Sun, fun and skiing the Scandinavian Alps‏

I just arrived from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore. It’s the easter weekend and my memory goes back a few years to my Easter holiday in the Norwegian mountains and makes me think back to how much i miss skiing. In Norway Easter is the time of the year when most people head up to the mountain for a skiing holiday to enjoy some time with family and friends. Either they spend it in their own mountain cabin or they book a stay at some of the more popular hotels in famous skiing destinations in Norway.

As I was on a business trip in Oslo during this time and Chiara took some time off from work and traveled from Brazil to join me in Oslo we decided to booked a 5 days stay in Hemsedal. Or at least I believed i had booked a stay in Hemsedal. I rented a car, picked Chiara up at the airport and off we went. Driving on a winding mountain road with beautiful nature all around, enjoying the drive. Just after we passed Gol I saw a sign to Golsfjellet and in the back of my mind I remembered this name. I had been to Gol a few times before but many years ago so was assuming that this was the reason for me remembering the name, so we continued driving until we reached Hemsedal.


Hemsedal with a population of around 2000 people is small so easy to find your way around. I asked Chiara to check out the hotel name, so looking at the print out she told me it was Storefjell Resort Hotel and for some reason I remembered the sign golsfjellet that we had passed earlier, but we continued driving to see if we could find a sign with the hotel name. Passing through the small town and entering the ski resort area we had not found any sign with the hotel name, so we turned around and stopped at a petrol station to check. The guy at the petrol station was nice and told me I had to drive back to Gol and take to the left when I could see the sign to golsfjellet.


So finally a bell was ringing in my head that I had not booked hotel at hemsedal as I was planning. I usually book my hotel stay at and realised that when the hotels are fully booked in the area you search it suggest hotels close to the the place. But as I was in a hurry when booking i did not notice this. So we just had to turn back and find our way to golsfjellet and the hotel I had booked. A bit disappointed as we had been looking forward to be staying in Hemsedal and be close to the ski resort and the activities around, including after skiing.


We arrived at Storefjell Resort Hotel, checked in and found out there is a ski area just next to the hotel, so that made us feel a bit better. Still it was not Hemsedal, but the hotel was nice and location on the mountain was nice as well with a good view and the distance to drive to Hemsedal was not to far. So overall we ended up enjoying our stay at the Resort.


We enjoyed the evening with good food and drinks and decided to check out the ski lift next to the hotel the next day and then take a trip to Hemsedal the following day to check out the ski arena there. This would give us some time to practice a bit skiing before enter the more advanced ski slopes as well, with Chiara being quite new to skiing.

Even do we ended up staying at a different place than planned at least we had luck with the weather. We had sunny days and blue sky, so it could not be more perfect that that.


Hemsedal is considered a true heaven for ski lovers with snow from November to early May.  You will find all from off-piste skiing to cross-country skiing where you can enjoy well prepped mountain tracks in beautiful wild surroundings.


With the car it was easy to drive to Hemsedal so we tried out the ski area there as well and it ended up being another fantastic sunny day with lots of fun in the ski slopes. Chiara was struggling a bit in the fist ski lift but she got a hang of it after a few time with falling off as the first part of the ski lift is the one you are standing and not the seated ski lift. So with the snowboard it is a bit more tricky.



No matter what your level is you will enjoy the slopes so it is just to choose the level of comfort. And if you feel like stopping for a refreshment along the way you have the options for that as well.



We tested out the slopes and had a fantastic time, enjoying the sunny weather.



After a long day trying out all the slopes our appetite was high so we headed over to the city center to find a place to eat.


We ended up at Hemsedal Cafe and had a fantastic meal follow by some coffee as we had to drive back to our hotel after.


Back at Storefjell Resort hotel we find our way to the after ski event.


Taking in the beautiful view of the mountain with a drink before dinner, it was a perfect end to our day.

Hemsedal is one of the largest ski resorts in Norway. A very popular resort, 3.5 hrs. drive from Oslo. The stable climate and the absolute guarantee of snow will ensure an unforgettable winter sport vacation. The season starts as early as November and runs until May.

We had a memorable time and looking forward to our next stay and maybe next time we would be lucky enough to book book a say in Hemsedal.






A Sunday stroll around Bangsar Village

I woke up early this Sunday morning and opened the curtains just to find out it was raining so my plan to head over for Breakfast at Bangsar Village seamed like a bad option. So I quickly came up with a plan B, to hope for the rain to stop and find my way over to the Village for a nice lunch instead.

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I visited the Bangsar Village a few weeks ago with a friend for dinner and was told it is a great place to hang out during the day as it has a wide selection of cafe’s, Restaurants and shops.

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As soon as the rain stopped i booked a grab taxi, took my camera and I was lucky that the traffic was not to heavy, so it did not take me to long to get there.

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The area has a wide selection of restaurants serving everything from Local food, Japanese, Thai, Chinese and Western cuisine.

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I checked out the lunch menu at the Ril’s Bangsar restaurant and ended up ordering a fantastic tasting Beef. The place have a nice atmosphere, great service and amazing tasting food, so well worth a visit.

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The Pasar Malam Bangsar market is located just next to the village mosque.

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You will find a mix of stalls with option to buy fruit and vegetables, taste the local cooked food or shop for cloths and other items. For sure an interesting place for a stroll and people watching.

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I spent some time at the market, before I found my way over to the shopping center.

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As everywhere else in Kuala Lumpur you have to watch out for the motorbikes and cars as they are driving everywhere.

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At the shopping you will find a wide selection of shops to choose from including the high class brands. So for the once loving shopping it would be easy to spend some hours checking out the stores. As I had spent a few hours walking around outside the shopping centers I decided that the only shopping I would to this Sunday, other than buying a some fruit at the market, would be to buy a few items at the grocery store to take back to my hotel. So exploring the shopping centers will have to be for next time.


Bangsar Village is located within one of Kuala Lumpur’s most affluent neighbourhoods and is Easily accessible via the Bangsar LRT station, Rapid KL’s Kelana Jaya Line has a stopover along Jalan Bangsar. Jalan Telawi – Bangsar Village I & II’s address – is a five-minute cab ride away. Alternatively, you can hop on the Rapid KL bus U87 (which also goes past Mid Valley Megamall) to get to Bangsar Baru and then walk to the retail emporium.

Seokbulsa Temple

While searching for places to hike in Busan, I ended up with Seokbulsa Temple, so Sunday morning i put on my hiking boots and set out to find this Buddhist temple.

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As for most things in Korea it is difficult to find any info on how to get to the different places so after trying to search online not finding much of what i was looking for I checked at the hotel lobby and got them to write the name of the temple down in Korean for me. It usually comes in handy when you need to ask people for direction and I was sure I would need to ask along the way.

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Starting at Geumgang Park I took the cable car up the mountain and found my way to the Fortress South Gate. It was a cloudy day and still cold in the air but quite a lot of hikers out on the trails.

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From the south gate I turned left and headed downhill passing through a mountain Village.

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At this point i had to ask for the direction as there were different paths leading in different directions. The locals are friendly and always willing to help so they pointed out the direction and I continued downhill.

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Entering the paved road I was not to sure what direction to go as the road was leading in both directions so I had to choose to go uphill or downhill. I choose to head uphill as I assumed the temple would be somewhere up in the mountain and along the way i meet some people that confirmed i was heading in the right direction and about 20 min later I  reached the gate of the temple.

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Carved into rock, Seokbulsa includes massive etched Buddhist images and is a truly powerful experience. It must be one of Korea’s best kept secrets.

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While other temples such as Beomeosa that is over crowded with visitors this temple only had a few visitors at the time I was there. Seokbulsa literally means “Stone Buddha Temple”. From the front it looks like a typical Korean temple, but as soon as you head behind the front row of buildings, you will find one of the most majestic sights.

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As you walk between the buildings, the sight before you is simple breathtaking as tall carvings tower over you in the u-shaped crevice in front of you. The carvings, which are several hundred years old, are impressive.

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Climbing up the stairs between the mountains you get a stunning view overlooking Busan city.

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I spent some time at the temple watching the few people visiting it and I really enjoyed the peace and quietness.

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I decided to head back the same way as I came so I followed the paved road until I reached the same sign as when I entered the road and hiked up the side of Geumjeongsan back to the South Gate.

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Passing the village again it started to be quite crowded with people stopping for lunch, some playing games and others just passing by like myself on the way up or down the mountain.

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Back at the South Gate I stopped for a rest and some snack before I found my way back to the cable car.

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It was well worth the hike finding the temple and I enjoyed my Sunday to the fullest.

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I visited the temple in March 2016.




The Culture heart of Bali

We had chosen Bali as destination for this ester holiday, but chose to go beyond the big cities and the beaches and in to the charming area of Ubud. Also known as the culture heart of Bali. Ubud is surrounded by beauty, all from the Jungle, the rice fields, the smiling faces of the local people & temples. And you find some nice spots for chilling out when the sun gets to strong, with some great restaurants, bars and cafes.

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Our choice of hotel was a new built resort close to the city center so easy walking distance to most attractions with Money forest being one of them.

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Surrounded by nature we felt the tranquility as soon as we stept inside the resort. Our room was overlooking the Jungle with some rice paddies down below.

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We spent a day strolling the streets, visiting some of the market places, stopped for lunch and some refreshing drinks and a visit to the Monkey forest.

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We took a shortcut down to Monkey forest from the hotel and it’s a lot of new development in progress in the area. It’s an area with rice paddies mingled in between the different hotels and restaurants along the way.

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We did not spend too much time at the Monkey forest as none of us like the monkeys to much. We are both a bit scared of them jumping on us. It has happened to me a few times and I can’t say I like the feeling very much. But I do like to capture them with my camera.

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One advice I got when walking in the Nature reserve in Singapore is to never make eye contact with the monkeys.

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After a stroll around the forest we wanted to try out the Locavore restaurant for lunch but it only had a set testing menu available so we headed over to “Loca Vore to go”. They serve modern cuisine with local products and the food is very tasty.

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As the weather in Bali was quite hot at the time some chilling out at the pool just before sunset was just the perfect spot to be. Nothing better than a dip in the pool with a drink looking at the sunset.

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As the hotel was newly opened they only served beer, but on a hot day it was not a bad substitute for wine and coctails that would have been our preferred drinks.

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Our evenings was spent trying out different restaurants and one of them being the Blanco par mandif. The restaurant was difficult to find and it has an interesting touch to it with a different dining experience. It serves Indonesian cuisine with very creative presentation and very tasty.

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We also got it paired with the drinks and we tried a lot of interesting combinations.

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We also tried out Pica for dinner and again another great choice of restaurant. The food tasted amazing. It’s serves South American cuisine.


We signed up for a bike ride one of the days and started our bike tour at the top of Mt Batur,  From there it was mostly downhill back in to town.

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Our guide explained us to keep the gear in 2 and 7, like non off us had ever been on a bike before. He kept repeating this to us a few times to make sure everyone understood, also pointing out that if facing a uphill we should change gear. At the time we faced a steep uphill slope it was just to jump off the bike and push it as the gear was stuck for most of us. It had probably not been changed that often.

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The ride down the mountain went through local villages and rice fields with some information from the guide along the way.

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We got picked up for our bike ride after breakfast and on the way to our starting point we has a stop at a coffee plantation where they informed us about the process of the luwak coffee and some tasting was offered as well.

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Another stop along the way was in the village of Tegallalang.

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A great place to stop for an amazing view of the beautiful rice terrace that the village is known for.

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Well back in Ubud we headed over to the 3 monkeys cafe for some refreshment

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and a stroll around the city center visiting some temples along the way.

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A group of school kids was passing by enjoying the time in the city before heading back to the different villages they come from.

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On our search for the Blanco par mandif restaurant we found a nice wine bar to hang out for a few drinks before dinner. DIVINE is bridges wine and cocktail bar with view overlooking the river.

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We did not have time to try out the Bridges restaurant so will put it on the bucket list for our next visit to Ubud.

Our flight was with Garuda Indonesia direct from Singapore

We stayed at Goya Boutique Resort

Recommended places to eat and drink: Blanco par Mandif, Cafe Lotus, Cafe Wayan & Bakery, 3 Monkeys cafe, Pica, Loca Vore to go, DIVINE wine and cocktail bar.




A stroll around the Jagalchi Fish Market

I was strolling the streets early on a Sunday morning on my way to Jagalchi fish market. It was December and the street was still very quiet and only a few stalls was open at this time. Others were getting ready to open and preparing for the day.

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Some cleaning in front of the store and some laying out the fish ready to be sold. The closer i got to the fish market the more busy it was. I passed the stalls and headed in to the indoor wet fish market.

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I walked inside the building but as it was still quiet i decided to head over to the outdoor wet market that is located just next to the indoor market.

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Fish was unloaded from small and large fishing boats and the outdoor market got busy.

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Passing this i was thinking why not try out the waffles like thing looking like fish? Well i decided to miss it this time and headed in the direction of the harbor as i could see lots of fishing boats had anchored up and was unloading fish to be sold at the marked and transported off to other places in the country to be sold.

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The harbor was busy and people was shouting at all corners to make sure the fish got to the right trucks or sold off to the local marked.

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All was very well organized and boxes got stored in different location or transported direct on the trucks for transportation.

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The Jagalchi fish market is the largest fish market in Korea and you will find fresh fish that can be purchased for a good price. With the location beside Nampo port the fish can be delivered quickly and kept fresh.

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The market is famous as many elderly woman run the fish stands and have done so since the men were off fighting in the Korean War. Meals are served to locals and tourist alike in the small restaurants they have set up behind the stalls were they are selling the fish.

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A lot of restaurants come here to buy fish from wholesalers.

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At the time I left the market it was getting really busy.

If you visit Busan make sure you visit the Jagalchi market. Try out some of the food stalls or just stroll around. Either way it is worth the visit.





Arriving on Maafushivaru after a 25 min seaplane ride from Male we were dropped off in the middle of the sea on a pontoon. A Dhoni (traditional Maldivian boat) was ready to pick us up and at the Island we were surrounded by friendly staff handing out ice-cold face towels and a color-full refreshing Welcome drink.

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Shoeless in the sand and with our snorkelling/diving equipment in our bags we were ready to celebrate Christmas.

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Our new home was an overwater villa, modern and minimalistic, lots of natural light in the room with large windows overlooking the endless stretch of turquoise water.

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A nice sundeck terrace, with stairs straight in to the water, large bathroom with a bathtub overlooking the balcony and the ocean and a shower was installed just in the entrance from the Balcony to the bathroom.

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Maafushivaru means “The Flower Island” and on this small Island you will find 48 Villas, a wine cellar, a library / cafe, a restaurant Gallery Cuisine, a spa and yoga area, the Water bar, a big freshwater pool and a small stage for the different entertainment during the week. Furthermore there is the diving center, a small boutique, a water sports center, and the restaurant 135 Degrees East.

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The Island also have a small sister-island, Lonubo, that is uninhabited and different trips can be arranged to the island.

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Maafushivaru is located on the southern tip of the Ari atoll, so this makes it one of the best places to get the chance to swim with the whale shark. And as we wanted to see the life beyond the beach, we signed up for a few aquatic adventure. The Christmas snorkeling on Lonubo Island, Manta Ray snorkeling trip & not to be missed, Diving with the Whale shark.

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We rented a Kayak and went paddling across the island’s lagoon, crossing over to the nearby Lonubo Island. It almost felt like being inside a picture perfect postcard of the Maldives.

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We did not spend a long time at the Island before that relaxing feeling you get in the Maldives came sneaking up on us so before we knew, we were sitting at the Water bar sipping cocktails with same colors as the ocean admiring the amazing view.

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The Island is surrounded by coral reef, that houses different fish, in all different color, small sharks and sea-turtles. Once you get in the water with your snorkel, there is a world beneath the surface inviting you to see thing from another perspective. We tried to get close up to the black tip sharks swimming in the lagoon, but they were too fast for us.

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Snorkeling in the Maldives is a must try thing to do even if you have not done snorkeling before.

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The underwater life is beyond amazing and what we saw during our snorkeling trips was all from Manta Ray, Sharks, Turtles, corals and fish in all kind of colors swimming around us. And not to forget the whale shark.  

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Early morning on the way to our dive site a school of dolphins decided to welcome us by swimming alongside the boat. At this time both my camera and my phone was downstairs and i had no time to get any of them to capture it on film, so I just enjoyed the view of watching them leaping up and down of the water. What i did get a photo of was the whale shark, but it was difficult to get a clear shot as we only saw it during snorkeling and not during diving. Same for the manta ray as it was difficult following them while snorkeling. You really need to swim fast to try to catch up with them.

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One of the evening we got invited for a complementary dinner at The restaurant 135 degrees East. We were served a fantastic dinner with sushi and teppanyaki. The service was great and the location just amazing.

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On reflection, the fluency of the Maldives is found not on the sun lounger but out at sea, surrounded by crystal blue water. We dived beneath the surface and the ocean and found a Maldives that is much more than just relaxing and eating and left with memories that will be cherished forever.

How to get there:

Direct flight from Singapore to Male with Singapore airlines.

As we arrived late we had to stay over at Male city so we booked one night at Somerset hotel. Hotel provided pick up service from/to Airport.

Check in for the seaplane is at the airport and transport is then provided to the seaplane terminal by bus.















Thaipusam – sacrifice at every step

Singapore is a city with multicultural diversity and during the full moon of the 10th Tamil month, called Thai, the traditional festival, Thaipusam is held.

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The festival is celebrated in honour of Lord Subramaniam (also known as Lord Murugan), who represents virtue, youth and power, and is the destroyer of evil.

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I headed over to the Sri Thendayuthapani Temple early morning to witness the devotee as they prepare themselves for the walk to Sri Mariamman Temple. Men and women are working themselves into a trance before piercing cheeks and tongue with silver needles and pricking the body with hooks and spare-like needles.

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Some wearing ‘Kavadi’ and others just simply carry a pot of milk, an offering which symbolises abundance and fertility to the Hindus.

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‘Kavadi’ literally means ‘sacrifice at every step’ in Tamil, and indeed, this proves to be the case if you take a closer look. A semi-circular steel or wooden frame, a ‘kavadi’ is meant to be hoisted by a devotee for the length of the procession. It has bars for support on the shoulders, is decorated with flowers and peacock feathers, and has spikes that pierce into the body.

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I followed the devotees along the way from the Sri Thendayuthapani Temple to Sri Mariamman Temple, Singapore’s oldest Hindu temple. Devotees will walk the 4.5 kilometres, along with relatives and friends who chant hymns and prayers to support and encourage them.

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The Symbolism of carrying KAVADI originated from a myth where the kavadi represents a mountain, with Lord murugan at its apex. A spike kavadi can weigh up to 40kg and reach a height of 4m.

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I first went to see this festival some years back when I got to know about it from some friends. It falls on different days depending on the time of the full moon, so this time as it was during the weekend I had the changes to see it again and take some photos.

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What I witnessed this day was a powerful festival, full of group support, lots of energy, determination and teamwork. I was amazed to see that with discipline over mind and body, anything is possible.



What happens in Bangkok…

And the continuation could easy have been … stays in Bangkok! But our New Year’s eve did not get that crazy.

Bangkok is known to have some of the best night scenes in Asia. For anyone that like party, there is a lot to choose from of neon-lit clubs and bars with cheap alcohol.

This New Year eve we decided to stay at the same location as we would celebrate as from earlier experience trying to get taxi on New year eve can be quite tricky so we booked our stay at the Lebua with a room overlooking the river.

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We touched down in Bangkok around lunch time, checked in to our hotel and started our celebration with lunch at the poolside restaurant and a few glasses of rose while waiting for our room to get ready.


As we had not made any dinner plans up front and most things were fully booked for New Years eve events,  we ended up with a table at the Opus Wine bar for a 7 course dinner. Not what we had in mind but as options was limited for this evening we went for it and it ended up being a surprising evening with fantastic food and wine.

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We welcomed 2016 reaching for the stars at the Dome sipping Champagne at Flute A Perrier-Jouët Champagne bar with an amazing view and fantastic atmosphere. Our new found friends at the bar invited us to tangle along for some drinks to check out Bangkok’s night life but we turned it down. Waking up next morning we were both happy we did.

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Bangkok, also known as the Asian “City of Angles” is the perfect place to spend New year eve and some days after to laze around, indulge and get pampered. And this is just what we did.

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Our remaining days was spent visiting the different temples and trying out some local Thai food.

We found our way to the Chao Phraya river, also named “the river of kings” by King Rama I, to check out Bangkok’s waterway. The Riverboats are a great way to get around to the different sites. After the New Year celebration it felt good with the nice breeze from the river.

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We visited What Arun “Temple of Dawn”, named after Aruna, the Indian God of Dawn. Sitting majestically on the Thonburi side of the Chao Phraya River, the legendary Wat Arun is one of the most striking riverside landmarks of Thailand.

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Followed by a visit to  Wat Pho “Temple of Reclining Buddha” that is just across the river so just a short ferry ride away.

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Wat Pho’s top highlight is the genuinely impressive Reclining Buddha and it’s an amazing site. We had to queue up to enter in to the room where it is located and had to take off the shoes. They provide plastic bags for you to bring them along with you so when you get back out they will not be lost.

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We spent some morning hours at the Chatuchak weekend market, that is Asia’s largest market with 27 sections and over 15.000 booths selling virtually everything. As we went early morning it was not to crowded but at the time we left it was quite packed.

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We picked up a map at the entrance to make sure not to get lost.

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As Bangkok get really hot on a sunny day a refreshing coconut ice cream would have been a good option to try, but as the queue was to long we ended up with some water instead.

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We visited Chinatown for a stroll around and different from other places in Bangkok on this day when most stores were closed due to the holiday, Chinatown was quite busy.

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The many gold shops along the street was packed with people and just off the small side roads in any directions we passed stores selling just about anything you would be looking for.

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After a long day strolling the streets we visiting one of the many massage places in Bangkok for a well earned foot massage. To get around Bangkok we used Tuk-Tuk as long as the distance was not to far. It is a easy way to get around and your find them everywhere.

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Food lovers as we are and having tried out some of the local food that we both love, we wanted to try out Bangkok’s international kitchen. Due to the holiday lots of places were closed, but at the end we managed to book a table at the Savelberg Restaurant. And it ended up being and amazing culinary experience.

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Savelberg Bangkok is located at the Oriental Residence and is run by Henk Savelberg, a critically-acclaimed chef behind four different Michelin-starred restaurants in the Netherlands. As the main man himself is working the kitchen on a daily basis we had the pleasure of meeting him when he came over to our table to welcome us to the restaurant.

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We headed up to the sky bar at the Dome to watch the sunset and to try out the  smooth yet powerful Hangovertini before ending our evening checking out Bangkok’s famous night life. Bangkok becomes a different city at night so well worth to try it out.

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The Hangovertini cocktail was created by Lebua’s mixologist for cast and crew of “The Hangover Part II,” which features a few key scenes shot at the hotel. The Cocktail is made with Chivas 18 years, Zen green tea liqueur, Martini Rosso, green apple juice & rosemary infused honey.


Our flight to Bangkok from Singapore was with Tiger Air.

Our hotel during our stay: Lebua at state tower

Bars with a view: Sky bar at Lebua

Places to eat: Savelberg, for a culinary experience (French), Blue Elephant (Thai), Opus Wine bar (Italian)





Hiking Geumjeong-san

Autumn leaves was falling from the trees on this cloudy November day. With the shift of seasons the temperature had dropped and the temperature this Sunday morning was showing 5 deg C. But the low temperature did not seem to have scared off the locals from finding the way out in the nature. The trail was packed with Korean hikers sporting the very latest in alpine fashion, heading up the mountain.

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We picked the Geumjong fortress as our hiking destination for the day. It is one of Korea’s Historical sites and is known for some of the city’s best hiking with spectacular view overlooking the city of Busan.

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We took the subway to Beomeosa station and a short bus ride to Beomeosa temple that was our starting point for the hike. It was easy to find the bus to take as it was just to follow all the other hikers heading in the same direction. The bus was packed and sins we did not have any idea of where to get off the bus we just went off where most of the other people went off.

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Well off the bus we tried to look for any sign in English on where to go next, but there are no sign. And we did not find any showing the way to the temple so we walked up some stairs and at this point we passed a small building and spotted that it said information. We went in and asked what direction to take and if they had any maps showing the area and they had. And surprisingly they gave us one in  English. The women pointed out the direction for us to continue uphill and told us to keep on the left side of the temple.

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From Beomeosa temple we followed the river course uphill on a rocky path and ascended relatively steadily. It took us about 40 min to reach the North Gate. At this point we needed a short break and something to eat. It was quite cold with a bit of wind so all the clothes taken off during or uphill climb had to get back on to try to stay warm when not moving.

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The mountain contains a network of hiking trails and at the North gate the trails goes in different direction and this is when the map came in handy. Looking at the map we decided to follow the fortress wall to the south gate and from there descend by the cable car.

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From the North gate it was again steep uphill for a short part and from there a mix of uphill and downhill, so quite pleasant hiking. We passed several watchtowers with some spectacular view of the city along the way.

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Arriving at the different watchtower we checked on the map to located our self to make sure we were heading in the right direction.

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Geumjeong Fortress is the largest mountain fortress in South Korea and was built in 1703 by King Sukjong in response to previous Japanese and Manchu invasions. The gates and 17km of walls have been mostly restored after destruction during the Japanese occupation (1910-45). The fortified area is immense and not particularly fertile thus it has fallen into disrepair several times throughout history.

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Arriving at the South gate we followed the path to the gondola to return down from the mountain. It’s possible to walk down from the different gates but for us after hours of hiking we choose the easy way down.

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Well down we walked to the Oncheonjang Station and from there took the subway back to our hotel.


To get to Beomeosa temple:

Take subway line 1 to Beomeosa Station. Walk to the Open air bus terminal and take Bus 90 to Beomeosa temple.

Jangsan mountain‏ in autumn colors

The path wound its way along the river,  covered in leaves. It’s Autumn with winter just around the corner. The air is fresh with the sun trying to find its opening in the clouds. Nice temperature for a Sunday hike and a few hours surrounded by nature.

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Just what we needed after a Saturday evening out.

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My first visit to Jangsan Mountain was a few weeks earlier, so i new where to go this time. First time around was a bit tricky and along the way I had to ask for the right path taking me to the top as all signs was in Korean. Some spoke a bit English but others not that much, but with some body language and a picture taken at the entrance from one of the maps I managed to reach to the view point and from there found my way up to the top.

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The only sign in English is at the entrance of the park were it show the way to the physical park and Peak.

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Maybe it was the winter getting closer or maybe it was that it was later in the afternoon, but this Sunday the trail was less crowded. We went up the mountain the same way as i had done the first time, just to make sure we did not get lost.

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People were doing some exercise in the physical park, sitting around chatting at the same time and some had stopped for lunch along the way. Along the river there are wooden platforms that you can sit down on and enjoy some quality time with a good meal and at the same time enjoy being in the nature.

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We continued our way uphill until we came to a junction. At this point we choose the easy path around the mountain to get a bit of a break before the next steep uphill until reaching the view point.

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A bit of a rest here and there was needed this day, so we stopped to enjoy the nice view of the mountain showing off the beautiful autumn colors.

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Reaching the viewing platform the view is stunning and you have view overlooking the city of Busan. Haeundae District with the famous Haeundae beach in one direction and Gwangandaegyo Bridge with Gwangalli beach close by.

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From the viewing platform you can see the peak. The path leading up to the peak it’s steep uphill. The top of the mountain is fenced off, but you can walk around and there are different trails that leads back to the viewing platform.

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At one part of the mountain there is still land minds buried from the Korean war, so arriving at this area it’s all fenced off  with warning signs all over to keep people away from entering in to these areas.

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Most people are walking on the trails, but the easy trails can be done by bike and some people passed us on bikes on the very steep part down along the river. I think they regretted taken that way as they were struggling quite a lot having to carry the bike most of the way.

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On our return we were quite happy having done the hike even do it was quite challenging in the beginning after a late Saturday night out.

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And it must have been the fresh mountain air that gave some energy to fling around in the trees.

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As most of the parks in Korea this also have a station with air blowers to clean off the dry dirt and dust from your shoes and pants before heading back home.


Some info about the mountain:

Jangsan is a Mountain located in Haeundae-gu in Busan with an elevation of 643 Meter above sea level. Signs posted indicate that an active land mine field is located on the mountain.

To get to Jangsan mountain exit the subway at the Jangsan station that is the end station on the green line. Take exit 10 and just follow the road to Daecheon park and from there it’s just to find your way to the peak.