Nov 14 2016

3D2N Trip to Bintan Lagoon Resort (Part 2)

Continuation of my trip to Bintan Lagoon Resort! You can read Part 1 HERE!


Woke up bright and early for breakfast at Fiesta!

We planned to go for a swim after that but it was raining unfortunately.


In the afternoon, the sun was bright and sunny already so we went to the beach for a stroll before going for our swim.


Had some light bites by the pool. It was soo relaxing to just lie there and think of nothing.


Love the chicken and fries!


Coconut juice to cool ourselves down


Bought this bag during my BKK trip which is so roomy and nice to bring around!

Our first time having such a relaxing trip.. Our previous trips were just jam packed with places to go but this time we decided to just take it slow and just enjoy the serenity of the place, and Bintan is a really good place to do that.


Caught the sunset as well


For dinner, we went to a Japanese restaurant in Bintan Lagoon Resort.

We ordered the Teppanyaki set + Sukiyaki set to share. The waiter warned us that the portion is really big and double checked that we could finish it haha.


Our seafood teppanyaki set


The waiter helping us to put in the vegs


Desserts to end the day, and we managed to finish everything! Haha.

The next day, we decided to explore the resort abit more. There was this part of the resort which we didn’t explore the past 2 days and it’s really a hidden gem.


There was these steps to take which according to the BLR staff, couples do come here to take wedding shots because the view up there is really nice.


And it really is!!


Could just sit here and stare at the scene the whole day.


Went for some last minute shopping before our ferry! We managed to buy 2 Polo tees each!


Had a quick snack as well!

Since BLR has a private ferry service, it was such a smooth and quick journey back home. Our ferry was at about 5pm, and we took the shuttle service from the lobby to the ferry terminal at 4.25pm (and reached in less than 3mins). No need to squeeze with the crowd and queue for so long to board the ferry! Haven’t had such a relaxing holiday in a really long time, and it was really fun at the same time with my favourite travel partner! :)

You can also book your next weekend getaway on Bintan Lagoon Resort’s website HERE!
http://www.bintanlagoon.com

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Oct 21 2016

3D2N Trip to Bintan Lagoon Resort (Part 1)

Recently back from a short 3D2N getaway to Bintan and it was such a good and relaxing short break.

This is my second trip to Bintan and both trips I stayed at Bintan Lagoon Resort. I like staying there because of their direct ferry service (powered by Moziac Ferry Lines) which leads you right to the doorstep of the resort! Custom clearance was really fast and you don’t have to waste another hour to travel to the town area.

Beautiful peaceful beach that greeted us when we arrived. Sun sand and sea for the next 3 days!!

There’ll be an internal shuttle bus which would pick you up from the ferry terminal and send you to the resort lobby.


Our Deluxe Room which had a nice pool facing.

Put down our bags and we’re off to tour the area!


The Sea Sport counter. There are over 30 Land and Sea Sport Activities which would leave you spoilt for choice.


Some of my colleagues actually travel frequently here to play golf. This is the beginner’s range, and they actually still have 2 other world-renowned, exceptionally designed championship 18-hole courses.


There’s also pool tables & those football machines which are complimentary for guests to use if I’m not wrong.


TV Consoles which are available for rent too! Great for those who come in large groups.


The really well equipped gym


There’s also something for the kids if you’re planning a short getaway with your children!


I’ve always wanted to go into one of these so I sneaked in shhh..


They even have this which we didn’t have time to play :(


Was hungry from all the walking and we settled our lunch at the newly opened Fiesta Restaurant which serves international cuisine!


The restaurant is perched on a hill and overlooking the pool side.


Super love the white and glass structures which makes the whole place looks so bright and welcoming!


Nice lighting calls for more selfies!


Lots of choices to choose from. I like ‘Fresh Life’ the most!


So relaxing…


I like that there are a few counters which serve freshly prepared food!


There’s also a live band that sings songs of all languages, even mandarin ones!!

There’s many sea sports to choose from, like canoe, jet-ski, banana boat, snorkeling and more! We decided to give jet-ski a try!

Jet-ski was so fun!!! If you’re the kind that doesn’t like too extreme sports but still want that bit of thrill, this is the perfect sea sport. And it was so nice being in the open sea and under the blue skies, with wind blowing in your face.

Initially I was afraid that we’d fall but it wasn’t scary and pretty easy to handle. What was even scarier was when we were walking on the sand to our Jet-ski, there were like super a lot of small crabs crawling towards us which I totally freaked out and kept jumping.

Went back to our resort to wash up and we’re off to roam the beach again before dinner! I like how everything is so integrated and convenient at Bintan Lagoon Resort.. Save all the traveling time!


One good thing about this place is also that they have their own private beach which spans across a 1.5km distance. Even though we were there on a Saturday, it still wasn’t too crowded.


Dinner was at The Nelayan which has really nice ambiance since it’s just by the beach!


Their soup of day was soooo good!!


Ordered Seafood Risotto and a combination grill platter (beef, fish, prawn & lamb) to share!


Followed by 2 desserts which were awesome as well!


Took a really slow 2hrs dinner cos we were just enjoying the view and ambiance.

Surprisingly, the weather in Bintan is not as humid and hot as in Singapore even though we were under the sun most of the time! I guess the cool breeze really helped too. Will be blogging about my 2nd & 3rd day in another post so stay tune!

If you’re planning a trip to Bintan, I’d really recommend staying at Bintan Lagoon Resort! You can check out more about the resort HERE and book your weekend trip now! There’s a Weekday Package promotion (2D1N) which is on-going till 30 October where you can save about 30%!
www.bintanlagoonresort.com

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Sep 5 2016

Cambodia Siem Reap Travelogue

Here to blog about my Siem Reap trip! So many travel posts to catch up on! Earlier this year, I had the chance to head to Cambodia Siem Reap for a management workshop.

Hahaha as you can see it was quite some time back, but better late to update than never!


My first time to experience being ferried to the airplane by bus then having to climb up this flight of stairs! Should have just checked in my luggage zz. But thankfully there were lots of guys on this trip so I just dumped my luggage to them hahaha.


On route to our resort! Along the way it was just very barren.


We stayed at Hotel Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra Golf and Spa Resort for 4 nights.


Would have been better if it was not a work trip!


I shared a room with my colleague cos we were both scared to stay alone hahaha.


What greeted me in my room! So cute!! They actually made our company logo out of jelly?


First food I had after touch down. Some noodles which came in a gigantic portion.

Since our flight was a morning flight and we had all the way till evening to spare, a few of us decided to head down to the temples to take a look! We hired a mini van to bring us around and covered a total of 3 temples in about 4-5hrs. My colleagues were frequent travelers there since we have products there, so they knew who to contact!


You have to purchase this ticket (which covers all temples). Passes are sold in one-day (US$20), three-day (US$40) and seven-day (US$60) blocks that must be used on consecutive days. Your photograph will be taken a printed on the spot and you have to be ready to produce this ticket as and when they require it! So keep it safely!


First stop was Angkor Wat, which is the largest religious monument in the world, and one of the 7 wonders of the world.


This was the king’s pool I think.

The place was quite big but it’s just a straight path down and you exit from the other side. Our van was just waiting at the other side for us. After that we hopped on, and he sent us to the next temple!


We visited Ta Prohm temple next which is more famously known as the temple where Tomb Raider was shot at! Similarly, it’s just enter from one entrance, then exit at the other side.


One very interesting thing about this temple is that you’d realise the roots of the trees actually grow out of the ruins.


Things you’d do for a good shot.. Climb up a few level of rocks. It’s actually quite high up!


Meet my new friends!


To be honest I’m abit lost now which temple is which cos ruins all look roughly the same lolol.


Bayon Temple – The last temple we visited!


This temple is where you can find lots of faces on the ruins.

So with that, I survived climbing up and down stairs and rocks for 5hrs in freaking 37degrees. Remember to stock up on water!!

Along the way there would be young kids coming to you to sell stuffs like fans, books, etc. If you’re not interested, just try to not have eye contact with them or entertain them. If not, they’d walk with you all the way till you get something from them. And after you’ve gotten something, they’d try to get you to get even more things. Honestly, I think they make quite good salesmen in future but that is if only they can get proper education and not think that they can do this for a living. :(

Went back to our hotel all tired and sticky. Went for a quick shower before heading to our welcome dinner by the pool!


Buffet style.


On the spot grilling. I didn’t take the full spread but there was so much food to feed an entire army!!


Day 2 was the start of our 2.5days workshop. It’s a workshop involving 5 different countries and a few different functions, so it was quite a big turnout! Good to be able to see my colleagues from overseas again too!


One of the nights, my manager brought our team (4 of us) out for dinner. The restaurant sent a complementary tuk tuk to bring us there. It’s actually just a short 10mins walk from our hotel. But you can get the hotel to call the restaurant for you to check if there’s seats, arrange transport, etc.


This is like my ultimate favourite dish there. Some grilled mushrooms. They added black pepper and some sweet sauce and it’s SO good! Shit I miss it so much now.


Some spring roll thing.


I obviously did not touch this cos it’s just a pile of raw vegs.


As you can see, Cambodia food is like a fusion of Thai/Vietnamese style.

Had some time after our workshop on Day 3 so I decided to tag along with some of my colleagues who wanted to try the Quad Bike.

I had an ATV experience before in Bintan and it was just not very memorable. So I initially was dreading this cos along the way I thought: “Oh shit, Imagine 4hrs under the hot sun.” The other time in Bintan it was only 1hr, but now it’s 4hrs of driving.


But after doing the test drive and getting on the road, it was really fun! And windy!! Not hot at all like what I imagined. We drove along the countryside and the paddy fields.


Rest stop. Sun was setting and it’s so beautiful!


And as soon as I saw this view it was so serene?? Huge patches of vast land that seemed endless. Something you’d never see in Singapore!

No regrets for this trip even though it’s not exactly very cheap. Can’t remember how much but I think it’s about 50-80usd per person? But I highly recommend going at least once in your life if you’re there! I can’t remember which was the shop that we went too but be careful of scams especially if you’re in a large group. We were scam of the change where the shop owner insisted that they already gave back the change to xx guy but he didn’t receive it. Said that they’ll view the CCTV records but the CCTV was never connected in the first place.

Super long post which marks the end of my 5 days trip in Cambodia, Siem Reap. About 3 days was occupied by work stuff but glad that I could still explore key attractions there! I almost couldn’t make it for this trip as initially it clashed with my Japan holiday. And I guess without work, Cambodia wouldn’t have been on my to-go list. So I’m thankful for all the opportunities I get from work.

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Apr 17 2016

Taiwan 2015 Day 2: Cingjing Farm, Little Swiss Garden, Old English Manor

Long overdue post on my Taiwan trip!! I really need to catch up on this travel series because alot of you have been asking for it!! So sorry for the delay! To get to Cingjing area from Taichung, it’s about a 2hrs+ ride. If you’ve a big group, you can consider just taking a 1-day taxi which would cost about 3000NT, but if you’re only traveling in a pair then a cheaper alternative would be taking a Nantou bus from Taichung HSR station (Bus station is at Exit 5/6) You can then get the tickets and more information at the counter. That was the original route that we wanted to take but our Minsu has contacts for this carpool service where they gather a few people who are going to the same destination and you pay a flat rate of 450NT per person 1 way. (I can’t remember if it’s 450 or 300 or what..) It was slightly more expensive than the public bus but the car will pick you up directly from the Minsu (they’ve a few timeslots) which meant that we saved the transport cost + time to the HSR station too. I don’t know what’s the contacts for this service but you’ll probably be able to find alot of such services at the HSR station itself too. They’ll tell you that compared to the public bus, the carpool service would take much faster… But I don’t think the timing differs much just that it’s more convenient?

After a long journey we’re finally in Cingjing!! It was in the mountains so be prepared for a little turning here and there… There were a few drop-off points and we chose to drop at the Old English Manor.

Heard that it costs S$600+ a night if you want to stay here.. And people actually pay an entrance fee to take their wedding shots here too! But if you’d like to take a sneak peek of the place without paying such crazy prices, you can always opt to dine at their restaurant.

There was a super long queue when we reached there and we were just in time for their first afternoon slot, and thankfully they had space!

The prices was very reasonable for a place that charges S$600 a night!! Set lunch starting from 580NT? That’s like about S$20+

We ordered 1 set lunch + 1 afternoon tea set to share.

Fish set that comes with soup, a plate of salad + cake for dessert. Less than S$30 with this kind of ambiance… And if I remembered correctly, there’s also free flow of coffee/tea outside. It’s like shut up and take my money please.

The colour is so pretty.

Tea set comes with an assortment of things but it’s more expensive than the lunch set.

 

The area which you can explore in the Old English Manor is actually pretty small, but I’d think it’s still worth a go for the ambiance + affordable food.

But the problem is getting around Cingjing isn’t that convenient… Thee are public buses but the frequency seems low. We ended up taking a carpool service for 100NT per pax to the Cingjing Farm. You’d have to get someone to help you call for it or run after one yourself lolol.

And we’re here! Entrance tickets cost 200NT for adults on weekends & holidays (160NT for weekdays).

Oh hellooo.

Freaking crowded on a weekend. Maybe cos it was also China’s long holiday too… -_- Tip: Don’t come on a weekend! Oh and the time when we visited the place they were having the sheep show… So all the meh meh were at the front and not roaming around. :(

  So crowded that we were lazy to go down to watch the sheep….. And it was so hot!!! My cousin told us that it was cold the previous time she came during this period, so we wore long sleeves and pants. -_-

Went to Little Swiss next!

Pretty peaceful and not too crowded place. Nothing much actually here.

Another place you can visit is the Carton King, where everything there is made of carton boxes (we didn’t have time to visit that place). They’ve a souvenir shop selling Carton King stuffs at Little Swiss too.

So pretty.. But Mel said it’ll confirm collect dust if I buy this back lol.

My first time to Cingjing and it’s really scenic.. Only down side is the inconvenience to get from one place to another without your own transport.

We took the same carpool service back to our Minsu.. They’ve fixed timings to pick you up at different location. Nearer to the pickup time, the driver would call you to confirm the timing + exact location. I think 4pm is the last service because it’d be dangerous to travel down the mountain when it’s dark.

Spent the night at Fengjia Night Market and the weekend crowd is crazyyy!! That’s why I hate traveling over the weekends.

Read my other Taiwan 2015 posts: Taiwan 2015 Day 1: Taichung

Read about my Japan travelogue here: Japan Day 1 & 2: Nikko Japan Day 3: Tokyo (Asakusa)

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