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    WINTER TRAVELS

    HONG KONG

    HONG KONG

    A chaotic, packed fun city, skyscrapers, alongside junkboats, smog, and street food. A city of major finance, and a great Soho area for a night out. What use to be a regular haunt of mine 25 years ago, I find it surprising still to be one of my favorites after a recent visit. The fast pace creates a sense of permanent change, the crowds, multiculturalism, and food ...  I could sit eating a noodles all day long! and you can not visit Hong Kong without eating Peking duck an absolute favorite of mine.
    Hong Kong is a busy city, eight million inhabitants, one of the biggest hub airports in the world. It can be overwhelming for many visitors, especially those not used to crowded places. Here are a few of our favorite places and highlights if ever you get chance to past through and visit such a fun city.
    The Hotel Icon with a rooftop heated pool, a 24-hour gym, spa, TV room and bar run by the University with an excellent location, facilities and service. A great extra is that when checking out you can hang out here whilst waiting for a night flight  www.hotel-icon.com
    This area of Hong Kong has some of the largest and busiest markets in which to soak up. The two best markets for inexpensive souvenirs are the Ladies Market (bargain clothing, accessories, and souvenirs) and the Temple Street Night Market (flea market). Temple street night market  Even if your not shopping it's a great place to go and soak up the atmosphere and eat some street food.
    Another  stop you have to make is the Wholesale Aberdeen Fish Market full of hustle and bustle. You can wander in here and watch for hours, a lot more local than touristy with a restaurant that also operates as a canteen for workers. You can also take a trip along the river and in a junk boat and stop off at the Riverside restaurants for fresh fish.

    And of course a trip across the the harbor from Kowloon Island to Hong Kong Island is via the Star Ferry, an awesome view of the city skyline. It’s one of my favorites.
     
     
     
     

    VIETNAM

    VIETNAM

    VIETNAM

    It’s always good to travel, to get inspired, recharge and put things into perspective.

    I generally drop my jewelry and electronics on these trips to enjoy the moment, Traveling to Asia is one of my favorites, “it’s a reality check” I feel lucky to wake up by the ocean on Nantucket everyday. Experiences like this make me appreciate what I have and how hard life can be for others,

    It makes me laugh at how spoilt and demanding we can become in the western world.

    Being totally overwhelmed with the amount of options we had for Vietnam, we picked an area that gave us chance to see local life in the amount of time we had. We decided to travel from Saigon to Phnom penh via the Mekong Delta.
    We landed in Saigon and spent a few days people watching, exploring the city and a visit to the Cu Chi Tunnels and the War Remnants Museum.
    We then cycled 120km along the Mekong Delta
    passing through local villages along the way to see rural life, stopping off at local factories, family run businesses and floating markets. We ended our cycle in Chan Doc. From Chan Doc we took a morning boat the rest of the way crossing over into Cambodia.
    Links to check out for planning a trip.
    For group or custom biking with a guide http://www.vietnambiketours.com/ 
    Friendly family run Homestay  http://mythuanhomestay.blogspot.com/

    THAILAND

    THAILAND

    After a couple of weeks in Vietnam biking through the Mekong Delta and looking dirtier than the locals. (I have no idea how they keep so clean with the lack of modern luxuries) We hopped through Cambodia and into Thailand. Bangkok is the gateway to the Southeast Asian world and often used as a stopover for a few days. To get to know Bangkok, however, these 5 days aren’t long enough. You could easily spend a week or two without looking at the same thing twice
    Khao San Road
    Backpackers haven in Bangkok. Affordable accommodation, bars, clubs, food stalls, small shops and fun fun fun!
    Try fried scorpions or other insects (grasshoppers taste like chicken). Every visitor of Bangkok should have explored this crazy street. Definitely worth a visit and great nightlife.
    Bugs
    Bugs!
        and more bugs!!
                                                 Around the Klongs                                         This was a favorite hidden gem that locals told us how to get around the canals, great fun. Hop on, hop off and figure it out along the way. You have to be good at jumping on and off whilst it's moving. Cheap and worth every cent to go through the canals and to observe the local life. You don't even need a plan
    Thai Street Food
    A must in Bangkok is to try the street food. All over the city, there are endless stalls offering everything. Food stalls with noodle soup to grilled snacks, fruits, healthy drinks – you can try something small everywhere.
    You could eat all day, so it’s best to keep it small and simple. You can also find some stalls during the day time, but most of them start selling as soon as it gets dark and late into the night. A sure thing not to miss!
    Sukhumvit Road
    The Sukhumvit Road is one of the longest streets in Bangkok, Streets are lined with stands and food stalls, shopping of any kind I personally found too many malls and western world luxuries but definitely found some cool hidden streets with lots of bars.
    Thai Islands
    After 5 days in Bangkok we finish our travels by heading to Koh Lanta. There are many islands to choose from Koh Lanta offers a  mix of peace and quiet, and a busy nightlife if wanted. If anyone has read the book "The Beach" the caves are definitely worth a trip, swimming in complete darkness through the caves to pop out in the middle with pure blue skies and 100ft cliffs.
    Other than that we'd been traveling for three weeks so were happy to just chill on the beach before heading home.