Monday, 31 March 2014

Maya Beach, Thailand

You know when you watch certain movies and the scenery looks so beautiful you convince yourself that it's being filmed in a Hollywood studio because nothing in nature really looks that perfect and beautiful?

You're wrong.

Very, very wrong.

This is real life Paradise, otherwise known as the Phi Phi Islands of Thailand.

And if you happen to find yourself in Thailand and want to go see them yourself, I highly, highly recommend booking a trip with Phuket Sail Tours.

Maya Beach at Phi Phi Islands Thailand

They are a little more expensive (a lot more private) and worth every penny.
Bigger, cheaper tours will make you feel like cattle being herded from one place to the next compared to this tour.

We were picked up bright and early, taken to the docks, loaded up, and shipped out.

First stop:

Maya Beach (also known as the filming location for Leonardo DiCaprio's 'The Beach'.

Maya Beach at Phi Phi Islands Thailand

Anchored safely in the harbor we jumped into the clearest water I've ever seen and made out way for the beach.
Stopping only to pinch ourselves to make sure we weren't dreaming, or to take a photo.

Safely on shore we went exploring.
We actually landed on the back of the island.

The Beach was mostly filmed on the opposite side.
However the queue to see it was MASSIVE and we much rather play than queue.
So back to the water it was!!!

Maya Beach Phi Phi Islands

Thai long-tail boat at Maya Beach Phi Phi Islands

A little word of advice:
A waterproof camera will make sure you capture all those wonderful memories on a beach vacation.
BUT, make sure the lens doesn't have any water or sand droplets on it before shooting or you'll end up with random blurry spots on your photos like I did!

I use an Olympus Tough TG-2 in case you're curious.

After about 45 minutes or so we were waved back to the boat; it was time to make our way to the next destination.
And at a good time too!
(All the packed ships started to arrive just as we were leaving so I know what I say when I tell you to stay away from them!)

We swam back to the boat and waited to see what beautiful place we would be taken to next.

Maya Beach at Phi Phi Islands Thailand

We were not disappointed...

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Phuket Thailand

We wanted to do something really special for Chris's birthday this year.
And what can be more special than going to one of the most beautiful places on Earth?

Phuket, Thailand was that beautiful place. 
We landed Friday evening and the absolute first thing I wanted to do was see crystal clear water.
I didn't care that everyone was already leaving the beach.
Or that the sun setting.
Or that my bathing suit wouldn't dry before dinner.
I just wanted to be in that water.

So I tied up my hair, kissed Chris "see you soon" and ran off into the sea.

The water was perfect.
Not too warm, but not too cold.
The waves were plenty, but not too high.
I had a smile ear-to-ear on my face.

I wrapped myself up in my beach cover up/blanket/dress and we went to scout a dinner place.

We found one that had everything.
And all I wanted was Thai.
Chris got a burger.
I got proper pad thai and green chicken curry.

A perfect first day is paradise. 

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Changi Gardens

So many people come through Changi Airport  every day.
And unfortunately most don't know that there are some really cool things to do at the airport while you wait for your flight.
My favorite are the gardens.
You have probably guessed I love flowers.
Which means that with some time to spare before our mystery trip for Chris's birthday we were going to sniff some flowers.

Each Terminal has it's own little treasure trove of things to discover.
Next time you have to catch a flight make sure you pick up a brochure and head to one of these spots preflight.

On the way are posts from a place that is literally heaven on Earth so keep a close watch on the blog, subscribe by email, Facebook, or all three!

Friday, 21 March 2014

Chinese New Year

We got back into Singapore in the beginning of January.
The first few weeks were spent house hunting.
And before we knew it a holiday was upon us.

Chinese New Year is huge in Singapore.
It's a holiday celebrated in late January, early February.
People really get into the spirit of New Years here.
They spend weeks preparing and shopping for food, decorating their homes and cleaning.
One of the places they do a lot of that shopping is in Chinatown.
Naturally, Chris and I had to go and see what all the fuss was about!


CNY is more about family than anything else.
People spend the days and evenings eating traditional Chinese meals, visiting family, and eating some more.
To them it's a time to purge everything from the old year, to ask for forgiveness and to renew connections with everyone dear to them.

This year also happens to be the year of the horse (my lucky year!!!).
Chinatown had a huge horse lantern display down the main road.

I also got to participate in lo hei at a function at work.
A bunch of us stood around a bowl of mixed shredded veggies, fish, and cinnamon powder, and on the count of 3 shoved our chopsticks into the mixture and tried to throw it up as high as possible to bring us good fortune.
I love when I can learn something that opens my mind up to a whole new way of looking at the world!