The situation with the coronavirus the last couple of months has made this quite a difficult post.
Last year, I made a little challenge to average a country a month for the year. While keeping my day job. On allocated leave days. There was an additional criteria I kept in view – I had been going on a LOT of solo trips and wanted for a change to involve family and friends on adventures.
I spent 3-5 days for most of those trips and my most expensive trip was probably to Havana which was a trip I HAD to take since I was in Montreal for a business trip and it’s an ideal flight route. […]
Before that though, let’s talk about happier times. Some friends and I made plans to explore Lake Maninjau, a crater lake in Sumatra, by unicycle. It’s one of my favorite trips to date – I get to whine about physical exercise to friends who can relate; there’s great scenery and we get to distract kids from attending school.
It also instilled in me a long-term love for nasi padang and jus alpukat (an avocado shake drizzled with gula melaka and love). For the uninitiated (you haven’t lived), authentic nasi padang is not just a dish but a whole process. You’ll pick a couple of dishes you really like and these will be laid out on […]
You might have heard of the World’s Most Dangerous Road(tm). Also known as the Yungas Road, the road claims some 200–300 lives annually. You’d start off from about 4650m above sea level and end at 1200m. That’s almost 3.5km of altitude change over the 65km route. Well, around 65km — I’ll explain.
I didn’t go to Bolivia intending to ride the route. In fact, I didn’t even know it was one of the marketed things to do. I brought along a 24″ unicycle and that’s too small a wheel size to travel that kind of distance.
The advertisements around La Paz convinced me otherwise. Most widely promoted was an MTB tour of the Yungas road with full equipment support. I […]
While wandering around Huilo Huilo in Panguipulli, Chile, this sweet chap over here tagged along while I unicycled through.
On this particular leg of my journey, I stayed in a “backpacker” lodge which was unreasonably cheap (I think it was <$10 a night). It’s really more of a camping lodge with a few huge rooms of something like 10 bunk beds. I was the only person in the entire place outside of the guard who lets people into the reserve. Not expected at all…
Naturally I appreciated the company though he had to stay outdoors since I don’t want to be evicted into the wilderness. I would learn later too why that sentiment of appreciation is shared. […]
In my country, an average bottle of wine costs US$15-20. You wouldn’t drink wine with your meals. Heck, grape juice was a luxury when I was growing up because juice isn’t cheap either.
Chile is, in comparison, ridiculous. At some point, I caught myself at the supermarket in a twist over if I should get a good wine for a dollar more. Why is that even a choice when it’s easily a $10 difference back home for the quality gap?
Eventually, I learnt that the rule of thumb was that wine under $2 was horrid. Anything $5 or more is luxury.
Water Water Everywhere
Wine was cheaper than water. Everyone knew that party trick where […]
I think I decided to hike the Torres del Paine in the Chilean part of Patagonia days before I did that. It was the right season; I happened to be in the area and everyone who’s done it raved about the brilliant scenery. Google tells me that it’s a must-do – a constant best hikes in the world contender and high up on a lot of people’s bucket lists.
All the cool kids do it, the internet told me.
Look at this madness!
I didn’t have the right clothes for it but it’s ok, there’re lots of second-hand shops in Puerto Natales, a tiny town that exists only to serve hikers. In fact, this was supposed […]
Despite being in plain sight in a well-populated area, surprisingly few people knew that we had a functional railway station. Specifically, one that brought us to Malaysia.
I must have passed by this building a million times but have always thought that it was some government building due to its atas colonial exterior. It might have looked welcoming 50 years ago but not in my lifetime.
Anyway, back in 2011, it was in the papers everywhere that the old railway station was going to shut. We did a bit of research, packed our bags and took a weekend trip by rail…to Penang (which is really mostly an island that didn’t have a rail connection but I didn’t […]
Don’t get me wrong, Cheung Chau is a beautiful place, off the beaten track from the hustle and bustle of business Hong Kong. For about US$4-5, you’ll take an ~ hour ferry ride from the Central ferry terminal to the island where it’s as different as you can get.
My excuse was for an adventure to a relatively safe but less-explored part of Hong Kong. Cheung Chau Island was perfect since no one really goes there except for apparently a Bun Festival that was decidedly a bit too far off in the calendar and a bit too crowded for my liking anyway. I’d never make it far in a career in bun snatching (although mental note, I will […]
On my first visit to South Korea, transport options across the country were not great. You’d have to fumble around getting to a bus terminal in Dongseoul which no one could tell you was still kind of Seoul but not really. Google Maps was still a new concept so you couldn’t just navigate yourself around.
In Seoul, I would ask for directions to the Goseong with the dinosaur prints (“You know, RAWWWR! Stomp, stomp!”) and absolutely no one would know what I’m talking about. To make things more fun, there turns out to be 2 places identically called Goseong (고성군) which are on opposite sides of the country like this:
I can’t exactly remember how I chanced […]
Your typical K-dramas usually feature some picturesque parks. Equally-spaced trees would arch over paths , sheltering some doe-eyed, well-powdered lovers from the sun because God knows love’s greatest enemy is prematurely ageing skin. Everyone needs a visit to a Korean park/forest in their travel itinerary.
So I went to Haesingdang Park.
Because you would obviously need a good story to explain to your neighbors why you’re building a park with giant dicks, there is one that accompanies this park.
Legend goes that a fisherman left his wife at a coastal spot while he went out to fish. The weather turned bad and swept the wife away. Now, if you think the rest of the story is […]
This is me. This blog mostly talks about how to have grand adventures as an unrepentant Singaporean.