Monday, January 26, 2015

Trekking to Pisang Waterfalls via the Twin Drains

Who would've known that there's a waterfall just within Kuala Lumpur.. Situated in Gombak, Pisang Waterfalls is fast becoming popular among waterfall hunters and also a perfect place to escape the hustle-bustle of the big city.

Some time last year, I was hosting a couchsurfer from Philippines. She had another local friend in KL and the three of us altogether decided to trek to Pisang Waterfalls. I never heard about this place until that day her male friend told us about it.

So it happened like this.... her friend would pick us up from an arranged spot and he will drive us to the starting point of Pisang Waterfalls trail. I was surprised to know that it was very close to KL! Our driver parked his car at the side-road, paid a parking fee of RM5 and a nominal entrance fee of RM1 per person,.. and off we go!

We got our stuff that consist of extra clothing, towels, water and packed lunch, and started our trek, with our male friend leading the way.

And to where first?

To two HUGE DRAINS with water going through it!

The famous twin drains that will lead us to the enclosed Pisang Waterfalls.

Friday, January 23, 2015

6 Things To Do in Batam That You May Not Know About

My office did an office trip to Batam sometime last year and about 40 people joined with the exception of me. They didn't actually sleep there, but made it into a daytrip from Johor into Batam via ferry.

Almost all of my office-mates told me that there was NOTHING to do in Batam except do some shopping. So why stay longer? OK, I got the longer part and decided to prove them long by spending one fine weekend in Batam.

Did I do any shopping?


With a struck of good luck, I happen to know a good friend in Batam named Mukhlis whom I fortunately met during my backpacking trip to India the year before and decided to pay him a visit.

Hold on... you might be actually asking yourselves.. is there really ANYTHING to see in Batam? Lemme give you a teaser picture before I continue on with this blogpost.

Guess where this is? Nongsa beach at Pulau Purti Batam. Pictured with Mukhlis. Spot at number 3 in the list!
I really didn't have much budget planning for this trip so I only set aside about RM200 for my personal expenses (if any), excluding the ferry and bus tickets as blogged already here..

Monday, January 19, 2015

Trekking to Rainbow Waterfall, Sg Lembing, Pahang

My traveling partner in crime to Sg Lembing has blogged about our trip here...

Zilla booked a night at the famous Time Capsule Hotel in Sg Lembing and advertised on her facebook wall, looking for a travelmate to share the room. I immediately messaged her, telling her I wanted to join! Hahaha!

And so off we went to Sg Lembing. Me, from Kuala Lumpur while Zilla was coming from somewhere in Pahang. The best thing I liked about Zilla is that she likes using the public transportation as much as I do. It's an adventurous trait that I  find it rare among Malaysians

Trekking to Rainbow Waterfall is an easy task. You could easily book at any homestay/hotel/hostel operators in Sg Lembing. There are an abundance of them. If you ask any locals there, they'd surely direct you to the correct person. Zilla and I just booked the trip for RM40 (transport, maggi cup, guide) with our hotel.

The trip starts as early as 5:30am. A 4WD will pick us up from the hotel and send us to have breakfast (self-paid) in Sg Tembeling town. A mosque is a walking distance away, where Zilla and I did our prayers. It was around 6:35am that we headed to the waterfalls area... with 12 other people.

The 4WD drive through mud and lush rainforest. Picture taken from Zilla's blog
I'm not sure how long we were on that bumpy ride to the waterfalls. More than an hour perhaps? All I remembered as we were seated at the back, was the jumping all over the place and us holding tightly to the rails around us. Some might say it was impossible, but I did however got some eye-shut. Hehehe.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Travel Nightmare : Sleeping at Hanoi International Airport

To Moscow With Love - Day 1 - Sleeping at Hanoi International Airport 

This is a long overdue post continuing from this post.

I was in the state of "not properly healed" but my soul was souring when I first checked-in for my flight to Moscow with an overnight transit in Hanoi. Knowing that my parents would be worried if I didn't update them before my departure, I decided to post a picture on my Instagram and Facebook instead. I think I was too bummed to reply the  good-wishers. Hehe. #maafSombong

Posted with the #sickGirlGoesTravelling hashtag on Facebook. 
Traveling alone in my state of health (at that time) was not a situation to be joking about. I brought with me all the medicine that the hospital prescribed me and also all the needed lotions to keep my skin moisturized. I was heading to a cold country and my skin was extra sensitive that time.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

2014 Travel Recap - A Year of Total Randomness

Happy belated new year!!!


Just a short recap on my travels in 2014.. I know.. I know... we are already in the middle of January 2015. I just turned a year older on the 6th of January and I pray for many, many adventures for this year!

So let's stop babbling and let me recap. OK? Before my brain grows old and starts forgetting. Huh!
Jard, do you have a bucketlist that you follow for this year?
No I don't... I fly to where-ever the cheap flight tickets bring me to... and these are among the countries that I've been to.. minus the local ones though. Hehe.

Clockwise from upper right - Luang Prabang, St. Petersburg, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Disney World Hong Kong.

January 17 - 22 ---- Myanmar RM108 + 75USD
January 31 - February 2 -- Jogjakarta + Semarang, Indonesia RM80 + 381k rupiah
February 20 - 24 --- Maldives
March 29 - April 6 --- Hong Kong - Shen Zhen - Guangzhou - Macau RM117 + 328 MOP
April 8 - 13 --- Thailand (Bangkok - Udon Thani) - Laos (Vientiane - Luang Prabang) RM164 + 1189 THb
May 10 - 13 --- Padang, Sumatera Barat (My first entrance into Sumatera!! Woohoo!!) RM218
May 23 - 25 --- Medan, Indonesia RM80
June 20 -22 -- Bali, Indonesia RM292
June 26 - July 1 --- Sri Lanka RM401
July 26 - 29 -- Aidilfitri at Sabah
September 26 - October 12 --- Russia + 8 other countries
November 14 - 17 --- Palembang, Indonesia RM111
December 6 - 7 --- Batam, Indonesia
December 12 - 15 -- Jogjakarta, Indonesia RM137
December 25 - 28 --- Solok, Sumatera  RM157

There.... goodbye 2014.. hello 2015!!

Happy traveling peeps!!! :P

Monday, January 12, 2015

Sunrise at Mount Datuk, Negeri Sembilan

Located at Rembau, Negeri Sembilan of Malaysia, Mount Datuk has become a favorite among nature lovers to do some exercise during weekends as the view from the peak is among the best in Malaysia. The mountain's highest peak is at 885m which comprises of big rock boulders. A regular hiker would take around 2 to 3 hours to reach the top and for the avid ones, maybe around 45 minutes. My small group of friends, 4 guys and 4 girls (including me) have planned to meet up near the Seremban toll where we will head to Rembau together.

At the  peak of Mt. Datuk. 
It takes about 2 to 3 hours drive to get to the foot of the mountain from Kuala Lumpur and we started pretty early. I stayed at my friend's house, Anne, before our 2:00 am drive to Rembau. We didn't sleep that much as Anne had accompanied me to buy headlamps from DIY which costs RM9.90 to RM20 each. It enthralls me that we'd be hiking in the DARK!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Ferrying Across Singapore Strait to Batam, Indonesia

My friend, Anne and I started our journey to Batam, Indonesia from TBS  also known as Terminal Bersepadu Sentral in Bandar Tasik Selatan. I love how modern and efficient the bus transport system is there. I could just simply buy a ticket to any part of West Malaysia at any counters in the station as ticketing is now centralized! A big plus for efficiency! Now everyone can "bus"! Ehh...

My friend and I bought return tickets to Larkin Johor Bahru for our first leg of the journey. Knowing that it takes about 5 hours to get there, we opted the midnight bus so that we can reach Johor by Subuh. And after Subuh prayers (there's a relatively large mushollah at Larkin Bus Station on the third floor), we'll catch the earliest ferry to Batam from Stulang Laut Johor Bahru ferry port.

Oh ya.. did you know that you could catch some eye-shut at Larkin's mushollah? There were many people sleeping there! Hahaha! You could also bath at the paid toilets there. If you don't fancy the food stalls found there, you can always opt eating at Pizza hut or KFC situated just a walking distance away.
Sunrise from Stulang Laut Johor Bahru, before boarding the ferry.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

10 Things To Do in Palembang Besides Shopping

I spent about four days in Palembang with no intentions whatsoever to go shopping. I didn't realize until just recently that I have many friends who lives in Palembang and I decided to pay them a visit. And while visiting, they introduced me to these spots below which I considered sharing with my blog readers.

1. Have lunch with a local... guy.. :P

It was not intended but I had to buy this poor lad a meal for helping to fetch me from the airport (arranged by a friend of mine who was out of town) and sending me to my friend's place!

Here's dedek Irwin, fresh from college. 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Kalibiru, at the Edge of the World

(continuing from the previous post here)

Our chat, weeks before my arrival in Jogjakarta...

Friend whom I had a crush on : Just list down the places you want to visit in Jogja.
Me : Dieng!
Friend : Dieng? Ok aja!

Our chat a day before my arrival...

Friend : We have to skip Dieng. It's raining and not advisable.
Me : ok #sadface
Friend : Where else? On Saturday, do you mind going to Kalibiru?
Me : Ok. I'll just follow whatever your plans are. :)

I googled Dieng... found pictures exactly like this one that I personally took. It was LOVELY! 
(Later we found out there were some landslides in the Dieng area and I was glad we didn't end up going there.)