1
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport

Well friends, travel day is finally here! I woke up at 2:30 this morning because 1) I am super excited and 2) I was worried I would oversleep. I’m not sure how that would have been possible because I set 3 alarms. But if you know me, you know I HATE being late so much better safe than sorry!


I made it through security and now I’m waiting to board my first flight to San Fran!

Also- I had the best Lyft driver this morning! Today is off to a great start!


So if you’re wondering why I sent you this silly link Jana’s Southeast Asia Adventures here are a few reasons:

  • For starters- feel honored you made the list 😛😉
  • To keep y’all at ease and know that I am still alive and have not been taken 😘
  • I’m not sure how much I’ll be on social media, what my cell service will be like, etc
  • A place to store pictures/adventures/and see everything on the map- I don’t want to forget anything
  • Document all the food I will be eating! I’m so pumped to eat my way through Vietnam and drink my weight in the very delicious Vietnamese coffee! Thankfully I’ve had quite a bit of practice doing this with my lovely co-workers!


I’ll try to post on here pretty regularly, but I can’t make any promises!


FYI- I won’t really have cell service for the first couple of weeks. If you have an iPhone- no worries, I will be able to connect to WiFi most days. If you are one of the ‘others’ I have GroupMe, Viber and WhatsApp (I don’t know how to use this one yet). You can also shoot me an email- janaemill@hotmail.com



Alrighty, I’m off to search for coffee!

Much love to all

Jana

2
San Francisco, CA 94128, USA

Just one more latte before I leave!

Do you know why they call it a latte?

3
Terminal 1, 1 Sky Plaza Rd, Chek Lap Kok, Hong Kong

I survived the 15+hour flight! Only one more airplane to go until I get to Vietnam!

I made it to Hong Kong airport and this was the first thing I saw! I wish I could say I ate there! Misocoolll 😂

4
Ho Chi Minh City

I made it! Now time to take a snooze!

A little treat to you from my Uber driver!

5
Ho Chi Minh City

Hi friends!

I made it through day 1 in Saigon. After 29 hours of travel and almost no sleep on the planes I was only able to sleep for 3 hours last night! I was up before 7am getting my day started. It’s safe to say it’s gonna be an early night tonight.

Of course I had to start off my day with my favorite: Milk Coffee! I also had some noodles and eggs for breakfast (sounds crazy, I know!)

This place is absolutely insane and I must say I dig it! It’s loud, people are everywhere and it seems as if there are NO traffic laws whatsoever!

Here was my day in pictures:

Milk coffee!

Breakfast! Not what I was expecting, but not bad at all!

Coffee #2 with some people watching at a cafe

So much fruit!

Ben Thanh Market

Coconut # 1 at the market

War Remnants Museum

Richland people- look! It’s a peace pole just like the ones all over campus

Coconut number 2!

I found Banh Bao!

This one is for you Lindsay! I know how you LOVE libraries🤓

Dinner! I didn’t have much of an appetite (shocking, I know) so I went with a recommendation from a new Canadian friend- Morning glories sautéed in garlic. Quite tasty!

✌🏼

6
Mekong River Delta

Today I took a day trip to Mekong River Delta!

Snake rice wine 😳

Happy Buddha!

Milk coffee is the reason he’s so happy!

Ride down the river

Dinner!

Walking street is crazy! So loud and so many people!

All in all it was a great day!

Coffee count- 3 😛

7
Cu Chi Tunnels

Holy moly, I am pooped!

I had another day of going non-stop, which is easy to do in this city since it’s so fast-paced, loud, hectic and full of life! \240Today I did a half day tour of the Cu Chu Tunnels with some new girls I met from Norway. \240The tunnels were a network of secret underground tunnels/living quarters/hideouts for the Vietnam soldiers during the Vietnam war. For those who want to know more, go here -> \240https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Củ_Chi_tunnels


When we returned from that I had planned on just resting, but it was such a beautiful day I decided to walk around and do some \240self guided sightseeing. I walked a total of 10 miles today, and I’m glad I did because I covered so much of the city.


Here is today’s picture download!

So much fruit!

Yum! Fried rice paper!

Milk Tea!

Soooooo many motorbikes

All the New Year decorations are coming out

Notre Dame Cathedral

Dinner = Delic!

And you cannot beat the $0.66 beer

8
Van Trang Hotel, 80 Bรนi Viแป‡n, Phแบกm Ngลฉ Lรฃo, Quแบญn 1, Hแป“ Chรญ Minh, Vietnam

Today = Waking up at 5:30am to watch the Super Bowl!

I also found heaven on earth...

This, my friends,is 9 stories worth of glorious coffee shops! There are also a few boutiques scattered in there as well.

It used to be an apartment building, but they converted it into all these super cool shops.

Thinker&Dreamer Coffee shop

View from the top!

Pho!

So cute! It looks much better than it tasted!

9
Da Nang

Hi, friends!

I’ve spent the last couple of days exploring the city of Danang. I’ve been on-the-go during \240the day, and chatting with other travelers until the wee hours of the night, so I haven’t really had time for an update. I started writing this on a bus earlier this afternoon but then my pal Jim decided to join me so we chatted the whole way to Hoi Anh.


Flash back to 2/6


Danang is quite a city. It is much more laid back than Saigon, but still a bustling city right off the coast of central Vietnam.


Day 1- took an early morning flight from Saigon to Danang (only about an hour flight). As soon as I got checked in to my hostel I went out and explored the city.

Haha

I befriended a Vietnamese girl and she took me out on her motorbike. First we went to the Marble Mountains and did a bit of a hike. There were such stunning views here!

Dragon bridge

Huong also took me to dinner at a popular place amoung the locals.

And this was delicious corn 🌽 juice!

Dessert!

Coconut Jelly!

10
Da Nang

Yesterday I arrived in Danang, a cool little city in central Vietnam right off the coast.

I don’t have time to write now, but I’ll try to post more tonight when I get back from some site seeing.

But I’ll leave you with this stunning view!

Top of Marbke Mountains

So much love 😘,

Jana

11
Holiday Beach Danang Hotel & Resort

2/7/18

I took a stroll to find breakfast and coffee.

The cafe I had breakfast at happened to be across the street from a bank having a grand opening party. They had dragon dancers, singers and fan dancers

I took a Grab (like Uber, but they also have the option to have a motorbike pick you up), to Linh Ung Pagoda and Lady Buddah.

View lady buddah from the beach!

The I spent the rest of the afternoon on the beach

Stopped for lunch. Here was the view.

12
Hoi An Ancient Town

Hoi An- Day 1

After arriving to Hoi An and checking in to my hostel, Jim and I went in search of Cao Lau, a dish that Hoi Anh is known for. \240We found some and it did not disappoint. The noodles were made out of rice and had a very different texture, but they were still tasty.


After lunch we went just set out to walk around and discover this new city.

Beautiful lanterns line the streets of the Old Town part of the city

Found another dragon dancer!

That evening our hostel offered a street food tour that I joined and had a chance to meet some other travelers.

After \240the food tour a few of us decided to head back to a pub close to our hostel for some beers and Jenga.

Which then turned into about 10 of us deciding we wanted to go out dancing.

Before calling it a night, we had to stop for more Banh Mi!

13
Tribee Cham

Day 2 in Hoi An

I got up early and and rented a bike for the day.

Meet Beverly

First Bev & I rode through some rice paddies

Then I decided to hit the beach for some coffee, reading, and a little relaxation.

Then I just put my map away and just rode \240 around for hours, making stops along the way whenever I felt like it

Mastering the art of one handed bike riding

I stopped and had a delicious lunch


Banana blossom salad with fresh seafood and a fresh squeezed passion fruit

I went to the market and paroused around and ending up getting some fresh fruits.

Did some more riding before eating some delicious street food. You know it’s going to be good when you pull up a red plastic stool, no one there speaks English and you just kind of point and nod, hoping we both understand each other.

It was def a win-win-win😁

After dinner I met up with friends from the night before and we decided to join a beer pong tournament!

We got second place!

Then we decided to walk around and check out the night life.

We realized we all had the same go-to -dance move. I found my people!


Of course we had to finish our evening with more bahn mi!

14
74 Bร  Triแป‡u, Cแบฉm Phรด, Hแป™i An, Quแบฃng Nam, Vietnam

Hello all!

Hoi An, Vietnam!

That’s where I’ve been for the last few days and I absolutely love it here!!!

It’s an ancient town off the central coast of Vietnam and it’s an UNESCO heritage site. Want to learn more about Hoi An?

https://wikitravel.org/en/Hoi_An


This town is super charming, there is beauty everywhere you look, and I’ve been trying to soak as much of it up as I can before I leave. Like right now, I’m sitting on the roof of my hostel, listening to the monks ring the bells from the Temple and watching the sunrise and this town begin to wake up. There are actually roosters singing their morning song. God is so good.


I’ll be taking a bus up to Hue today, so I’ll hopefully be able to give a proper update, but for now I’m going to drink some coffee and have some breakfast before the next stop on my journey.

Current view!

15
Hแป™i An

Day 3- Hoi Anh

I spent the morning at the weekend market wiith friends Elsa (New York) and Xesc (Spain).

Full chicken!

Then we stopped for lunch!

Then we spent the rest of the day exploring the old town

Xesc!

Stopped here for some ice cold buy one get one free 🍻

Hoi An is known for their hand made lanterns and they all come on at night

Then we went to the night market and ate ALL the street food!

Banh Mi all day, everyday

Baby crabs

Such tourists

Banana filled pancakes!

I was not ready to leave Hoi An. So far, this has been my favorite stop on my trip.

16
Imperial City

Yesterday I spent the day in Hue. I walked to the Imperial City, also known as The Citadel for some history lessons :)

For those histroy buffs or people that like to read random facts (BJ) here is more about the imperial city:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imperial_City,_Huế

It rained for much of the day, but thankfully when I met Thuy Anh’s friend, Truong in Ho Chi Minh City she gave me a poncho and I was able to still go out and explore without getting soaked. Thanks, Truong!

Here was my day in pictures:

I took a bus to Hue in the morning. We stopped in a little fishing village on the way.

Of course I had to stop and get coffee before I started my quest of the imperial city.

I found it!

I waited forever for the girl in the pink jacket to move, but she just kept taking selfies! 🙄

And this pile of bricks just cracked me up because when I first looked at it I saw Santa🎅🏽

🤣😂🤪

The Brosef needed help finding him so this is what I sent him :)

It still makes me crack up!

After leaving the city I stopped at this huge grocery store to take a look around for a bit and it was crazy! Everyone was stocking up and getting ready for New Years!

But I got myself a treat while I was there

More exploring Hue

This was called ‘Big Head’ for obvious reasons

😂I did not go inside but the sign made me chuckle

Super late lunch!

Bun Bo Hue, a dish Hue is well known for. All of his cost under $2.00. Crazy!

After this I went back to my hostel to dry off, warm up and relax a bit before venturing out more.

I went and had dinner with some guys I met from Holland. We found this really cool place that had three floors of outdoor patios but I forgot to take a picture of the place and the delicious Hue meal of Nem Lui.

And I finally found good Che! Street food at its finest!

Today I’m heading to the airport to fly to my next stop, Hanoi!

But first...

More coffee!

Noodles and eggs for breakfast

And rose apples () that I bought at the market.

And one more coffee while waiting on the shuttle to take me to the airport!

Bus ticket

17
Hanoi Old Quarter

The last couple of days I’ve been spending some time in Hanoi.

Most of my first day was spent getting here, but I still had some time to explore and eat!

I decided to do a progressive dinner.

1st course- veggie/beef soup

I’m not sure what was in it, but it definitely made me feel funny. A bit lighttheaded and a bit of a headache. Weird.

So I moved on to the next place.

Steamed Rolls. Feel much better now.

The place I was staying had a three story bakery/cafe on the bottom two floors so I couldn’t help myself and stopped and got this cutie. Also, living above that is a deadly combination.

Chocolate Mousse Bear!

It was already quite late by now, so I grabbed some hot tea (Lindsay!!!) and sat on the patio people watching.

The next day I got up early and went out to explore the city. \240Everyone is getting ready for New Year so it’s a bit chaotic, but there are fresh flowers and sparkling lights everywhere! So nice!

Old Quarter

Fresh pineapple, anyone?

Egg Coffee

Sounds a bit weird, but it was delicious

Also, the cafe was super cool with a tree right in the middle of it.

The sidewalk around the park. Reminded me of the movie ‘Big’

Lunch! Coconut Ice cream

You know the food is good when you see this! And those chairs are much higher than most.

Found an awesome park

That’s made out of tiny roses

That’s me! I’m an Ox

Thuy Anh

Lindsay?

So cute

These were so cool. And made out of plants and flowers

2018- year of the dog 🐶

An alley way

Dinner?

All the tourists waiting for the train to come. It’s a passenger train that runs the length of the country and passes through town twice a day.

Because of the Tet holiday the train was running on a two hour delay (I asked a local) so I was not about to wait for it to come.

So all you get are the tracks :)

Next I set out to get my learning on :)

I went to the Citadel (Imperial City)

Found the world’s steepest set of stairs

Then I went to the Parliment Building

The Presidential Palace

And the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

Before I knew it, it was time for dinner!

Pork Vermicelli 😋

TAN, Tram, Nhan, Lindsay- look what I found!!

And this was on the bathroom door. I want to know who has been throwing cans in the toilet.

Alright, y’all!

I’m off to Halong Bay! I’ll be on a boat for the next two days. Not sure if there will be WiFi or not so you may or may not hear from me in a while.

Much love 😘,

Jana

18
Hแบก Long Bay

Hi friends!

I just spent the last couple of days on a boat checking out Ha Long Bay. I had such a wonderful time.

Ha Long Bay is made up of 1969 limestone islands. It was quite foggy while out at sea, but it was still beautiful and peaceful.

View from my bed!

Lunch! It doesn’t look appetizing, but it was!

After lunch we headed to land to do a hike up one of the mountains.

View from the top.

Half-way!

We jumped back on the boat for a bit, then did some kayaking and exploring some of the islands.

We found a cave!

And Pride Rock!

And an opening

This is what we found after making it through to the other side! Gorgeous!

The kayak crew!

After kayaking we had a family style dinner.

Then we did some squid fishing.

Sadly, we didn’t catch any, but we did see a couple swimming around.

We ended the evening on the top deck of the boat swapping life & travel stories and playing cards.

Next day-

Fresh squeezed watermelon juice for breakfast!

Then we headed to see some caves

Can you find Romeo and Juliet?

View from the cave

We learned how to make spring rolls

The whole gang about to part ways 😢

Now I’m back in Hanoi for the evening. Since it’s New Years Eve here we plan to walk to a nearby park for a fireworks show at midnight 🎇

😘

Jana

19
Hanoi

First, I wanted to start with wishing my momma a Happy Birthday!!🎊🎂🎁🎈

I hope you have a wonderful day!

Secondly, Happy Lunar New Year!

Last night I celebrated like the locals. At 11pm we (don’t worry, I didn’t go \240alone- I had a Russian bodyguard go with me 😂)headed out to one lakes to see how New Year was celebrated here. It was crazy! There had to be 100,000s of thousands of people out and about. Whole streets were shutdown to vehicles while everyone headed to the lake.

Sorry it’s sideways!

Sooo many people! It was great!

Some sweet entertainment

And they had the longest, loudest, best fireworks show I’ve ever seen! It was great!

The aftermath!

If you’re interested in learning what the heck lunar new year is and why it’s so important in the Vietnamese culture, find out here —> http://www.lafairy-sails.com/en/blog/all-about-traditions-of-tet-the-vietnamese-lunar-new-year.htm

Ok- gotta run to the airport! Catching a flight to Thailand tonight to meet up with Cale and Michelle!!!

20
Noi Bai International Airport

I can’t believe my time in Vietnam is up! 16 days sure has flown by!

My last day here😢:

Banana pancakes (to us they are really crepes) for breakfast

Coffee views

My first cup of this goodness in days

😳shocking, I know!

Hung out on the wrong side of the tracks for a bit

Woo-hoo!

Reminders from the celebrations

These are not chairs for children although they look like it. I’ve enjoyed 75% of my meals from those tiny stools.

All I could think about was “The worst part of prison was the dementors and the gruel” - Prison Mike

This was not the gruel! Veggie fried noodles.

Followed by a fresh Soursop & Avocado smoothie

So long, Hanoi!

As I’m sitting and waiting for my plane to Bangkok, here are my observations of Vietnam:

-Everyone smokes. Locals, tourists. Everyone.

-Pollution/smog is terrible. Now I understand why everyone wears masks

-It’s a bit dirty. People throw trash in the street and liter all the time, but at night they have trash fairies who come and do the cleanup.

-You see lots of groups of men having dinner, playing games or drinking beer/coffee together. I have yet to see groups of women do that.

-The people in general are very friendly.

-There are no rules on the road. Yes there are traffic lights, but those are merely a suggestion. Enter the roads at your own risk.

-Also, if you are going down a one way street, don’t assume people will treat it as a one way street. THEY WILL NOT. See earlier observation.

-Everyone honks their horn here. To warn you they’re coming, to tell you to get out of the way, or just because

-They can fit anything and everything on a motorbike. I’ve seen one carry 5 people and another one carry two refrigerators stacked on top of each other.

-Grab bike is quite possible the best invention for people like me without a vehicle. It’s like Uber, but only with a motorbike. And we get to wear these really cool green helmets! And it’s so cheap! I paid $1.42 for a 20 minute ride. Can’t beat that!

-Vietnamese are very resourceful.

-It is okay to pee in public.

-Bicycles with baskets. Bes. Thing. Ever.

-Dogs in those bicycle baskets may be the only thing better than the bicycles themselves. Actually, dogs in hoodies in bicycle baskets are way better.

-There are lots of dogs here. I haven’t really seen any big dogs, but lots of little guys. Also, they are usually not on leashes and just roam at their leisure

-They love to sweep. All the time I see people sweeping. The floors, the sidewalk, the streets

-They love their coffee. There are no less than 5-10 coffee shops on each block. That is not an exaggeration nor is it a complaint!

-You order a coffee and automatically get a Vietnamese tea with it. Also not a complaint :)

-Fresh fruit everywhere! \240Buy in the street, market, minimart,grocery store, cafe, restaurant. If it looks weird or I’ve never seen it before, you better believe I’m trying it!

-Fresh fruit juices and smoothies are also everywhere and you can get them in most coffee shops too

-They like their beer. Each region had their own specialty. You can also buy beer anywhere, even at Burger King. It can also be extremely cheap. I’ve paid $0.22 for a beer. The most expensive beer I’ve purchased was $1.76 and I felt like I was really splurging

-Family is a very important part of their culture

-They can pop-up a street food restaurant in no time. One minute you’re on an empty sidewalk, the next minute you’re in the middle of a full on busy ‘restaurant’

-Being here during Lunar New Year has been quite the experience. Flowers, fireworks, singing, dancing, confetti, fires, balloons, lights, lucky money, outfits, 100,000+ celebrating at the lake 👌🏼

-There is soooo much culture here, amazing food, wonderful people, adorable children, beautiful places, delicious coffee, and the list goes in and on.

Vietnam, I’m a big, big fan of yours!

Until next time✌🏼

Vietnam you will always hold a piece of my heart.

Not as good as they sound

21
Bangkok

I made it to Bangkok,Thailand!

Michelle and Cale arrived and we had a nice little reunion at our awesome Airbnb!

After going to bed around 4am we woke up bright and early to get our day started.

We found this super cute cafe across the street from where we are staying and enjoyed a lovely little breakfast.

Nahim Coffee= Espresso, Thai Tea & Thai Ice cream!

How cute is that little pineapple donut?

There were adorable llamas all over the walls and this one was my fave!

Then we set out that do some sightseeing in our first Tuk Tuk ride!

After breakfast we headed out to Wat Pho (http://www.bangkok.com/attraction-temple/wat-po.htm) to get our temple seeing on!

The giant reclining Buddha. This thing was seriously massive

Watch out for gangs

We headed to the Grand Palace but decided it was too hot and too crowded to really enjoy our visit so instead we grabbed another Tuk Tuk and headed to the weekend market!

We bought all the things and ate delcious food at the market before heading jack towards home to meet up with Natalie for dinner and to hangout in Chinatown for the Chinese New Year Celebrations

All the delicous pork

Sooooo much food!

After Chinatown we decided to do a mini bar crawl down our street before calling it a night.

Teens of Thailand bar had the world’s smallest door. Also, we aren’t quite sure what’s up with the name.

For my MC peeps!

That’s all for now!

Much love 😘

Jana

22
Chinatown เธญเธทเน‰เธญเน€เธˆเน‡เธเธฎเธฐ

Hey all!

My last couple of days have been full of lots of adventures.

Yesterday was another day in Bangkok. We started our day off with some delcious bagel sandwiches and Thai tea. Both were delicous!

That is a Rueben bagel. This was my first time in an American restaurant since I’ve been here.

I’ve had a prett nasty cold the last couple of days so we made a stop at the pharmacy so I could loud up on cold medicine to hopefully kick this gunk. I had no voice by the end of the day.

My Thai medicine mix.

After getting loaded on meds we set out on the sky train to check out this massive city.

First stop: Full Body Thai Massage. When they say full body, they really mean the masseuse uses their full body to massage your full body. Lots of elbows, knees, chops, bends, pulls, stretchs, back walking, wrestling moves and much more happened in that hour. Good experience and I fet great when it was over:).I will definitely happen again before I leave!

Post beat-up... I mean massage

More Chinese Mew Year stuff near Chinatown

Makes Happy 💕

And then lunch time! We stumbled upon \240this hole in the wall place run by the cutest little old Thai ladies. They were the sweetest. Cale and I ordered beers and they didn’t sell beer, so one of the ladies ran across the street to another store and bought them for us :)

This is one of them preparing our meals for us.

It honestly doesn’t get any cuter than this!

Curry!

And dessert!

Banana crepe time. I have eaten soooo many bananas over here. And I’m loving it!

After lunch we took a night little stroll before heading home and getting ready for or evening out.

We spent the evening in the heat of Bangkok. We started out at a rooftop bar for cocktails and appetizers. We had a 360 degree view of the city and it was stunning! It was on the 57th floor and is the highest rooftop bar in Bangkok.

The View!

After drinks we headed there Khao San Road, which is much like Bourbon Street. We ate \240again(surprise!) but I didn’t take pictures, but it wasn’t very good so I’m sparing you :). We walked around and bit, then listened to some live music. And by live music, I mean two rock bands dueling each other. It was awesome and interesting and weird and great all in one

The bass player was on point win his head banging and hair flipping!

Khao San road!

I finally found it Thuy Anh! Coconut ice cream in a coconut with fresh coconut!

That pretty much summed up our last night in Bangkok!

Next stop: Chiang Mai!

23
Chiang Mai

Hello everyone!

I am still alive!

We’ve been busy up in Northern Thailand so I haven’t had much of a chance update y’all on what’s going on.

We’ve been up in Chiang Mai for a couple days now and I am smitten with this place. It’s such a nice change of pace from the craziness of Bangkok.

Bangkok= huge city, millions of people, smog, concrete jungle, hustle & bustle, crazy traffic, lively, chaotic, lively street life

Chiang Mai= culture, nature, history, Mountains, Old City, moats, slower paced

Day 1

We started our day with a flight from Bangkok to Chiang Mai. We had breakfast at the airport before taking off.

I chose to have a piccolo latte and a Krispy Cream! I chose the Chinese wealth donut.

After arriving in CM and getting all checked in to our hotel, we set out to explore this New location.

Iced coffee

Lunch! Glass noodle salad

We found this growing out of control at one of the Buddhist temples

We stopped or a foot massage before going to our Thai cooking class!

We went to Zabb E Lee Thai Cooking School for our cooking class today. It was awesome!


We started off by visiting the local market and loading up on fresh ingredients for our meals.

Let the cooking begin!

Tom Kha Gai Soup

Pad Thai

Making some Penang Curry paste!

Penang Curry

Mango Sticky Rice

Everything turned out delcious and we had the best cooking instructor!

24
Maerim Elephant Sanctuary

Day 2 in Chaing Mai was fantastic!

We got up early, grabbed breakfast at our hotel

Bed was the name of our hotel

After breakfast and coffee we headed to Maerim Elephant Sanctuary where we got to spend the day loving on the elephants. We learned each of the elephant’s stories(5 elephants live here) and lives before they were rescued and given the chance at a better life. I’m not gonna lie, their lives before coming to the sanctuary were heartbreaking and I was almost in tears learning about the pour treatment they endured.

Many people asked me if I rode any of the elephants and simply put, I did not.

But for the more extended version:

When tourists ride elephants it looks quite harmless to the elephants. It’s just like riding a horse, right?

Not exactly. What we don’t see are the years and months of torture, beatings and bullhorns used on the elephants to get them to the point where they can let tourists ride them, where they can paint or are used as logging animals.

Elephants in nature are not made to be riden, to perform tricks, or to use their trunks and body weight to log trees.

It’s places like Maerim Animal Sanctuary who rescue these animals and give them a chance to be part of a family and live a happy and peaceful life.

I’m off my soap box now ☺️, but if you want to know more about this sanctuary, their mission, please visit their website at

http://www.maerimelephantsanctuary.com

One thing I loved about this place was that we spent our day around the elephant’s schedule, their wants and their needs and not based on our agendas or schedule.

We started back feeding the elephants bananas! So many bananas!

This is Sitti, the baby elephant! Look how happy he is!

He is only 2 years old and he definitely acts like a toddler! He loved to play and wasn’t always the most swift on his feet!

Living her best life! :)

After we fed the elephants we went to a banana plantation and cut down some trees to feed to the elephants. They eat so much! Elephants typically eat 25% of their body weight each day which ranges between \240500lbs to 1000 lbs of food a day! That’s 17 hours of their days just eating!

When it was my turn to do some tree chopping I split my pants right down the middle! 😂

Good thing I had my bathing suit on underneath!

After tree chopping, we had a delicious soup of lunch!

All the chili! 🌶

More coffee!

While we were finishing our meals, baby Sitti decided he wanted to go for a swim in his drinking water.

So he just climbed right in!

After bath time we fed them all the trees we cut down.

Next we went on a walk with the elephants before they ate again.

Cornstalks this time!

Someone decided they wanted to show off for us

After this we went to a mud hole and played with the elephants IN the mud! We gave them mud baths threw some mud and hair had a jolly time.

After mud baths it was time to jump in the watering hole and clean ourselves and the elephants. I was definitely in my happy place!

There was a photographer there who captured all of this on camera. Once I’m able to download those pictures I’ll be sure to share!

Of course we had to finish our day with them with a Chang beer!

Chang = elephant in Thai

25
Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep

Day 3 Chiang Mai-

Today we slept in a little bit since we didn’t get to bed until 4am. I woke up around 7 and did some research on how I wanted to spend my next few days. I went and grabbed some breakfast then Cale and I went to Wat Phra That Doi Suthep, which is a Theravada Wat in Chiang Mai. The temple is referred to as Doi Suthep, although that’s jus the name of the mountain it is on. It is a sacred site to many Thai people. We decided we wanted to walk the 309 steps to the top rather than have someone drive us.

So much gold!

Cale got blessed by a monk

View from the top! It was a bit foggy so we couldn’t see much.

Reppin’CG in Thailand!

The walk back down.

***Warning- do not watch this video if you get motion sickness*

Also- it’s hard to tell, but halfway through there is a little kid just sitting on the steps licking some money 😝

My reward for making it up and back down! Thai Tea!

When we got back it was time to pack up. Cale and Michelle are heading to check out some of the islands in south Thailand (I’ll join them in a couple of days) while I go check out more of Chiang Mai and the surrounding areas.

My day:

Sorry if you’re getting sick of all the pagoda/temple pictures. There are over 200 in Chiang Mai alone (not a very big city) and everytime I pass one it looks so pretty I have to stop.

Coolest little shop! This guy makes such cool art on handmade cloth pieces. I’ll definitely stop and get one before I leave. When I stopped by I was on a mission to find food and food won.

Pad Thai again!

Secret garden

Spaghetti and meatballs elephant

Coconut Icecream

Night market time!

Stick meat for the win!

26
Doi Inthanon National Park

Today was all about me and nature! I did an all day \240trek through the mountains/jungle in Doi Inthanon National Park.

Waterfall #1

Next I stopped at a Sohhab village where they make clothes by hand and harvest coffee beans.

A Sohbab woman making a scarf

This is a very poor farming village and these are the houses the village people live in.

Next stop- the highest point in Thailand.

It was actually really cold up here compared to the bottom of the mountain!

Stupa

Jungle

Many of the trees are covered in moss.

This view doesn’t suck

Next I visited the twin royal pagodas of Phra Mahathat Naphamethanidon, the two pagodas built to commemorate the King & Queen’s 60th birthdays.

The two pagodas were on side by side mountains. Pagoda #1 (back)

Bottom/front of Pagoda #1

Here I am standing at pagoda #1 and this is the view of pagoda #2

Pagoda #2 up close

The details were flawless

So many gorgeous flowers

The gardens surrounding these were stunning

And there was a squaty potty for anyone who has never seen one. Luckily I went into the next stall and there was a ‘normal’ toilet

Stopped at a dry goods and fruit & veggie market for a mid afternoon snack

So fresh!

Waterfall #2!

After returning from my afternoon adventure I was pretty pooped but still wanted to soak up more of the amazing culture of Chiang Mai.

I visited a Wat at night and it was breathtaking. The pictures really do not do it justice. There was a nice little breeze, there was hardly anybody there, and it was so peaceful.

And who could forget another amazing meal?

I met a couple today and they recommended this restaurant to me so I had to try it out. It was amazing!

Green curry, sticky rice, and a fresh coconut shake- made with fresh coconut and coconut milk. This was prob one of my favorite drinks so far!

That’s a rap folks! Tomorrow is my last day in Chaing Mai before I spend a week soaking up the sun doing some island hoping in southern Thailand!

27
Chiang Mai

Last day in Chiang Mai!

Today I decided to keep things pretty close to my hostel since I had to check out and head to the airport for the next leg of my journey.

I woke up early and went to the market that the locals go to. It was much less touristy and it wasn’t nearly as crowded as the other markets have been.

Morning stroll views in sleepy Chiang Mai.

Chinatown

So many noodles

I think something got lost in translation here 🤣💕

After my morning/afternoon of exploring new areas it was time to head to the airport.

My flight to Krabi was delayed about an hour, but I didn’t mind because I got a free seat upgrade (woot woot) annnnd I got to go hangout in the lounge and eat/drink for free (woooooo) annnnnd I got the whole exit row to myself (yay!)

After making it to Krabi I met up with Michelle and Cale for some live music before heading to bed!

28
Chiang Mai International Airport

I’m at the airport waiting for my next flight and I stumbled upon this on one of the travel groups I’m in and thought it was pretty on- target. For those of you who are curious as to why I like solo travel- here it is!

“THE PERKS OF TRAVELING ALONE”

By: Jun Mar Prado

Traveling abroad alone needs to be a must do to any human being.

There's no shame in traveling alone. I've pretty much done all my travel - solo, it's actually addicting and I'm totally stoked to spend time on the road that way.

While solo traveling is intimidating, it is easy and actually more fun. Traveling alone shows you that you are more than capable, and stronger than you thought. You see what the problem is. You can move at your own pace. Do what you want without compromising a travel partner. One of the best things about traveling alone is that fact that you don't have to answer to anyone. You can rest when you want, you can eat where you want and you can stay within your budget. Your mistakes are your own and there's no worrying that you ruined your partner's day; because it's your own day to salvage to a learning experience.

One of the best parts also is meeting new people and you could easily fall in love and give it a fair shot. Contrary to what some may think, traveling solo doesn't mean someone is a LONER. Some people go alone because that leads them to engage more with the people who live and move during their trips. I like roaming around without a schedule or agenda. My soul is ignited by surprise discoveries, and I have more of them when I am alone.

Being in your own is also a good shot for yourself whilst traveling solo. You can be your true self, or whoever you want to be. More than that, solo traveling \240gives you the ultimate freedom. I don't have people I can rely to make my trip or photos dope, as I have to motivate myself and make sure I make the most of everywhere I go. It helped me a lot and gain so many skills - from connecting to different people, budgeting and more.

Solo travel is not for everyone. Some find it harder, some embrace it right away. But you'll never learn that if you don't go and travel once by yourself. Don't wait for a friend or other people to say yes to travel with you or from living your dreams. You could be waiting a long time until a friend or someone finally goes with you and says yes. Don't hold your dreams for someone, time is running out. THERE'S ONLY NOW - and if you don't go, you will REGRET it.

(IG: solo_backpacker)

29
Railay Beach

Krabi, Thailand. More to come later 💕

30
564/2 4203, Tambon Ao Nang, Amphoe Mueang Krabi, Chang Wat Krabi 81000, Thailand

Hello friends!!!

My 1st and 2nd full days in Krabi have flown by!

Yesterday was Cale and Michelle’s last day here. We headed Railay Beach, a nearby beach that took about 15 minutes to get to by long boat.

We ate, played in the water, found our own little private island, read/snoozed on the beach and had fresh fruit smoothies. Before we left we found this super hippie bar to hangout in for a little while.

Our own private beach we swam to

Love everywhere

All the long boats in a pretty little row

Long boat ride

After the beach it was time for Cale and Michelle to head to the airport. When they left I decided to explore Krabi.

My favorite way to get aquianted with a new place is to just choose a direction and start walking. \240No map. No plans. No direction. Just go.

So I did and it was great ☺️

How many people can ya fit in a truck?

Day 2:

I booked a day tour today and we went to three different locations.

1- Emerald Pool & Blue Pool

This was not man made. Such a gorgeous emerald pool and the water was so clear!

Next stop: Blue Pool

After walking through the jungle for about 15-20 minutes we were greeted with this lovely sight...

These pictures have not been doctored or edited in any way. That’s as blue as water gets, my friends. This is a hot natural spring in the forest with water temperatures between 115-125 degrees. It was not safe to swim in either, as the bottom is of a quicksand substance 😳

Water was also super clear

Crystal Pool- another natural pool made of crystal clear water

Next stop: Natural Hot Springs

I didn’t get many pictures here as Inwasntoo busy enjoying this natural hot spring. It was as warm as a hot tub and super relaxing after all the walking I’ve done so far today.

The stream at the bottom of the hot spring was actually cold, so we would sit in the hot spring for a while, then slide down into the cold water afterwards, then repeat.

Next stop: Tiger Cave Temple

There were actually no live tigers at this temple. However, there was a temple on the top of the mountain and the only a to get there was to climb. 1,237 steps. That’s a whole lotta steps and it wasn’t easy.

Let’s do this!

Made it to the top!

Monkeys everywhere

Then I ended the day watching the sunset on the beach.

31
Phra nang Cave Beach

Today was an all day beach day!

I took a long boat over to a beach you can only get to by boat😎

On Phra Nang beach you can find the Phra Nang Princess Cave

The Legend

The cave, on the east side of the Railay Bay is famous for its wonderful stalactites and stalagmites. Since ancient times, Phra Nang (Princess) Cave has been where fishermen, before going out to sea, have made offerings to the symbolic Phallus of Shiva (known as the Siwaleung or Palad Khik in Thai).

The fishermen, who say the cave is the home of a mythical sea princess, believe their offerings will bring them success in their fishing and protect them from danger, but what is more remarkable is that the cave contains a large collection of carved wooden phallic symbols, offerings and other objects believed to help with fertility. My boatman told me that some fishermen do still come here to make offerings to the princess but that the number is shrinking.



Lunch is served! Several long boats equipped with ‘kitchens’ came to the island to cook/sale \240lunch since there wasn’t anywhere else to eat here.

After hanging out in the sun for a while I found a nice spot under a tree did some reading and snoozing. It was quite a long very, relaxing day.

The flowers over here are gorgeous. I’m in flower heaven. His was just on the side of the road.

After beach day I went back to my hostel, had a shower, ate more Pad Thai then met up with my French friend for some live music back at the Boogie Bar.

Every Thai band I’ve heard so far have all played this song.

That’s a wrap!

Much love 💕

Jana

32
26 Thanon Sawatdirak, Tambon Patong, Amphoe Kathu, Chang Wat Phuket 83150, Thailand

This is my 4th night in a row I’ve had the chance to watch the sunset on the beach. I am still in awe at how beautiful and different each one has been.


Well after the sun has set, \240the night sky has taken over, \240and everyone else has cleared from the beach, I still find myself with toes buried, butt sandy and heart happy, \240soaking up as much of this as I can. In these quiet moments I feel at peace and know I’m right where I’m supposed to be; dreaming, thinking, praying and thanking God that I’ve had the chance to go on this incredible journey.


Before I know it, the tide starts rising and the little crabs start coming out, flinging sand and scurrying every which way. I know I’ve over stayed my welcome, for the beach is now theirs...


My heart is so full.

Jana

Hi friends!

Just made it through security and am waiting on my next flight. Next stop: Singapore!

The last couple of days I spent in Phuket, Thailand. Phuket is in the southern part of Thailand and is also the largest island.

My first day here (after a very uncomfortable 3 hour mini van ride) was pretty chill. After checking into my room I went and explored the area.

1st- My hostel was awesome. I use the term ‘hostel’ \240loosely because it is nicer than many of the hotels I’ve stayed in. It was less than a 5 minute walk to the beach

Swimming pool

A boxing ring

They also had a full on gym complete with punching bags.

Full on restaurant and bar

After checking out the new digs I headed to the beach to scope everything out. I stayed in the Patong Beach area, which is flooded with tourists and didn’t have a ton of culture that came with it.

But it sure was pretty.

After some time on the beach I went on a search for food. I really \240wanted some curry and found it at a place called Thai Taco. Weird I know, but they did make a mean curry.

After dinner I went and checked out the nightlife. But first- this was one of the elevators in my hostel and it cracked me up.

The popular place to go at night is to the Bangla Walking Street. When I tell you it was insane, I mean a whole different kind of crazy. It put Khao San Rd. in Bangkok to shame. \240It was cool to experience, but definitely not my scene.

I can’t believe I’m actually saying this, but I’m tired of the beach. I know I’m very fortunate to be here and I’m sure some of you back home in the cold weather are rolling your eyes at me 😚but I’m just over the beach right now.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the beach just as much as the next person, but I’m looking for more of a cultural experience. Take me to a Cancun all inclusive any other time of the year, but for right now I’d rather learn something new and experience something different.

So on my last day in Phuket, I did just that. I booked a day tour and set out see, learn, experience.

While waiting on my ride I grabbed some street food for breakfast!

Karon View Point

Big Buddah

This buddah is 45 meters tall. He is made of concrete and then covered in marble.

Interesting sign for those who need a liver or gallbladder cleanse

Not a bad view up here.

Thousands of hearts decorate the trees, railings and pretty much all surfaces on the top of the mountain. These are wishes or good luck hearts that people can buy and write whatever they want, then hang them up.

I really liked this one

Of course I had to do some of my own

:)

❤️

Next stop: Chalong Temple

Then we went and checked out Old Phuket Town.

I loved walking through these colorful little streets!

We also stopped at a cashew factory and a honey farm before calling it a day .

The yellow part is what a ripe, ready to be picked cashew looks like (before being cracked open)

I finished my day with a sunset on the beach

And dinner!

Seafood night!

Oysters!

Also-when you want fresh seafood here, many of the restaurants have their live seafood in coolers and you can go pick out what you want .

33
60 Bukit Timah Rd, Singapore 229900

I just finished eating dinner and it hit me- I’m in freaking Singapore!

Some days it just doesn’t quite sink in that I’m halfway across the world doing my thing.

Today has been one of those days where I need someone to pinch me just to remind me I’m not dreaming. I’m living the dream 🤓🤪

My last two days in Singapore have been AMAZING! I’ll fill you in later tonight or in the AM.

So much love!

Jana

34
The Esplanade

Singapore!

Wow, what a place!

The last couple of days have flown by, and each day was packed to the max with siteseeing, food and fun.

Day 1: I explored Little India, the area of the city I am staying in.

The streets are lined with colorful buildings

I stumbled upon a Tibetan Temple

After checking things out on my own, I went on a scooter tour with a group from the Inn I was staying at.

The group before we all got super hot and sweaty!

This was such a fun tour, definitely one of the highlights of my trip. We covered about 9 miles on those bad boys zipping all throughout the streets of Singapore. I never realized how fun, convenient, and fast those puppies are.

I felt like such a rebel. We rode through the streets, through the mall, sidewalks, subway stations, etc.

For those of you who don’t know, Singapore is an extremely strict country and there are fines and/or jail time for many things.

Examples:

-Riding scooters on the street is supposedly illegal, but our tour guide told us it was okay....punishment= $500 fine and/or 6 months in jail.

-Chewing gum is illegal

-Jaywalking is illegal. You can only cross the street at the crosswalks. Fine or jail time for breaking this

-No eating/drinking on public transportation

-No Durian on public transport, hotels, etc

-Spitting is illegal- $5000 and/ jail time

-picking flowers is illegal

This was on my immigration card- Drugs are also illegal in Singapore and use, trafficking or even having drugs on you is punishable by death.

So back to scootin’

- I wasn’t able to take pictures through much of the tour because 1) we were booking it and 2) I was so caught up in the moment and didn’t want to miss anything

We did make a few stops along the way that I was able to get some pictures.

We stopped and had dinner on at a market on the Riverwalk.

Still going strong!

Then we rode to the first of two light shows

This light show was incredible. They used fountains and lots of misting water to create this! It went on for 20 minutes. It was unreal! I’ve never seen anything like it!

The second light show was at the Super Tree Grove. They were both very different but both awesome.

We put down a blanket to sprawl out on. It was quite lovely! This was the view from lying down.

We made a couple of stops at some of the Singapore icons

We stopped and got ice cream and took a break/cooldown (it’s in the 90s here) and this was the view I got to enjoy while eating my corn icecream- it’s really a thing here!

We stopped in this cute little neighborhood near the Mosque for another break and drinks.

It was such a pretty can that I had to get it!

The crew at the end of the tour, all hot and sweaty!

35
Gardens by the Bay

Singapore day 2:

Today was just as busy as yesterday. I got up early, had breakfast and decided to hit the streets early so I could be sure to fit everything in.

For today’s activities I decided to use the subway. Once I got the hang of the ticketing/different rail lines it was a breeze and the stations and subway were super nice!

1st stop was the Botanical Gardens! This was the coolest biggest, nicest one I’ve been to and all the flowers weren’t even blooming yet. I spent almost 3 hours here and could have easily spent a couple more but there were other places I wanted to see.

I love flowers, plants, and nature so naturally I took a bagillion pictures at the gardens, but I’ll only show you a few.

I even walked through a rainforest!

They this super cool/beautiful healing garden, which had over 400 plants with medicinal uses. Each plant had a description of uses and where they were from.

Amber & Thuy Anh- this is right up your alley!!

Next- I hopped on the subway and headed to Chinatown 🇨🇳

Check out these buildings!

Ministry of Magic in disguise???

So cool

New Years decor still up!

#nailedtherainforecast

This is Laska, a dish Singapore and Penang is known for. Though it looks pretty terrible, it was quite tasty.

I go this at one of the many food stalls.

After lunch I walked to Fort Canning Park

History Buffs click here for history/significance: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fort_Canning_Hill

The park was built on Ft. Canning Hill, which is the highest point in Singapore.

❤️

I decided to walk to my next destination since it wasn’t too far away. Plus I was able to go through the city art walk and I got to see St. Joseph Church.

These are all self-portraits. There were thousands of them.

The Singapore Pledge.

St. Joseph

- clouds are starting to roll in

And you walk a mile in the other direction and you’re back to blue skies!

I’m back to where I was last night. Since we didnt have much time to look around and I wanted to see everything in the daylight I went back to the promenade.

The other side of the river.

The durian shaped building is the Esplande, which is their performing arts center. (I rode my scooter through that last night 😛)

Merlion

The Garden by the Bay

Back to the Super Tree Groves

Close-up of the trees and all the beautiful plants and flowers growing out of them.

I would definitely try to hug one

It started thundering & lightening and it was getting late so I decided to head to the subway and may back towards ‘home’.

So the subway station is attached to a SUPER nice mall,that happens to have this 😳

And this

Home was a 20 minutes away but Subway. When I got off the subway, it was pouring rain.

So what did I do?

🌧 ⚡️🌧😆🌧⚡️🌧

I ran through the streets of Singapore in the pouring rain.

Getting soaked did not bother me one bit.

I had a perfectly good poncho, but chose not to use it.

I’m a firm believer that running, dancing, playing, laughing, etc. in the rain is good for your soul. Sometimes you just enjoy a good thunderstorm. Even in another country

After getting dried off and drinking some nice hot 3-in-1 I headed out for some dinner. I was craving some Indian food, lucky for me I was staying in Little India!

The rain stopped for the evening so I set out in search of food.

Indian food stall time!

It’s basically like a mall food court, but instead of a mall there is a market attached.

I finished dinner at about 8:30 but still had so much energy I decided to check out a few other areas of Singapore before calling it a night.

Just a little reminder

Bali Lane

On one side of Bugis street was a super fancy mall. On the other side was a crazy, loud, energetic market full of clothes, sovereigns & food.

And that’s a wrap for today. It was super eventful and I was on the go from 8am- 10:30ish pm. Even though I hopped on the subway several times I still got in 40,000 steps. That’s 17 miles of walking today!

36
George Town

I decided to make a little change to my itinerary. After speaking to other travelers and telling them about my love for Hoi Anh, Vietnam, they recommended I go to Penang, Malaysia. So I got online and booked a flight there :)

I aready has a flight booked to Kuala Lumpur, but decided, the heck with it. When in Asia!

Not only that, my sweet friend and coworker, Lindsay grew up in Penang so I was super excited to be able to tell her I’d be visiting her home 😁!

Before I dive into how lovey Penang is, y’all have to check out the Singapore Airport. It was insanely nice!

It was like a really nice shopping mall that just happened to have planes coming and going.

A nice pond

An entertainment deck complete with

Gaming rooms

The one on the left is a motion sensored game

A free movie theater

PS3 and Xbox gaming stations

And a sunflower garden

Of course I decided to spend some time here

And then I went and got a Kopi coffee (Singapore coffee) and waited for my flight to Penang!

Now to Penang!

Warning: I took and incredible amount of photos here. I stayed in the George Town, the multicultural capital of the Malaysian island of Penang. The city is known for its British colonial buildings, Chinese shophouses and mosques. It was so full of character, charming, colorful, artsy, lovely, etc. Everywhere you look is some kind of street art or mural. It’s like I can’t blink because if I do, I’m surely going to miss something.

I’ll devote a post later to just the street art.

Day 1:

Ok!

Who doesn’t like streets lined with lanterns?

Such vibrant buildings

Yep- that’s a pig’s snout 🐽 and other parts

Lunch! Rojak and soy milk-because who doesn’t want milk when they’re hot sweaty on a 90+ degree day

I’m a huge fan of lanterns, if you couldn’t already tell!

I went to one of the parks by the water for the evening. They had a little market set up, food and live music. I just found a spot on the grass and listened for a while.

Nasi Lemak for dinner (plus a coconut milkshake, which is now one of my favorite things BUT it has to be made with fresh coconut)

I traveled around with a guy from Malaysia and he gave me a list of all the foods that I should eat while here. My goal is to try everthing on his list. This is one of his favorites.

After dinner I hung around for a little while later before heading home.

I know it’s blurry, but I had to try one of the local beers while planning my day for tomorrow!

37
Kuala Lumpur

I made it to KL. I took a 5 hour bus ride from Penang to Kuala Lumpur. I got super lucky because the bus is was on was so nice, had a working AC, which isn’t the norm, \240and the seats almost fully reclined into a bed! The icing on the cake was that I got to the bus station early (of course) so they let me hop on an earlier bus. Oh, the little things.

Now the cherry on the icing on the cake was that there was this little Chinese boy on the bus singing a mash-up of Let it Go and Despicacito! Such a great morning 😄.

The bus dropped us off at KL Sentral, which is this HUGE station that included 4 different rail systems, city and long distance buses and even a small airport. Luckily I’ve become a whiz at public transportation systems 🙃 and was able to find the right line that left me only a block away from my new home!

After getting checked in I set out check out my new area. Shortly after my headed out it started to rain. There was a mall across the street from where I was so I ducked in there for shelter until it died down a bit.

When the rain let up I went in search of food since it was well past 2:30pm and I had only had a muffin for breakfast (weird, right- no noddles other interesting breakfast choices)

I found Roti Canai! Lindsay and my Malay friend both said I had to try it. And it was delcious. Roti, roti, roti- so, so delcious!

Just dip the roti in all those Indian gravies and you are in roti heaven.

I also had to get one that had banana in it :)

After lunch I headed to Pedaling Street, which was this massive street market. I did a bit of shoppin, looking around and some people watching.

My plan was to walk to another area of town and do some siteseeing, but it was getting dark and I didn’t feel comfortable walking the streets of KL alone at night. This was the first time in all of my traveling that a place made me feel uncomfortable being a female traveling alone. I had already had several men come up to me asking to be my friend, or to show me around the city. While I am adventurous and usually up for trying anything, I am not stupid and I’d like to think I have pretty good street smarts. That was my cue to call it an evening. I grabbed a cider and some mango and read on the rooftop patio of my Inn.

Tomorrow Round 2: Jana VS Kuala Lumpur

38
Penang Hill

Today started like any other day.

Breakfast = Wanton Mee (another recommendation) & Penang white coffee

Followed by a trip to the wet market.

Waited in line patiently for my turn for a chunk of that meat

I watched some chickens being carefully selected, then slaughtered. The the feather plucking was a special feature before the butchering

I’ll spare you the graphic details. You’re welcome.

Then I headed to the bus station to catch a ride

I checked out a couple of the Jettys

These are real people houses built on stilts

Then I took a stroll because I was in need of a refreshing beverage. I \240passed this little reminder on the way.

And I found my happy place.

From the name, to the decor and even the music, it was calling me in.

Raspberry & Mint? Yes, please!

After my cool down time I continued checking out some local areas

I wish I could tell you what Poe Choo Seah is, but I can’t. I just thought it was pretty.

Time sure is flying by and it’s my normal 2:30pm feeding time. I was making a purchase in a shop in Little India and the shop owner recommended this place. He also said I should eat it like Indians eat it: sans utensils.

So I did! I’m proud to say no fork, knife or spoon were used to consume this meal (or plate 😂)!

I also had an iced Milo just for Lindsay!

Heading back home to grab some supplies before next part of my day. This was right outside the guesthouse i was staying in.

Cutie! I’m home!

Ready for my next adventure! Headed out to another bus stop. Just look at these wonderful streets!

😆

Amie and Joan!

Got my ticket! Headed to Penang Hill!

I then took a train up a mountain and was greeted with view!

Saw some love locks

Dinner- because I’m adulting :)

This is called Ice Kacang. It’s like shaved ice, mixed with fruit, topped with a scoop of icecream, beans, corn, jellies and peanuts. It sounds like it shouldn’t work, but it does!

Such a creepy, creepy clown.

I’ll give that a minute to sink in

Final destination: Kok Lok Temple.

I’ve been told this was a must see because it truly is one of the prettiest temples I’ve ever seen. What really puts the icing on the cake was they still have it decorated for Chinese New Year! They have these lights up for only a couple more days!

I had originally planned to come here in the morning to beat the crowd and the heat, but then I read that the lights were still up so I knew I had to come as the sun was setting!

Here it was as the sun \240was setting and the lights were starting to come on.

The ceiling was amazing!

If you know me, you know I’m like a kid in a candy store. I loooove all the lights & lanterns

So many lanterns!

From the bottom of the hill 😍

And that’s it.

I’m tired.

Good night!

39
Batu Caves

Today I got up early to get my siteseeing on!

Jumped on the subway, then on a bus, then on another subway and made it to my final destination if the Batu Caves. The Batu Cave is a limestonehill that has a series of caves and cave temples in Gombak, Selangor, Malaysia. It takes its name from the Sungai Batu (Stone River), which flows past the hill. It is the tenth (Pattu in Tamil) limestone hill from Ampang. Batu Caves is also the name of a nearby village. (Wikepidia- see more about it here, if you so desire to learn more 😁https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Batu_Caves)

This makes me think of Clark Kent.

It was actually pretty cool inside because each little area illustrated a Hindu story.

Once I climbed the hill, walked to the center of the cave, then looked up, this was the view.

Y’all, there were so many monkeys here!

They’re so cute, but they’ll snatch your things if you’re not paying attention.

Mean Muggin’ me

After the caves I grabbed a water and jumped back on the subway.

For my next destination I had to switch subway lines. When I got on the new subway I was staring out the windows looking at all the passing buildings, and as we were going under an underpass you can see the reflections of the people around you. Wouldn’t you know it that as I was looking at the reflections, I saw someone I knew in the next subway car! It was my friend Jannik who I met and hung out with in Singapore!

He was with his Malay friend, Eric who he met in a few weeks ago traveling in Jakarta. Since Eric is from KL he offered to show Jannik around. We happened to be heading to the same place so we joined forces to do some siteseeing.

We want to the KLCC (Kuala Lumpur City Centre) and the nearby park. The KLCC is a super fancy area know for it’s upscale malls, hotels and skyscrapers. In the middle of all that is a lovely park where you have a great view of the Petronas Twin Towers, which are basically the symbol of Kuala Lumpur.

We started with the inside of the towers and Posh mall before we went out to the park and to see the views.

Petronas Towers

Park in the middle of the city.

One of the malls had a really good book store, and I’m a sucker for a good book store, so we made a stop there.

Next, Eric took us out to the ‘burbs so we so we could see ‘typical’ Malay houses and neighborhoods. He also took us out to a lunch place where robots delivered your food!

And she spoke Cantonese. Luckily Eric understood her!