Thursday, March 29, 2007

Taronga Zoo, Sydney

Since young I love to go to the zoo. However, there's nothing much to see it in our local zoo so whenever I'm overseas, I'll try to visit the other countries' national zoo if there's one nearby.

The lastest zoological garden that I've visited is Sydney's Taronga Zoo located in Mosman which was right across the Sydney Opera House. We took a ferry across as we do not have a car. It was another great experience too!

The zoo's area is quite huge and it goes up and down the hill. Besides getting to see all the Australian's animals exhibits, there are also other animals from other countries.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Bridge Climb Sydney

I've been to Sydney a total of two times and each time I was there, I never missed doing something memorable! In fact, both my trips to Sydney were for sking with my groups of friends who are still studying in the uni. And coincidentally both trips were organised by some clubs of the uni and they let me join in though I'm not a student with their uni.

The first time I was there in 2000, I did not managed to go for the fame Sydney Bridge Climb. So, when I get to go there again, which was in 2003, right after I graduated from uni in WA, I flew acrossed the continent (Perth-Sydney) with Virgin Air, which was also my 1st experience with a budget airline.

My friend was unable to go with me so I went for it alone! Yeah... how could I miss the chance again just because no one can accompany me right? I went on to make a booking seeing the weather was quite good. There were actually a few pricings depending on the different time slots available. The cheaper ones are those before during the day or night. The entire climb took about 3 hours (including of checking in, briefing and a short demo).

I was thinking, since I came all the way, might as well I take the exclusive package which allows me to see both the day and night including the setting sun! Yeah, I'm a sucker for all these 'sales gimmicks'! I took up the 'Twilight' package which was the most expensive then as it allows me to view the day and night scenes during the climb. It was breathtaking especially when we reached the peak of the bridge! Worth every cent but sadly they don't allow us to bring our own camera to the climb so we have to purchase photos from them at the end of the climb! Good sales tricks!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Why our passports are so expensive?

Since the past few years, the price of getting an International Passport is so expensive for Malaysians. I remembered we do not pay such heft sum years ago. To get a 32 pages now will cost a whopping RM300 for adult and RM150 for children below 12. And for the 64 pages, we need to fork out RM600! A bit crazy right?

I was having a conversation with my dad earlier about travelling and he was lamenting that since he got his new passport, he has only used it twice to Singapore wherelse my mom only used once. The validity for International Passport now is restricted to 5 years only and we can't renew it like in the past. So, pay RM300 just to go to Singapore... don make sense right?

Guess we better make full use of our passport or else just don't get one or go anywhere if there isn't any long travelling plans ahead...

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Free & Easy or Guided Tour?

So you have some time to go for a vacation abroad and you are not sure if you should go on a F&E (Free & Easy) or like most people, join a guided tour with a local tour agency.

I do not have anything against guided tour or commonly known as package tour but I find the itineraries can be quite rigid. In my entire life, I've only been on a guided tour once. That was my trip to Koh Samui. It wasn't a very pleasant trip though.

The things that I dislike about guided tour are the packed schedules (morning call at 6am!), trips to places like diamond/gem stones factories (they will try to con you to purchase at least one item!), to too many temples (this case as it's Thailand which is filled with temples) and not forgetting to mention the way the hungry group wallop the lunch and dinner! Then there is the unsatifactory with hotel rooms, locations, convenience and etc...

However, for someone who has not been to the place before, it's good to have all the itineraries lined up so at least you will know there are things to do everyday. Guided tours are generally suitable for people who has not much travelling experience and preferred to have someone to do all the job for them such as reservations of hotels, restaurants, transport and etc...

As for avid travellers, most preferred to do the F&E way. Why? For me, it is definitely the the total control of where, what and how we can do at the chosen locations. With the proliferation of the Internet, we can do most reservations, from hotel, restaurants, transports, entrance tickets and a whole lot more from the Internet. There are even special price for Internet booking too!

I'm all for F&E mode of travelling! At least I can shop at places I want to go and stay at hotel that fits my itineraries!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Skiing at Perisher Blue

I love winter! The feeling being wrapped by snow is such a wonderful feeling! And what is best to do during the winter season??? Go skiing of course!

One of the spot @ Perisher Blue

Yeah, I just love to slide down the snow paths! Though I'm not an expert in skiing but I think I'm quite ok to get to the top and slide down... without much problems! Well, first must get some courses as a refresher since I don't go skiing that often... and that usually for just an hour or two.

On the way to Blue Cow via Skitube

I've gone skiing a couple of times in Australia and I think my favourite place is still Perisher Blue near Canberra (at Snowy Mountain). My last trip there was back in year 2000. It is one of the most cherished skiing experience I've ever had in my entire life. I fell in love with one of the ski site - Blue Cow.

With a group of friends

As it is going to be winter in Australia, there will be lots of activities going on there. So, if you feel like sliding down the snow... get on a trip to Perisher Blue for a fun filled sking experience!

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Living in Perth - Pt 1

To many people, Perth is a quiet and boring place to stay. However, I do not think so... Well, maybe those who are so used to the night life, they will definitely feel uncomfortable living in Perth as the city did not offer too much night life. Probably the only night life in Perth is in the city where all the pubs and discos are located.

Since I am not a night creature, I find living in Perth is an entire different experience. I love the grenery though most of the area are filled with bushes. Perth offers the 4 seasons which I really like especially autum and winter where the temperature is just so perfect! Well, got to minus the frequent rainfalls during autumn lar...

Though we have so many shopping complexes in Malaysia, I found shopping in the malls in Perth can be really different. First, you hardly need to take the escalator or lifts. This is perfect for mothers who have to shop alone with their kiddos. It's a chore to go up and down. Most malls are built with just one level as Australia has so much land! Even the parking lot is so huge you don't have to worry you will need to squeeze in the box like wahat we do back here!

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Lets hop with me!

I love travelling and it just hit me that it will be a good idea for me to keep a record of all the places I've been to so I can share those wonderful experiences with my kids in the future and also whoever out there who are keen to read my travelling stories.

Welcome to my travelling page!!! Lets hop-hop-hop around the world together!!!