Folks, I just wanted to say a big thank you for looking at my blog.

I have not been able to update my blog as much as I wanted but my battle with cancer was taking a big toll on me.

Thank God, I have been told by my oncologist that I am making a big progress!

There's even a talk of a resection of my liver for a full recovery!!
Yay!!! No, but seriously, the numbers (CEA= Carcinoembryonic Antigens) levels are way down. Just to give you an idea, last November they were at 1300 last two weeks ago they were down to just 98!!! Is that good news of what!!

So once I am (hopefully) fully cured than I shall put more time to update and to rejuvenate my blog.

Again, thank you so much to all of you wonderful people who are taking a look or following my blog.
God bless you all.

Regards and happy travelling.

Hayri (Harry) Yuruten

We can check your plugins and stuff

The world's best cities for food lovers

Tokyo, Japan
This isn't number one by random chance, it's number one. Head and shoulders. The Japanese capital now has more three-Michelin-starred restaurants than any city in the world, but it's the amazing casual dining that should have you salivating. From ramen noodles to tempura to soba to sushi to the small plates of awesomeness dished out by any dodgy neighbourhood izakaya every day of the week, Tokyo rules.


Beijing, China
You can wow your friends by eating sheep testicles on a stick at Wangfujing Snack Street if you want, but the truly great Chinese dining is elsewhere. Peking duck is a favourite, obviously, but if you're all about the dumpling then you won't be disappointed. Even shopping mall food courts turn out great fare.


New York, USA
New York food is good – Gray's Papaya hotdogs, L&B pizzas, any bagel – but it's the variety of world cuisines that puts the city onto any foodie list. You can have a Mexican-style breakfast, a Korean lunch and a French dinner and it will have been three of the best meals of your life. And you haven't even scratched the surface.


Buenos Aires, Argentina
Angels chorus when you touch down in BA; foodie gods beam their lights upon you. Or something like that. Anyway, the pastries are awesome. Alfajores (a sort of caramel sandwich) should be illegal, they're that sugary and good. Streetside choripan rocks my world, while the pizzas and pastas show a handy legacy of Italian immigration. And apparently Portenos do a reasonable steak.


Singapore

This is one of the cities like New York that does have its own cuisine, but it's the imported stuff that you really come for. Hawker food in Singapore spanks the pants off any restaurant in most Western countries, as vendors lovingly pump out the one dish they've become famous for over decades. Chinese, Indian, Malay, Indonesian... It's all here, and it's all good.


Hanoi, Vietnam
By now, you know Vietnamese food. You've slurped pho, you've fumbled about with rice-paper rolls, you might have even tried banh mi, the Vietnamese baguettes. But it's not until you've done it sitting on a tiny plastic seat on a Hanoi pavement, surrounded by scooters and bustling foot traffic, washing it down with a local bia hoi, that Vietnamese food really makes sense.


Mexico City, Mexico
Mexican food gets a bad rap, but I assume that's from people who haven't been there. Try tacos al pastor – shredded pork with chunks of pineapple and other goodness wrapped in a fresh tortilla – from any old street vendor and tell me this isn't a great place to eat. And make sure you try chilaquiles: shredded chicken with tortillas, queso fresco and a spicy salsa. Breakfast of champions.


Mysore, India
Mysore's already famous, but that's because of the whopping great palace in the middle of it, not for what's on the plate. But it should be the food that people rave about. Mysore is home to the best of South Indian cuisine, and that's saying something. I had the sort of thali there that can change your life, followed up with a great coffee and an artery-clogging galub jamun. Take me back there, now.


Bologna, Italy
The city is nicknamed "La Grassa", meaning "The Fat One", which is exactly what you'll be after a few days in Bologna. It's the home of tagliatelle Bolognese, sure, but there's so much more going for it. Just have aperitivo, the free snacks most bars serve with happy-hour drinks – it always changes, but my last one had hunks of fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano, lumps of mortadella, slices of bruschetta, marinated olives and a pizza. And that's before dinner.


San Sebastian, Spain
A night of bar-hopping in the Old Town, feasting on pintxos – the Basque-style tapas – and drinking local wine is just about the best experience you can have. Anywhere.




Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
Stansted Airport Stansted Mountfitchet, Essex Stansted Airport is another low-cost airline hub. The biggest issue people have with the airport isn't the facilities, although they are pretty dire... It's the immigration process. Regardless of how many flights arrive at once, they still have the minimum number of people on the counters. It's not uncommon to wait 1.5-2 hours just to be seen. Once you’re through, it's colder than a freezer and there's nothing to keep you entertained.

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
Orio al Serio Airport Bergamo, Italy Orio al Serio Airport, located 45km from Milan, is a shocking place to get stranded. Mainly used for low-cost carriers, the airport is noisy, crowded, and seriously ill-equipped. Some have reported the security staff like to play a game with the overnight guests. Once you've fallen asleep in one part of the terminal, they will wake you up and move you to another, only to wake you up and move you elsewhere after you've finally nodded off. Not fun.

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
Miami International Airport Miami, Florida The jury is out on this one. Some claim it's a model airport that sets the standard for rival airports to follow, while others label the airport's customs, security, computer systems and check-in waiting times as a complete farce. The layout of the airport is another point of contention, with poor signage and long distances to gates meaning you’re likely to miss your connecting flight if you don't give yourself enough time.

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
Luton Airport Luton, Bedfordshire If you're going to be stuck in Luton Airport, it's best to find a seat and stay with it! Do shifts if you have to. The airport is notoriously bad for seating, with many eventually giving up hope of finding a place to rest their derriere and sitting on the floor instead. The facilities are basic, and the constant PA announcements will drive you nuts.

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
LAX Los Angeles, California Los Angeles International (LAX for short) is the sixth busiest airport in the world, with nearly 59 million people passing through in 2010. As you can imagine, it's a bit chaotic. Seating is limited, so be prepared to prop yourself up against a wall. Queues are long, switching between terminals isn't easy, and many of the staff seem to be in a perpetually bad mood. On the plus side though, it’s usually pretty clean

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at..

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at..
Boryspil International Kiev, Ukraine As the largest airport in Ukraine, you'd think Boryspil International might be an inviting place to welcome its guests. Sadly, that's not the case. The airport is small and crowded, staff at check-in desks are rude and unhelpful, and the temperature is freezing. If you want to sit in the departure lounge, be prepared to wrestle for the limited available seats. New terminals are currently under construction, but until they arrive you’re in for a frustrating wait.

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
Paris Beauvais Tillé, France Your flight has been cancelled, you're miles from Paris, and that row of seats in the corner looks like an attractive place to sleep. Sorry, you're fresh out of luck. Paris Beauvais Airport closes between the hours of 1130pm-630am and you will be kicked out, no excuses. On the bright side, it probably only cost you €1 to fly to this low-cost airport in the first place

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
Nusatupe Airport Gizo, Solomon Islands Gizo is the second largest town in the Solomon Islands. Accessed via canoe ride, Nusatupe landing strip is located on a coral atoll just north-east of the town. The terminal (shed) isn't the most exciting place to be stuck if you miss your flight… so unless you like the idea of sleeping on a picnic table under the stars you’ll have to make the canoe trip back to Gizo.

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
Frankfurt-Hahn Airport Lautzenhausen, Germany Not to be confused with the excellent Frankfurt am Main Airport, Frankfurt-Hahn is dull. There's no sugar coating it. Once you've done a lap or two of the duty free store, you'll be left scratching your head for things to do. With limited seating, dusty floors and a depressing grey-on-grey colour scheme, Frankfurt-Hahn is a basic airport for budget airlines.

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...

Lost in transit! Worst airports to get stranded at...
Ninoy Aquino International Airport Manila, Philippines Passing through Ninoy Aquino International in Manila? Just hope it's via Terminal 3. If you're in the unfortunate situation of going via Terminal 1, be sure to hold onto your belongings. Tales of theft and bribery abound, and the facilities are reportedly looking worse for wear. Thankfully airport officials have recently promised to clean up their act. Still, the lack of decent facilities and poor seating mean you're in for an uncomfortable wait.

JUSTICE PHILIPPINO STYLE!!!

BACK TO THE CHEMO DEN!!!! BECAUSE A MEDICAL ONCOLOGIST SCREWED-UP!!!!

BACK TO THE CHEMO DEN!!!! BECAUSE A MEDICAL ONCOLOGIST SCREWED-UP!!!!
Receiving chemotherapy at Sir Charles Gairdner hospital in Perth - 23 June 2011

FLASH...............FLASH...............FLASH..............FLASH

My cancer has come back and I will be starting Chemotherapy (last one was on the 29th of March 2011) this Thursday 23 June 2011

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Being diagnosed as stable, am enjoying an evening out in the company of a friend.

Being diagnosed as stable, am enjoying an evening out in the company of a friend.
18 June 2011

AT HOME PERTH - 2 June 2011

AT HOME PERTH - 2 June 2011
Busy with computers

CHEMOTHERAPY UNIT AT SIR CHARLES GARDNER HOSPITAL IN PERTH

CHEMOTHERAPY UNIT AT SIR CHARLES GARDNER HOSPITAL IN PERTH
first day of chemotherapy 14DEC2010

PERTH I NNALOO SHOPPING CENTER

PERTH I NNALOO SHOPPING CENTER
having recovered from the surgery having fun shopping 02DEC2010

SOUTH PERTH REHABILITATION HOSPITAL

SOUTH PERTH REHABILITATION HOSPITAL
recovering from colonorectal surgery with my two daughters Suraya (on the left) and Nadia 9NOV2010

OPERATION DAY AT SIR CHARLES GARDNER HOSPITAL

OPERATION DAY AT SIR CHARLES GARDNER HOSPITAL
checking for vital sign and preparation for a the colonorectal surgery 27OCT2010

PERTH SIR CHARLES GARDNER HOSPITAL

PERTH SIR CHARLES GARDNER HOSPITAL
having been diagnosed with colon cancer I am now waiting for a colonoscopy 25Oct2010

AIR ASIA CABIN

AIR ASIA CABIN
on the way from Singapore to KL to catch the flight from KL to Perth 14Sep2010

SINGAPORE TERMINAL 1

SINGAPORE TERMINAL 1
waiting for Air Asia flight to Kuala Lumpur 14Sep2010

MANILA TERMINAL 3

MANILA  TERMINAL 3
waiting for the Cebu Pacific flight to Singapore 14Sep2010

14 Sep. 2010 first leg of my long journey to Autralia Legazpi to Manila

14 Sep. 2010 first leg of my long journey to Autralia Legazpi to Manila
Legazpi airport with Mt Mayon volcano

Happy Couple

Happy Couple
Me and Jo celebrating our third year of togetherness. Manila 22 July 2010

Legazpi city airport with Mt Mayon

Legazpi city airport with Mt Mayon
Off to Manila. 20 July 2010

MT Mayon

MT Mayon
n me! At Lignon Hill Legazpi city. August 17 2010
Link Exchange

THE DONER KEBAB

THE DONER KEBAB
yummmyyyy!

WORLD'S TOP 10 FAMOUS MEALS


1. TAPAS IN BARCELONA, SPAIN

Patatas bravas (potatoes in a spicy tomato sauce), calamares fritos (fried squid), boquerones (anchovies), croquetas de jamon (ham croquettes), chorizo (pork sausage), pimientos asados (roasted peppers), albondigas (meatballs) and berenjenas gratinadas (cheese-baked aubergine) are just some mouth-watering examples of the Spanish snacks known as tapas. The vivacious Catalonian capital of Barcelona excels in the creation of tapas, particularly along La Rambla late in the evening when residents and tourists alike slowly graze their way south from Placa de Catalunya. Leave the cutlery on the table and claim the tapas with a toothpick or your fingers.

2. PASTA IN NAPLES, ITALY

Food historians still debate whether Marco Polo introduced pasta to Italy by importing it from China in the 13th century, or whether the Etruscans had already embraced it long beforehand. But it's generally agreed that by the 18th century Naples had turned the mixing of flour and water into a bona fide industry and was the world's pasta capital. As an encore, Naples also arranged a blind date between pasta and squashed tomatoes, and romance blossomed. So the next time you're wandering the crumbling streets of Naples' historic center, make a beeline for the nearest trattoria and tuck into some pasta napolitana.

3. DONER KEBAB IN ISTANBUL, TURKEY

The traditional doner kebab consists of a plate of grilled mutton on a bed of buttered rice, and many of Turkey's restaurants still serve it this way. Far more prominent nowadays, though, is its fast-food cousin, which takes the form of a pita-bread sandwich containing marinated meat that has been sliced from a rotating spit and bundled together with salad and a yoghurt-based sauce. It's de rigueur in Istanbul to equip yourself with a weighty doner and then wander around Sultanahmet or along the Bosphorus.

4. STEAMED DUMPLINGS IN SHANGHAI, CHINA

Shanghai dumplings have to be tasted to be believed and they are one of the items most fought over during dim-sum feasts. These delicious morsels seem like ordinary dough balls until you discover that they are filled with a hot broth flavored with ground pork, crab meat or vegetables. This little surprise is achieved by filling the dumplings with a hardened gelatin that liquefies when the bun is steamed. To avoid scalding your gums with hot soup, do not crunch the dumpling between your teeth but instead nibble it until the liquid seeps out.

5. FEIJOADA IN RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL

Taste buds stage their own carnival in honor of Brazil's national lunch, feijoada, a dark and spicy stew built upon a foundation of black beans and pork. Be aware that the feijoada prepared for mass consumption in Rio's restaurants usually just contains pared-down pieces of pig flesh, but it may also contain less familiar porcine treats such as ears, tongues and those cute curly tails. Also note that this hearty recipe is a challenge for any stomach to digest, so plan on hitting a couch rather than the waters off Ipanema after eating it.

6. GUMBO IN NEW ORLEANS, USA

Scooping out a steaming pot of gumbo is as central to life in New Orleans as listening to jazz, zydeco or swamp blues, or chomping on those sugary pastries called beignets. This Louisiana favorite is essentially a hearty broth of seafood or smoked meats, thickened with okra or a wheat-and-fat mixture called roux, which is then splashed over a mountain of rice. But New Orleans serves up countless variations of the basic gumbo recipe, from classic Creole style to pungent Cajun.

7. COUSCOUS IN CASABLANCA, MOROCCO

The minute you arrive in Casablanca, make straight for Boulevard de la Corniche down on the waterfront, pick an appealing cafe or restaurant and order a cup of mint tea and a plate of Morocco's staple food, couscous. The couscous grain is made from semolina (ground durum wheat) and is ideally prepared by being repeatedly steamed in a special pot called a couscoussier. It's then topped with a spicy stew containing either vegetables or a mixture of veggies and meat such as chicken, lamb and fish.

8. NASI GORENG IN PENANG, MALAYSIA

Visitors to Malaysia inevitably find themselves ordering the delightfully simple nasi goreng. Literally meaning 'fried rice' and also enjoyed across Indonesia and Singapore, this dish is prepared by stir-frying rice with chicken or seafood, vegetables, eggs and a sweetish soy sauce. Nasi goreng is available practically anywhere in Malaysia that serves food but is best sampled within the wonderfully crowded hawker centers that dot the island of Penang. The diverse Malay, Chinese, Indian and Baba-Nonya cooking styles conspire to give an otherwise humble dish some special flavors.

9. CURRY IN MUMBAI, INDIA

Curries are a pan-Asian phenomenon, being cooked almost everywhere between the Punjab and Japan. But the birthplace of curry is India, and you haven't really tasted one until you've come to Mumbai in the state of Maharashtra and delighted your palate with one of the local concoctions. A Mumbai curry typically contains seafood and coconut blended with a masala (mixture of spices). Standard spices include turmeric, coriander, ginger and red chilli.

10. HOT DOG IN NEW YORK CITY, USA

So what if NYC has one of the greatest varieties of dining options in the world? Everyone knows the only truly meaningful foodie ritual here is to head to a busy inner-city intersection, find a shabby metal cart topped by colorful a umbrella, and order a dog with ketchup, mustard, onions and either sauerkraut, relish or chilli sauce. For a bit more of a challenge, head to Nathan's on Coney Island on 4 July and enter the famous hot-dog-eating contest: the record is 53.5 dogs in 12 minutes.

SAWADEE HOUSE - KOH SAMUI - THAILAND

SAWADEE HOUSE - KOH SAMUI - THAILAND
The best budget hotel in Koh Samui

FLOATING MARKET - THAILAND

FLOATING MARKET - THAILAND
Sellers at the floating market

FLOATING MARKET - THAILAND

FLOATING MARKET - THAILAND
cruising on the floating market

BALI SORGAWI HOTEL - Dec.2009

BALI SORGAWI HOTEL - Dec.2009
Swimming pool

BALI SORGAWI HOTEL - Dec. 2009

BALI SORGAWI HOTEL - Dec. 2009
Reception

TUNE HOTELS



Tune hotels, is a new concept in the hospitality industry, by the Datuk Tony Fernandez, of Air Asia fame. It is pre3tty much modelled from the airline where evertything is extra.

The rooms are small, claustrophobic I might add and comments like " you can't swing a cat in the room" is spot on. The bed (double bed) is quite comfortable and the shower with it's pressurized water nozzle is also a pleasure to use. However, the shower nozzle is quite high and it will require a person of 6ft or taller to adjust it's water trajectory.
You are paying for just the basic, the bed, if you want toileteries (soap, shampoo, towels) it will cost you extra, so will the use of air-con (don't worry there's a ceiling fan) or wi-fi (where applicable) and tv (where applicable).

This new concept is proving very popular with budget conscious travellers as it differs with the "hostel" type accomodation.

In a few months, Tune hotels has expanded dramatically, with major Malaysian hubs and with the addition of 2 properties, recently opened in Bali ( I've stayed at the kuta property, see photo above.)

Tune hotels, has an ambitious expansion program, with outlets due to open in various South East Asian nations.

Only time will tell whether their popularity will stay or vane, as it is not for people used to roomy accomodation.

Bali - December 2009

Bali - December 2009
In front of Tune hotel 10Dec. to 12 Dec 2009.

Oct 13, 2008

THE NEW AIRBUS 380 WHAT IS THE "HOOPLA" ABOUT THIS PLANE?



The Airbus 380, the much talked about aircraft, a rival to the Boeing 747, is an

aircraft where luxury is not a dirty word!
For those who can afford to pay for it!


Yes, Airbus which sells each aircraft for a whopping US$327 million, made quite a splash, when the A380 made it's maiden flight in Toulouse back a few years ago.

Every airline wanted to have one!


What with it's gallery, bar, flat beds, 31" plasma tv's, the champagne, the showers (Emirates Airlines), and hordes of novelties, made the "mother of all passenger aircraft" a "must see and fly" among the aircraft enthusiasts.



First Class


How does the average, John Doe traveller, flying this aircraft

will think about this aircraft will it be any different than the 747 that we have been used to fly for years?




Bar



In my humble opinion, the answer is a resounding "Yes". If you can afford the First Class, business Class and Economy Premium Class fares!





Shower (On Emirates Airlines only)


For us the "John Doe" average traveller, the economy seats will still be arranged to maximise revenue for the airline, make no mistake about it the 3cm extra legroom is not going to take your breath away.




Duty-free shop area


Still, it's called economy class for a reason. Most adults will find it cramped and uncomfortable after hours in the air and the toilets are still pokey.


All passengers can gain access to webmail such as hotmail or Gmail and SMS can also be sent and received through the in-flight system. Laptop and USB ports are built into every seat and more than 100 movies are available.


Mood lighting throughout the plane is meant to help fight the effects of jet lag and enhanced cabin soundproofing noticeably lowers noise levels during flight.


Yes folks, if you have a deep pocket, to the tune of A$21,700 return for a Sydney-London-Sydney,business class fare, than this aircraft is definitively for you!


However, most of us, do not have the luxury, to spend that kind of money, for that kind of trip.


So, it's back to basics! The good old economy class or as some writers calls it "the cattle class" for the majority of us.


Happy and safe flying, to you all.

Harry



Sep 18, 2008

TRAVEL SCAMS - Don't be the victim of one.



I have been travelling for over 40 years now and during all these years travel scammers have become
more cunning and more sophisticated in trying and
sometimes succeeding in ruining your hard earned holidays.

Here below are some of the most popular scams going around.

This article is to help not only the novice travellers but also some of the would be "experienced" traveller alike.

Taking note and being aware of these scams will prevent you from losing your valuables.

SCAM No:1

The Hotel switch.

You get into a taxi and ask to be taken to a certain hotel, only to be told by the driver that he just tried to take someone else there and the hotel was full.
He helpfully recommends another hotel, which just happens to have a vacancy - and happens to pay
commission to taxi drivers.

Here's how to avoid this scam:ring from the airport to make a booking or ask the taxi driver to wait while you check that the hotel has a room (don't leave your bags in the taxi!).

SCAM No:2

The shoe cleaner.

A kid in the street points out that you have bird poo on your shoe and says he can clean it off for a modest sum.
He just happens to have a shoe cleaning kit under his arm - and guess how the poo got on your shoe in the first place?

How to avoid it: just laugh and pay up - many street kids make a living out of shoe cleaning. If
you don't pay up the hassles will continue until your patience is tested to the breaking point, is it worth it for a measley few cents?

SCAM No:3

The shirt slash.

Watch for this one folks as it is getting into the serious side and it may ultimately, make you loose
your cash or other valuables that you are carrying with you.

A member of a gang slashes the shirt of your travelling companion while another mugs you for your jewellery or camera.

How to avoid it: don't be a target - buy yourself a cheap plastic watch and leave all your jewellery in a safe place at home.

SCAM No:4

The card swipe.



The shopkeeper tells you he/she needs to go out the back to process your credit card, when what she really means is to copy your credit card.
This is also sometimes done under the counter, where the card is swiped through a second machine that records the details.

How to avoid it: never let your credit card out of your sight and only use it in well-established shops and restaurants.

SCAM No:5

The luggage slash.

You put your padlocked bag up on the rack while you sleep on the train and when you wake up you discover your bag has been cut open and half emptied.

Locking your bag to the rack with a bike lock is a good start but many thieves simply slash bags open to rifle through them.

How to avoid it: use a hard-shell, lockable suitcase or
invest in a Pacsafe protector, a tough wire net that goes around your rucksack.

SCAM No:6

The dodgy taxi.


It is amazing how often a "broken" taxi meter suddenly comes to life when you threaten to get another taxi. Or how a 10-minute trip can take half an hour, with a lot of twists and turns.

Dodgy taxi drivers are one of the most common complaints among travellers but also one of the easiest to get around.



How to avoid it: insist that the driver either use the meter or agree a price up front. Ask hotel
staff or locals how much the fare should be and make sure the driver knows that you know.

SCAM No:7

Money changers.

Some of the money changers you encounter on the street ought to be working as magicians.
Distractions are often used to short-change travellers and they have also been known to duck away
to "get change" and not come back.

How to avoid it: work out in advance how much you should be getting and don't walk away until you have counted it. Official money changers are a better bet.

SCAM No:8

The bag snatch.

This usually involves some sort of distraction, such as an altercation in the street.

How to avoid it: keep the strap of your bag across your body, or around your chair leg if you are
in a cafe. Try to avoid carrying a bag if you are just out for the day.

To finish this article off, one piece of last advice is: use your common sense and you will be in the clear.

Happy and safe travels.

Harry

Aug 25, 2008

The cheapest way to see Egypt is travelling by train.




Believe me it is an experience that no seasoned or would-be-traveller should miss.

First of all it is cheap, yes, take my word for it second class is only $5 and first class, wait for it,only $9!!

These are the prices to travel from bustling Cairo to what the locals call a "sleepy backwater town!" Alexandria.

Well if you can call a town with it's 6 million inhabitants a "sleepy backwater town" then, what is a town with only a million people be called?

When and if you take the train take the El-Torbini (Express) a it is the "fastest" train linking the two cities.

When I took the train...ooohhh about 46 years ago, it was hardly a picnic as in them days everybody and everything was allowed inside the carriages, humans, goats, chickens,etc,etc,.

Of course now these days, things have changed but, just, specially if you are going to travel in third class!

Yeah...them were the good old days, but for a journey that takes just over 2 hours I am sure that not only you will enjoy it but it will be one of the few memorable journeys by train that you will remember for a long time to come.

As you travel up North through the Nile delta and it's numerous canals (to see them sit at the left hand side of the carriage)you will appreciate how the Nile is so precious to the people of Egypt.




As you get closer to the Mediterranean coast, the weather gets to cool and you will see the distinct difference between the desert weather and the coastal one.
The breeze will flow through your hairs, the sun will splash your face with it's warmth and along the way, the people will wave at you remind you of their hospitality and warmth.




Alexandria, this historical city with it's 17Km coastal promenade is something that you should see.
The beaches one one side and the magnificent villas and houses overlooking the turquoise sea is something that no-one should miss as it reminds us, of the days
gone by, how the the rich and the famous, made a sizeable real-estate investment to have the best location (now full of hotels,apartments and boarding
houses) in this jewel called Alexandria.


Cornish


I enjoyed so much that I wanted to get drunk with joy and happiness, so as I was sitting on one of the numerous gracious European-style cafes, a man in his usual Fellahin (local dress) attire accosted me to sell me a bottle of Johny Walker Red
whiskey for a ridiculous price of one Egyption pounds (0.185 US cents in todays exchange rate) being completely green and wet behind the ears, I paid the man
and grabbed the bottle, thinking that I had made the killing of my life!

As I left to go back to my boarding house, I was overjoyed with the thought of having a whiskey on the rocks, from my balcony overlooking the sea.

Having made myself confortable and holding my ice filled glass, I went on
to uncork and open the bottle.

After a few seconds I was pouring the contents into my ice filled glass and as I sipped the 'whiskey' I realised that Iwas conned, as the contents, far from being whisky turned-out to be TEA!!!

Yes folks, they had sucked the real whiskey from the bottle by inserting a syringe through the cork and had replaced the whiskey with similar coloured tea!

Boy oh boy! Was that a wake-up call for me!!!

Anyway, back to the today's trains.
There are three types of train operating between Cairo and Alexandria: turbo, express and ordinary. The superfast, non-stop so-called "French", "Spanish" or torbini trains (French and Spanish refer to the countries where the trains were built or overhauled), have air-conditioned first and second classes and a refreshments service. The express services also have good first and second class services but are a bit slower. The total cheapo, the all-stops ordinary trains, have no first class, air-con in second class only on request, and third-class is considered a no-go zone for even the tightest foreigner.


Aerial view of Cornish

If you can't get a first-class ticket, second class is perfectly suitable, with airline-style seats, a food and beverage service, and big, though heavily finger-printed, windows which don't open,(in my days you couldn't closed them even if you tried) so photos are out of the picture. Large luggage is locked away in a compartment at the end of each carriage by a porter,(in my old days the luggage be it big or small travelled with you in the carriage, in the above-head compartments) who unlocks it as you pull into your destination.

In the old days, we had a man clonking a tea glass to it's saucer, to alert the passengers that you could have tea if you ever wanted one.

Now these days,The tea man walks the aisles through the trains, offering tea, instant coffee, pastries and water. Amazingly, he remembers everything you had, and presents the bill just before you pull in to the station. This is no paper cup misery: tea comes in a glass with a metal spoon and even a saucer lined with a napkin to steady it against the knocks and bangs of the train, which is for the most part very smooth.

Now for the downside of things.
It would be advisable for you to do your toilet business BEFORE you board the train, as the hygiene and the smell of the train toilets, will not entice you to even enter them, let alone do your business!

But if you must, buy scented (lemon preferably), tissues.
Also, have plenty of change for unexpected transactions, as if you don't give the exact amount, you are not likely to get your change.

Try to travel at the off-peak days (mondays to Thursdays) as from Thursday onwards, the locals tend to get-away for the week-end( Friday is considered a holiday).

If you are travelling solo, then, do not despair, there are plenty of Egyptians who would want to share addresses with you and tell you, in their own way and english, their stories!

All in all, it will be an unforgetable trip, that will linger in your memory for a long time to come and will make n interesting anecdote of travel to tell your children and relatives.

You can find the train schedules here:


happy and safe travels to you.

Harry



Ramses II Train Station in Cairo

EGYPT IN PICTURES







TEMPLE OF ABU SIMBEL AT NIGHT.
















ABU SIMBEL TEMPLE AND THE NILE RIVER IN THE BACKGROUND





















A PYRAMID














TEMPLE OF THE KINGS















MUSEUM OF ANTIQUITY IN CAIRO.



















PYRAMIDS AT DUSK.
















THE SPHYNX AND THE PYRAMIDS.

Aug 14, 2008

The Pyramids of Egypt - Finally hassle free for tourists.


Tourists have long been awed by Egypt's famed Giza Pyramids and irritated by having to fend off peddlers relentlessly offering camel rides and trinkets.

Tourists undergo a constant barrage from peddlers selling souvenir statues, T-shirts and other trinkets. Visitors are sometimes followed by men on camels selling rides or photos - and rarely taking no for an answer.

Young men even try to force their way into taxi cabs carrying foreigners toward the pyramids, looking to steer them to nearby horse stables for a ride around the site.

But the hustlers were gone Monday as Egypt started an elaborate project to modernize the area and make it friendlier to tourists. Security is also improving, with a 12-mile chain-link fence featuring cameras, alarms and motion detectors.

What a s igh of relief for tourists who were constantly bombarded and hassled by
vendors of all sorts, trying to grab whatever business they could.

We the tourists and travellers applaud the Egyptian authorities, for bringing back some sort of order and sanity for the madness that it was previously.

Now we can enjoy the splendours of these magnificent sites, that has passed the test of thousands of years and has defied modern structures with their toughness.

Skytrax survey says Singapore Airlines is world's best airline


Singapore Airlines has been named World's Best Airline in the 2008 Airline of the Year awards, with Cathay pacific chosen second and Qantas (despite it's recent spate of problems) was chosen third.

Along with placing third in the awards behind Singapore and Cathay Pacific, Qantas also won the award for best first class lounge, best economy class catering and best airline in Australasia.

The awards, run by UK-based aviation research agency Skytrax, are based on the world's largest passenger survey, with 15 million passengers taking part around the world.


Singapore won the title for the second year in a row and the third time in 10 years. The airline also took out the award for best business class.

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways, who recently expanded their Australian routes, climbed into the top 10 for the first time, placing tenth.

The awards


The world's best airlines


1. Singapore Airlines

2. Cathay Pacific

3. Qantas

4. Thai Airways

5. Asiana Airlines
6. Malaysia Airlines

7. Qatar Airways

8. Air New Zealand
9. Emirates

10. Etihad Airways


Best First Class
Cathay Pacific

Best Business Class
Singapore Airlines

Best Premium Economy Class EVA Air

Best Economy Class
Asiana Airlines

Best low-cost airline easyJet

Best Inflight Entertainment Emirates

Best First Class Catering
Cathay Pacific

Best Business Class Catering Austrian

Best Airline : Transatlantic British Airways

Best Airline : Transpacific Air New Zealand

Jul 2, 2008

SINGLE AIRCRAFT AIRLINE CHOSEN AS THE TOP RATED AIRLINE FLYING FROM THE UK.




Palmair, is a trading name for the tour operator R.E. Bath Travel Service (Palmair) ltd based in Bournemouth, UK.

It operates inclusive tour charter flights to holiday destinations in Europe on behalf of Bath travel.
It has it's main base at Bournemouth airport.

The charter flights started operations on 1 January 1993 as Palmair Flightline operating a BAe 146 aircraft. Upgraded aircraft were acquired in 1999 to reflect increased demand for capacity from Bournemouth and for the introduction of longer range routes. Until winter 1999 services was operated by Flightline, using a single BAe 146-300. In 2003 Palmair carried 75,000 passengers. In 2004 the company operated scheduled passenger flights to ten European airports, and day trips to 25 European cities.
In 2003 and again in 2008, the UK consumer magazine ‘Holiday Which?’ published the results of a survey of 20,000 UK air passengers, showing that Palmair was the top rated airline flying from the UK.

On 22 December 2006, founder, Peter Bath, who had previously seen off every flight personally, died, aged 79.

Palmair serves the following destinations:

# Austria

* Salzburg (Salzburg Airport)

# Croatia

* Dubrovnik (Dubrovnik Airport)

# Czech Republic

* Prague (Ruzyně International Airport)

# Greece

* Korfu (Corfu International Airport)

# Iceland

* Keflavík (Keflavík International Airport)

# Italy

* Brescia (Brescia Airport)
* Milan (Malpensa International Airport)
* Venice (Venice Marco Polo Airport)

# Malta

* Luqa (Malta International Airport)

# Portugal

* Faro (Faro Airport)
* Funchal (Madeira Airport)

# Spain

* Alicante (Alicante International Airport)
* Arrecife/Lanzarote (Lanzarote Airport)
* Málaga (Málaga Airport)
* Menorca (Mahon Airport)
* Palma de Mallorca (Palma de Mallorca Airport)
* Tenerife (Tenerife South Airport)

Congratulations Palmair!
You have once again proven that being small can also be the best.

their website can be accessed from here.

Jun 26, 2008

JAPANESE ARE THE BEST TOURISTS


A survey to find out the world top tourists, by online travel company, expedia has found that the Japanese were the top ranked tourists.

A
mong the topics being asked in the survey were, behaviour,manners,generosity,willingness to learn the language and willingness to try the local cuisine and their propensity to complain.

Japanese tourists were the tops overall followed by the British and the Germans in joint second place, followed by the Canadians in the third place.

So, the world's top tourists ranking, according to hoteliers
were:

1- japanese
2- British/Germans

3- Canadians
4- Swiss
5- Dutch
6- Australians/Swedes
7- Belgians
8- Norwegians
9- Austrians/Danes/Finnish
10- New Zealanders

Jun 6, 2008

NEWS FROM THE PHILIPPINES



RP 3rd fastest-growing air travel market

Air travel within the Philippines is the third fastest growing market in the world, after India and Mexico, industry data revealed.



India’s domestic market grew by 33 percent, followed by Mexico at 27 percent, Philippines at 23 percent, and China at 16 percent last year.

The Philippines domestic air travel market grew with almost 10.4 million travelers in 2007 compared with almost 8.5 million passengers in 2006.

Gokongwei-owned Cebu Pacific (CEB) set the pace in the domestic market with a growth rate of 47 percent in terms of passengers carried in 2007, or from 3.034 million in 2006 to 4.46 million in 2007.

Philippine Airlines (PAL) experienced a six percent increase, from 3.81 million to 4.033 million, while traffic for Air Philippines grew 21 percent, or from 653,175 in 2006 to 726,616 last year.

Candice Iyog, CEB spokesperson, said domestic travel started booming when CEB introduced year-round low fares in 2005, forcing other local airlines to follow suit to be able to compete and introduced air travel to many first-time flyers.

Clark wins Asia-Pac Airport of the Year Award



The Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA) took home the “Airport of the Year” award together with Singapore’s world-class Changi International Airport during the 2008 Frost & Sullivan Asia Pacific Aerospace and Defense Awards held in Singapore.

“In recognition of its past year performance and expansion efforts, Frost & Sullivan awards the 2008 Frost & Sullivan Asia Pacific Airport of the Year Award for the airport serving below 15 million annual passengers category to DiosdadoMacapagal International Airport,” the citation given to the DMIA said.

Two years ago, the DMIA also won the “Low Cost Airport of the Year 2006 Award” from the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA).

CIAC said the DMIA got the “Airport of the Year” award in the category of airports that could serve less than 15 million passengers a year, while Singapore’s Changi got it in the category of those capable of serving over 15 million passengers annually. Luciano received the award during the ceremonies in Singapore.

Luciano said “the citation came at a time when the DMIA has been experiencing an unprecedented growth in aviation-related projects and passenger volume.”

Frost & Sullivan is a leading research company in the world with over 26 global offices with more than 1,500 industry consultants, market research analysts, technology analysts and economists. The company was founded in 1961 and has done research in aerospace and defense, automotive and transportation, chemicals, materials and food, energy and power systems, environmental and building technologies, health care, industrial automation and electronics, and information and communication technologies.

The Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, India was chosen the “Aeronautical Excellence Airport of the Year” award while Changi Airports International was chosen “Airport Investment Company of the Year.”

The other awardess were Japan Airlines for “Widest Route Coverage of the Year,” Air Asia for “Airline Market Penetration Leadership of the Year” and Singapore Airlines as “Airline of the Year.”




Hotel





San Miguel Pale Pilsen is Asia’s best

San Miguel Pale Pilsen is the best tasting beer in Asia, according to a popular US Magazine which recently gathered major beer brands from China, Japan, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore and Philippines for a taste test.

The iconic brand of San Miguel Brewery, Inc. (SMB), San Miguel Pale Pilsen bested six other international brands in all categories – appearance, aroma, taste and finish — used by the magazine to determine the best tasting beer.

In the article entitled “Far East Beer Showdown” by Derek Buono published in Beer Magazine’s March to April issue, the lone Filipino beer brand has been described as having “the most flavor and tasted better than all the other beers of the region.”

“The SMB family is truly inspired by the recognition given to San Miguel Pale Pilsen. We are glad that our very own product stands above the rest and for us Filipinos, that’s something worth celebrating for,” said SMB management.

San Miguel Pale Pilsen was also recommended for its “certain wheat/ citrus hit that sets it apart from the rest,” that one can “drink lots of it with most Asian foods and in most climates.”

San Miguel Pale Pilsen, one of the eight widely popular beer brands in the SMB portfolio, is known for its smooth moderate bitterness, pleasant hoppy aroma and snappy clean palate.

Articles courtesy of http://goodnewspilipinas.com






TAIWANESE CARRIER ADDS A FOURTH DESTINATION IN THE PHILIPPINES




Further information can be obtained here




10 worst cities for pickpockets

Trip Advisor latest survey has a few shcoking news about some cities in the world that you thought were perfectly safe to visit.

10 European cities where pickpockets were rife, alive, and kicking were:

1- Las Ramblas, Barcelona, Spain
Fun and music filled days and nights in this city,
is also famous for it's pickpockets.

2-
Rome, Italy
The eternal city, with it's fountains, luxury goods
and world renowned fashion brands, is also the
home of slick italian pickpockets.

3-
Prague, Czech Republic
Before taking in the view of the Vltava River and
the Prague Castle beyond, be sure valuables are
strapped down.

4-
Madrid, Spain
Beware of the pickpockets plying in the museums
of this spectacular city.

5-
Paris, France
The "Oooh La la's" should not take your attention
away from guarding jealously your belongings.

6-
Florence, Italy
Michael Angelo would never forgive you, if whilst
visiting and wondering at his marvelous inventions
you would loose your precious belongings.
So beware!

7-
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Should you fall for the steps of Tango, don't fall for
pickpockets also, active here.

8-
Amsterdam, Netherlands
The "Venice" of the North will enchant you in more
ways than one, specially if you loose your wallet!

9-
Athens, Greece
Whether you are visually enriched with the
antique beauty of the Parthenon or the Acropolis
make sure that your valuables suddenly doesn't
disappear!

10-
Hanoi, Vietnam
While visiting this historic city, stay alert!


Singapore Changi Airport voted the World's No: 1

Singapore Changi Airport voted the World's No: 1
Priority Pass members survey among it's members voted Changi as the best Airport in the World

World best airport's as voted by Skytrax readers

WORLD'S TOP 10 AIRPORTS

1 Incheon International Airport

2 Hong Kong International Airport

3 Singapore Changi

4 Zurich

5 Munich

6 Kansai

7 Kuala Lumpur

8 Amsterdam

9 Centrair Nagoya

10 Auckland

BEST BY REGION

AFRICA
Cape Town

ASIA
Incheon Int'l

AUSTRALIA/PACIFIC
Auckland

EUROPE
Zurich

MIDDLE EAST
Tel Aviv

NORTH AMERICA
Dallas/Fort Worth

SOUTH AMERICA
Lima

CENTRAL AMERICA
Panama

BEST IN CATEGORY

BEST DUTY FREE SHOPPING
Dubai

EASIEST INTERNATIONAL TRANSIT AIRPORT
Incheon International

BEST AIRPORT DINING
Hong Kong

BEST SECURITY PROCESSING
Incheon International

CLEANEST AIRPORT WASHROOMS
Kansai

BEST TERMINAL CLEANLINESS
Incheon International

BEST BAGGAGE DELIVERY
Helsinki

BEST LEISURE AMENITIES
Singapore

BEST IMMIGRATION SERVICE
Kuala Lumpur

ASIA -PACIFIC MOST DIRTIEST HOTELS

Trip Advisor ( www.tripadvisor.com) travellers has compiled a list of 10 dirtiest hotels in this region, they are:

1- First Hotel - Bangkok, Thailand

2- Hotel Grand Central - Singapore, Singapore

3- The Imperial Hotel - Hong Kong, China

4- Royal Peacock Hotel - Singapore, Singapore

5- Woraburi Sukhumvit Hotel and Resort - Bangkok, Thailand

6- Colmar Tropicale, A French-Themed Resort - Bentung,
Malaysia

7- Oxford Hotel - Singapore, Singapore

8- City Gate Hotel - Hanoi, Vietnam

9- Royal Parkview Hotel - Bangkok, Thailand

10- Aseana Resort - Langkawi, Malaysia

So, there you go fellow travellers, avoid these establishment
and have a pleasant and safe travels.

Harry

The Hustle and bustle at London Heathrow Airport

The Hustle and bustle at London Heathrow Airport

World's most annoying airport


Heathrow has been voted the worst international airport for passport queues and baggage problems.

New York's JFK and Los Angeles International airports were ranked second and third worst in the survey by online travel and social network WAYN.com (Where Are You Now?).

The survey asked 2250 passengers about passport control, baggage handling, customs and security at major international airports.

Heathrow, the world's busiest air hub, was voted the worst for long passport queues followed by the two American airports.

The three were also seen as having the longest wait time for collecting baggage and were considered the most likely to damage luggage.

However New York and Heathrow were also regarded as the best airports for security, with British travellers putting Heathrow at number one.

Bangkok, Amsterdam and Rome were considered to have the least-thorough security.

Heathrow's passport control officers were also considered the friendliest after Australia's followed by Canada, although British travellers put Heathrow first.

US immigration officials were given the unwanted tag of being the rudest, followed by India and Russia.

Travellers wanting the shortest queuing times should head for Amsterdam's Schiphol airport, Changi in Singapore or Frankfurt

A380 RESTAURANT!!!

Yes folks, it had to happen, after the 747 Jumbo Hostel,
we now have the A380 restaurant!

Set in a dull commercial building in central Taipei, the A380 In-Flight Kitchen looks and functions like an airline in many ways, expect that it serves a regular restaurant menu of Western food, sometimes in plastic trays.


A380 RESTAURANT IN TAIPEI

A380 RESTAURANT IN TAIPEI
View from the entrance
Since November 2008, the restaurant has been packing in wannabe passengers, who sit in soft speckled blue seats with headrests covered in white napkins and under oval-shaped windows. Locked white baggage compartments hang overhead.

Waitresses dressed as flight attendants take meal orders for filet mignon or waffles, as well as the customary fish and chicken. Staff say "welcome aboard" to customers and issue boarding passes to those who must wait for a table.

A380 RESTAURANT IN TAIPEI

A380 RESTAURANT IN TAIPEI
Serving crew
Of the 84 seats, 20 are "first class" or set aside for groups with advanced bookings, and the place is often overbooked, says business operations manager Emily Lu.

"There are customers who come in and say 'is this real airline food? Airline food doesn't taste good,'" Lu said, adding that they had turned a profit.

The restaurant, in Taipei's university quarter, opened after owner Yang Mao-hui figured that he could ride some of the Airbus A380's recent fame in the aviation industry by offering a simulated experience, Lu said.

A380 RESTAURANT IN TAIPEI

A380 RESTAURANT IN TAIPEI
Welcome aboard!

A 747 Jumbo Jet converted into a hostel by Swedish Entrepreneur.

An old 747 Jumbo plane previously owned by Singapore Airlines and standing idle outside Stockholm Arlanda airport, was bought and turned into a hostel by Oscar Dios.

The idea came to Mr Dios when he was looking for a house or a building and said: " why not a plane?"

He bought and converted the old 747 into a 25 room hostel capable of sleeping 72 guests.

The customers will have 7 bathrooms to share among them except, the honeymoon suite which comes with it's own ensuite bathroom.

Compared to other hotels outside of the airport, the "Jumbo Hostel" rooms will cost 350 Swedish Kroners or about USD42.

Well, we had a cuise boat turned into a hotel why not a plane!!

Safe travels to you all.

Harry

Cockpit room in the new "Jumbo Hostel" in Stockholm

Cockpit room in the new "Jumbo Hostel" in Stockholm

The TOWN HOUSE GALERRIA HOTEL IN MILAN - ITALY

The TOWN HOUSE GALERRIA HOTEL IN MILAN - ITALY
Check this room!

THE WORLD'S FIRST SEVEN STARS HOTEL OPENS IN MILAN!

When the Burj Al-Arab opened in Dubai a few years back and got a rating of 6 stars, few would have thought that, this would be upstaged by a seven stars hotel.

But, that's exactly what happened, when the italian hotelier Alessandro Rosso, did not mind spending a few millions dollars, to open his new seven stars rated Town House Galleria in Milan, next to the famous Duomo Cathedral.

For people wanting opulence and luxury and not minding forking out 1000 Euro's (US$1343,00) for the starting room price, they are sure to get a few "Aaahhh's and Ooohhhh"s.

Here a couple of pictures of this establisment, for your perusal.

Happy and safe travels to all.

Harry


THE TOWN HOUSE GALLERIA HOTEL IN MILAN - ITALY

THE TOWN HOUSE GALLERIA HOTEL IN MILAN - ITALY
How about this room?

Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport

Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport
Departure Lounge.

BANGKOK and The MALAYSIA HOTEL

I have been coming to Bangkok, since the seventies,but, quite frankly, I wasn't
interested how the city was developping in them days, as being a bachelor, I had only one thing in mind, Girls!

However, this time as our flight was approaching the new Suvarnabhumi airport, after only 5 days of protesters leaving the airport, I was naturally a bit nervous and also curious as to what Bangkok's was looking like after nearly 25 years of absence!

As we were taxiing towards the gate, I saw row upon row of aircrafts, of all shapes and sizes, parked on the apron, coming from all over the world.

As we came to a halt and passengers were deplaning, I found myself inside a gigantic building, looking like an over stretched hangar.


Moving walkways were guiding us towards the immigration and ultimately to the taxis stand.The process was quick and very efficient, upon paying a nominal 50BHT (US$1.43) our luggage was unceremoniously shoved in to the boot of a taxi, and
before we knew it, we were off to Malaysia hotel in the city.

I told the driver to avoid taking the tollway as I was the one who was going to pay for that toll!

This was a far cry exit from the old Don Muang airport, that I had so many times used in the past.

Freeways and it's many exits were placed on top of one another and unless you knew where you were going, it was not difficult to get lost in this concrete maze.

I tried to stay awake as I hadn't slept for the last 13hrs and watched the light filled miles pass us by.

My first impression of Bangkok having changed, was, as I was to find out later on, not impressive at all.

As we entered the gate to the hotel, a doorman welcomed us inside.I had to pay the meter fee of 200BHT plus a surcharge of 50BHT as the hour was
showing after midnight, and with the initial 50BHT that I had paid at the airport, the total cost of the trip was 300BHT (US$8.60) not bad, when you think that we had travelled nearly 40Km's.

Hotel Malaysia in the seventies, was located just opposite the hua lamphong, main train station of Bangkok. However, this time, this wasn't the case!
It was quite far from the station. Immediately, I asked myself whether this was the same hotel or the metamorphosis of the same named hotel displaced in a different suburb of Bangkok.

Soon after the registration process, we were given the key to our room on the 3rd floor.Upon entering the room, we noticed that there was a slot on the wall and by inserting our key the air condition was activated.

The large and confortable bathroom, was quite well designed and confortable to use.

The double bed plus the single bed were facing a colour TV with 6 local and 5 foreign channels ( 2 movies channels) the bedside table had switches and table light accomodating the restaurant menu (you can order food and drinks 24hrs/7) the TV remote and the telephone, was a welcome convenience, in what was a rather large room, with plenty of floor space to move and a mini fridge stocked with various cool drinks, of which only the the mini bottled water was complimentary!
My advice is unless you are desperate, do not touch the drinks in that mini fridge, as the prices are quite shocking! Beside, if you go out of the hotel gate, and turn right, you will see a 7/11 shop where the prices are 2/3 cheaper, right in front of you!

The dressing table with it's large mirror along with it's luggage rack, made this room at the cost of 980BHT (US$28.00) is one of the best value hotels in Bangkok. The location , was only 6Km from the main railway station or only 60BHT (US$1.72) by taxi, conveniently stationed in the courtyard of the hotel.

Malaysia hotel website is here:

http://www.malaysiahotelbkk.com/index.html

MALAYSIA HOTEL

MALAYSIA HOTEL

A VIEW FROM OUR ROOM - MALAYSIA HOTEL - BANGKOK

A VIEW FROM OUR ROOM - MALAYSIA HOTEL - BANGKOK

THE BEDS IN OUR ROOM - MALAYSIA HOTEL - BANGKOK

THE BEDS IN OUR ROOM - MALAYSIA HOTEL - BANGKOK
The next morning having slept like a baby, albeit, a cold one,we went downstairs to have our breakfast at the cafeteria doubling as an internet cafe.We had a bit of a problem, ordering our breakfast as the staff wasn't fluent in english and had to repeat several times, much to our annoyance, what we wanted to eat. Thankfully, everything on the menu had a number next to it, so we simply said "number 3 please".

However, much to our pleasure, we found that the prices were very very reasonable and the food was well presented and cooked.

Unfortunately, I could not say the same with their internet stations as it failed to connect, despite our numerous efforts, having to pass the idea of checking our emails.

In case you are short of cash, there's an ATM right at the entrance of the hotel gate, much to our delight, we were able to replenish our dwindling Peso reserve, with Baht's.

I noticed that the clients of this hotel, were mainly retired or pensioners gentlemen, with Americans being the majority.I remember reading in a comment made by one the past customer, mentioning that this hotel is renowned for it's "golden boys".

Sure enough when we entered the cafeteria, there was a bunch of "them" having a rupturous time with some elderly American tourists at the back of the cafeteria,
attracting some annoying glances from a bunch of policemen having their breakfast meals right in front of our table.

This fact did not bother us at all, as it did not interfere one bit with our holiday and unless you were looking at all these with an observing eye, you wouldn't notice it all.

I thought of taking a dip at the swimming pool located at the back of the cafeteria, to cool myself from the constant humid and hot air that prevails in Bangkok. But I soon gave up the idea, when Jo asked me to go around for sightseeing.

Sure enough, Bangkok HAD changed, however, in my humble opinion, not for the better.High rise buildings, an atrocious traffic problem and the ever present smog had changed this city. Peoples driving their motorcycles or bikes were wearing a surgical
mask, trying to stop the smog from entering their lungs. Bronchial problems and chest infections, were on the rise.

The Global Economic Crisis and the actions taken previously by the protesters, had indeed reduced the intake of tourists and whenever you were asking for the price of anything that you wanted to buy in the markets, you were first told a shocking
price usually starting (the lowest price) at 350BHT (10USD). This is where your bargaining skills comes in handy and unless you are a hard hagler, you will be "had"!

We went to the Hua Lamphong train station to buy our train tickets to Surat Thani and on to the island of Koh Samui. Upon getting out in to the courtyard, a taxi driver straight away started to hassle us by shouting "taxi" "Sir do you wanna a Taxi?", we
decided to ask how much he was going to charge us to the train station. Sure enough,he said "for you cheap 350BHT", cheap, my foot! This was a 6 minute ride and the fare would have been at the most 60BHT (1.72USD).When I said " 50Baht" he immediately started to laugh in a sarcastic manner and
shaked his head to the negative. So, I started to walk toward the gate with the intention of getting another one. It was no surprise that, just as i was about to get in into another taxi, he came back to me and said " ok,ok, for you first time in Bangkok, 50Baht!" First time! If he only knew that this was over the last 30 years my 11th trip here, he wouldn't have said that.
Nevertheless, we accepted and much to the annoyance of the other taxi driver who thought that, I was about to make his day, I let him go.
During the trip to the train station, the driver asked me all the usual questions, such as "how long will I stay in Bangkok?", "where will I go after here?", "what was I going to see or do whilst in Bangkok?", etc, etc,.
Not wanting to commit myself to whatever idea he might have if I gave him a specific answer, I said " I don't know" to all the questions, giving him no leeway to use on me!

When we arrived at the station he asked me if he should wait or go, I asked how much more he would want if I told him to wait. He said "100 Baht for the round trip including the wait" that sounded fair enough for me, so I gave him a time of 30 minutes to wait or to pick us up after that time, he nodded in the affirmative and left.

We bought our train tickets (2nd class economy sleeper) to Surat Thani, which included the coach and the ferry to Koh Samui for 1850BHT (52.95USD).
After half an hour, our taxi driver was there to pick us up and brings back to the hotel.

Hua Lumphung Train Station - Bangkok

Hua Lumphung Train Station - Bangkok
As we were leaving on the 11th of December, since we had one free day to kill, we decided to take a sightseeing trip or tour to the famous Floating Markets, Crocodile show, Elephant riding, snake farm (with a live Cobra show) and finally Rose Garden, with Thai cultural dance show, to entertain us.Since this was Jo's first trip to Bangkok, she was extatic.

We sat down in front of the "Tour Desk" in the lobby of the hotel and started perusing the numerous catalogues and finally, said "this one" pointing to the above-mentioned attractions. When we saw the price of 1100BHT (31.47USD) per person, we thought
that this was a pretty good price and paid 2200BHT and were told to be in the lobby at 7.30AM the next day for the pick-up.

After having our dinner whilst watching the BBC News in our room, we retired for the night.

The next morning we were in the lobby bright and early for breakfast, and was ready by 7.20AM. However, as the time went by and the clock hit 7.45AM, I was getting a bit nervous as there was no-one picking us up. As Jo went to ask at the front desk, from my table in the cafeteria I saw a white 18 seater mini-van pulling up in front of the entrance door and knew that they had come to pick-us up!
With a sigh of relief, we entered the air-conditioned minibus and made ourselves comfortable. After about 3 minutes, a lady sitting in the front introduced herself as our tour conductor and said that, we will first be going to the Floating markets
followed by the Elephant ride, then the snake farm then lunch (Included in the price)
then the crocodile show, followed by the final attraction being the Rose Garden where the Thai cultural dances will be held.
This was ok. But then, the bad news came and hit us on the face like a slap! We were expected to pay 600BHT (17.17USD) EACH! for the floating markets ride. Well, you can imagine my annoyance when I heard this news, as it was not mentioned in the
catalogue and thus, was a hidden cost. Not to disappoint Jo, I bear and grinned upon
hearing this, but, I put on a brave face an managed to have a forced smile. Since we were now comitted to taking this tour I already was wandering whether there would be more hidden cost to be divulged as the tour progressed.

The floating Markets, was a thrill and a complete surprise to Jo who was amazed at the variety of goods sold and bought, from wooden boats, barely 5inches above the water. (See photos on the right hand side of this page)

When the water ride was finished we were told that we would be free to do our shopping at a souvenir emporium, right at the edge of the water.

Naturally, Jo was absolutely delighted, being able to buy various souvenirs or Pasalubong (in Tagalog) for her family members, friends and work colleagues.

After two and half hours of Floating Markets and souvenir buying, we were off to the Elephant riding area. Upon reaching the area, Jo was so excited with the prospect of riding an elephant, that we nearly missed the price and the sign that was posted on
top of the ticket booth - 600BHT PER PERSON FOR HALF AN HOUR OF ELEPHANT RIDING! Some members in our tour (including yours truly) wasn't amused upon seeing that sign! However, as this was maybe a first and a last, lifetime opportunity
for Jo she gladly paid the money and went on the ride. (See right hand side of this page)

But, I was furious and became very vocal complaining that these hidden costs should
have been mentioned in the catalogue (which, if it did, we would have not taken the tour at all!), my displeasure was echoed by other members of the tour, to the tour guide who, remained very quite and was heard murmuring "Sorry Sir"

After the elephant ride, we were off to the snake farm and the Cobra show. However, this time, I asked the tour guide if there were any more hidden costs. She told us that we were expected to pay 300BHT (8.60USD) per person for that show, but, there would
not be anymore fee's payable for the rest of the tour. I've gasped a sigh of relief upon hearing this.

After 45 minutes, we arrived at what looked like a mini reptilean zoo, with various snakes of all sizes were inside a concrete "box" with a gigantic crocodile passively sunbathing in an another. Then, we were called to gather at the ticket counter for the live Cobra show. The show started with the 'Master of ceremonies" explaining the life of the said reptile, and how venemous the cobra's were. Then, it was on, a man went inside a ring with of course who else but a cobra and started to taunt the reptile, which, on several occasions was trying to bite the man by hissing it's displeasure of being exposed and ridiculed to the audience. After several similar attempts by different men, the highlight of the show came, when the man held a cobra from it's
head and started to roam inside the audience for photo shoots and people brave enough to touch and caress the cobra. The show ended with a thunderous applause from the audience.

It was time for us to have lunch and we boarded the minivan.

Lunch was inside the Bangkok zoo's restaurant. A buffet was laid out with western and Thai food, divided for people who liked hot (as in chili hot) and not hot food.
Our lunch was copious and satisfied we went on to the Elephant show, where trained
elephants were seen playing war games, depicting famous Thai battles in the past (with real fires and explosions) Thai sword fighting, football with gigantic balls and at the end, the elephants gathered at the rails and saluted the crowd amid thunderous
and rousing applause. The crowd were then told that if they wished they could feed the elephants with bananas and sugar cane sticks bought from the vendors, which the crowd did (and so did we). As the crowd dispersed, I knew that the crocodile show was next. But, having seen that in the seventies, I was, along with hundreds of others, witness to the horrible way the guy who was taunting the crodile and was doing all kind of heroic acts, lost his right arm, when the crodile bit it clean off from his shoulders, amidst the horrific shouting and screeming from the crowd, the blood and the gore scene was too much for me and made an indelible impression and I had vowed never to see another crocodile show ever again!
So, I let Jo go, and see the show whilst I was resting on a bank and taking pictures of the crocodiles. (see right hand side of this page).

Our final item on the tour was the Rose Garden, where Thai cultural dances would be shown to the tour members. Upon our arrival, we saw elephants again! But, this time you could ride one for 50BHT (1.43USD) albeit for 5 minutes only. I do not want to
repeat the words that I uttered when I saw that!
This segment of the show lasted for nearly an hour and again, havig seen all that before hand, I send Jo to enjoy it. Which she did, judging from her smile upon her return.

Since the morning when we were picked-up at 7.50AM, until now with the clock showing that it was 3.30PM, if it wasn't for the hidden costs being slapped at us, thewhole thing would have been quite enjoyable. However, one thing that Jo was certain,
she enjoyed the tour tremendeously and had no regrets for the extra cost that was taken from us.

To recap, our adventure of 3 days in Bangkok, the city is overpopulated, over polluted, traffic jams of gigantic proportions are a daily reality and prices are going through the roof!

If you stand all of that, I wish you a happy and safe travels to you all.

Harry

AIR ASIA X..SELLS ONE WAY FARES TO LONDON FOR A$260.SERVICE TO START MARCH 2009!

Air Asia X the long haul arm of Air Asia is to start their new Kuala Lumpur to London services in March 2009.

To celebrate this new service they are offering seats to London on a one way basis for A$260...all charges are inclusive in this fare.

The service will be using an Airbus A340.

There will be 5 flights a week to and from Kuala Lumpur and London.

Happy and safe travels to you all.

Harry


DESTINATION OF THE MONTH

DESTINATION OF THE MONTH
Bali - Indonesia

TIGER AIRWAYS CUTS MANILA TO MACAU FLIGHTS!

Tiger Airways of Singapore has announced that they will be ceasing operating flights from Manila to Macau, as of 16 November 2008.

I learned of this news on the 4th of November.

Of course, no explanation was given as to why this sudden decision was taken!

My personal belief is that, the competition from Cebu Pacific, was the main reason. Load factors being so vital to el-cheapo airlines, would have forced Tiger Airways to cut flights.

Yours truly was booked to fly-out on Tiger Airways flight from Manila to Macau on the 8th of December.

After the announcement of the cut, I was expecting Tiger Airways, to do what normally, in this situation, any other airline would do, and that is, to contact passengers and give them their options (if any).

However, until today the 22th of November 2008, no such contact was made by the said airline.

I took the iniative to call them in Manila and asked them, what was I suppose to expect from them.
I was told by a reservation clerk that the options given to the passengers booked on that flight were as follows:

1- Re-route (with Tiger Airways) to another destination.

2- Apply for a full refund.

I chose the latter, I was told that the refund would be credited in my credit card in 21 days!

Here's hoping that, this will happen!

IT DID HAPPEN FOLKS! TIGER AIRWAYS HAVE REFUNDED MY MONEY ON THE 24TH OF NOVEMBER 2008!

CEBU PACIFIC NOW IS YOUR TURN! DO THE RIGHT THING AND REFUND MY MONEY AS WELL!

Happy and safe travels to you all.

Harry


GLOBAL FERTILITY TOURISM!


We have seen eco-tourism, adventure tourism, health tourism, and now we have Global fertility Tourism!

What is it? I hear you ask!

Well, If you are a woman and unable to have your own child, it is created for you (through in-vitro fertilization) then, implanted in to the womb of the woman who wasn't able to conceive.

Simple right?

Well, it certainly looks that way.

However, the moral and ethical question is left wide open to discuss the issue.

India, who is advertising this new trend of tourism claims "many healthy young fertile Indian women who are superovulated exclusively for you" with fees payable online by credit card!

The fee's are half of what you would expect to pay in western countries, and the women applicants gets to have twice the number of embryo's implanted in them, to make sure that they will fall pregnant.

India, does not have the same dilemma as the west about the legal, moral and ethical implications.

A woman who for the sake of keeping her anonymity, we will call Ms Doe, who is of German nationality, was unable to conceive a child for years and fearing that her "biological clock" was ticking at the age of 40 plus, decided that she would want to have a child before "it was too late!".

At the end of last year, she boarded a plane in London and flew to Mumbai. It wasn't her first trip there - she is a management consultant and often goes overseas on business.

But this time she went to have five embryos implanted in her womb. Two days later she flew home. While on business in Hong Kong in January, she discovered she was, at 42, pregnant with just one embryo.

It was the culmination of a six-year struggle to become a mother. Divorced at 29, she hadn't been in a serious relationship since she was 34. "I always wanted to have a child but the men kept saying, 'Why don't we travel?"' she says. "It wasn't that I was obsessed with my career; I just couldn't get men to be a father."

First, she tried to adopt in Germany, , but that didn't work out. Then, in 2004, she moved to Britain to take advantage of that country's more liberal attitude to single women who need in vitro fertilisation. She spent $45,000 in less than three years, trying and failing to conceive at a private clinic. When she finally conceived in India, she was in a state of "shock and disbelief."

She has no genetic link with her baby, born in September. The colour of its eyes, length of its legs and slope of its nose were determined by a man and a woman who are strangers not only to her, but also to each other. Her baby's biological parents live 7000kilometres apart and are separated by language and culture.

All they share is the decision to ply their gametes in the global fertility bazaar where she shopped for the ingredients of life, perusing and eventually paying for eggs and sperm. She bought the sperm online from a Danish sperm bank retailing in New York. The $2600 price tag included shipping to Mumbai. There, the sperm was used to fertilise the fresh eggs of an Indian woman who was paid 40,000 rupees ($1200).

So, there you go "instant baby", just like expresso coffee or noodle soup!

For those of us, who are wondering "what next", I may hazard a guess and say that, it will be like dining in a Michelin's five star restaurant.
" I like to have my steak rare, with hot sauce and saute champignons, and tender green beans."

Translated literally, " I like to have a girl, with blonde hair, blue eyes, and long legs, please!"

Mind you with the likes of genetical engineering and DNA manipulation, this is already being done by some " Scientists!".

If that's the case, isn't that like, Dr Joseph Mengele's re-incarnation, minus the torture?

I would leave you readers with that thought, and simply say, what would divine wisdom thinks about all that?

Happy and safe travels to you all.

Harry

So you like your beer huh! Check these 10 Beer destinations.

Beer drinkers rejoice, a new survey by backpacking travellers, has found 10 countries where you will find
liquid delight.

Try testing the local brew and to find out, who better to ask, than the barman or barmaid.

Here's the 10 most beer drinking countries sought by backpakers (not necessarily in order)

1- Germany

2- England

3- Australia

4- Japan

5- Vietnam

6- The Netherlands

7- USA

8- Croatia

9- Czech Republic

10- New Zealand.

Happy and safe travels to you all and cheers!

Harry

TRAVEL TIPS No: 2


Cutting your travel expenses.

Here are some tips to cut your travel expenses and get more mileage out of your dollars.

1- Book early.

2- Compare prices for a day earlier or later.

3- Instead of top destinations choose a "secondary" destination. I.e: instead of Hong Kong choose Macau.

4- Avoid taking taxis and instead use the public transport.

5- Don't eat at western icon fastfood restaurants.
Go to where the locals eat.

6- Opt for cheaper accomodation, such as hostels,
bed and breakfast joints, and other pensions.

7- If possible travel by land when visiting the country, by taking buses or trains, instead of flying.

8- Pay whenever possible by cash instead of using your credit card.

9- When buying things, use your bargaining power.

10- Unless it is the norm or the customs, do not give tips, for services rendered.

If you stick to these simple rules, you will enjoy and have more cash in your pocket, whilst travelling.

Happy and safe travels.

Harry

Another airlines bites the dust!

LTE, a private spanish owned airline, had to suspend their operations as financial difficulties made it impossible to continue operating.

The airlines has issued the following notice on their website (http://www.lte.es/default.aspx?lang=en):

"IMPORTANT NOTICE ABOUT SERVICES SUSPENSION

Lte International Airways S.A. wish to inform you that due to the financial situation of the company, that make it difficult to meet the operational expenses in the next days, we have had to suspend our charter and scheduled operations.

Lte is doing everything to minimize the impact of this suspension of services on its clients and providers. After 20 years operating with maximum dedication to our clients it just was not possible to avoid this situation given world events lately.

We apologize for the inconvenience this may cause to our passengers, clients and suppliers.

Lte International Airways S.A."

Passengers booked on LTE flights were offered a refund but not an alternative flight to get them home.


THE NEW AIRBUS 380 WHAT IS THE "HOOPLA" ABOUT THIS PLANE?

See below for photos and article.

CEBU PACIFIC UPDATE....REFUND RECEIVED AFTER P2000 CANCELLATION FEE ON THE 10TH OF DECEMBER 2008


I have had it with this airline. Despite their cheap prices and empty promises,it's been over 3 months since I cancelled my flight and still NO REFUND!

Apparently I am not the only one complaining about delayed refunds or no refunds at all!

Despite numerous calls, which never got answered and follow-ups, it seems that Cebu pacific is impervious to thousands of irrate passengers complaining of late flights, bad service and refunds not given on time or refunds not given at all!

After a search on Google over 1700 results were shown
and after checking the first few links given, there were so many complaints against Cebu Pacific that, the unanimous view was that the airline was nothing but a "Corporate Thief".

Here are examples of the comments made by unhappy customers of Cebu Pacific:

"OH F**K! WE GOT SCREWED BY CEBU PACIFIC!” taken from the blog "PinoyTux Weblog " http://www.pinoytux.com/rantings/cebu-pacific-airlines-is-evil

"Why has CEBU PACIFIC failed to refund me my money for almost 4 months now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
taken from weblog "not-another-blog"
http://not-another-blog.blogspot.com/2008/05/cebu-pacific-refund-saga.html

"What happened was they book more than the plane’s capacity and then suddenly at check in it becomes a first come first serve basis. If everyone comes in on time (like what happend to us), unahan na sa seats! What the F*** happened to booking early and reserving your seat!?!? Cebu Pacific sucks big time!"
taken from the weblog " Jason Magbanua"
http://jasonmagbanua.com/blog/2008/02/29/cebu-pacific-sucks/

"I asked for a refund, they said that it would only take 60 days for the refunds but it's been 4 months and still haven't received my refund."
taken from the website " Epinions.com"
http://www.epinions.com/Cebu_Pacific/display_~reviews

"I even liked your latest Bicol promotional advertisement. “We’re Not Laing.” Cute, but if you keep up this kind of service and flight delays, I’d say a better line would be “YOU’RE SO DAING”!!!"
Taken from the website "Market manila"
http://www.marketmanila.com/archives/cebu-pacific-youre-so-daing

"HAVING HAD MORE THOUGHTS ABOUT MY RECENT BLOG REGARDING CEBUPACIFIC AIRLINES AND THEIR APPALLING CUSTOMER RELATIONS SERVICE == WELL THEY DONT HAVE ONE IN REALITY!
AND THE APALLING DISREGARD THEY EXHIBIT TO THEIR CUSTOMERS I PERSONALLY CONSIDER THEM TO BE CORPORATE THIEVES
AND THEY SHOULD BE EXPOSED AND TAKEN TO COURT AND SUED FOR THE HARDSHIP AND TROUBLE THEY CAUSE TO UNSUSPECTING CUSTOMERS"
Taken from the website "Macuha.com"
http://www.macuha.com/2008/01/rants/my-cebu-pacific-experience/

" I used to like Cebu Pacific too, BUT not anymore!"
Taken from the website "Market Manila"
http://www.marketmanila.com/archives/cebu-pacific-youre-so-daing#comment-126844

Could all these customers be wrong? I don't think so. When you start using monies no longer your own and start using this money to boost your profits, you should be taken to court and sued for unethical business conduct, misappropriating funds of customers and be exposed to the world for this in-excusable, atrocious, corporate theft.

If you book and try to travel with Cebu Pacific, you do so, at your own risk and peril.

GIVE THEM A MISS.

Harry.

TRAVEL SCAMS - Read below

TRAVEL SCAMS - Read below
Don't get scammed see below.

oh la la

oh la la

TRAVEL TIP No: 1- Travelling to Europe? What can you expect?

France, a place where the pedestrian apparently has no rights, and zebra crossings simply are insignificant paint on the roads.

Crossing the street in France is a game of chance and bluff: you try to bluff the drivers that you're crossing whatever they do, and you take the chance that they
will have a conscience after all and at least slow down.

But it's not just in France that motorists are arrogantly dismissive of pedestrians. It's a
cultural phenomenon in Europe.

But in France, they do it with more panache.
This is one of the lessons the visitor must learn in order to survive in Europe.

Here's another: Europe is a paradise for gaspers.

Gasping is the European community's national sport. Even with bans in place in many countries, the place is rife with chuffers happily and carefreely blowing smoke in your face. In cafes and bars, anywhere within sight of the footpath and street seems their territory.

If you don't like total strangers blowing smoke into your face, crowding your space with carcinogenic particles, then beware.

Particularly of Switzerland, of all places.

Known as an urbane, go-ahead kind of place, Switzerland is one of the few countries in Europe still
to impose bans on smoking in bars and restaurants.

In France, there also is the Curse of the Non-French Credit Card.

These days, you can get cash and pay for things with your credit and debit cards from pretty well any ATM in Europe, but there is an important exception to this in France.

Financial transaction machines in France that are associated with government organisations will not
accept credit and debit cards issued by banks that aren't French.

That means that cards issues by non-french banks won't work.

So having said all that, don't forget to say "Bonjour" at least this will help you melt the ice (and maybe the smoke as well) when you are in French speaking Europe!

Au revoir et bon voyage (Good-bye and good travel).

WORLD CITY GUIDES

WORLD CITY GUIDES
Click on the region that you want to travel for a comprehensive city guide list.

OK...so you wanna travel...check these MUST SEE places.

OK...so you wanna travel...check these MUST SEE places.
a) Costa Rica - Monteverde Rain Forrest
Due to the acclaimed rain forests and cloud forests in the greater Monteverde area, Monteverde has become a major part of the Costa Rican tourist trail - despite difficult access. It was recently voted one of the "7 Wonders of Costa Rica" by the Costa Rican newspaper La Nacion Of Monteverde's total 200,000 annual tourists, over 60,000 tourists visit the reserve.

b) Australia - Great Barrier Reef
Due to its vast biodiversity, warm clear waters and its accessibility from the floating guest facilities called live aboards,the reef is a very popular destination for tourists, especially scuba divers. Many cities along the Queensland coast offer daily boat trips to the reef. Several continental and coral cay islands have been turned into resorts, including the pristine resort island of Lady Elliott Island.

c) USA - Florida Everglades

Lunch at Florida -Everglades

Here's the desert!!!!
Everglades National Park is centered on a fresh water river, with sawgrass marshes and mangrove islands.

The park holds the largest continuous stand of sawgrass prairie in North America and the largest mangrove ecosystem in the Western hemisphere. It’s the habitat of some 14 threatened species.

The Everglades is one of 26 World Heritage Sites in danger and according to Smithsonian magazine, is currently "the focus of the world's largest environmental restoration project." It is the only place on earth that has both alligators and crocodiles living side by side. And contrary to what people say, it's a marsh, not a swamp because its main vegetation is grassy, not woody.

d) USA - Louisiana Bayou's
The Bayous are serene,mysterious and beautiful.They are the home of Cypress Swamps abundant wildlife and fish.There's Swamp Tours,Fishing Charters both inshore and offshore,Hunting Charters and Bow Fishing Charters.There's Jean Lafitte Wildlife Refuge with walking tours,Mardi Gras and many fine Restaurants.

e) India - Taj Mahal
The Taj Mahal attracts from 2 to 4 million visitors annually, with more than 200,000 from overseas. Most tourists visit in the cooler months of October, November and February. Polluting traffic is not allowed near the complex and tourists must either walk from carparks or catch an electric bus. The Khawasspuras (northern courtyards) are currently being restored for use as a new visitor centre. The small town to the south of the Taj, known as Taj Ganji or Mumtazabad, originally was constructed with caravansarais bazaars and markets to serve the needs of visitors and workmen. Lists of recommended travel destinations often feature the Taj Mahal, which also appears in several listings ofseven wonders of the modern world, including the recently announced New Seven Wonders of the World, a recent poll with 100 million votes.

f) Tanzania - Mt Kilimandjaro

Kilimanjaro. The name itself is a mystery wreathed in clouds. It might mean Mountain of Light, Mountain of Greatness or Mountain of Caravans. Or it might not. The local people, the Wachagga, don't even have a name for the whole massif, only Kipoo (now known as Kibo) for the familiar snowy peak that stands imperious, overseer of the continent, the summit of Africa.

Kilimanjaro, by any name, is a metaphor for the compelling beauty of East Africa. When you see it, you understand why. Not only is this the highest peak on the African continent; it is also the tallest free-standing mountain in the world, rising in breathtaking isolation from the surrounding coastal scrubland – elevation around 900 metres – to an imperious 5,895 metres (19,336 feet).


g) Europe - The Alps
The Alps are popular both in summer and in winter as a destination for sightseeing and sports.Winter sports(alpine and Nordic skiing, tobogganing, snowshoeing, ski tours) can be practised in most regions from December to April, while in summer the Alps are popular with hikers, mountain bikers, paragliders, mountaineers, while many lakes attract swimmers, sailors and surfers. The lower regions and larger towns of the Alps are well accessed by motorways and main roads but higher passes and by-roads can be treacherous even in summer. Many passes are closed in winter. A multitude of airports around the Alps (and some within), as well as long-distance rail links from all neighbouring countries, afford large numbers of travellers easy access from abroad.

h) Tahiti _ Bora Bora
Bora Bora, located about 160 miles northwest of Tahiti and approximately 2,600 miles south of Hawaii, was discovered in 1722, and is arguably the most beautiful island on the planet.

Its ancient name of Vava'u suggests that the original inhabitants of this seven-million-year-old island arrived from Tonga.

And interestingly, in the local Tahitian language there is no "B," so its actual name is then Pora Pora, meaning "first born."

Bora Bora's fabled blue lagoon (above) is, according to novelist James A. Michener, "so stunning, that there are really no adequate words to describe it."

Volcanic in origin, Bora Bora's rugged main island, and a few smaller islands, are completely surrounded by coral reefs.

Made famous by books, movies, and its stunning beauty, the island is now besieged by tourism and overcrowding. Regardless, if you must visit a South Pacific island (and you should), Bora Bora would be an excellent choice.

CAN YOU NAME THIS CITY?

CAN YOU NAME THIS CITY?

.....and this one?

.....and this one?
look closely....:-)

IN WHICH COUNTRY WOULD YOU FIND THIS MAGNIFICENT SCENERY?

IN WHICH COUNTRY WOULD YOU FIND THIS MAGNIFICENT SCENERY?
hhmmmm where could it be????

THIS CITY SITS ON TWO CONTINENTS. CAN YOU NAME THE CITY AND THE CONTINENTS IT BRIDGE'S?

More international flights than any other website! Low Fares to France and Europe

I love the tropics, don't you?

I love the tropics, don't you?
Somewhere in paradise!

TO WHICH COUNTRY DOES THIS AIRLINE LOGO BELONGS TO?

TO WHICH COUNTRY DOES THIS AIRLINE LOGO BELONGS TO?

Talking about the tropics here are few more mouth watering paradise pics.

Talking about the tropics here are few more mouth watering paradise pics.
Anse source d'argent - Seychelles

IKOYI BAY BEAUTIFUL ISN'T IT? CAN YOU NAME THE CITY WHERE THIS BAY IS?

IKOYI BAY BEAUTIFUL ISN'T IT? CAN YOU NAME THE CITY WHERE THIS BAY IS?
by the way once you get to find out the name of the city this will give you a clue to find the answer for the airline logo....hehehehe

Kho Phi Phi Island -Thailand

Majahuitas Bay - Mexico

Paradise Beach - The Caribbeans

Pink Beach - Antigua and Barbuda

Playa Medina _ Venezuela

The Maldives

The Seychelles

Would you like to be onboard this aircraft?

Would you like to be onboard this aircraft?