A few last things before I go

Upon making plans to leave Hong Kong, I knew there were a few things I’d like to do before departing. One was visit the Peak again to get night shots of the city, and another was to ride the Star Ferry once more. Otherwise, I just wanted to spend time on the Island, enjoying the…

The Singapore Sling

Spring Break 2018 – Singapore and its gems In addition to the major neighborhoods of Singapore, there are plenty of other little gems in the city if visiting during peak tourist season. We explored the Singapore Botanic Gardens, which are a must if you love orchids and exotic plants and flowers. Even in the heat,…

Singapore’s Neighborhoods

Spring Break 2018 – Singapore’s popular neighborhoods A short flight from Hong Kong is the city it is most often compared with – Singapore. Well, city-state, that is. It’s a city, a state, and everything in between. For such a small space, it packs a good punch in terms of things to do and see….

Slow down & smell the bauhinias

Day 2 – CNY holiday – Hong Kong: Central, toward Admiralty Today I continue my journey around Hong Kong by going up another steep road (with steps) toward the Fringe Club and Lower Albert Road. It is this road I intend to follow on my way to Hong Kong Park. I woke up aching because,…

On the trail of old Hong Kong

Day 1 – CNY holiday – Hong Kong, Sheung Wan & Central  Undoubtedly, Hong Kong’s early streets and neighborhoods are an urban maze. Stairs up to the heavens. Streets with steps ready to break an ankle. Homespun tea shops and coffee bars. Trees growing like the Kraken along walls – or other host trees. Spray-painted…

Eat, Pray, Repeat

A week in Bali for October holiday There’s something to be said for a holiday where the most difficult choices I have to make are pool vs. beach and this cafe or that cafe. We were wondering if this holiday was going to happen, as the tumultuous Mount Agung was roaring to life in the…

Churches and squares everywhere 

Chinese New Year in Macau – Day 2 – A tour of old colonial Macau If you don’t go to Macau to gamble or shop, you go to Macau for history. I’m not a gambler – and I’d probably be a poor one even if I tried – and I don’t particularly go in for…

The Forest of Wisdom

Diary of an Autumn Leafer – Heyri Artist Valley & Paju Book City  If you tell a bibliophile that there’s such a magical place as a “Book City”, then it had better live up to its moniker. Add in 8 m high bookshelves and something called “The Forest of Wisdom”, and just point me in the…

A foot into the hermit kingdom

Diary of an Autumn Leafer – DMZ and JSA tour  When in Seoul, I felt that it was absolutely important that I visit the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) and the JSA (Joint Security Area) near the shared border with North Korea. In order to visit inside the DMZ and the JSA, a tour was necessary, and it had…

War, peace, and the surprising beauty of stones

Diary of an Autumn Leafer – Jeju Island Tourist Bus Besides meet up with old friends and colleagues who now work in schools on Jeju Island – and having Mexican food and local Korean BBQ for various meals – there were a few looping tourist buses that run around the island to drop people off…

What to do on Jeju

Diary of an Autumn Leafer – Jeju, South Korea  About a three hour flight from Hong Kong is a small Korean island called Jeju. The island made its living from seafood, and now, tourism – mostly of from China at about 85% of the usual tourist trade. October holiday, a blessed week that we get…