Top 10 Incredible Things To Do in Cairns

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Cairns, which is typically referred to as the “Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef” is an absolute must-see destination in Australia.  I spent five full days exploring Cairns, and could have easily stayed another week or two.  When you walk along the city streets, you’ll see countless travel agents selling a variety of different trips and activities, but these are the top 10 things to do in Cairns.

1 ) Helicopter Ride over the Great Barrier Reef

When I was planning my trip to Cairns, a friend of mine told me that I had to do a helicopter ride over the Great Barrier Reef.  Well, I took his advice and I had the most incredible experience.  You simply can’t appreciate the beauty and magnitude of this place until you’ve seen it from above.  I took a 30-minute scenic flight with Nautilis Aviation, and would highly recommend them.  If you can, try to snag the seat in the front!

2 )  Full-Day Scuba-Diving / Snorkeling Trips to the Great Barrier Reef

This is probably the single-most important thing to do while visiting Cairns.  You need to get out to one of the reefs and experience the beautiful coral, fish, and scenery.  You can read all about my experience snorkeling the Great-Barrier Reef, and go from there.  The main three reefs are Moore, Green Island, and Fitzroy Island.  I did the full-day trip to the outer reef of Moore Island with Sunlover Cruises and had an awesome day.  Great ship, friendly staff, and beautiful scenery!

3 )  Explore The Esplanade & City By Night

Cairns is not a very big city, but walking around at night is so much fun!  You can head down to the lagoon for a night swim, or just stroll past the massive trees that are lit up so perfect.  I personally think the lagoon is one of the most interesting parts about Cairns.  It almost looks like it’s a 5* Resort with a massive infinity pool, but it’s just the public pool for locals and tourists to enjoy.

4 )  Kuranda Scenic Railway & Skyrail

A visit to the old town of Kuranda is a must while visiting Cairns.  You can either rent a car and drive up there yourself (which is a pretty great drive), or you can opt-in for the full-day trip with the scenic railway and round-trip skyrail pass.  These prices can add up to around $150, but the views really are amazing.  If you book it with a package, you could probably score a discount.  Make sure you also check out the little market in Kuranda, and take some photos of Barron Falls!

5 )  Captain Cook Highway to Port Douglas

When it comes to scenic drives in Australia, I feel like the list would be never-ending.  With that being said, the drive from Cairns – Port Douglas is simply stunning, and it should not be missed!  The coastline is just so massive, and it reminded me of Hawaii.  You will truly understand the meaning behind the slogan, “Where The Rainforest Meets the Ocean”.

6 )  Mossman Grove

This rainforest is just a short 20-3o minute drive further north from Port Douglas, and it really is stunning!  While during my visit there it started raining within 5 minutes and forced us to leave a bit early, I really enjoyed the visit.  You have to park your car down in the lot, and then take a $10 shuttle bus up to the rainforest, but it’s definitely worth it!

7 )  The Cairns Botanical Gardens

This is free to enter, and absolutely awesome.  Beautiful trees, forest walks, and vibrant butterflies are a few things to expect during your visit.  You could easily spend a few hours here just getting lost in the nearby rainforests.

8 )  Fitzroy Island Relaxation

If you’ve got some spare time, then take the ferry over to Fitzroy Island for the day.  The beach is the perfect place to relax all day, watch the sunset (if you stay overnight), and so some snorkeling!

9 )  Barron Falls 

Located in Kuranda, this beautiful waterfall is massive and breathtaking.  It’s just a brief 10-minute walk from the carpark, and is a perfect photo opportunity that only takes about 30 minutes or less to experience.  When I visited the waterfall wasn’t flowing that heavt, but it was still worth the visit.

10 )  Daintree Rainforest & Cape Tribulation

While it may be a bit further away from Cairns, a trip up to Cape Tribulation definitely needs to be discussed when it comes to top things to do in Cairns.  It’s one of the highlights of visiting the east coast of Australia, and you can’t miss out.

Dreaming of my next beach getaway. ? #beachvibes #beachlover #capetribulation

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Top 10 Amazing Things To Do in Arugam Bay

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Arugam Bay is hands down my favorite place in all of Sri Lanka.  

During my first visit to the country, I ended up staying here for 10 days, and fell in love with the laid-back atmosphere.  It’s a small town with just one main street of shops, restaurants, and surfboard rentals, but that is what makes it so charming.  People come for the surfing and the legendary beach parties, but they stay for the amazing A-Bay vibe.

I just finished my second visit there, and had an amazing time — and these are my top 10 amazing things to do in Arugam Bay.

 Just be careful, if you’re heading that way, you might find yourself staying there much longer than expected.

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1 )Surfing

Alright, let’s start with the really obvious one.  Arugam Bay is one of the world’s top surfing destinations, so if you go all the way out there and don’t at least try to go surfing — then you’ve made a huge mistake.

There are three main surfing spots to choose from:

Main Point:  this is the surf spot actually located in Arugam Bay.  Every morning you’ll see dozens of surfers out there catching some quality waves.  This is recommended more for intermediate to advanced surfers.

Whiskey Point:  About a 15 minute drive from Arugam Bay is this famous surf spot.  It’s a really beautiful beach as well, and can provide some excellent waves for beginner surfers.  You’ll also notice heaps of people on surfing lessons.

Peanut Farm:  About 25 minutes from Arugam Bay is this awesome tucked away beach / surf spot.  Very popular, and highly recommend.

Tuk-Tuk rides are around 500 rupees one-way to Whiskey Point & Peanut Farm.  I’d look into renting your own tuk-tuk, and splittng the cost with people.  It’ll be cheaper and more fun.

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2 ) Yoga

I feel like surfing destinations always seem to be yoga destinations as well, and Arugam Bay is no exception.  When you’re walking up and down the main street, you’ll see that there are tons of yoga places.  It’s a great way to start the day, get some exercise, and relax a bit.

I joined a couple classes at the Stardust Beach Hotel my first visit, and had a great session.  Definitely worth checking out, and it’s also a nice place to stay if you’re looking for accommodation.

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3 ) Rent a Moto

This is one of my favorite things to do while traveling around Asia.  I love the feeling you get when you’re exploring on a scooter.  The roads around Arugam Bay are excellent, and there’s some really beautiful stuff to see.  My advice would just be to drive down Panama & Kumana National Park.

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4 ) Beach Days

Arugam Bay is a beautiful and long beach that is perfect just to chill at all day.  Grab a book, a fresh coconut, and a towel — you’re not going to want to move.  Take a dip in the ocean, play some beach volleyball, or just work on your tan.

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5 ) Panama Tank

Driving through the Panama Tank on a moto is an absolute must.  It’s a short 15-20 minute ride from Arugam Bay, and there’s basically just one path to drive along and explore.  The landscape is stunning and perfect for taking photos, and you’ll probably see a few crocodiles.

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6 ) Kumana National Park

You’ll see signs all over Arugam Bay for booking a Kumana safari.  This is in Yala East, so it’s definitely recommended if you haven’t done any safaris in Sri Lanka.  You’ll see heaps of elephants, and if you’re lucky can spot a leopard.  Sri Lankan is known for having beautiful and great safari experiences, so definitely look into it.  Should cost around $30-$35 U.S.D

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7 ) Whiskey Point Friday Nights

Arugam Bay is also the main party destination in Sri Lanka, and Friday nights at Whiskey Point should not be missed.  Beautiful people at a beautiful location, great music, and lots of dancing.  Once the arrack starts pouring, you’ll be glad you went.

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8 ) Mambo’s Saturday Nights

The legendary weekly beach party at Mambos’ is an absolute must for anyone visiting Arugam Bay.  It’s honestly so much fun, and was one of the highlight’s of my time in the country.  I’ve been three different times now, and each time was a solid night.

The music basically doesn’t stop until everyone leaves, and the hard-core party people always make it to the sunrise!  The music is really groovy deep / tech-house, and the party is always bumping.

Mambo's Beach Party Crew

Mambo’s Beach Party Crew

9 ) Dinners at Beach Hut

The Beach Hut is hands down my favorite place to stay in Arugam Bay, but if you’re not sleeping there — at least pop on over for the daily dinner specials.  They are delicious and extremely cheap.  I’m talking around $3-4 for a decent sized meal.  If you’re there for a fish-BBQ night, then definitely do it.

It’s also a great place to meet people, as everyone who is staying there pretty much has dinner together.

Cheaper option available for vegetarians.

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10 )  Nothing

Alright, so I probably shouldn’t list this a thing to do, because it’s exact opposite.

But Arugam Bay is the perfect destination to lose track of time, and fall into the traveling mentality.  Lie in a hammock, read, take naps on the beach, and enjoy the simplicity of A-Bay.

Days turn into weeks in Arugam Bay.  Seriously.  It can be really hard to leave.

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Well there you have it.  Those are my top things to do in Arugam Bay.  It’s an amazing and beautiful destination in Sri Lanka, and definitely should not be missed!

Have any questions?  Feel free to shoot me an email, or drop a comment down below and I’d be happy to answer them for you.  Safe travels!

Thanks for reading!

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10 Amazing & Free Things To Do in Singapore

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It took me three separate visits to Singapore to really fall in love with the city.  It’s one of the places I could actually see myself live in for a couple years as an expat.  It’s extremely clean, excellent public transportation, and there are tons of amazing and free things to do in Singapore. 

Whether you’re there for just a short stopover, a weekend trip, or a bit longer of a visit, this will be a great list to start your trip planning.


1 )  Gardens By The Bay

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This is absolutely the most important thing to do when you’re in Singapore.  The Gardens By the Bay is a massive and beautiful area located behind Marina Bay Sands which is completely free to explore.  If you choose to enter the Flower Dome or Cloud Forest, it’s gonna cost you a decent amount of money however.

Make sure you check out the Gardens By The Bay Light Show every night at 7:45 P.M & 8:30 P.M.  It’s really cool, and it’s amazing to see the trees light up in all the different colors.

2 )   Sentosa Island Beaches

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No trip to Singapore would be complete without exploring Sentosa Island for a day.  It’s honestly entertainment central, and there’s so many different things to do.  If you’ve got the money to spend you can check out Universal Studios, ride the cable cars for aerial views, or hit up Maddam Tousse’s museum.

If you’re like me, and wanted to explore Singapore on a budget — then just head down to the beaches on the southern coast of the island.  From the main entrance area, all you need to do is get to Siloso Point.  There are free busses and shuttle services.

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From starting at this point, you can choose to walk all the way to the end beach which is Tanjong beach.  That’s what I did, and really enjoyed it.

My main recommendation would be checking out Palawan Beach.  It’s beautiful, and has a really cool bridge / lookout area on this little island which is the furtherest south point of continental asia.  Pretty cool, eh?

3 )  Chinatown

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At some points along my travels, I started getting tired of people telling me to visit the “Chinatown” in different cities.  Everywhere you go, there will be a Chinatown.  Well, in Singapore it’s definitely worth a quick visit to Chinatown!  The food street is really cool, and has some amazing food stalls to get your grub on.  It’s also one of the cheapest places to eat in Singapore.

4 )  Botanical Gardens

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If you’ve got an afternoon free, than take the MRT over to the Botanical Gardens stop and spend an hour two exploring these large green gardens.  They’re nothing like Gardens By The Bay, but they are definitely worth the visit.  It’s free, so why not?  Take a stroll along the nice paths, take some nice pictures, and enjoy the fresh air.

5 )  Clarke Quay

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During the day this place isn’t all the exciting, but as the night falls and lights turn on, Clarke Quay turns into this cute little escape from the city. It’s got a riverside restaurants, happy-hour specials, and colorful decorations.  Why not grab a beer at 7-11 and enjoy it on the bridge to start the night?  This place can be really pricey (it is in Singapore), but it’s obviously free just to check out.

6 ) Little India

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The food here at the Tekka Market is absolutely delicious.  I’m a big fan of Indian food, and if you’re looking some cheap and great curry — then you gotta come here.  There’s some shopping stalls around the market, as well as upstairs.  Really easy to get to, and you’ll leave very satisfied.

7 )  Arab Quarter

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This small area of Singapore has tons of life and personality.  From it’s cute little restaurants, live music venues,  and graffiti — this is a place you should definitely wonder through at night.  Grab some friends and get a hookah and some hummus.

8 ) Walk Across the Helix Bridge

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I don’t know what it is about this bridge, but I find it truly fascinating.  It provides some amazing views of Marina Bay Sands as well as the city skyline.  If you’re a photographer, you can definitely go here for some stellar sunset shots.


9 ) Har Paw Kaw Villa

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This Chinese temple is free to enter to explore, and has some really cool stuff to look at and read up on.  All of the the different and colorful statues that portray stories are worth the visit.  It doesn’t take too much time, and is located just 1 minute away from the MRT station.


10 ) Mariamman Temple

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Singapore’s oldest Hindu temple is located in the heart of Chinatown, and is definitely worth a quick visit.  The statues are super detailed, colorful, and can be fun to photograph.


Have you ever visited Singapore?  What did you think?  Am I missing on this list?

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Making the Most of a Long Weekend in the Eternal City- Rome

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Rome, the eternal city, is also known as the city of love, meaning that it is not only the perfect place to visit with friends, but also with your loved ones. From its (world famous) gastronomic delights and ancient wonders of art and architecture, to romantic strolls along the Ponte Sisto and the many other bridges of the Tiber, Rome is a cosmopolitan centre yet still infused with the magic ancient civilizations. The only problem once you’re there is figuring out what to see in the short time you’re there. As the city is so full of treasures is absolutely impossible to visit (or even discover) everything, the numerous churches hidden in every alley, the designer shops in Via Veneto or Via del Corso, the restaurants, or the myriad of historic piazzas with their monuments, museums, art exhibits, and cultural events… and the list goes on. Here are my tips on how to make the most out of your short holiday in Rome.


1 )  Book tickets in Advance!- This way you can avoid waiting in long queues as Rome is always bustling with crowds of tourists daily. Buy your flight tickets early and possibly even weeks prior because prices tend to shoot up approaching the holiday seasons. This includes not only hotels or B&Bs but also entry tickets for museums, shows at cultural events, and of course for kids’ activities! Visiting the Colosseum will be a lot of fun for both couples and families, kids can take pictures with Roman Gladiators and even dress up like one (make sure you visit the local shops for toy swords and helmets!). The Vatican is another must, and you can snap up your Vatican Museum tickets long before your holiday to avoid wasting precious time and energy at the back of a long queue under the hot Italian sun! My advice to avoid crowds is to visit the Vatican in the afternoon, particularly on a Thursday or Friday if possible.


2 )Getting around in Rome can be a hassle for locals but if you’re a visitor then you may well enjoy the characteristic and authentic view of Roman life with a nice bus ride or on the metro. The metro is always your best option to get from A to B quickly and easily, but once you are in the historic center (like Trastevere) it is easy to walk to all the major sights; Campo de Fiori, the Pantheon, the Vatican, the Colosseum and the Roman Forum are all within easy reach.


3 )  If you like to relax and submerge yourself in local city life you might want to visit a piazza, like Piazza Navona with the fantastic mythological statues and fountains of Bernini and the Monuments of Borromini, Piazza Barberini, or the Pantheon Piazza. You can marvel at these ancient wonders while sitting at a cafè and sipping a glass of wine or enjoying an appetizer or an amazing gelato (for kids and adults alike!)


4 )  For the best panoramic experience, climb the Spanish Steps, or even better, the marble staircase of  the Vittorio Emanuele Monument to get the best view of the historical sights. At the top terrace bar you can take in the whole view stretching over the ancient Forum filled with arches and columns from the 6th Century B.C.


5 )  If you are not a first-time visitor and you’d like to see and experience something different, then check out hidden spots like the Romeow Cafe, a Vegan Cat Cafè where you can hang out with all your feline friends that roam around the area while you enjoy a healthy vegan cake! There are also the more mystical elements to Rome and one includes the Egyptian motifs that appear throughout the city (including the Vatican); the Egyptian influence on Roman culture dates to the time of Julius Caesar and a visit to the 2000 year old Pyramid of Cestius will be an unforgettable experience (and you don’t have to go to Egypt to see it!)


Ultimately, you may not get to see everything you had planned for so meticulously, but the important thing is that you have the opportunity to relax. Don’t spend your tome in Rome hurrying from monument to monument forgetting to take a second and just marvel in your surroundings, remember- you can always come back another time to see the things you missed!      

THANKS FOR READING!!    

The Top 3 Must Places To Visit in Israel

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When it comes to planning a trip to Israel, you will soon discover that there really is no shortage of things to do in this beautiful country.  Whether you’re coming for its biblical history, delicious food, or diverse landscapes — I bet you’ll be wishing you had more time to explore Israel.  Travel planning can be a difficult task, so I’m here to share with you what I believe to be are the absolute three must visits for those of making your way to Israel!


1 )  Markets, Beaches, Sunsets, and Hummus in Tel Aviv

No trip to Israel would be complete without visiting the Mediterranean gem of Tel Aviv.  I’ve never met a single person who has visited this city and not fallen completely in love with it’s various markets, gorgeous beaches, and unbeatable Israeli cuisine.

Your first stop has to be Carmel Market, which is Tel Aviv’s largest fruit and vegetable market.  Don’t think that this is just a stop for groceries though, because it’s vibrant atmosphere and wide range of restaurants can keep you there for hours!   Then make your way over to Tel Aviv Port Market, which has recently become one of the best spots for trying and learning all about the country’s cuisine.  It’s in a beautiful setting, and it’s impossible to leave without a full stomach!

Recordando este increíble mercado en el medio de Tel Aviv

A photo posted by Juan (@juankmagician) on

If you’ve read about me page, you’ll know that I have a strange obsession with hummus!  It’s my go to snack, and Israel is the perfect place for chick-pea indulgence!

The real draw of visiting Tel Aviv though is checking out some of it’s magnificent beaches!  With over 16 different to choose from, you better have plenty of sunblock to prepare for those long days of beach fun.  Tel Aviv is actually known for having some jaw-dropping sunsets, so make sure you stick around and witness the magic!

Tel Aviv has some fantastic nightlife as well, and if you’re lucky you might just discover some pretty epic beach parties!


2 ) Dead Sea Floating

While some people may say it’s “just a lake”, the Dead Sea is the lowest place on Earth! 

You don’t just come here for a quick swim though, because the Dead Sea is one of the most cool, relaxing and healthy places to visit while in Israel.  The water and mud found in the Dead Sea is rich in minerals that have fantastic healing properties, and will leave your body and skin feeling nice and refreshed!  There are a few different public beaches to choose from, but the most popular that you have to visit is Ein Gedi Beach!  Get your bathing suit on, lather up your body and face with mud, and float away in the Dead Sea!

3  )  Eilat Red Sea Explorations

Eilat is simply the perfect holiday getaway for your trip to Israel!  It’s not only one of the most beautiful destinations in the country, but also has some of the best marine biodiversity in this region of world!  Going snorkeling / scuba diving is an absolute must, parasailing / skydiving for views above the land, and check out getting a Eilat Car Rental to do some fun day-trips to nearby attractions!  It’s also a great idea to get a car rental, because then you can make the 4 hour drive from Eilat back to Tel Aviv, and get a much better understanding for the country!

THANKS FOR READING!!


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MALAYSIA Travel Guide: Trip Highlights, Itineraries, & Tips

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Welcome to Malaysia! 

Malaysia is an amazing and diverse country that has something to offer everyone.  If you’re looking for amazing food, gorgeous islands, and beautiful landscapes — Malaysia is a destination you should highly consider for your next holiday.  I have traveled pretty extensively through Peninsular Malaysia, and it has grown to become one of my favorite countries in entire world!  I’ve compiled this Malaysia Travel Guide as a source for people planning trips to this amazing country.

This guide will go over trip highlights, how to get around Malaysia, Malaysia itineraries, and general travel advice!

Hope you enjoy reading my Malaysia Travel Guide and favorite photos from my travels!

Note:  This Malaysia Travel Guide will focus entirely on Peninsular Malaysia.  I have never traveled to Sabah or Sarawak, and am not too well informed about those areas of the country. 

Trip Highlights

Kuala Lumpur

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You’ll most likely be starting your Malaysian holidays in the amazing capital city — Kuala Lumpur.  This is truly a special place with friendly people, beautiful sights, and delicious food (just like the rest of Malaysia).  During my travels in South-East Asia , I was lucky enough to call this city home for awhile.  The first time I visited Kuala Lumpur I actually didn’t enjoy the city too much, but after spending more time there I discovered how special the city really is.

TOP KUALA LUMPUR TIP

Sign up for AirBNB, and stay at the REGALIA CONDOMINIUM.  I used to live there, and it’s by far the best place to stay in Kuala Lumpur.  It’s luxury complex that has all the amenities you’d want, perfectly located, and has the most amazing infinity pool.  There is a mall right next door with a grocery store, movie theater, and tons of other shops.

Also, ff you sign up for AirBNB with this link, you’ll get $38 off your first visit!  Which is easily a free-nights accommodation at The Regalia!

Trust me.  You want to stay here!


For more information on Kuala Lumpur, check out the following blog posts I’ve written:


Penang

Penang is the cultural hotspot in Malaysia!  You’ll fall in love with it’s busy streets, beautiful artwork, and enchanting history.  Oh, and the food is absolutely amazing.  Most people come to Penang only planning a few day stay, but end up staying much longer than they expected.  You can spend a day on Batu Ferringi beach, hike through the National Park, and take the journey up to Penang Hill for spectacular views of the entire city.        

Best things to do in Penang:

  • Beach day and sunset on Batu Ferringi Beach
  • Spend some time hiking through the National Park
  • Take a visit to Penang Hill for spectacular views of the city
  • Stroll through Georgetown and check out all the artwork
  • Eat at Penang’s famous hawker stalls

Langkawi

Officially known as Langkawi the Jewel of Kedah, Langkawi is an archipelago of 104 islands in the Andaman Sea, around 30 km off the mainland coast of northwestern Malaysia.  It’s right at the border of Thailand, and is a popular place to visit for traveller’s going north/south between Malaysia and Thailand.  It is truly an amazing island with amazing things to do, cheap accommodations, tax-free booze, and beautiful landscape.

Check out some of my blog posts on Langkawi:


Cameron Highlands

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The Cameron Highlands is a stunning hill station in central peninsular Malaysia, and has become a popular destination for visitors in Malaysia. Roughly the size of Singapore, the Cameron Highlands covers a large stretch of land, and there’s tons to see, do, and explore.  You’ll fall in love with the beautiful green tea plantations, and will leave you speechless when you visit the highest peak in the Cameron Highlands

For more information on the Cameron Highlands, check out the guide below!

 


Taman Negara

Teman Negara National Park is the perfect place for travelers who love wild life viewing, jungle trekking, hiking, rock climbing, fishing, camping and many more. It is well established as one of the most popular ecotourism in Malaysia.  Popular activities include the canopy walk, jungle trekking, rapid shooting, cave exploration, and boat cruises.

Recommend days spent here:  1-2 days max

Check out the Teman Negara National Park website for more information


The Perhentian Islands

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Welcome to paradise.  The Perhentian Islands consist of both Perhentian Kecil & Perhentian Besar.  They are both absolutely stunning, and the minute you step foot on of the two islands you’ll never want to leave.   I’ve visited Perhentian Kecil on two different occasions now, and I definitely would not mind going back for a third.  The beaches are gorgeous, the atmosphere is relaxing, and the nightlife can get pretty crazy.

Perhentian Kecil is more for a younger crowd.  It’s much more lively at night and has an incredible fireshow.  Perhentian Besar has a lot more resorts, and is a bit more family oriented.

If you’re going to Malaysia — you’d be mistaken to skip the Perhentian Islands!

Check out my blog posts on this paradise island!


Pulau Kapas

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Pulau Kapas is an idyllic island escape for those looking for a bit more of a remote location.  You won’t find any big crazy resorts, fast wi-fi connection, or luxury restaurants.  What you will be rewarded with is amazingly beautiful water, suburb underwater life, and an extremely laidback atmosphere.  Pulau Kapas is truly a Malaysian gem, and I guarantee if you go for a couple days you won’t regret it!

For more information about traveling to Pulau Kapas:


Tioman Island

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If you’ve looking for some more island action, than definitely make your way over to Tioman Island.  It isn’t as gorgeous as the Perhentians or Kapas, but it has some of the best scuba-diving sites in the whole country.  The island is pretty massive, and is a 2-hour ferry ride from the mainland.  It is a DUTY-FREE island, which makes drinking on this island pretty cheap!  It’s a popular destination for weekend trips from Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, so book in advance if you plan on being there on a Saturday & Sunday.  If you do plan on going, I’d definitely recommend staying on ABC Beach.

When I was there, I happened to catch really bad weather, and had some transportation issues.  I still had a great trip.  Read about it below:


Melaka

Melaka is just a short bus ride away from Kuala Lumpur, and can be a great place to spend one night.  It’s small enough to walk around, explore, and try some delicious food.  There’s not a whole lot to see here, but it’s definitely worth the visit.

To plan your visit, check out this post titled:


Getting Around Malaysia

The Malaysian transportation is some of the best I’ve found in all of South-East Asia.  Prices are relatively low, there’s tons of options, and they are all relatively comfortable.

Flights / Airfare

Malaysia is actually a really easy country to book extremely cheap domestic flights.

If you know your exact dates, you can actually get great flight deals.  Malindo Air is really great and includes 1 20kh checked bag.  These are particularly useful for flights to/from Kuala Lumpur.

Perhentian Islands

Perhentian Islands


Busses

Traveling around Malaysia on the bus transport is actually really easy, budget friendly, and comfortable.  There are loads of different companies that offer a ton of different routes.  None of the journeys take that long, and the busses can actually be really nice.  For bus schedules, routes, and fares, check out the website below.  I’ve booked online tickets with them, and made the process extremely easy.  You can just show the email confirmation at the bus station, and receive your ticket.

Pulau Kapas

Pulau Kapas


Hitchhiking in Malaysia

Just like in any destination, you should be careful when hitching a ride alone.  With that being said, Hitchhiking in Malaysia can be done, and it’s actually not too difficult.  I met these Spanish girls on Pulau Kapas who found a ride all the way from Teman Negara – Kuala Terranganu.  It’s not that it saves a ton of money, but it’s a great way to meet some local people, and have a unique travel experience.  For more information on Hitchhiking in Malaysia check the website below:

Kuala Lumpur

Jalan Alor in Kuala Lumpur


Trains in Malaysia

I’ve actually never taken a train in Malaysia, but I have heard that the system works out.  I almost boarded a train from Penang – Kuala Lumpur, but ended up extending my stay in Penang, and finding a flight that was cheaper than the train!  I honestly think that dealing with trains on other routes would just get complicated, so I’d just personally recommend Flights and Busses over taking trains in Malaysia.

Sunset on Tioman Island

Sunset on Tioman Island


Renting A Car

I’ve never rented a car and explored Malaysia on my own (mainly because I’m a solo budget traveler), but I have had some friends rent a van and go on weekend trips from Kuala Lumpur.  It’s definitely not the best option for everyone,

Jeep Excursions in the Cameron Highlands

Jeep Excursions in the Cameron Highlands


Malaysia Trip Itineraries

If you look at each of these locations on a map, you can see that it actually fits pretty well

One Week Malaysia Itinerary

If you are only in Malaysia for a brief visit, than you want to enjoy your holiday.  My advice would be to enjoy 2-3 days in Kuala Lumpur, and fly to either Penang for 3-4 days.  You don’t want to rush around each destination, because you will want enough time to enjoy each place and do all the activities.

Two Week Malaysia Itinerary

Days 1-3 — Kuala Lumpur

Take a morning bus to Teman Negara

Days 4-5 — Teman Negara

Book the early bus ticket to the Cameron Highlands

Days 6-7 —  Exploring the Cameron Highlands

Book the early departure bus to Penang

Days 8-10 — Penang

Catch the two hour ferry to Langkawi

Days 11-13 — Langkawi

Catch a domestic flight from Langkawi to Kuala Lumpur

Day 14 // End of Trip — Kuala Lumpur for your outgoing flight..

Island Hopping Boats in Langkawi


Three Week Malaysia Itinerary

Days 1-3 — Kuala Lumpur

Take a morning bus to Teman Negara

Days 4-5 — Teman Negara

Book the early bus ticket to the Cameron Highlands

Days 6-7 —  Exploring the Cameron Highlands

Book transportation to Marang Jetty for access to Pulau Kapas (Close to Kuala Terranganu)

Days 8-10 — Pulau Kapas & Gem Island

Book early morning boat back to mainland, and get to main bus station.  Book transport to Perhentian Islands

Days 11-15 — The Perhentians Islands

Book Domestic Flight from Kuala Terrananu Airport – Penang.  Cheap fares available if booked in advanced. 

Days 16-17 – Penang

Catch the two hour ferry to Langkawi

Days 18-20 — Langkawi

Catch a domestic flight from Langkawi to Kuala Lumpur

Day 21 // End of Trip — Kuala Lumpur for your outgoing flight..

Water & Lights show at KLCC

Water & Lights show at KLCC

One Month in Malaysia Itinerary

If you have a full month in Malaysia, I honestly would just recommend to follow the 3-week itinerary, but travel slower.  This will also allow flexibility with the domestic flights, and also spending less time on travel.  I would also recommend staying in Kuala Lumpur for an extra couple days, and doing a one-day trip to Melaka.  If you want to see it all, you can switch up this itinerary to add Pulau Tioman, but I would honestly skip it.  I found it to be really touristy, difficult to get to, and there are much better islands and beaches in Malaysia.

If you have even more time in Malaysia, look out for cheap domestic flights over to Borneo.  You could scuba-dive off the coasts of the world famous Sipadan island, or hike the highest peak in Malaysia — Mt. Kinabalu!


General Malaysia Travel Advice

Eat as much as you possibly can!  The food in Malaysia is absolutely incredible.  When you get to Kuala Lumpur, check out a Nasi Kandar and try the various curries, Roti Canai, and Nasi Lemak!

Interact with the locals!  Malaysian people are extremely friendly, and generally speak really great English!  They are very open and welcome to tourism, and can be a great experience.

Understand you are in a Muslim country!  Be respectful with your clothing!

Get a local SIM card!  Malaysia has a wide variety of phone plans, and it will come in handy to have 3G / 4G internet when your traveling.  I’d recommend Tune Talk.  There are great prices and deals, and it’s good coverage.

Download my Free E-Book — 77 Amazing, Helpful, Money-Saving Tips for Backpacking South-East Asia.  This goes over a ton of valuable information for Malaysia!


If you haven’t figured it out by reading this post, I have traveled pretty extensively throughout Malaysia.   I think it’s an amazing country, and am always thinking about going soon and exploring different parts.  I’m actually dying to get over to Borneo, but I’m sure that time will come eventually.

If you’re ever planning a trip to Malaysia, feel free to Contact Me with any questions!

Thanks for reading!

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One Month

The Ultimate Guide to Pulau Kapas, Malaysia

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Pulau Kapas is one of the most beautiful and relaxing places you will ever visit.  It’s truly an island paradise that has a strange power to keep you there longer than you planned on staying.  It’s not a rich and glamorous place with tons of 5 Star Resorts or expensive restaurants.  It’s a very minimalistic island, which is what makes it so special.  There’s not tons of electricity, or decent internet connection — meaning it’s the perfect holiday escape.  The beach is amazing, the water is perfect, and you’ll be left speechless when you first arrive.

I’m hoping that this Travel Guide for Pulau Kapas will answer all your questions and get you stoked for your time on this idyllic island!

I’ve even gone as far as claiming it’s the most beautiful island in Malaysia!

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So Where Is Pulau Kapas?

Kapas is located just a few kilometers off the West Coast of Peninsular Malaysia in the Terengganu province.

Know Before You Go

  • Pulau Kapas shuts down during the monsoon season between November and February.
  • Bring CASH.   There are no ATM’s on the island.
  • The Best Time to Visit Pulau Kapas is from April – August!
  • There are a lot of mosquitos on Kapas island!  Bring insect repellant!
  • Bring a flashlight at night to walk around the island!

How to get to Pulau Kapas

The boat ride is only a short twenty minute journey, and leaves several times per day from the Marang Jetty.  The closest city is Kuala Terranganu.

  • Marang Jetty.  Take the public bus from Kuala Terrenganu to Marang.  It’s a short bus trip, just make sure you ask the bus driver to drop you off at Marang!
  • Earliest boat at 9:00 A.M  — Last boat at 6:00 P.M.
  • Round-trip boat tickets.  Make sure you book round-trip tickets.  These should cost about 30-40 MYR depending on the time of the year.

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Flying to Pulau Kapas

There is no airport on Kapas island, but you can always book a flight on one of the many budget airlines in Malaysia to Kuala Terrenganu Airport.  Ideal for those looking for a weekend trip from Kuala Lumpur, Penang, or Singapore.

Bus to Pulau Kapas

The transportation in Malaysia works really well, and the busses are actually pretty nice!  You can easily check timetables to Kuala Terrenganu

For booking busses in Malaysia — check out the helpful website EasyBook I’ve searched and booked many bus tickets through Malaysia with them, and would recommend them to other traveling throughout the country.

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Where to Stay on Pulau Kapas

Gem Island Resort & Spa

By far the nicest and most comfortable way to spend your holiday on Pulau Kapas is at the Gem Island Resort & Spa.  While it is technically a 10 minute boat ride off of Kapas Island, it’s home to some of the best snorkeling on the island, relaxing beaches, and delicious food!  Prices as low as 63 per night!

LongSha Campsite Beach Camping

This is for the ultimate budget travelers, backpackers, and camping  fanatics.  It’s an awesome place to stay.  I stayed there for 5 night during my time on Pulau Kapas, and I highly recommend it.  It’s more than a campsite, it’s a community of like-minded people.  You’ll definitely have a blast if you choose to stay here.  Read my review of the Longsha Campsite on Pulau Kapas!

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Kapas Island Resort

This place is definitely your best choice if you’re not trying to go camping.  With rooms costing as low as $35 U.S.D, it’s clean, comfortable, and well located right by the ferry.  It’s also one of the only places on the island that has a swimming pool.

The Kapas Island Resort is also the only place you can really book online before you arrive on Pulau Kapas.  So if you’re looking for some guaranteed accommodation, this is your best bet.

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Captain’s Longhouse

For the people who aren’t fans of beach camping, wander over next door to Captain’s Longhouse.  It isone of the only other budget places to stay on Pulau Kapas.  I stayed here for one night, and had an enjoyable time.  They have double private rooms, and also a large dorm room as well.  The listed price is 40 MYR for a dorm bed, but you can easily talk them down to 30 MYR.  This definitely

Kapas Beach Chalet

By far one of the best places to spend your time on Pulau Kapas!  Kapas Beach Chalet, more commonly referred to as KBC, is where I spent the majority of my days on the island.  The restaurant meals are delicious, there’s tons of books to browse through, and the staff are all really friendly.  The owner of KBC is a Dutch man who moved to Pulau Kapas and fell in love with it.  It’s a really relaxed vibe here, and I highly recommend eating and spending some time here.

Kapas Turtle Valley Resort:  If you’re not on a strict budget, than this is the perfect place for you.  Located at the very end of Kapas, with it’s own private and secluded beach, Kapas Turtle Valley is an amazing place to spend your holiday.  The owners are really friendly, and the snorkeling right outside the property is fantastic.  Double rooms are still somewhat budget friendly for 190 MYR including breakfast.  There is also family rooms that fits up to four people.  Wi-Fi is also available here!


Best Places to Eat on Pulau Kapas:

Jetty Café

This is the first place you’ll see when you get on to Pulau Kapas if you get dropped off on the Jetty.  The family who owns this place is extremely nice, and the food is incredible!  At the end of my stay, I feel like I had tried the majority of the meals, and they all had me coming back for more.  They even make chicken nuggets, which are pretty great, and only cost 6 MYR.  It’s also one of the only places to find internet on Pulau Kapas.  It’s not really fast, and sometimes does not work too well, but if you need to send a few emails — head here.

Kapas Beach Chalet

As mentioned above, definitely cruise over to KBC for a few meals.  If you’re there on a Friday night, they do amazing BBQ’s!  It’s a little expensive at 45-50 MYR, but it’s absolutely delicious.

Cook Your Own Meal

This is meant specifically for those who are camping at Longsha Campsite!  They have an awesome kitchen, and it can be fun to get a group of people together and cook a communal meal.  All you need to do is to remember to go to the grocery store before you get on the speedboat to the island!

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Best Activities & Things To Do on Pulau Kapas:

Snorkeling / Scuba Diving

One of the main reasons you should be visiting Pulau Kapas is to be exploring it’s underwater biodiversity.  I only went snorkeling, but it was a daily activity!  I always saw beautiful fish (tons of nemo), turtles, coral, and even a couple sharks!  All you need is a mask, and you can swim out just a minute off the shore, and experience some amazing stuff!  Scuba-diving around Pulau Kapas is supposed to be amazing as well.  For scuba-diving on Kapas island, you’ll want to contact Aquasport Divers.

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End-to-End Beach Walk

All the places to stay, eat, and drink on Pulau Kapas are on the same side.  You can easily walk from one end, all the way down to the other end in about 30-40 minutes depending on how fast you are going.  It’s an amazing way to see all the main beaches, and soak up the truly relaxing nature of the island.  The best part about doing this — the beautiful golden staircases that you will follow.  They just remind me of a stairway to heaven.  Such a beautiful sight!

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Day trip to Gem Island

There are a few places on the island where you can book transportation to Gem Island.  Just go to the guys at the Longsha Campsite , and they’ll be able to organize a boat trip for you.  Gem Island is a small island just off the coast of Kapas.  There are two really nice beaches that are perfecting for swimming, snorkeling, and relaxing.  This is also home to one of the “Shark Bays”, where you have a chance of swimming with sharks.  (Don’t worry, they won’t bit).  I saw two sharks during my time out there, and they were incredible!  There is also one really beautiful resort on the island.  It’s definitely a little pricey, but would be an awesome place to spend a holiday.  Check out the Gem Island Resort & Spa .

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Hammock & Read

Pulau Kapas is one of the best places in the world to just sit back, relax, and enjoy your time in paradise.  A lot of places around the island have hammocks, book swaps, and beautiful soft sand.  In between meals, snorkeling, and swims — just take a nap in the hammock, or catch up on your reading.

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Jungle Walks

There are two different jungle walks you can do to the other side of the island.  I was actually do lazy to do these during my time on the island (and because I didn’t have any shoes), but I heard they were both pretty quick and enjoyable.

Beach Volleyball

There are a few different volleyball nets on Pulau Kapas.  Get some people together, and get a game going!

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Budget Tips

Beach Camping is definitely my best travel advice for visiting Pulau Kapas.  It’s cheap, fun, and you’ll meet some amazing people.

Bringing your own food from the mainland can save you some money on food costs.  The restaurants on the island aren’t TOO expensive, but if you were to go grocery shopping you could save some money for sure.

Bring your own booze because there aren’t many places that sell beer on the island.  The few places that do will charge you around 10 MYR for one can of beer.   

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Conclusion

A weekend or extended trip to Pulau Kapas will be a trip that you’ll never forget.  The beaches are amazingly beautiful, the underwater life is incredible, and you’ll get stuck in the relaxing island vibe.

It might not be the most popular destination in Malaysia to visit compared to the metropolitan Kuala Lumpur, stunning Cameron Highlands, or popular Perhentian Islands — but that is exactly why Pulau Kapas is so special.

THANKS FOR READING!!

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10 Amazing Things To Do In Uluwatu

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Uluwatu is probably my favorite area of Bali, and I always get excited when I find out people are heading down that way.  Here is my list of amazing things to do in Uluwatu.  If you do all these things, I can guarantee you’ll love this area just as much as I do.

1.  Watch The Surfers + Sunset @ Uluwatu Beach

You can’t go to Ulutwau without watching the insanely talented surfers from up above.  You’ll be blown away about the size of the waves, but even more blown away by the beautiful sunsets every night.

2.  Sunday Night Sessions @ Single Finn Club

The weekly party that happens every Sunday night at Single Finn Club can not be missed.  It’s free entry, there’s always a good turnout, and the music is top-notch deep-house.

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3.  Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner @ Cashew Tree

Hands down my favorite place to eat in Uluwatu is located near Bingin beach, and you definitely need to swing by for a meal and one of their delicious and healthy smoothies.

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4.  Resort Crashing & Sunset Magic @ Mu Resort

My first time down to Uluwatu, I was lucky enough to have friends tell me about this place.  The infinity pool will blow you away, there’s a jacuzzi perfectly located to watch the sunset, and it’s a great place to pretend to be rich.

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5.  Luxury Relaxation Day @  Finn’s Beach Club

Yes, it is a little expensive, but it’s worth every penny.  The beach is amazing, the food is great, and it’s a great relaxing day.  They also have a great happy hour selection, and nightlife bonfires.

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6.  Saturday Night Party @ Padang Padang Beach

Padang Padang beach is an amazing place to spend a day at the beach, but every night they host an awesome party there as well!

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7.  Dinner on The Beach @ Jimbaran Bay

Not exactly in Uluwatu, but having dinner and watching the sunset go down in Jimbaran is amazing.  Fresh sea-food, candle-lit dinners, and cold bintangs…perfect way to spend an evening.

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8.  Rent a Moto & Explore All The Beaches

You’re basically going to need a moto when you go down to Uluwatu.  Without one, you’ll basically feel stranded.  There are so many different areas to explore, and you should try and visit all of them if  you have the time.  Uluwatu Beach, Padang Padang Beach, Bingin Beach, Dreamland Beach, etc.  All amazing.

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9.  Pre-Game / Afterparty @ Mart Party

Before and after the club events down in Uluwatu, all the party-goers head to one of the Mart’s to have some drinks.  It’s a young / backpacker crowd full of international travelers and surfers.  Some nights can be hit/miss, but if you’re there during a good mart party, you’ll love it!

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10.  Never Miss A Sunset

Arguably the best place in Bali to watch the sunset is down in Uluwatu.  The top recommendations would be Uluwatu temple, Uluwatu Beach, or Mu Resort.

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Have you been to Uluwatu?  What was your favorite thing to do?

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10 Amazing Things To Do in The French Riviera

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The French Riviera is one of the classiest, elegant, and beautiful destinations to travel to in all of Europe.  Walking the streets of Monaco, it’ll be fun to pretend you are a billionaire who just had to find a place to park your yacht.  A visit here will definitely be a highlight of your time in Europe.  So without further ado, check out my 10 amazing things to do in The French Riviera.

1.  Explore Nice

Nice is the best place to call your “homebase” during your stay in the French Riviera.  It’s one of the biggest cities in the area, and has a ton to offer.  As well, it’s perfectly located in the middle of Monaco and Cannes for perfect day-trips.  As well, I would say that Nice has the best nightlife in the French Riviera, as well as the most affordable.  There’s a lively bar scene, and some really fun clubs.  For a fancy club experience, check out HIGH club which is just a 15 minute walk from Old Town along the beach.

2.  Promenade des Anglais

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Nice has one of the nicest stretches of water and a great stroll along the Promenade.  There’s a ton of great restaurants and cafes along the Promenade, and the beach is a great place to spend a day.  It’s not a “sandy” beach whatsoever, but it’s still a great spot to kick it.  A trip to the French Riviera would not be complete without strolling along the Promenade des Anglais.

3.  S-E-A-F-O-O-D

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The French Riviera is known for having some of the best seafood in Europe.  There’s tons of restaurants to choose from.  If you enjoy seafood, then definitely take advantage of being in this area, and indulge in a great meal.  This area is pretty expensive, so you might want to shop around and look for a restaurant that fits your budget.  Definitely try some oysters, mussels, and fresh fish.

4.  Wayne’s Bar & King’s Pub (Old Town Bars)

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In downtown Nice there is an area called Old Town, and it has a really vibrant bar scene.  There’s tons of small bars and clubs to choose from, places that stay open late to eat, and a few large squares to hang out as well.  Wayne’s Bar & King’s Pub are two of the best, and they are conveniently located on the same street.  Head to one of these, then bounce over to the other.  There’s live music and a great atmosphere, and is definitely one of my favorite things to do in Nice.  Don’t miss out on these two bars.  *One other bar just a short 5 minute walk away is called THOR, and is also worth seeing.

5.  Explore Monaco

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Yachts.  Expensive Cars.  World Famous Casinos.  Monaco is is the second smallest country in the world, and definitely the fanciest place I have ever visited.  This is just a short 20-minute train ride from Nice, and only cost around 8-9 euros round-trip.  Make sure you head up to the hill to check out both sides of Monaco.  Take a look at all the massive yachts.  Food and drink prices can get expensive here, so I always recommend going to the grocery store near the train station, and getting drinks and snacks and put them in my backpack.

6.  Gamble at the Monte Carlo

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What would a trip to Monaco be without doing some gambling at the Monte Carlo?  There can sometimes be a strict dress code, so it’s best to wear a nicer outfit when going inside.  As well, sometimes the require you to bring your passport, but I have gotten in once or twice without it.  One last note is sometimes they do ask for an entrance fee.  For those who might not be as well dressed, forgot their passport, or don’t want to pay; there is a a free casino called Cafe Paris in the same plaza.  This entire area is also amazing to explore, with amazing streets, ritzy shopping, and beautiful gardens.

7.  Oceanographic Museum of Monaco

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This is an amazing combination of an aquarium and a museum that is definitely worth a visit while in Monaco.  It’s beautifully located right against the sea, and is a stunning building.  There’s tons to see, amazing fish, and you can learn a lot.  If you want to see a lot of fish that will remind you of “Finding Nemo”, definitely stop here.  Also, if you have a student ID- bring it.  It will save you about 50% off here.

8.  Cannes Beach Day

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Going to the place of the famous Cannes Film Festival is a must during your time in the French Riviera.  There’s a great sandy beach that’s perfect for swimming, tanning, and relaxing.  Bring some booze, music, and you’re ready for a nice day.  I’d also walk along the entire promenade in Cannes as well.  There’s tons of amazing hotels, beautiful people, casinos, and beachside restaurants.

9.  St. Tropez

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Now, I only really recommend checking this place during the touristy season, because it’s not really worth it to go during the colder months.  The famous hotspot for celebrity spotting, bottles of champagne, and luxury living.  It can get rather expensive to get to, but it’s definitely one of the highlights of the French Riviera.  Nice – St. Tropez directions can be found here.

10.  Villefranche-Sur-Mer // Antibes

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If you stay in Nice, you’ll be taking the trains to both Cannes and Monaco.  I always recommend getting off at one stop along the way, and checking out other cities.  Both of these are smaller and less touristy, but amazing to spend a few hours at.  Antibes has some incredibly massive yachts and some great restaraunts for lunch.  Villefranche-sur-mer has an incredible beach and nice areas to explore.  Definitely make the most of your time in the French Riviera, and see as much as possible.  [divider]

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10 Amazing Things To Do On Gili Trawangan

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This is easily one of my favorite places in the world!  There’s so many amazing things to do on Gili Trawangan, and the island is incredibly beautiful.  It’s also one of the best party islands in South-East Asia, but there’s much more to this place.  From snorkeling with turtles every day, eating delicious food, and stunning sunsets; you’ll honestly never want to leave Gili Trawangan.

Where to Stay on Gili Trawangan

AirBNB — There are tons of amazing properties on AirBNB on Gili Trawangan, and you’d be dumb not to take advantage of the $38 off your first stay when you sign up for a new account.  I always do this when I’m traveling to places, and it’s been incredibly helpful!

BUDGET — Ombak Homestay — Centrally located, good reviews, and only $9 U.S.D per night.

MID RANGE HOTEL — Gili Hideaway Resort — Great staff, location, breakfast, and clean.  Only $30 U.S.D per night.

Luxury Hotel — Ombak Sunset Hotel — Award winner, perfect location for sunset, and $50 U.S.D per night.


Top 10 Things To Do On Gili Trawangan

1.  Explore The Underwater Life

The Gili Islands are known for amazing scuba-diving, snorkeling, and beautiful underwater life.  This should be number one on your list of things to do.

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2.  Never Miss a Sunset

Of all my travels in South-East Asia, I strongly believe that the sunsets in the Gili Islands are by far the most beautiful.  I pretty much go every day to see what different colors the sunset will bring.  Make sure you get the classic Gili Trawangan “swing shot” at Ombak Sunset resort.

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3.  Feast at The Night Market

You’ve got to eat at the Gili Trawangan night market at least once during your time on the island.  The food is fresh, cheap, and incredible.  You have to go to the lower east corner grill and eat there.  You pick out your meat skewers, and all dishes include rice and three vegetable sides + peanut sauce.  It’s mouth waveringly delicious.  Don’t miss this place.

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4.  Gili Trawangan Booze Cruise

The drinks might be expensive, but it’s easily my favorite thing to do in the Gili Islands.  The party always bring an amazing group of backpackers from around the world together to enjoy a fine selection of music and partying.

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5.  Relax On The Beach

When you look at pictures of the beaches on Gili Trawangan, one word always comes to mind…paradise.  The sand is great, the water is crystal clear, and it’s the perfect place to spend a day and do nothing.

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6.  Late Night Burger at Le Petit Grill

This is probably my favorite place to eat on the entire island.  Not only is one of the only places open 24 hours to grab something to eat, the food here is absolutely incredible.  They’ve got a pretty decent sized menu, but you they are famous for their burgers.  I’d recommend getting the Greek Burger or the Crunchy Onion burger; both solid options.  They both cost around $5 and come with french fries.  This is also my #1 recommended spot to grab a late night meal to either continue partying, or a drunk snack to soak up some of the alcohol for the hangover.  

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7.  Bike Ride Around The Island

There are no cars or motorbikes on the island, so you’ll see everyone riding around on bicycle.  This island is a great place to take a leisurely ride and see the entire place.


8.  Live Reggae Music at Sama Sama / Horizontal Lounge

When walking around Gili Trawangan, you’ll places that advertise live reggae music.  The two popular spots are located pretty close to each other along the main stretch.  The music at Sama Sama is my favorite, and it’s a great way to chill out, drink a beer, and listen to some awesome reggae music.

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9.  Movie Night On The Beach

If you walk up and down the main stretch of Gili Trawangan, you’ll see a couple places advertise movie nights.  Most of the places are free, but the movie on the beac at Pearl Beach Lounge costs 50,000 IDR and includes a crappy juice.  Most of the movies are played at 7:00 P.M and 9:00 P.M.  It’s a great way to spend a night for those nights where you don’t feel like partying.

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10.  Detox, Yoga, & Meditation @ The Yoga Place

The Yoga Place is one of my favorite spots for food and relaxation on the island.  They have daily yoga during sunrise, sunset, and afternoons.  They’ve got great and healthy food, and it’s just a great environment.  It’s owned by a really nice Dutch couple.  Definitely swing by for a little detox and a fresh coconut, or maybe one of their big and healthy salads.


I lived on Gili Trawangan for 2 months, and it will always hold a special place in my heart.  It was one of my top South-East Asia travel experiences, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Feel free to email me with any questions you have about traveling Indonesia!


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10 Amazing Things To Do In Kuala Lumpur

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Kuala Lumpur is easily one of my favorite cities in South-East Asia.  It’s a metropolitan city perfect for those looking for south-east Asia costs, but with a more modern touch.  I’ve spent a good amount of time in this city, and here is my list of 10 amazing things to do in Kuala Lumpur

1.  The Regalia Condominium Infinity Pool

What I would consider to be the absolute best thing to do in Kuala Lumpur, you can’t miss out on the opportunity to swim in one of the most incredible infinity pools in Asia.  The view of the city is breathtaking, the food at the restaurant is delicious, and it’s FREE.

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2.  The Water & Lights show at KLCC (Petronas Towers)

Marveling at the Petronas Towers is going to be a #1 thing to do for people when they go to Kuala Lumpur.  I actually recommend seeing them both during the day and night, and there’s no better time to see them at night than during the water & lights show at the KLCC Park.

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3.  Shopping on Petaling Street

The main shopping street in China Town is not to be missed during your time in Kuala Lumpur.  This street might just appear to be like any other market in South-East Asia, but there’s much more to it.  There’s tons of amazing restaurants, shops, and other things to keep you busy.  The cost of travel in Kuala Lumpur is actually pretty cheap, so go ahead and buy some souvenirs!

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4.  The Batu Caves

With the massive buddah statue out in front, you definitely should check out the famous Batu Caves.  They are easily accessible through public transportation, free entrance, and you’ll get some great photos.  Fair warning:  the monkeys on the way up are vicious.  They will grab stuff if you’re holding it in your hand.

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5.   Little India

This is just a short walk away from KL Sentral, and is a great place to grab lunch and shop for a bit.  The area is actually pretty small, and you can knock it off pretty quickly.  Not too exciting, but definitely worth the visit.  Tip:  Grab a samosa!

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6. The Heli Lounge, Kuala Lumpur:  Dinner + Drinks on a Helipad

This is something I would recommend to absolutely everyone coming to Kuala Lumpur.  The views you get of the city are amazing, and the ambiance they create is truly fantastic.  For more information, check out my blog post about my experiences at the Heli Lounge Bar.

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7.  Dinner on Jalan Alor- Changkat

Hands down my favorite place to grab dinner in Kuala Lumpur.  The street is lined with dozens of restaurants and street food, and you’ll absolutely love your food.  This is also right around the nightlife area, so it’s perfect for a meal before heading out for some drinks.

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8.  Mojitos at Bar 51

Happy Hour from 5-9 P.M.  You can get delicious Mojitos for only 5 MYR (Roughly $1.70).

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9.  Rooftop Parties at Reggae Mansion

The main backpacker hostel of Kuala Lumpur, The Reggae Mansion, has an amazing rooftop bar that has different events every night.  There’s a young crowd, decent drink specials, a pool table, and a DJ spinning top-40 electronic music.  Definitely a great spot to have a few drinks and meet some people.

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10.  Kuala Lumpur Bird Park

The World’s Largest Free Flight Walk-In Aviary.

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Well, there you have it.  If you check out these amazing things, you’ll definitely enjoy your visit to Kuala Lumpur.  I personally did not like this city too much the first time I visited, but now I love every visit I have back in KL .

Have you been to Kuala Lumpur?  What was your favorite thing about this city?  Let me know in the comments section!

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The Absolute Best Thing To Do in Kuala Lumpur

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Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, is an incredible city that has something to offer everyone.  From the stunning Petronas Towers, The Menara Tower (the tallest tower in SEA), the Batu Caves, incredible shopping, amazing food, and a solid nightlife scene; this city is definitely one of my favorite places in Asia.  I’ve spent a good amount of time here, and I’m going to share with you guys this incredible secret, which I believe to be the absolute best thing to do in Kuala Lumpur.

The Regalia Condominium Infinity Pool

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I first discovered this gem (which I actually think is one of the coolest pools in the world) back in September 2014.  I had friends who stayed at the Regalia, and I felt so lucky that they were able to show me this incredible pool.

Now you might be asking yourself, do you have to be a guest to use this pool? ….NO!

Update October

 You used to have to be a guest to have access to use the elevator to buzz yourself up the 37th floor, but that isn’t the case anymore.

In the past few months, the owners of the Regalia condominium opened up a brand new restaraunt, The Hemisphere which is open to everyone.

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How Do I Get There?

For those who haven’t been to Kuala Lumpur before, you’ll quickly learn that the public transportation system works very well, and the Regalia Condominium is well connected to two different metro stops — PUTRA or PWTC.  It’s also just a short minute walk from the new Sunway Putra mall.

An easier option would just be to take a Taxi or Uber.  Pretty much all of the drivers know of the Regalia Condominium.  

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How Do I Get Up To The Pool ?

Unless you arrive by cab, you’ll enter the building through the parking garage.  You’ll see signs easily directing you to the correct tower for access to the Hemisphere restaurant.  You might be able to be buzzed directly from there if there’s a security guard, if not you’ll have to go to Floor 4 to get buzzed up to the 37th Floor.

I’m not sure about the rules, but if I were you, I wouldn’t look like I’m going to the pool!  Treat it like your sneaking in, and just using the Hemisphere as your excuse.  You’ll simply go up the elevator, and instead of going into the restaraunt, walk to the pool…and be BLOWN AWAY BY THE VIEW.

You can literally spend all day up there and no one will bother you.  

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Extra Tips

  • If you can, go on a weekday…it’s a lot less busy than the weekends.
  • Bring pool essentials.  Sunscreen, Book, Sunglasses, Towel, Music player, Headphones, etc.
  • Bring some booze of your own.  The Hemisphere alcohol is really pricey.
  • The food at the Hemisphere is expensive for Malaysian standards, so bring some snacks, or prepare to spend a decent amount of money.

Definitely make sure you check out this view at night as well.  A night swim is also a great idea!

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No matter what you do during your time in Kuala Lumpur, make sure you make your way up to this pool!  The pictures you’ll get are incredible, and it’s just one of the best places to relax, take a swim, and enjoy one of the best FREE views of the city.

Update:  I have heard from one of my readers that the security has become more strict in the past month or so.  I believe that all you’ll need to do is sign in for the room your staying in.  Anyways, if you can get into the pool, definitely check out the Hemisphere Restaurant Kuala Lumpur views up on the 37th floor.  You can even talk to your server, and visit the pool from their patio area, and get some cool photos. 

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