Lombok Travel Guide

Indonesia, Travel, Travel Guide

Where to go in Lombok, Indonesia

1. Sengigi Beach

_DSC5418

Sengigi Beach 

IMG_0155

Perfect Sunset Spot 

  • Sengigi Beach has one of best sunset viewpoint in Lombok.
  • About an hour rides from the Lombok Airport.
  • Arts market located at the vicinity of Sengigi Beach. Great place to shop for souvenir .
  • Highly recommended to stay at Puri Bunga Beach Cottages. Amazing view!
  • Roadside Food Vendor
  • Happy Café (Live Band Cafe during the night)
  • Asmara Restaurant – delicious Indonesian cuisine

2. Tiu Kelep & Sedang Gile Waterfall

_DSC5322

Tiu Kelep Waterfall 

IMG_0126

Tiu Kelep Waterfall 

  • About 2 – 2.5 hours ride from Sengigi Beach
  • Guide (Not necessary). Be careful if the local kept insisting that you will be needing a guide for the trek.  The trek to the waterfall is pretty obvious and you just have to follow it.
  • First waterfall (Sendang Gile) 5 minutes hike
  • 2nd Waterfall (Tiu Kelep) 20 minutes hike. (The huge one)
  • Entrance fee should cost around (INR 10,000 / USD 0.70 / MYR 3)
  • Normally spend around 2-3 hours here.

3. Kuta Beach

_DSC5109

Michelle & Vera

_DSC5146

Vera

_DSC5129

Michelle 

_DSC5153

Local surfers 

_DSC5102

One of my favorite shot here in Lombok 

  • Normally known as surf beach among the local surfer here.
  • Reggae Bar
  • Visit Pantai Seger (5 – 10 minutes drive from Kuta Beach)
  • Small fee to be paid to the local upon entrance.
DJI_0007-2

Aerial shot of the Pantai Seger

DJI_0011-2

Sunset

DJI_0003-2

Aerial view of Pantai Seger. 

_DSC6070_DSC6066

_DSC5076

Kenny‘s friend that brought us around. 

4. Tanjung Aan Beach

_DSC5184

Vera & Michelle at Tanjung Aan

_DSC5233

The Swing 

  • Amazing beach view
  • Boat ride to Batu Payung available here.
  • Family friendly beach
  • Local snacks stall available.

5. Sasak Village (ENDE)

IMG_9849IMG_9856

IMG_9860

Traditional House 

_DSC5002

Local stick fighting performance by the locals. 

_DSC5046

Local crafts

  • Local villages open for visitor
  • Pay as you want (donation to the villagers) and also comes with a local guide.
  • Visit their traditional houses.
  • Souvenir shopping
  • Local fighting performances

6. Sambelia Tree Forest

_DSC5345

  • Giant ancient trees
  • Small fee required upon entrance.
  • Skippable if you have tight schedule.
  • About 3 – 4 hours drive from Sengigi Beach.

7. Gili Terawangan Beach

_DSC5875

Sunset at Gili Terawangan 

_DSC5832

Michelle with the swing 

_DSC5809

Perfect sunset spot 

_DSC5720

Love this shot 

_DSC5631

OM

_DSC5787

That Sun peaking 

IMG_0227

Our villa acoomodation 

IMG_0233

Local Vegan Cafe in Gili Terawangan 

IMG_0234

 

  • About 30 minutes boat ride (local boat) from the jetty. (About IDR 150,000 / USD 11 / MYR 45 including pick up from hotel)
  • Private boats around 10 minutes.
  • Gili Terawangan known as the party island and tons of scuba diving shops and restaurants.
  • Do rent bicycle to get around the island or hop onto the pony carts. (Around IDR 50,000 / USD 3.50 / MYR 15 per day)
  • Night life at Gili Terawangan is spectacular from party bars to reggae music.
  • There are plenty of boat tour around so make sure you compared the prices.
  • Sunset Swing (Ombak Sunset) one of the famous swing that you see on Instagram.
  • There are viewpoint on top of the hill.
  • Do spend around 2-3 days here.
  • Bear in mind that it can get pretty crowded on the island.
_DSC5931

Relaxation 

DJI_0011

Aerial View of the Island 

DJI_0007DJI_0004-3

Other places to visit

  1. Sembalun Highlands (About 1 – 1.5 hours hike and paddy field aerial viewpoint)
  2. Selong Belanak Beach (Surf Beach & Yoga Class)
  3.  Mawi & Mavun Beach (About an hour drive from Kuta)
  4. Pink Beach 

Extra Tips

  • Lombok is a huge island so make sure you have your main destination in mind and plan your travel well.
  • Would highly recommend to stay in Lombok for at least a week to get full experience of Lombok.
  • Rent a car or motorbike is the best way to get around.
  • Check out our travel vlog here Lombok Travel Guide

For more info,

Stalk me on social media, Lionel Benang

For Business

Email me at lionelbenangchai@gmail.com

 

 

Advertisements

Surabaya Quick Travel Guide

Indonesia, Travel, Travel Guide

Where to go in Surabaya, Indonesia

1. Mount Bromo

_DSC4529

Michelle & Vera

_DSC4509

That’s Vera 

_DSC4352

Making their way to Mt.Bromo 

_DSC4398

The Iconic Postcard Photo (This is not Mt Bromo though) 

_DSC4417

Michelle looks sleepy there

_DSC4431

Mount Bromo

_DSC4437

Wear mask to prevent inhaling too much of the gas

IMG_9655

That morning ride 

IMG_9658

Crowded with people 

IMG_9670

Sunrise View 

  • Sunrise in Mt. Bromo viewpoint is very popular with tourists.
  • Book early with your guide for the jeep ride or ride with GoJek (Local Bike Sharing)
  • It can get very crowded at the viewing point so do go early and find your perfect spot. (Highly suggested to ask your guide bring you to other spot for sunrise)
  • Mt. Bromo located far away from Surabaya Airport so make sure you arrive one day earlier.
  • Normally trip to Mount Bromo is a guided tour and they will bring you to few attractions around Mount Bromo.
  • They will drop you off at the parking area and gotta walk about 20 minutes to Mount Bromo.
  • There’s temple located at the middle of pathway to Mt. Bromo.

2. Teletubies Hill

_DSC4623

Teletubies Hill 

_DSC4659

New member of the Teletubies squad

_DSC4734

Good Times! 

  • After visiting Mt.Bromo, we were brought to the Teletubies Hill.
  • Beautiful green mountainaoeus scenery
  • Horse Riding Available

3. Lautan Pasir (Sea of Sands)

_DSC4757

Jumpshot 1 

_DSC4769

Jumpshot 2 

_DSC4783

Jumpshot 3? 

_DSC4807

The Gang Lair

  • Vast land of dark sands, locally known as Lautan Pasir (Sea of Sands) 
  • Perfect spot to get your Instagram picture with the iconic hill.

4. Colorful Village (Malang, Surabaya)

_DSC4873

Rainbow Town 

_DSC4896

So colorful 

_DSC4848

_DSC4846

Amazing arts 

  •  A small village located at Malang, Surabaya.
  • Rainbow colored house and townhouse.
  • Entry fee required

Extra Tips

  • Surabaya has a lot to offer so make sure you spend more than 3 days here.
  • If you have more time to spare do visit the famous waterfall and Mount Ijen.
  • Indonesian cuisine is a musts try although it can be extremely spicy.
  • We booked our trip through  Javanation Trip Organizer.
  • Our trip cost around IDR 975,000 / USD 68 / MYR 294 per person.
  • Very reliable guides and friendly. Highly recommended.
  • They know the places well and can bring you to eat awesome local food.
  • Check out our travel vlog here Surabaya & Lombok Travel Blog

For more info

Stalk me on social media, Lionel Benang

For Business

Email Me at lionelbenangchai@gmail.com

 

 

 

Jodhpur Travel Guide

India, Travel

Where to go in Jodhpur

1. Clock Tower Market

_DSC3601

Clock Tower Market

_DSC3605

Riding his bike

_DSC3658

Textile Shopping

  • Located at the heart of Jodhpur
  • Free Entry
  • Local wet market and shopping districts
  • Textile and jewelry shopping

2.  Mehrangarh Fort

_DSC3865

Mehrangarh Fort (Hogwarts in real life)

_DSC3672

Almost there

IMG_9255

It comes with audio tour

IMG_9262

Turban Museum

_DSC3706

Opium Ceremony

_DSC3832

Local performances

IMG_9195

Aerial Tours Available

  • Open daily (9am – 5pm)
  • Entrance fee (600 Rupees / USD 9.30 / MYR 38 )
  • Entrance fee including an audio guide
  • If you’re a student, do bring along your student ID because it is cheaper.
  • Follow the audio guide to explore the fort (Normally around 1.5 – 2 Hrs)
  • Can hire a Tuk Tuk / taxi to get here or walk through the local villages about 10 minutes to get here.
  • Souvenir shops available towards the end of the tour
  • Opium Ceremony
  • Best description for this place is it look exactly like Hogwarts.

3. Jaswant Thada (White Temple)

_DSC3883

Jaswant Thada (White Temple)

_DSC3903

Local guard playing their traditional instrument

  • Open daily from 9am – 5pm
  • Entrance fee is 30 rupees / USD 0.50 / MYR 2
  • Walking distances from Mehrangarh Fort.
  • If you’re going to take a Tuk Tuk / taxi to the fort, make sure you visit this place.

4. TOORJI KA JHALRA (STEPWELL)

_DSC4040

Stepwell in Jodhpur 

_DSC3996

Local spent their evening having fun here

_DSC4006

One of mine favorite shot

_DSC3953

Happy kids

_DSC4017

They jump at least 5 storeys high

_DSC3986

Leap of faith

_DSC4165

Chill in well

  • Free entry.
  • Walking distances from the Stepwell House Cafe.
  • Go in the evening when it is more crowded with local.
  • They will dive and perform some stunts to entertain you .
  • Check out our travel vlog if you are interested to watch them jump.

What To Eat in Jodhpur

1. The Omelette Cafe

_DSC4056

The chefs and his eggs

IMG_9329

Other services they offer beside making you an omelette

  • Located close to the Clock Tower Market
  • Seats are limited
  • Highly recommended
  • Try more than one type of omelette and you’ll be amazed

2. Cafe Royale

IMG_9331

Cafe Royale 

  • No.1 in Trip Advisor lists.
  • Great snacks food & coffee options.
  • Located in the vicinity of the Clock Tower Market.
  • Run by local Indian family.
  • Super friendly and informative
  • Highly recommended this cafe

3. Stepwell House Cafe

IMG_9307

Comfy interior 

IMG_9309

Great view

  • Located right at the step well.
  • Great views
  • Comfy ambience
  • Food was just okay but great place for chilling and watching people dive into the well.
_DSC3786

The blue city, Jodhpur

_DSC3928

People of Jodhpur

_DSC3939

All blue 

IMG_9457

We even stay at this old all blue backpacker lodge. 

IMG_9462

Last day in Jodhpur

IMG_9470

Check out your name on the train list before you board 

IMG_9466

Can you spot ours 

IMG_9475

Inside of the train 

IMG_9190

Moustaches is a thing for men here. That’s me trying to blend in. 

Extra Tips

  • If you have extra time here in Jodhpur, do visit the village safari
  • Mehrangarh fort is can be reach by walking from the city
  • Mehrangarh fort and Jaswant Thada are close to each other so do not let them charge higher.
  • Cafe Royale and Omelette Cafe are not to be missed.
  • Cafe Royale owners are very lovely people so do chat with them and they will be very delightful to spare you their thoughts.
  • Do watch our travel vlog here Jodhpur City Guide

 

 

Jaipur (The Pink City) Travel Guide

India, Travel

Getting there

  • Jaipur city is accessible by trains and buses from other part of India.
  • Do check out the train schedule on Clear Trip Apps
  • Do plan and purchase your train ticket in advance.
  • Uber services available.
  • Metro railway available in Jaipur, so hop on!
IMG_8620

Jaipur Railway Station

Where to go in Jaipur City

1. HAWA MAHAL (PALACE OF WINDS)

_DSC2465

Haha Mahal (Palace of Winds) 

_DSC2453

Interior of Hawa Mahal

_DSC2445

Climb all the way up for this view. 

  • Open Daily (From 9am to 4.30pm)
  • Entrance fees for foreigner (200 Rupees / USD 3 / MYR 13)
  • If you are a student, bring along your student card (Cheaper fee)
  • Do explore inside out of Hawa Mahal and you will be amazed.
  • Climb all the way up for the view. (Bird eye view of Jaipur City)
  • Local guide available for hire.
  • If you would like to take the shot of Hawa Mahal building, visit theopposite cafe on the third floor and they have a rooftop there where you can take your shot of Hawa Mahal during sunset.
  • Walking distances to Jantar Mantar & City Palace.
  • In house museum.

2. AMBER FORT

_DSC2369

Amber Fort 

  • Open Daily (8am – 6pm)
  • Entrance Fee (500 Rupees / USD 8 / MYR 32)
  • Light show available from 7pm – 9pm.
  • Duration for visiting Amber Fort normally around 2 hours because it is freaking massive.

3. PANNA MEENA KA KUND (STEPWELL)

_DSC2321

Stepwell 

_DSC2327

Located at the village after Amber Fort

  • Free Entry
  • If you would like to take picture at the staircase of the step well, the security guard would ask for some tips. (Negotiable)
  • We did not take any because we cheapskate. Budget backpackers you know.
  • Instagram-worthy photoshoot right at this place.

4. JAIGARH FORT

_DSC2266

Jaigarh Fort

_DSC2232

View from Jaigarh Fort. 

_DSC2246

Massive Fort 

_DSC2171

Take Instagram-Worthy Photo Here 

  • Open Daily (8am – 4.30pm)
  • Entrance Fee (85 Rupees / USD 1.30 / MYR 5)
  • Hire a Tuk Tuk or Taxi to get here (Normally less than 500 rupees)
  • Uber services not available at this area. (We tried)
  • Normally combined day trip with Nahargarh Fort & Amber Fort because all these forts located nearby.)
  • Explore around 1.5 – 2 hours here. This fort is huge! You will be amazed!
  • Do inform your driver to wait for at least 1.5 hours or else they will charge you extra. ( P/S : We had so much fun exploring that we forgotten that we agreed with our driver for just an hour here and he asked for extra pay.)

5. NAHARGARH FORT

_DSC1979

Amazing Architecture 

_DSC2036

Classic Window 

_DSC2009

Aerial View of Jaipur City 

  • Open Daily (8am – 4.30pm)
  • Entrance fees for foreigner (200 Rupees / USD 3 / MYR 13)
  • If you are a student, bring along your student card (Cheaper fee)
  • Hire a Tuk Tuk or Taxi to get here (Normally less than 500 rupees)
  • Uber services not available at this area. (We tried)
  • Normally combined day trip with Nahargarh Fort & Amber Fort because all these forts located nearby.)
  • Explore around 1.5 – 2 hours here.
  • Wax museum open for visitor (Separate Ticket Fee)
  • In house restaurant.
  • Check out their Bawri (Step well) .

6. JAL MAHAL

_DSC1929

  • Not accessible
  • Free to view from the waterfronts
  • Used to be a palace but then abandoned till now.
  • Located at middle of the Man Sagar Lake in Jaipur City
  • About 15 – 20 minutes drive from Jaipur City depending on the traffic.
  • Do ask your driver to stop along the waterfronts if you are heading towards Jaigarh Fort, Nahargarh Fort or Amber Fort.

7. LMB RESTAURANT

IMG_8649

They served sweets, snacks and local food. 

IMG_8642

Chips!

  • Serve all kind of desserts, snacks and food.
  • Located at the heart of City Palace.
  • Local recommended.

8. PINK SQUARE MALL

IMG_8640

Pink Square Mall

  • Legit shopping mall in Jaipur City equipped with supermarket, restaurant and cinema.
  • Do you groceries shopping here.
  • Escape from the heat if you have to.
  • If you would like to enjoy local ambience cinema with a short pee-break in between the movies and have your food deliver to you directly. Experience that here.

9. NIBS Cafe (Chocolate Heaven)

IMG_8942

Hipster Cafe

IMG_8948

Chocolate Pizza! Yes! It is! 

  • My favorite cafe so far in India.
  • Uber your way here as I do not know the public transport to get here.
  • Find them of TripAdvsior.
  • Try their chocolate pizza and chocolate shots! You have been warned!
  • Fast Internet Speed.

Buying Bus Ticket in Jaipur

IMG_8681

This is the ticket counter (Near to the Jaipur Railway Station

IMG_8995

Two Pax Sleeper

IMG_8990

Sleeper Bus by Rishabh Travel 

  • In addition to train, you can also travel around India by bus.
  • This probably not as comfortable as train AC sleeper and may take longer time to reach your destination but it offer you an affordable budget.
  • We were recommended by Zostel staff to buy our ticket from this travel agent.
  • Highly recommended.
  • We bought our bus ticket to Udaipur from Jaipur for 550 Rupees / USD 8.5 / MYR 35.
  • It was an overnight bus and it took around 6 hours.

Other Places To Visit

  1. The Pink City Palace & Bazaar
  2. Jantar Mantar (Observatory)
  3. Royal Albert Museum
  4. Sun Temple (For Sunset Location)
  5. Niro’s Restaurant (Famous for Lal Maas)
_DSC1893

Jaipur City Palace

_DSC1898

Local Vendor in Jaipur 

_DSC1905

People of Jaipur

Extra Tips

  1. Always bargain 70%-80% less for the gifts / items that you want to buy.
  2. Always bargain or negotiate with the Tuk Tuk / taxi driver for your trip here because you can visit few places in one day.
  3. Jaipur city is a shopping heaven. Do all souvenirs shopping here from textile to bangles. They offer tons of affordable and colorful gifts here.
  4. Do get a tourist composite tickets if you plan to visit more than one site. (Multiple monuments entry tickets for the price of one)
  5. Spend at least 2 full days here to get a full experience of The Pink City.
  6. For accommodation, highly recommended Zostel or Panda Backpackers.  Check them out in Trip Advisor or Booking.com 
  7. Watch our travel vlog here Jaipur Travel Guide

 

For More Info,

Find me on social media, Lionel Benang

For Business,

Email lionelbenangchai@gmail.com

Visit Our Website Here

http://www.dreammuchvisuals.com

 

 

 

Taj Mahal Quick Guide

India, Uncategorized

Getting There

  • Taj Mahal located in Agra, India.
  • About 2 hours train ride from New Delhi.
  • Train scheduled daily to Agra at 7am.
  • Purchase your train ticket at the Tourist Ticket Counter at least a day before.
  • Check availability of train ticket and cost on Clear Trip apps.
  • If you’re on tight schedule, visiting Taj Mahal can be done on day trip.
  • Check out our travel vlog here Taj Mahal Travel Guide

_DSC1815

IMG_8418

Complimentary breakfast on train.

IMG_8425

Agra Cantt Railway Station

IMG_8424

Tuk Tuk Price List (Location Based)

  • There are plenty of taxis & Tuk Tuk available at the railway station.
  • Remember to discuss about the cost first before agreeing to ride with them.
  • They may ask for extra during your trip so do double check on your hotel or hostel location on Google map. ( P/S : They asked for extra rupees from us because our hotel kinda far away from agreed location.)
  • Normally they will offer you their tour services along the way so make sure you know the approximate tour price range and find the right match for you.

How To Buy Taj Mahal Entrance Ticket 

IMG_8487

Ticket Counter (From Western Gate) 

IMG_8453

Sunrise & Sunset Schedule (Opening Time For Visitor)

IMG_8452

Do & Don’t during your visit to Taj Mahal

  • Ticket Cost (1000 Rupees / USD 16 / RM 64)
  • If you are a student, do bring along your student card. (Cheaper)
  • Open from sunrise till sunset.
  • Best visiting time is during sunrise or sunset (Catch the Golden Hours)
  • There are three available ticket counter (Taj Mahal Western Gate, Taj Mahal Southern Gate & Taj Mahal Eastern Gate)
  • If you would like to buy your ticket in advance, purchase it online here Taj Mahal Online Ticket
  • If you love to visit Taj Mahal with a lot less crowd, visit Taj Mahal during sunrise in the summer. ( P/S, do bear in mind that it may get very warm & hot and Taj Mahal Building probably will go on maintenance.)
  • Photography & videography is not allowed inside the Taj Mahal monument.
  • Large tripods & stabilizers are not allowed as well unless with a film permit.
  • Night tour for Taj Mahal is normally available during the full moon period. Do check out their timetable here Night View at Taj Mahal
  • Guide is available for hire around USD 5. 
  • There are plenty souvenirs & gifts shop available right outside Taj Mahal.
_DSC1618

The Western Gate 

_DSC1747

Taj Mahal During Sunrise 

_DSC1728

Closer look at the western gate. 

_DSC1711

Mihman Khana (Guesthouse) 

_DSC1696

Taj Mahal Balcony 

_DSC1695

Taj Mahal 

_DSC1637

Taj Mahal During Sunrise 

_DSC1529

Street around Agra Town. 

_DSC1530

Local marketplace in Agra

IMG_8449

Local Thali at Good Vibes Cafe

Extra Tips 

  1. Always bargain about 70%-80% less for the gifts / items that you want.
  2. Do a proper research about the place to avoid potential scams and touts.
  3. Do screenshot the destination or map of the destination that you are about to visit.
  4. Do visit Agra Fort as well. (We skipped that due to budget) but it is huge.
  5. I would highly recommend to stay at Zostel again if you are on a budget.
  6. For food, go for Good Vibes Cafe, they can customize your meal to your preferences. (We asked for something that off menu, American Chopsuey, and it is superb!)

For more info,

Find me on social media, Lionel Benang.

For business,

Email me at lionelbenangchai@gmail.com 

Visit Our Website Here Dreammuch Visuals

 

Trekking in Nepal

Adventure, Everest, Inspirational Malaysia, Inspiring Filmmaker, Nepal Travel, Uncategorized, Web Series, YouTube, Youtube Channel

Everest Base Camp Trek

_DSC9451

Flight to Lukla by GOMA AIR. 

_DSC9525

On our way to Phakding. 

_DSC9509

Horses are available for hire.

_DSC9585

One of many suspension bridges.

PREPARATION

  • Check for the right season (March – May (Spring)  or September – November (Autumn))
  • Avoid the monsoon season (June – August (Summer))
  • Prepare yourself physically (At least 3 months prior to your trip – HIIT highly recommended)
  • Prepare yourself mentally (Read and do research about your trek course)
  • Do a full body medical check up (Optional)
  • Typhoid Vaccine and Hepatitis B Injection (Check with your local doctor)
  • Make your booking with reliable trekking agent. ( I did it with Madhav Adhikari (Trekking Agent) &  Mount Face Nepal)
  • Solo / Group (Do it with the right company)
  • Get a travel / trekking insurance (MUST) 
  • Prior Mountain hiking / trekking activities (Mountain with high altitude make the best preparation because you’ll be acclimatizing a lot easier during your EBC trek)
  • Eat a lot of ginger / garlic months before. It helps thinning the blood and apparently it with reduce severe Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS)
  • Drink a lot of water and get used to it.
_DSC9528

River water flows from the glaciers.

_DSC9532

Highest elevation trek (Phakding to Namche)

_DSC9554

Up. Up. and Up.

_DSC9564

Take photos. A lot of it.

_DSC9557

Gayane, Sola & Ganesh (Guide)

_DSC9567

Kakak Ani at the Sagarmatha National Park Entrance. 

_DSC9599

Double suspension bridges.

_DSC9619

Few hundreds meter to Namche. 

_DSC9630

Ganesh (Guide) & Sola. Their positivity is addictive.

_DSC9827

Local strumming the music instruments playing the Sherpa song.

_DSC9820

Panaromic View of Namche Bazaar. 

WHAT TO EXPECT

  • AMS can be very severe. (Be alert to the symptoms)
  • You will be having nausea and headache and maybe lost of appetite during acclimatization. It’s a sign of your body adjusting and adapting to the altitude and level of oxygen. Acclimatization is crucial. 
  • Rest a day or two if you have to.
  • Speak out if you feeling uneasy or unwell.
  • Most guides and local lodge operator speak decent English and some Malay Language(Share this post if you’re a Malaysian)
  • It can be freezing cold at night so make sure you are comfortably warm.
  • Hot water would cost you around USD 3 / 300 Rupees. 
  • You’ll probably fart a lot as you go higher. It is normal. It is due to the altitude.
  • You’ll maybe have a strange and weird dreams. It is normal. It is due to decreasing oxygen level as you go higher.
  • If you’re lucky, probably you can spot some local mountain animals.
  • Do your last shopping at Namche Bazaar before heading higher.
  • If you want to know more, do watch our whole EBC series here HUMBLED SERIES
_DSC9624

Our Superman Potter (Lakhwir) 

_DSC9627

Superman Surash (Potter). These people are amazing.

_DSC9632

Sola

_DSC9588

Common transportation here at the mountain. Yak Services.

_DSC9548

Prayer Flags, Prayers carved on stone and a Stupa.

GEAR

  • Comfortable Waterproof Trekking Boots
  • Pairs of Socks
  • Slipper / Birkens / Crocs / Sneakers (Off Trek / Lodge)
  • Thermal Layers
  • Fleece Jackets
  • Down Jacket (Wind & Waterproof)
  • Gloves (Waterproof)
  • Winter Hat
  • Quick Dry Towel
  • Comfortable Light Daypacks
  • Waterbottles
  • Thermal
  • Sunglasses
  • Rain Jacket (Optional)
_DSC9834

Monks at the Tebongche Monastery 

_DSC9846

Ama Dablam

_DSC9863

Me and Ama Dablam (Behind)

_DSC9878

Paradise on Earth.

_DSC9879

Yaks

TECHNOLOGY

  • Camera (Mirrorless Preferred -Lighter)
  • Extra Batteries (Always keep them warm – Put it in your pockets)
  • Chargers (Charging will cost you from USD 2 – USD 6 per charge)
  • Phone charging cables
  • Light Tripod / Gorilla Pod
  • Headlamp
  • Power Bank
  • GoPro (Optional)
  • GoPro accessories
  • Solar Charger (Optional)
  • Laptop (Optional)
  • Drone (Optional) – (P/S: I brought a DJI Phantom 4 for my expedition. I did not flew it. Himalaya regions Air Space can get very busy in the day. I decided not to risk it since I have no valid film permit. Check with the local authorities first before you flew it) 
_DSC0094

Gayane, The Yoga Master.

_DSC0075

Sola (The Dal Bhat Power)

_DSC0243

Towards Gorak Sheep

DOCUMENTS

  • Cash (Nepalese Rupees & USD)
  • Passport (VISA)
  • ID
  • Trekking Permits (Normally kept by your guide)
  • Trekking Maps
  • Books
  • Journal
_DSC9749

Danphe (Nepal National Bird)

_DSC9856

Musk Deer

_DSC9989

Periche

OTHERS

  • First Aid Kits (Your guide will carry one as well)
  • Water Purifications Tablets
  • Soluble Vitamin Tablets
  • Sunscreen
  • Diamox (Meds)
  • Wet tissues (Clean yourself humans)
  • Candies, Power bars, Chocolates and Nuts.
  • Poker Cards (Optional)
  • Portable Speakers (Optional)
  • Gifts / Souvenirs from your own country (Optional – You will developed a strong bonds with your guide and porters. It will be a great gifts to remember your expedition together.)
_DSC9940

Periche 

_DSC0226

View of Ama Dablam 

_DSC0088

Panaromic View of the mountains at Lobuche Memorial

EXTRA TIPS

  • Take necessary rest after trekking. Acclimatization is crucial.
  • Do train for this expedition and do not take it lightly. (P/S : I did not make it to the base camp due to severe AMS )
  • Keep a positive vibes at ALL TIME.
  • Talk to the locals. (They may have summited Everest)
  • Flights timing occasionally stray from schedule. Be prepare. You could be waiting at the departure hall for hours.
  • Drink a lot of water during trekking.
  • Keep a steady pace with your group and be brave enough to speak out your concern when you felt unwell.
  • Last ATM available at Namche Bazaar
  • Hot shower normally cost USD 3 / 300 RUPEES
  • Everything get more expensive when it get higher.
  • Internet available at most lodge. (Not Free)
  • Take those selfies. Take those mountain shots. Take those group photos.
  • Try the Tibetan Breads & Dal Bhat. It’s GOOD!
  • Remember to have fun!
_DSC0082

At the Lobuche Memorial

_DSC0097

Lakhwir, Sola, Surash, Ganesh & Gayane. 

What Happened?

I am going to share with you what happened on the day I was airlifted back to Kathmandu. This was based on my personal experience and may vary with different individuals. Check out the full series here HUMBLED SERIES EP1 (YOUTUBE)

Every now and then, I dreamt about the mountains. It felt like I had some unfinished errands waiting for me to get it done. What actually happened that day? Did I made the right decision? What if I kept going? What would happened then? Will I make it back? I asked these questions to myself so many times.

Unfortunately, there are no actual answers to my never ending whys. Nevertheless, I have to learn to embrace what happened to me there and slowly build up my faith again.

That very night, I had severe headache. Non-stop gentle pounding inside the wall of my skulls. It woke me up almost every half an hour.  To make the situation a lot more worse, the kerosene odor in the lodge was so heavy that it almost felt like sleeping right next to a gas station. That night was the worst experience I had on the mountains. I puked right after I woke up the next morning. I drank plenty of water hoping that I would feel better with so little sleep. I have told Ganesh, Gayane & Sola about this. These were likely  signs of AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness). Gayane felt the same about the kerosene odor and had kept her window open for the night for fresh air. I was looking forward to leave lodge hoping that I would recover quicker. After taking Diamox (Medication), we left the lodge.

Starting the journey to Everest Base Camp from Periche that day with such low spirit probably not the best thing. I was not feeling myself that morning. Throughout that trek, I constantly stopping for water break. Fatigue kicked in way earlier that I expected. My knees were weak and I was panting.  As I was walking behind my trek mates, Ganesh keeping his pace parallel to me just to make sure I was all right. Then, I mumbled The Hail Mary Prayers number of times as I trekked. Severe fatigue was real. I hardly felt my legs. I remembered asked God for strength just to finished this journey. Every single word of the prayer felt so deep and I began to had tears. I was tired. It was a very emotional journey for me. I started to questioned myself what is my sole purpose of being here and attempting to get to Everest Base Camp. 

It was at Gorak Sheep lodge when I slowly felt like my body shutting down. I was extremely fatigued and lost of appetite. I had trouble walking straight back to my room and even sluggish reaction. After talking to Ganesh, Sola & Gayane, these were symptoms of severe AMS. I had Snickers and some hot soup. Did not felt any better. Body temperature dropped and I started shivering.  They warmed me up with extra down jacket and gave me some warm thermos.

I was terrified that I might collapse at any moment. So frightened that I would not wake up if I took a rest or nap. The only thing I had it mind at that very moment were my loved ones. I still wants to be with them. Mountains will always be there. That was when I decided to withdraw from this expedition. It was difficult decision for me. Leaving my closed friends behind after spent 7 days trekking together was immensely heart-breaking.

After getting treated at the Hospital in Kathmandu, I genuinely felt defeated. Calls and texts from loved ones were very comforting and had helped me overcome that phase of dismal period. I am sorry that I have let all of you down. I promised to train harder and better. Have no worries, I am better now.

Everest Base Camp, I will see you real soon. Namaste! 

To Ganesh, Gayane, Sola, Kak Ani, Surash & Lakhwir,

All of you are amazing individuals.

I was so lucky that I had met each and every one of you. I truly appreciate every moment that we spent trekking together. I miss all the good times. Mountain Disco!

Thank you for all the knowledge that you had shared

Thank you for the cookies, snacks, bananas and mango juices.

Thank you for all the jokes and laughter

Thank you for dancing on the mountains with me

Thank you for taking care of me when I am at my lowest point while literally on the highest point of my life. =)

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Dal Bhat Power 24/7!

DSC05624

Everest Base Camp. Displaying the colour of Armenian Flags. 

DSC05627

Ganesh (Malaysia Flag) & Sola (Sarawak Flag, my Home). Thank you for bringing it to base camp.

DSC05628

If you know me well, that’s my drawing. He made it as well. 

And You! Thank you for reading this all through! Love you!

DM me on my social media,  LIONEL BENANG.

There’s a treat for you! =)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pokhara Travel Guide

Adventure, Malaysia, Nepal Travel, Pokhara Travel Tips, Travel, Travel Guide, YouTube, Youtube Channel, Youtuber
_DSC0606

Aerial View of Pokhara Town

_DSC0959

Pokhara Old Town

_DSC0589

View from Pokhara Town. That is Machhapuchhre.

_DSC0581

Clear sky will give you a magnificent view like this from Pokhara. That is Annapurna South.

_DSC0573

Annapurna I peeking behind the Sarangkot Hill. 

  • About 8 hours of bus ride from Kathmandu. A bumpy ride but with a breathaking luxurious green mountain views.
  • Bus ticket normally cost NPR 600 / USD 6 / MYR 25. 
  • There are many hotels and lodges available here in Pokhara. We stayed at Hotel Hakoniwa (Budget). Highly recommended.

 

IMG_7888

View from our balcony. They have rooftop view as well.

IMG_7889

Our room (Non A/C)

 

What to do in Pokhara

Boating at the Phewa Lake

_DSC0603

Kenny & Chris. Paddling. Harder than we thought.

IMG_7760

Here’s the price list. Each jetty has its own price list. Do compare them.

IMG_7761

Third Jetty 

 

_DSC0972

Phewa Lake

  • You can hire a local paddler or paddle on your own. (2 paddle max)
  • Do paddle in the afternoon or during the sunset. You will get spectacular view of the mountains and lakes.
  • There are few boat jetty around so make sure you get the one with reasonable price.

Watch the Sunrise at Sarangkot Hill

_DSC0738

View from Sarangkot Hill 

_DSC0939

Kenny contemplating his future.

IMG_7829

This chicken nailed it!

  • Hire a cab from town. (NPR 1500 / USD 15 / MYR 63)
  • 30 – 45 minutes car ride.
  • Find your sweet spot or you could be sipping a cup of hot coffee while watching the skies breaking the dawn at a cafe rooftop nearby.
  • It can get pretty crowded so make sure you arrive early.
  • If you’re not a morning person, sunset is doable and you can witness the skies breaking the clouds in purple rays as it getting dark.
  • You can hike all the way up here. About 2 – 2.5 hours of hiking. Our friend, Chris did that.
  • Sarangkot Hill  is famous for paragliding activities. We skipped that since it is not within our budget.
  • Price normally ranged from USD 80 – USD 120. Bargain!

HIKE UP TO PEACE STUPA

IMG_7775

Follow this sign. About 20 minutes hike up.

_DSC0612

We made it in 15 minutes. Chris is happy.

_DSC0609

View from Peace Stupa. 

  • Free Entrance.
  • Sunset view.
  • About 20 – 35 minutes hike.
  • Paddle across the lake and hike your way up.

RENT A BICYCLE OR BIKE

_DSC0709

We came across this beautiful landscape at the countryside.

_DSC0670

Amazing Nepalese crossing lake full of water buffalos.

 

_DSC0715

3 modes of transportation here in Pokhara. 

_DSC0711

Sunset

  • Cycle around town or the countryside. You will be amazed.
  • It can get very hot in the day so do spray your sunscreen.

‘CHUKPA’ LOCAL SNACKS

IMG_7852

Chukpa (Local Snacks)

  • Famous local snacks.
  • You can find it almost any where in Pokhara. 
  • Mixed of chopped onions, cucumber, tomatoes, garlics, potatoes and instant noodles with sprinkled noodles spices.

BEST SANDWICH IN POKHARA

IMG_7731

  • Locate this sandwich cafe with TripAdvisor.
  • We kept coming back because it tasted amazing. All fresh ingredients.

Tips when travel to Pokhara

  • Do check the weather forecast.
  • Avoid monsoon season as you would not get clear view of the mountains when you in Pokhara.
  • Spend about 2-3 days here for a full travel experience in Pokhara. 
  • There are plenty of good restaurants here. Highly recommended Tibetan Restaurant. 
  • Check out Blues Bar if you want to chill and have some good rock band music.
  • Visit Chitwan National Park if you want to see some Rhinos. 
  • Go to the North side of Pokhara Town if you’re a hippies.
  • Check out my video here about Pokhara Pokhara Travel Guide

 

Kathmandu Travel Guide

Adventure, Malaysian Youtuber, Travel Guide, Uncategorized, YouTube, Youtube Channel

Where to stay in Kathmandu

_DSC0367.jpg

Kathmandu Aerial View

_DSC0498.jpg

Thamel Street At Night

_DSC0495_DSC0492

_DSC0266

Thamel (Shopping Paradise)

 

  • Best places to stay in Kathmandu definitely in the vicinity of Thamel.
  • Plenty of hotels, restaurants, bars, trekking and gifts shop. (Walking Distance)
  • Bear in mind that Thamel streets can be very dusty so do wear your face masks.
  • Highly recommended Hotel Thamel & Holy Himalaya Hotel .

Places of Interest in Kathmandu

Bhaktaphur Durbar Square

_DSC0422

Bhaktaphur Durbar Square

  • Bigger compared to Kathmandu Durbar Square.
  • About 45 minutes drive from Kathmandu.
  • Bargain with your cab driver for the price. ( Around 1500 NPR / USD 15 / MYR 63 One Way)
  • 1100 NPR / USD 11 / MYR 46 Entrance Ticket.
  • Locals will approach you and offer to be your guide. (Not necessarily)
  • Do spend 2-3 hours here.
_DSC0288

Bhaktaphur Street

_DSC0307

Hindu Temple

 

_DSC0303

Amazing Archictecture

_DSC0348

Pottery Square

_DSC0347_DSC0320_DSC0315_DSC0294

_DSC0350

Gayane trying Kufti (Local Ice Cream) for the first time

_DSC0355

Bhaktaphur Lake

Monkey Temple (Swayambhunath)

_DSC0491

Stupa

_DSC0485

_DSC0482

Buddhist Prayer Flags

 

_DSC0481

Monkey

  • 200 NPR / USD 2 / MYR 8 Entrance Ticket.
  • Hire a cab. (Normally included in the day tour package or you could walk 30 minutes from Thamel street)
  • Locals will approach you and offer to be your guide. (Not necessarily)

Garden of Dreams

_DSC0384

Sola at Garden of Dreams

_DSC0386

  • 200 NPR / USD 2 / MYR 8 Entrance Ticket.
  • Flowers & Squirrels.
  • Great place for family picnic and dating.
  • Walking distances from Thamel.

Kumari (Living Goddess Place)

_DSC0525

  • Free Entrance (Donation expected).
  • Photo of Kumari (Living Goddess) are forbidden during visit.
  • Kumari will take a peek at the window just for a moment.
  • Walking distances from Thamel.

Kathmandu Durbar Square

IMG_7616IMG_7615IMG_7618

  • 1000 NPR / USD 10 / RM42 Entrance Ticket
  • Most of it still under construction after the earthquake.

Best Lassi In Town

_DSC0501_DSC0506IMG_7634

 

  • We were brought here by a local. (We have no idea where is the exact location)
  • 70 NPR / USD 0.70 / RM 3
  • BEST LASSI WE HAD SO FAR.

Watch Traditional Dance Performance

_DSC0395

  • There are plenty of restaurants here in Nepal that offered traditional Nepalese dance performance.
  • We were brought to Thamel Restaurant by our trekking agent and we had a great evening with amazing Dal Bhat.

Drink Local Beers

_DSC0557

Tips when travel to Kathmandu

  • Try Dal That (Local Dish)
  • Always bargain even for groceries. Yes. We did and it worked.
  • Always pay in Nepalese Rupees and they do accept MYR currency. (Many Nepalese able to speak decent Malaysian Language)
  • Bring your face mask. (It get very dusty and windy at times)
  • Phasphutinath Temple going to cost 1000 NPR / USD 10 / MYR 42. (We skipped this place because we think it’s a bit expensive)
  • Check out my video here on Youtube Kathmandu Travel Guide

HA LONG BAY

Adventure, Travel
IMG_6480 2.JPG

AT THE PIER

IMG_6481 2IMG_6354 2

IMG_6355 2

Apricot Cruise

IMG_6365 2

Lunch On Board

IMG_6358 2

Twin Bed Room

 

IMG_6392 2

SUPRISING CAVE

IMG_6398 2

 

IMG_6404 2

Ti Top Island

IMG_6428

Dinner on Board

IMG_6436 2

Squid Fishing

IMG_6438 2

THE ONLY SQUID WE CAUGHT ALL NIGHT

IMG_6443 2

Pearl Farm

IMG_6445 2IMG_6450 2

 

IMG_6452 2IMG_6456

IMG_6466 2

VIETNAMESE SPRING ROLL LESSON

IMG_6469 2

Vietnamese Spring Roll that I’ve made

 

_DSC9373

_DSC9412

Another cruise in Halong Bay

_DSC9365.jpg

Local Vendor in Ha Long Bay

_DSC9358

Sunset in Ha Long Bay

_DSC9307_DSC9431

  • There are variety of cruises available for Ha Long Bay tour.
  • Normally there are 3 options to choose from 1 day, 2 Days 1 Night or 3 Days 2 Nights.
  • Price range differently depend on type of cruise you choose (Budget – Luxury)
  • Apricot Cruise (USD 90 – USD 110) – Mid Range Cruise
  • Pick up from your hotel
  • Hanoi – Ha Long City Pier (4 – 5 Hours Bus Journey)
  • They will have one stop at the souvenir shops along the way.
  • Activities for cruises are different (Surprising Cave, Pearl Farm, Tip Top Island, Squid Fishing, Tai Chi Lesson, Spring Roll Lesson etc)
  • Avoid peak / holiday season (Too crowded)
  • Low Peak (June – September)
  • Kayak activities temporarily on hold (April 2017)
_DSC9435

Friends that I met in this trip

Tips when travel in Hanoi, Vietnam

  • Be careful of the slippers thread scams (Random strangers will point at your slippers and grab it, then glue new thread on it without your permission)
  • Avoid buying donuts from the street (They will charge you A LOT MORE)
  • Check out our video here Ha Long Bay for more details.

Cheapest way to Siem Reap, Cambodia.

Adventure, Travel, YouTube

 

Hua Lamphong Train Station, Bangkok

IMG_5510

Hua Lamphong Train Station

IMG_5509

Train Schedule

  • Check out our full video here Lost in Cambodia
  • Get to Hua Lamphong Train Station in Bangkok, Thailand.
  • If you would like to stay overnight nearby can consider Train Guesthouse (Highly recommended)
  • Train ticket would cost you THB 48 / MYR 6 / USD 1.50
  • It scheduled 5.45AM daily.
  • Train tickets available for purchase on daily basis (No need for pre-booking)
  • 6 hours – 7 hours train ride.
  • Third Class Train.
  • No A/C.
  • Local food vendor will sell various food in the train.
  • Multiple stops along the way.
  • Last stop at Aranyaprathet Train Station, Thailand.
  • Take Tuk Tuk to the Thailand Border (15 Minutes Drive) cost THB 80 /  MYR 10 / USD 2.30
  • Cross the Thailand – Cambodia Bridge.
  • Avoid all touts and VISA scams along the way.
  • Go through Immigration (Visa & Non – Visa).
  • Private Cab Ride (USD 40).
  • 2 hours drive to Siem Reap, Cambodia.
  • They will drop you off to a Tuk Tuk Driver
  • Tuk Tuk Driver will tell you it’s free of charge but they will want you to use their service or they will charge you USD 5
IMG_5536 2

Platform 6

IMG_5535 2

48 THB TRAIN TICKET

IMG_5539 2

THIRD CLASS TRAIN

IMG_5562 2

RICE WITH EGG OMELETTE

_DSC8519

Classic

_DSC8513

Saying goodbye to her family

 

IMG_5577

ARANYAPRATHET TRAIN STATION, THAILAND

ANGKOR WAT

_DSC8531

Sunrise Silhouette. 

_DSC8543_DSC8536.jpg

_DSC8610

Ta Phrom Temple

_DSC8623

Ta From Temple (One of the scene in Tomb Raider was shot here)

IMG_5650

Reality

 

  • Sun starts to rise at 5.30AM.
  • Get your entrance ticket for USD 37.
  • Some locals will ask you to buy long pants for Angkor Wat visit. (Shorts are allowed).
  • Tuk Tuk ride to Angkor Wat normally cost around USD 15 – USD 20.
  • You can get a guide in Angkor Wat or your Tuk Tuk will brief you the history of Angkor Wat and some other temples around it.
  • Food in of Angkor Wat are normally expensive (One fried noodle would cost around USD 6)
  • Visit some other nearby temples (Not just Angkor Wat)
  • Check out Central Hostel in Siem Reap for accommodation (Highly Recommended)
IMG_5595

Places to visit in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

PUB STREET, SIEM REAP

 

  • Siem Reap night life
  • Shopping heaven
  • Make sure you visit Angkor What! Bar.
  • Pub Crawl Available
  • Exotic food (Scorpion, Snakes for you try
  • Night Market
  • Try Khmer noodles on the street
  • Cheap beers & liquors
  • Do not give money to the young kids who begged on the street.
_DSC8629

Pub Street

_DSC8679

One Dollar Fried Noodle

  • They have plenty stalls along Pub Street Area.
  • This particular stall is my favorite.
  • Try their one dollar vegetarian fried noodle.

SIEM REAP COUNTRYSIDE

IMG_5821 2

USD 3 FOR A DAY (MOUNTAIN BIKE)

  • Do visit the country side of Siem Reap.
  • Can book with the local tour or rent a bike on your own.

_DSC8753

_DSC8744

These kids are getting last few pieces of snails

_DSC8754

Catching fishes at the Paddy Field

 

_DSC8746

Happiness

_DSC8752

_DSC8773

This family saved my day! Check out my video for more details!

IMG_5838

Lost while searching for the sunset spot.

IMG_5841 2

They offered me this for free.

_DSC8775

Uncle Mech

_DSC8778

Uncle Mech’s Mum