Travel Blog Information April to August 2010
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21st August 2010

Back in Jomtien after four days in Vientiane, Laos (Visa Run). The Mekong River was at its peak and at least twice as deep as my last visit in the dry season last year.

The weather was hot and humid and it rained every night. Despite all the rain it was very dusty around the streets as there is major construction work going on to build a new levy bank to protect the city from flooding. Once this is completed (due later this year) the city should be a more pleasant place, also the new levy includes a large park along the Mekong.

There were not many tourists in town as it is the rainy season and it was very quiet compared to my last visit.

Don Chan Palace, Vientiane, Laos    Mekong River, Vientiane, Laos    Laos National Cultural Hall, Vientiane, Laos

Don Chan Palace Hotel     Mekong River      Laos Cultural Hall       


11th August 2010

Air Asia has another Sale on at the moment and I have booked some more trips for next year - The trips I have booked

this time are:

Bangkok to Chiang Rai (Thailand) June
Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur and on to Kota Kinabalu (Borneo) July
Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur and on to Colombo (Sri Lanka) August

All up I now have eight trips already booked for next year


31st July 2010

I took the ferry over to Koh Larn yesterday which is the first trip over there for many months. I went to Samie Beach which is the second largest beach on the island. I had not been to Samie Beach before as I normally go to Twaen Beach as it is easier to get to and is the major beach. Next time I go over to Koh Larn I will rent a motorbike and check out the whole island.


23rd July 2010

I had a good trip to Ayutthaya the ancient capital of Thailand. I went up on the train from Bangkok and came back by bus.

Ayutthaya is situated about 80 kilometres North of Bangkok and is on an island between two rivers. It was the capital of the Siamese Kingdom for around 1350 AD to 1767 AD. It was a major trading hub and had a population of around one million people (at a time when the population of London was about half a million). The area has many ancient temples (Wats) and most of these are on small islands with a maze of moats isolating them.

A visit to Ayutthaya could easily be done as a day trip from Bangkok. The ancient temples are certainly worth checking out although they do not compare with the temples at Siem Reap (Ankgor Wat) in Cambodia.

Buddha Statue within Wat Mahathat, Ayutthaya, Thailand    Wat Mahathat Buddha Head    Ayutthaya City Pillar Shrine    Statue of King U-Thong    Wat Ratchaburana

More Photographs of Ayutthaya, Thailand


18th July 2010

The Pattaya Marathon was on today and I had planned to go in the quarter marathon but injured my knee a few weeks ago and it still has not healed properly. I did go on my own "Walkathon" and covered about 25 kilometres so I am very tired. I have decided that I will give up running altogether as my joints are just not up to it any more.


12th July 2010

I am going to Ayutthaya, Thailand, next week for a few days. Ayutthaya is the ancient capital of the Ayutthaya Kingdom (That later became Thailand) which originated in the 13th century and was the capital for more than 400 years. It is located about 80 kilometres North of Bangkok.


27th June 2010

I just got back from four days in Kuala Lumpur to get a
new Thai visa. I got a double entry visa so I can now stay in Thailand for up to six months, although I must exit after two or three months (up to three months on the first entry and up to three months on the second entry).

I have no travel plans arranged at all for the rest of this year at the moment but I will have to leave Thailand when my visa expires. I have booked a few trips for early next year:

Yangon, Myanmar
Ubon Ratchathani, Thailand
Udon Thani, Thailand border with Laos
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tianjin, China (Also travelling to Beijing)


12th June 2010

The rainy season has just started and it has rained heavily during the night for the past three days here in Pattaya/Jomtien, Thailand. Thankfully it has only rained at night and the days have still been fine and of course hot and humid.

I am in the process of starting a new business importing T Shirts into Australia. I have arranged for a company in Hanoi, Vietnam, to produce printed t shirts for me. This is an idea I have had for several years and the main reason it has taken so long is that I had not been able to find a good manufacturer able to produce at the right price.

The name of the business is CAUTION T Shirts and will sell printed t shirts with the CAUTION theme. To begin with we will only be selling ten styles in four sizes. The idea is to see what sort of demand there is in Australia before expanding the range and adding blank t shirts and other theme variations (I Red Heart Beer and Girls etc.). Initially all sales will be retail online but hopefully this will grow to wholesale sales and offline sales.

CAUTION - Contents May Be Hot


30th May 2010

Back in Thailand after 4 days in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I had two reasons to visit Kuala Lumpur - the first was just to have a look around and the second was to get a new Thai Visa. I was unable to get a Thai visa as the only day I had that I could pick it up was a public holiday (Wesak Day). I spent the bulk of my stay travelling around the city by light rail, walking and mono rail.

I was pleasantly surprised with Kuala Lumpur as it is much more modern than I expected and it has a good public transport system that is efficient and cheap.

I had expected a city similar to Bangkok but with Malays rather than Thais. Also I thought the bulk of the population was Muslim but this does not seem to be the case. The population of Kuala Lumpur is a mix of many nationalities with the Chinese probably being the majority followed by the Malays then Indians.

The public holiday on Friday 28th May was Wesak Day which is a Buddhist ceremony celebrating the birth, enlightenment and death of Buddha. Surprisingly it is a Malaysian ceremony which seems odd to me as Malaysia is supposed to be a Muslim nation.

Kuala Lumpar Twin Towers    Jamek Mosque - Kuala Lumpur    Park near Merdeka KL    Kuala Lumpur Old and New

More Photographs of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


23rd May 2010

Mr Cheap: Air Asia has had a promotion over the past few days offering really cheap fares for early next year flights. It was hard to book any flights because their website kept crashing due to the volume of traffic but eventually I booked a few trips:

Bangkok to Yangon (Myanmar) early Feb next year - 1,010 Baht all up return (about $35)

Bangkok to Ubon Ratchathani (Thailand) mid Feb - 360 Baht all up return (about $13)

Bangkok to Udon Thani (Thailand border with Laos) early Mar - 1,440 Baht all up return (about $50)

Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) end April - 3,230 Baht all up return (about $115)

Kuala Lumpur to Tianjin (China) early May - all up return $260

All these fares include me selecting my seat close to the front of the plane.

The total flying time for the trips is 23 hours - at a total cost of $473 which equates to roughly $20 per flying hour.


12th May 2010

Back home in Jomtien after 8 days in Bali. I had  really good time and it was like a real holiday.

Photographs of Bali, Indonesia


8th May 2010

We have been in Bali now for almost a week (Sue, Jodie and myself) and have been fairly active. We went on a full day self guided tour up to Batur Volcano stopping at a Batik factory, a jewellery factory, a wood carving gallery and a painting gallery. The last stop of the day was the Monkey Forest.

Yesterday we went on another full day tour visiting Nusa Dua, Uluwatu (Temple on the Cliff), Taman Ayun Royal Temple at Mengwe and finally Tanah Lot (the Temple in the Ocean).

Kuta beach is great and the water is much cleaner than when I was here last. Lots of surfers everywhere and the whole of Kuta seems to be full of Australians.

Bali Rice Terraces    Jodie Bali Rice Terraces    Monkey at Bali Monkey Forest    Monkey at Bali Monkey Forest    The Royal Temple - Mengwi, Bali

Monkey at Bali Cliff Temple - Ulawati    Two Monkeys at The Cliff Temple, Bali    Statue at Paradise Beach Bali    Tanah Lot Temple Bali    Jodie and Sue with Python at Tanah Lot, Bali

More Photographs of Bali, Indonesia


23rd April 2010

There seems to be very few tourists around at the moment. This is probably due in part to the "Red Shirt" protestors in Bangkok. It is the Off Season in Pattaya at this time of year but there were many more tourists around at this time last year.

The Songkran Festival ended last Monday and it is now safe to go into Pattaya without the risk of being constantly sprayed with water.

I leave for Bali (Indonesia) on the 2nd of May for 8 days. My ex wife (Sue) and daughter (Jodie) are joining me there - they are coming from Sydney, Australia. I have been to Bali before many years ago and it will be interesting to see if it has changed much. We will be staying on Kuta Beach at the Satriya Cottages.

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