“A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…” these immortal words have been engraved into our psyche since they first appeared on a cinema screen 40 years ago. Ever since the first Star Wars film debuted, it has started a massive cult following with legions of fans across the world. Continue reading “In A Galaxy Far Far Away…”
This blog is all about boats. From huge cruise liners to small canoes, It’s all here. If you are afraid of flying and sea travel is your thing then read on. Very often we hear that the journey is more important than the destination, and if you are one of those that believes in this, then taking a cruise to your holiday destination can be more enjoyable than being stuck on a pressurized metal tube up in the air for hours. And you also get to sleep on a proper bed instead of being cramped onto a small economy class seat, especially on long haul flights.
Still on our road trip through Japan, this final blog post is about a little less travelled place for most tourists to Japan. Starting on our journey from Tokyo to the central north of Honshu Island, we had stopped at Yamanouchi where the Snow Monkeys live, and made a westward turn towards Matsumoto, home of the Crow Castle. Heading south from Matsumoto, we were making our way back to Tokyo with a stop near Mt. Fuji.
Often referred to as the Roof of the World, Tibet is an unique destination due to its location and history. I finally got my chance to visit Tibet in August 2014 by following a packaged tour with Chan Brothers (www.chanbrothers.com). The tour actually took us to Lanzhou and Xining for 3 days first to acclimatize to higher altitudes before taking the train to Lhasa, capital of Tibet. Although the trip included Lanzhou, Qinghai and Xining, I will just talk about Tibet in this blog post since this was the main highlight of the trip.
This blog post has been updated with a link to a local tour operator that specializes in inbound tours for English speaking visitors to Tibet. Go to the end of the post for details.
Continuing on about our first road trip in Japan, this blog post is about Matsumoto, the second largest city in Nagano Prefecture. It’s the second largest city but it does feel small if you compare it to Tokyo. Matsumoto is about 1.5 hours drive from Nagano city and is a noteworthy stop along the way. We drove from Yamanouchi where we had our first encounter with the Snow Monkeys.
As we say goodbye to the Year of the Monkey in the Chinese zodiac, here is a blog post about monkeys. If you were a monkey and wanted to keep warm during winter, what will you do? Soak in a hot tub of course! So if you want to see monkeys soaking in a hot spring in the middle of winter, I’ll show you how to find them.
Here is Part 2 of our journey through the legendary Silk Route. You can read Part 1 here where we started from the ancient capital of Xi’an.
When I told my Chinese colleague that I was going to Xinjiang, he wasn’t too impressed. He said I was going to get killed by the Uygurs because I’m of Chinese ethnicity. Well, I survived and lived to write about this trip. We took the flight from Xian to Urumqi, capital of Xinjiang. Urumqi was one of the major hubs along the Silk Route and is the most remote city from any sea – 2,500km from the nearest coastline. Situated at 800m above sea level, the city is quite cooling at 25°C despite being summer in the desert. The flight time from Xian to Urumqi itself takes 3 hrs and it really gave me a sense of how large China is. For more about Xi’an, you can refer to my previous post. Continue reading “Chinese Legends – Journey to the West”