British Airways, Travel Review

I’ve seen a lot of bad press out there recently from passengers travelling on British Airways and wanted to throw my own opinion out there having recently travelled with them on my way to Hong Kong from London.

If I’m honest I’ve never been loyal to any particular airline, I do favour Malaysian airways as you may know from my review here. But I hands up will use whoever is the cheapest and has the times best suited to my needs of the trip.

My favourite thing about long haul travel is sticking my headphones in as soon as able and continually watching movies until my plane lands the other side….

Unfortunately for me I found the choices lacking anything new on the aircraft which wasn’t a huge problem as they had a favourites list of choices with Dirty Dancing and Disney so I could, I suppose I should also thank them as it meant I did actually try for a little shut eye!

Think the food choice was good, and on my 21:00 arrival 15:00 we were feed twice with one snack between. The most unusual part was one meal was a breakfast dish just before we landed, but local time was 15:00 meaning it should have been a ‘lunch’ dish personally.

Found the crew to be attentive and were happy to help, being stuck in the window seat they’d continually bring over water and juice for me to stop having to try and get out each time. They also were very patient when I got my foot hammock stuck (which I’ll review later!) and helped me get it out intact, even advising the worst case of getting the engineer out to take the seat apart… luckily for everyone it didn’t come to this!

Take off was a little late, but the pilots made up the time in the air meaning we still arrived as expected.

All in all although I did enjoy my flight unless they were the best priced or connection I wouldn’t choose BA over any other airline but I wouldn’t hesitate if they were!

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My Top Dinning Spots In Pantai Cenang, Langkawi 

If you're anything like me food is a massive part of the day, I've been known to be planning my lunch and dinner while eating breakfast!

Finding places to eat and recommend is my favourite part of a trip and often is the first thing I start to research once I've booked flights, So here you have it, My recommendations for your trip to Langkawi.

 

The Kasbah - Lorong HJ Salleh Lot 1301, Kampung Bohor Tempoyak 

Located off the beach front and hidden within the houses of Pantai Cenang this awesome reggae shack is a great hideaway from the midday's sun. With a selected menu full of summer cravings, unusual salads and burgers with fresh juices, smoothies & milkshakes it is the kinda place you should take a pack of cards and spend the afternoon.

Prices are really decent with my meal coming to 30RM (Burger with chips and milkshake)

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Indian Palace -  2, Jalan Pantai Chenang, Kampung Lubok Buaya

Down on the main stretch this upstairs no frills Indian is a great showcase of the multitude of cuisines on offer in Malaysia. The menu has a wide range of choice with lots of curries I'd not heard of before, best kind of menu!

With reasonable prices we were able to order a medley of dishes to try out with an average meal price of 40RM (1 Curry, rice and nan)

 

Red Skys - No. 6, Casa Fina Avenue, Persiaran Panthai Cenang

Wanting different dining tonight we needed somewhere that had a mixture of choices, Western & Malay and redskys fitted the bill.

Hidden from the street by metal cladding, plants and twinkly lights it certainly met the Instagram requirements… With the western menu it did mean prices were slightly higher than we'd been used to but our dinner choices did not disappoint.

With freshly cooked pizzas and Nasi Gorang (My favourite Malay dish if I must chose) value for money was fair with my meal coming to approx 30RM

 

Kalut Cafe & Bar - Mali Mali Beach Resort, Cenang Beach

Located on the beach this place is hard to miss. With rent-able loungers during the day you can get a bed and a parasol for less than 20RM for 2. Although they have no food/drink service during the day once they switch up for the evening set up you'll be first in line for the bean bags and silk umbrellas they bring out.

With a prime spot for the sunset you can settle in with a few beers and a early dinner with the summer vibes year round!

 

Other places we dinned and enjoyed are Red Tomato, The Telaga Walk & Indian Palace be sure to check these out too! Has anyone been to Langkawi before? Any other places I've missed out?

 

India Clothing Guide For Women

After spending the last couple of weeks in India I wanted to help those overwhelmed with their upcoming trip as I had been only just before.

After hearing numerous stories and seeing a large misconception from my own experiences,  I’d heard about women travelling alone and feeling uncomfortable in public and I can hand on heart advise this was not the case for me and I saw what I would only describe as beachwear being worn in the larger cities of New Delhi and Jaipur!

Now first things first, You are going to be looked at. It’s normal, we all love to people watch and the locals are no different. Depending on where you are visiting they may have never seen a red head/blonde *insert something about your self here* before and you must just learn to take it in your stride.

Yes you must dress modestly. However this is all relative to each!

Maxi skirts will become your best friend if they aren’t already, You’ll be thankful when it comes to using the roadside/attraction public squat toilets. I didn’t find this attracted anymore attention than usual either.

Keeping to the culture keeping your shoulders and knees covered is the best way to show respect and be comfortable. Cotton and light coloured clothing in those hot summer months are also best advised!

For me I had plenty of tshirts and blouses which kept my chest covered and shoulders off display and topped up my stash with a quick visit to primark.

Has anyone else been before? How did you feel and what did you wear?

Monkey Forest, Ubud Bali

Located on its name sake’s road, Nestled in the town of Ubud The Sacred Monkey Forest sanctuary is a popular tourist attraction in the inland resort.

The sanctuary was built to conserve the area which is based on the concept of Tri Hita Karana which translates to ‘three ways to reach spiritual & physical well being.’

There are 3 temples that date back to the 14th century that unfortunaely to help preservation you are no longer able to enter. Although you are able to admire there beauty from a distance.

The monkeys that live within the area are Macques or as they are locally known as ‘long tailed Balinese monkeys. There are around 600 to spot while you are there that live within 5 groups. It is quite interesting to watch the different groups as they interact, you certainly can tell when they are within their own groups and when an outsider approaches.

For a small entry fee of 20,000 (£1.50) you are able to freely wander within the grounds of the sanctuary. With some of the most beautiful art and sculptures in the area we took hours to walk around and capture all the photos I wanted.

Here are some of my favourite snaps from my visit to the monkey forest.

 

 

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La Plancha, Seminyak. Bali

I had to share the not so secret La Plancha with all my followers!

For our last night in Bali we wanted to treat ourselves (meaning pay on credit card and worry later) We’d read all about Potato Head and as much as I wanted to go I didn’t think visiting one of the most popular bars on the island was high on my list of places to visit, I wanted to try somewhere without the snobbery and the hype, Low and behold we found La Plancha.

Located on the beach between Jl. Dhyanapura & 66 road it is nestled between a few other bars offering similar set ups, However I had already been to a bar owed by the same people and knew if it was even slightly similar I would enjoy it.

We had pre booked a table on facebook a few days beforehand and were advised there is a 250,000 IDR minimum spend to do so (approx. £15 at the time of my travels) Which we were happy to do. The menu is not extravagant and is mostly bar food but the portions are good and overall the prices are not as expensive as the Potato Head.

My favourite part of the evening watching the sunset in the distance, Listening to a playlist I couldn’t of put together better myself enjoying some of the best cocktails of my whole trip!

 

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DisneyLand, Hong Kong

On my first visit to Australia we flew with Cathay Pacific whom’s home base is in Hong Kong, Being a savy saver I had researched online that with a British passport we were able to leave the airport should we have a long transit*. Booking our flights to arrive at 6am and then not to depart earlier than 10pm it gave us the right amount of time for a visit to the city.

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Already knowing about the Disneyland in Hong Kong it was my mission to convenience my mum and sister this was how we should spend our day! Luckily for me the Disneyland resort and Hong Kong airport are located on the same island of Lantau it means it would only take 25 minutes to arrive. On the morning we arrived we caught a taxi from the airport to the park, Which had I of done more research on we could of travelled by MTR (train) directly from the airport on the Disneyland Resort Line at Sunny Bay Station which travels from early morning until late night for a fraction of the price! Timetables of the train can be found here online

We arrived at the park way before entry was admitted into the park, With little other choice we decided to use the free transportation to the Disneyland Hotel where we booked onto a breakfast with the characters. I hadn’t done that even as a child (even though I visited Disney Orlando more than 7 times while under 16) because the price is always expensive, However we decided to spoil ourselves and £30 spent later we had access to the Enchanted Garden Restaurants all you can eat buffet and I finally got to try the Mickey shaped pancakes and waffles I have lusted over… And Mickey even came over while I was eating to point them out!

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Now finally getting onto the park! This is possibly one of the smaller of the Disney parks, and was more along the lines of Disneyland Paris before they opened the Walt Disney Studios Park. However I had read online they offer a transit ticket, which as long as you have your boarding pass as evidence of you departing within 72 hours they would take 40% off the day price for you reducing the price from 539HKD (£47) to 250HKD (£25) and as I mentioned before we were only in the country for 16 hours we received this discount which I felt made the park much better value!

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Personally I feel like the smaller the park is the more it reminds me of being a child again! I mean it’s not often in my adult life I am as excited about riding the carousel than when I’m at Disney! There are still a few big rides, Like the Runaway Mine Train, Space Mountain and the RC Racer, but ultimately this park is filled with the classics, “It’s a small world”, Dumbo the flying elephant and Mad Hatters tea cups.

 

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What the park might lack in big thrills the park is filled to the brim with interactive attractions and shows, Which were great to get away from the humidity in Hong Kong… And apparently a snooze for all, As most shows we went into watch people were taking advantage of a quick 40 winks before heading back out in the parks! With a Lion King and Beauty and the Beast show happening while I was there we had sneak peeks into the Broadway style shows.There is also heaps of opportunity to meet your favourite characters with loads of appearances throughout the day in the different lands of the park.

Plan your trip using Disneyland’s fantastic online interactive website here.

* This should always be double checked with your airline / travel agent before arranging any land based activities, and can depend on your nationally to ensure no visa is required!

Phuket, My first experience of Thailand

When I started doing research on Thailand I knew it was a place I could fall in love with, All those pictures of the white sanded beaches, Islands famous for their location thanks to a few box office hits, the beautiful history and culture… I knew I needed to see it for myself. Thailand for me was stepping out of my comfort zone, after years of holidaying in the US and Spanish islands I didn’t know what to expect and was a little nervous/excited of the unknown.

Choosing a resort was my hardest part but I eventually chose Kata Beach, A small resort, There was enough on our doorstep we didn’t have to go far for dinner each evening and with access to two beaches Kata & Kata Noi it was ideal for us. Karon beach further north is a little more built up than Kata with a wide choice of restaurants, bars and shops, and plays host to the night markets a short walk from the centre of town. The final beach resort was Patong beach, I already knew I didn’t want to stay here as this is where you find the main drag of bars and nightclubs… Which I did want to visit but I’d heard the beach wasn’t as nice and now as I’m a little older I don’t mind travelling out to the bars when I want them rather than them being on my doorstep.

Never having been before I went with what I knew from work and decided to book a trip to Phuket, and I can honestly say it met my expectations massively. Upon arrival we were greeted by the beautiful smiles of the locals all wanting to say hello and help us get to our hotel. I love to get out and explore where ever I am, and have a rule with my sun worshipper friends for everyday of sunbathing we have to have a full day trip out and we can’t spend a full day on any one beach to try to get to explore a little more… Some of my friends are more concerned about the tan they are returning home with and not memories of seeing other parts of the world. That said though I got to see as much as I could of the Island while I was there and I’ll share my recommendations of what to see and do while in Phuket…

Phi Phi Islands…

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Personally I think anyone visiting Phuket should make the trip out to Ko Phi Phi Le, the famous setting of the movie adaptation of Alex Garlands ‘The Beach.’ Maya Bay is a stunningly beautiful bay sheltered by towering cliffs on three sides making the bay perfect conditions for swimming and snorkelling. There is a downside to its beauty as its so well-known many boats are needed to bring the visitors in, meaning there can up be up to 30 speedboats moored at the beach at one time. Don’t let this put you off though as the lucky souls staying in Phi Phi Don can rent a longtail for approx 1,000 Baht for a few hours and visit after the tour hours, and enjoy a less crowed beach.

Ko Phi Phi Don is the larger of the two islands and the only island permitted for overnight stays, They have a huge varied choice of hotel and hostel accommodation for those wanting to stay somewhere a little different from the westernised Phuket.

A hike to big Buddha, Kata Beach…

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The huge statue sits on the top of Nakkerd Hills between Chalong and Kata and offers 360o views of the island and on a clear day you’ll be able to see out past Phuket town. Easily accessible by tuk tuk, taxi, or bike there is the option to hike to the top. The road up to the statue is approx 6 km long and can be very steep in parts. I met a friend who had walked and it took her about an hour, and caught a taxi back. Entry is free but there are donation boxes everywhere should you wish to donate something to the project. (Ladies please remember to take something to cover your shoulders and knees when visiting as a sign of respect.)

Go and see a ping pong/ Lady Boy show…

I know this might not be everyone’s choice of evening entertainment, But after hearing about them for so many years I knew it was something I wanted to see for myself. When in Patong they’ll be tons of men approaching you male or female inviting you to a show with free entry… And one night we took one up on the offer! After having a few drinks and discussing how it comes about one day you realise you can do these ‘tricks’ we accepted the free entry. It was pretty interesting to watch in fairness and some of the things they can do is in the strangest sense incredible?

Have a Thai massage….

Where else in the world are you going to be able to have an authentic Thai massage with a Thai masseuse? There are heaps of spas and salons in the resorts to choose from each offering different deals. There was a spa across the road from our hotel in Kata who we visited every other night for a massage and would always get talked into having a madi/pedi done and at the prices they offered you couldn’t refuse. It was pretty strange not knowing what to expect and when she started to stand on me and start pulling my limbs into these weird positions, I did panic a little! It’s definitely not for the easily bruised or those wanting something a little more relaxing… Better to stick to the aromatherapy  😉

Sea canoeing in Phang nga Bay…

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I chose this trip as I’d never canoed before, and I’d read about Tum Talu where we would visit for sea caving into the hidden lagoons. On our day trip we sailed to ‘James Bond Island’ to see the famous free-standing rock formation famous from the movie ‘Man with the golden gun’  and for pictures, before being taken to Koh Panyee a nearby Muslim fishing village remarkably build out over the water on stilts. Here we ate lunch and were given the opportunity to have a wander through the village, and make any purchases from the stalls set up for our arrival. Then we arrived in Tum Talu where we met our very own paddler, who was taking us out for our canoeing… Not what I was expecting but he was a great guide and really knowledgeable of the area and we had a great time caving,squeezing under tiny gaps into beautiful open lagoons hidden behind the cliff fronts… Was an amazing end to our great day.

Spend a day in Old Phuket town…

We chose to get a bus into the town one morning after bad weather put us off a day out at sea, we caught a local bus from Kata which travelled up the north coast before heading east to Phuket town. We weren’t sure what we wanted to see but fancied a wander around the town and wanted to try some of the street food a group of friends we’d made told us about. We ended hiring a taxi for a day who drove us to some of the famous temples within driving distance of the old town and took us to the markets where we went shopping for a few hours buying fake merchandise and souvenirs.

A night out in Patong…

Bangla road might be a name you’ve heard before in relation to Phuket and here is where you will find the bustling night-life Phuket has to offer the clubbers of the world. I didn’t know to expect our first night out and in the tuk tuk was feeling a little nervous, any unease I felt dispersed when we pulled onto Bangla road, it was in a million ways the same as any other resort and entirely different at the same time! There is over 100 bars, pubs and clubs to choose from and its entertaining in itself just walking the stretch of road looking into each of the bars! My favourite place turned out to be the tiger complex featuring a bar downstairs with a more laid back feel then once a few drinks had been drunk heading upstairs to the nightclub for dancing until the early hours of the morning!