosphere of the big amusement park! Don’t worry, there are linked paths, legendary castles and more.

If you are not driving, best to hire a taxi for a day. Otherwise it will be a little hard to get a taxi back to city. 😦

Do visit the website to check on entrance prices. Best to get it online or it will be a long queue to get in!

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Details
http://www.dreamworld.co.th/en/index.php
Packages range from 1200-1300 THB per person
Thanyaburi (via Taxi)
Daily (10am-5pm)

2. Bangkok National Museum

Thailand is indeed rich with culture. There are many museums in Bangkok which you may want to consider visiting! One of them is definitely Bangkok National Museum. There, you will be able to learn the language, culture, musicals and more. It exhibit some of the strangest collections you can imagine. Be sure to allow enough time for your visit. I remember the last time I went, it took me approx. 4 hours to cover the whole museum. (I do cheap and skip some. LOL!)

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Details
Entrance fee costs less than 200 THB per person (Sorry! I can’t remember! 😦 )
Na Phrothat Road, near the Grand Palace (via Taxi)
Wednesday-Sunday (9am-4pm)

3. Calypso Cabaret Show

There are many of such shows in Bangkok. This I recommend! 😉

Calypso Cabaret Show at Asiatique welcomes you the warmest. Show is in different languages and cultures. Believe it or not, those pretty ladies are actually ladyboys! They sure can walk and dance in heels!

Amazing!

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Details
http://www.calypsocabaret.com/
Packages range from 900-1500 THB per person (w/o dinner)
Asiatique (BTS – Saphan Taksin: Exit 2 and transfer via Asiatique Shuttle Boat)
Twice daily (20.15pm & 21.45pm)

4. Madame Tussauds Bangkok

If you’ve never been to a wax museum, do consider this! With 10 exhibit rooms decked out in real-life teams, you will feel like you’re back to the future!
Those wax sure looked real! Not every time you can take a photo with Brat Pitt! LOL.

Remember to take photo with every single wax!

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Details
https://www.madametussauds.com/Bangkok/en/
Entrance fees from 680 THB per person
Siam Discovery Center (BTS – Siam)
Daily (10am-9pm)

5. Mansion 7

Mansion 7 is a theme mall. It is dark and creepy. Definitely not for those with weak heart. Mall is not big at all! I would actually suggest you to go for the Dark Mansion. I heard quite a few great review on it. Unfortunately I’m not that brave for that. 😦

If horror is not your thing, don’t bother going! it will be a waste of time 😉

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Details
Entrance fee to Dark Mansion costs 300 THB per person (30mins)
Ratchadapisek Soi 14 (MRT – Huay Kwang)
Daily (12pm-12am)

6. Above Eleven

Above Eleven is one of the popular rooftop bar in Bangkok. It offers a spectacular experience for many. Standing on 32nd floor, you will be able to see ‘Bangkok’. Impressive!

Delicious food and drink, you will definitely enjoy your dinner!
Nothing is better than looking down at the traffic whilst enjoying the breeze, drink in hand. 🙂

Don’t forget to make your reservation!

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Details
http://www.aboveeleven.com/
Fraser Suites, Sukhumvit Soi 11 (BTS – Nana)
Daily (6pm-2am)

7. Yana Restaurant

A must visit everything you are in Bangkok! The best halal thai food! Yummy! I recommend you to try their Tom yam! I’m definitely not a foodie but this, you have to try! 😉

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Details
MBK Center – Siam (BTS – National Stadium)
Daily (10am-8pm)

8. Somerset Lake Point Bangkok

Last but not least, accommodation. I’ve never tried other hotels. Probably because I fell in love with this apartment, the first time I came. Apartment was so complete that I couldn’t ask for more. It is complete with washing machine and dryer. I usually bring two sets of clothing and wash it there. (I need those spaces in my luggage, you know! LOL)

Not mentioning the swimming pool and jacuzzi. What I love the most is the service! Those staffs are the best!

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Details
http://www.somerset.com/en/index.html
Sukhumvit Soi 16 (BTS – Asok)

I really hope above did help some of you who are still deciding. I totally understand that feeling when you are still unsure with holiday details. Panic!

Don’t worry, take a deep breath and go je. LOL!

Cheers,
Shama Sani

Travelogue: Bangkok, Thailand – Shopping

Bangkok; a land of smiles. I mean it. 🙂 Bangkok, capital city of Thailand, is a bustling city filled with street food, temples, tuk-tuk, markets and also shopping. It is normal for one to feel unsafe in a new place however after spending a few days there, trust me, I definitely felt safe and welcomed by every single one. That explains the 4 trips till date. I bet that’s not the end! LOL!

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Unlike Singapore, Bangkok may appear dirty and scary. But hey, that’s Bangkok! I have always loved the warm Thai culture and how unique it is in its own way. The first trip was an eye-opener. On the first night we arrived, the boys decided to show us the real Bangkok. They brought us to the red-light district. It is full of clubs. Girls, boy and transvestite everywhere. Trust me, that’s scary! I only see those on Google -.-

Barrio-rojo-BangkokPhoto courtesy of http://en.vietnamitasenmadrid.com/

But of course, I love the shopping more 😉

From MBK to Central World Plaza, Bangkok completes every taste, style and prices. You will definitely be spoiled for choice! From modern and air-conditioned shopping complex to bustling hot markets, most of the shopping complexes are easily accessible via efficient Skytrain (BTS) system. Just don’t forget to wear comfortably! NEVER forget your shopping bag too!

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1. Chatuchak Weekend Market

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Also known as Jatujak or JJ Market, Chatuchak is the biggest market in Bangkok. It is so big that you will need at least 2 full days to complete it. The market sells a wide range of products for both female and male. This includes fashion, footwear, accessories, household and more. They sell pets and food too! As the name suggest, it is only open on weekends. That explains the crowd. If you hate crowd, this is definitely not for you! HUMAN TRAFFIC! I suggest you to wear light clothing due to the hot weather. Don’t forget to bring water and a lot of shopping bags! That’s the trick to lesser plastic bags in hand! 😉 You can find a lot of souvenirs to buy back! The best thing of all, you are free to bargain. If you are luck, I’m sure you will be able to get a lot of stuffs at its cheapest. Don’t leave without trying their Coconut Ice Cream! Yummy!

Details
Chatuchak Weekend Market (BTS – Mo Chit / MRT Kamphaeng Phet or Chatuchak Park)
Weekends (Saturday & Sunday, 9am-6pm)


2. MBK Center

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If you are allergic to the sun, you can always opt for MBK (Ma Boon Khrong). This well known shopping centre sells almost the same stuffs as Chatuchak. However don’t expect same price or bargain freedom. The fact that it is a shopping centre with air-con, you don’t expect cheaper price, do you? You can get almost everything here too! The thing I like most about MBK is the way shops are placed. It is so systematic that each level sells a specific product or range. Like one level sells fashion, the other sells IT & mobiles, another sells snacks & tidbits etc.

Details
Siam (BTS – National Stadium)
Daily (10am-8pm)


3.  The Platinum Fashion Mall

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Also known as the wholesale shopping centre, it matters if you purchase 1, 2 or more. The more you buy, the cheaper the price. Unfortunately, there is no fitting rooms. Hence you better know your size. Don’t worry, they provide measuring tapes if you are unsure! 🙂 For those wearing US6 and above, I suggest you not to waste your time browsing. Many of the stuffs cater to small sizes.

Details
Pratunam (via Taxi)
Daily (9am-8pm)


4. CentreWorld Plaza

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Believe it or not, CentralWorld is one of the biggest shopping complex in the world. It is a modern shopping complex with Isetan and Zen department stores. You can also find world-class stores such as Zara, Miss Sixty and Uniqlo. If Narayana is in your to-buy-list, you might want to visit the boutique here! It may be a little crowded but it’s big enough for you to get all the stuffs 🙂

If you are lucky, you may see performance or activities on the big CentralWorld Square 🙂

Details
Pratunam (via Taxi)
Daily (10am-10pm)


5. Siam Paragon

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Another famous modern shopping complex is Siam Paragon. If you are looking for designer brands, you are definitely at the right place! You name it, they have it all! From Hermes to Versace, Chanel, Burberry etc. Don’t forget to bring your Credit Card! 😉

Along the stretch is Siam Center and Siam Discovery!

Details
Siam (BTS – Siam)
Daily (10am-10pm)


6. Asiatique, The Riverfront

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Asiatique is one of the popular night market you should not skip! It is spacious, beautiful and a great place to shop. It carries an interesting range of items. Definitely a must to go for tourists! They do have Calypso Show or Muay Thai Live for you to enjoy too! I’m sure you will appreciate the design and architecture. Oh, don’t forget to try the restaurants too! Yummy!

Details
Asiatique (BTS – Saphan Taksin: Exit 2 and transfer via Asiatique Shuttle Boat)
Daily (5pm-12am)


Despite the places I mentioned above, I’ve yet to complete the whole Bangkok. There are many more shopping centres that I did not visit such as Ratchada, Amarin Plaza etc.

Do look out for my next entry for more activities you can do in Bangkok! 🙂