About Me

My photo
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
I am married to my loving husband for more than 38 years now. I am a mother to 3 beautiful children, until 11 years ago when I lost my youngest son. Since then my life is forever altered but yet unbroken....

My Travel Journal

"There isn't much I haven't shared with you along the road and through it all there'd always be tomorrow's episode" - Elton John

I started traveling around the world since early 80s when I had the opportunity to combine business trips with vacations. Then later when my rezeki is in abundance, there were numerous other trips along the way for vacations, most of the time with hubby and the kids when the timing is right. I have also started to compile the journal and photo-pages covering almost more than 25 years of world wide travel. Some destinations I visited just once, others many times. Many of those places are the obvious famous places people would like to visit but some, the casual traveler doesn't even think to try. I have placed links to my travel at the side bar of my personal page, My Life Reflections, and will be updating them from time to time.

My wish is to continue my travel and complete circumnavigate the globe, insyaAllah…

Saturday, 21 July 2007

Bandung, Indonesia 2007 - A Shopper's Paradise...

"If people believe in themselves, it's amazing what they can accomplish..." - Sam Walton

Bandung, Indonesia
(21 - 24 July 2007)'

The 2-hour flight to Bandung was full. Normah and I chit-chatted to while away the time. Iwan and Ella slept the whole journey. From Bandung International Airport we took a taxi to the Grand Preanger Hotel situated at Asia-Afrika Road. The Grand Preanger Hotel is a 4-star hotel and has two side entrances: the old wing and the modern wing. The old facade has an interesting story. And the new wing art-deco style blended with the local culture. It was a controversial issue the time the new wing was built, but that gives a unique style to the hotel. We checked in and requested for adjoining rooms. As we were early, we decided to take a day tour of Bandung in a taxi.

(The volcano is still active)

The taxi driver suggested the Lembang trip to the north of Bandung. We took the uphill winding road to Lembang, a cool resort city. On the way, we stopped at the roadside to admire cute little rabbits in cages. You may want to enjoy cold fresh milk drinks with many flavors at the roadside restaurant and ask for the local delicacies of satay arnab and ketan bakar. After an hour’s drive we reached the top of Mt. Tangkuban Perahu, a still active volcanic mountain. We circled around Kawah Ratu on foot to see the volcanic activity closely. The crater is a touristic spot where you can smell the sulfur, watch the hot water springs closely or even boiled eggs from the boiling hot surface.

(A photo shot of the scenic view)

Later we went for a jungle trekking to the other craters: Kawah Upas and Kawah Domas and had to unnecessarily pay the tour guide IDR200,000 whose service we could do without. Along the trek we were hassled by so many tourist hawkers who were trying to sell souvenirs at unreasonably expensive prices. From the rest area at the Mt. Tangkuban Perahu we could see the panoramic view of Bandung, The lower crater is reachable by car, though it is more fun for us to hike from the top by foot at an elevation of 2084 m above the sea level and the path is not too steep although at certain places we have to crawl on hands and knees.

At some points, Iwan had to help both the emaks from toppling down hills. We were not prepared for the jungle trekking and were in our flimsy walking slippers and were not dressed appropriately.

(A comfortable lodging for 2 nights)

After the exhausting and strenuous jungle trekking, we continued our journey to Sari Ater, a hot water spring resort complex with natural hot water spring pools, some recreation parks and health spas. We stayed a while and dipped our tired feet in the hot water until our feel become as red as grilled prawns. On the way back to Bandung, we passed tea plantations and stopped at a strawberry farm and tasted freshly ice blended strawberry juice.We reached Bandung at night fall. After a light shopping and a simple dinner at the food court we went back to the hotel and slept like a log…

Other attractions

(One of the factory outlets)

Bandung is famous for food and factory outlets. Rumah Mode is the biggest factory outlet in town and sells various types of branded clothes. And it can get very crowded on weekends. Most of the visitors are from Jakarta as it only takes 2 hours via the new toll hi-way.

(Fireworks at night)

Other good outlets are at Cihampelas Street and in Setiabuhdi and along Dago and Riau Streets where they have converted bungalows into boutiques selling varieties of clothes of all sizes, colors and brands and at cheap prices too. Shopping in Bandung is fun, simple but quite tiring!Pasar Baru is where you can test your bargaining skill. Textiles, batiks and clothes at cheap to moderate prices are available here. Kain telekong with intricate sulams are sold at reasonable prices too.For visitors who really want to truly enjoy your visit to Bandung, you should also try to ride the Angkot, or eat the local delicacies at the roadside stalls.

Thursday, 5 July 2007

Chittagong, Bangladesh 2007 - A seaport City...

"Your beliefs don't make you a better person, your behaviour does..."

5 July 2007
Day-1 : Summer Blossoms'

The discussion with the boss ended right after 6 o’clock. I went to the gym to take a quick shower. By the time I took the Komuter train, it was already 7.30 p.m. The line was long at the check-in counter at KL Sentral so I took the ERL direct to KLIA. My flight was at 10 p.m. so I have time to solat and had a light dinner at McD.

(A wet day in Dhaka)

The 4-hour flight reached Dhaka Zia International Airport around midnight. Hubby was already at the airport waiting for me. It was good to be with him again, even just for the weekend. Tonight we spent the night at Asia Pacific Blossom Hotel in the Baridhara area.

6 July 2007
Day-2 : Top of the Town

We slept late last night. It was really difficult to get out of bed early in the morning but we need to get ready. Munir, the driver came to pick us up and send us to the Bus Station. This morning, Yin and Saba joined us to board the Shohagh Classic Line for a 6-hour bus trip to Chittagong and spent the weekend there.

(Vibrant colored Sari material)

Chittagong is the second largest city in Bangladesh. It is the Commercial Capital City of Bangladesh. The surrounding mountains and rivers make the city attractive. Karnaphuli River falls in Chittagong. Chittagong is the chief port of Bangladesh and has extensively developed port facilities for ocean steamers. Chittagong is an ancient city which passed from Tippera (Buddhist) dominance to Arakan (Hindu) and then Moghul (Muslim) rule.

(The common public transport)

It was monsoon season at this time of the year. There were reported floods and mudslides at certain parts of Bangladesh. It was raining heavily when we arrived in Chittagong. We checked-in the Tower Inn Hotel and had late lunch at the hotel restaurant. The rest of the afternoon was spent in a shopping complex, window shopping. Tonight we had our dinner at the revolving ‘Top of the Town’ Restaurant at the Zia Sriti Complex. After dinner we had the opportunity to watch an elaborate Bangladeshi wedding, complete with a musical band.

7 July 2007
Day-3 : Barbeque Tonight'

We woke up late again this morning. Breakfast was at the hotel restaurant. We had time to kill till 3 p.m. and the best way to get around is by the CNG. We directed the driver to bring us to Foy’s Lake. We were too early for the Adventure Land and Paradise Valley Amusement Park so we detoured to the Zoo, situated next to Foy’s Lake. We took the CNG and got a few locals to help us to direct the CNG drivers to Zia Museum. We ended at another amusement park and another round in the CNG got us where we started. At the end we gave up and directed the driver to send us back to our hotel where we had early lunch to ease our disappointment. To make matters worst, we got into a heated argument when we checked-out as they had charged breakfast to our bill when breakfast was inclusive.

(A huge elephant at the entrance)

Our trip back to Dhaka was uneventful. I slept most of the time. When we reached Dhaka we had to wait for the driver to pick us up and send us to ‘BBQ tonight’ restaurant for a hearty dinner. We reached our hotel near midnight and slept like a log…

8 July 2007
Day-4 : Goodbye again...'

We skipped breakfast and stayed in bed till noon. We had early lunch before we checked out and the driver drove us to Elephant Road where I bought a pair of tracking shoes at a very cheap price. We later went to the apartment and spent the afternoon napping. When Rani and Saba came home from work, we drove to Asia Pacific Blossom Hotel and had a light dinner. We later went to Movenpick to indulge in ice-cream delights. I have to catch the flight back to KL tonight.

Hubby sent me to the airport and we kissed goodbye with heavy hearts. We’ll be seeing each other again in KL this weekend, but already, I’m missing him…..