Browsing Category : Places

Lunar New Year in Luang Prabang

Laid back Lunar New Year in Luang Prabang, Laos

Why did I visit Luang Prabang? Hanoi has not been kind to me for a while. For more than a week I’d been battling a slight cold (sneezing and ticklish throat) that morphed into a super shitty virus. No, it wasn’t the Novel Coronavirus, but someone did cough without covering their mouth as they walked past me at the gym…

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Ladies of the Flower Market Hanoi Vietnam - Travelling Homebody

Ladies of the Flower Market, Hanoi

Back in September, I did a three-day film course. It was aimed at photographers, but I was the only photographer there. To cut a long story short it was terrible (so terrible that PayPal gave me a refund) but I did get out and about and shoot some film. The Quang Ba Flower Market is a hive of activity from…

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Scambodia: the Tonle Sap Lake scam - Travelling Homebody

Scambodia: the Tonle Sap Lake scam

Everything you need to know about the Tonle Sap Lake scam (and why I will never go back to Scambodia).  There are a few locations in Asia that have been on my bucket list for ages: Myanmar, Luang Prabang (in Laos), Chiang Mai (in Thailand) and Siem Reap/Angkor Wat (in Cambodia). I decided to remedy that this year. In May,…

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View across West Lake, Hanoi at sunset

Hanoi: an insider’s guide – Part 1

Friends and friends of friends who travel to Hanoi often ask me what they should do in this wonderful, vibrant city. Hanoi is more than the Old Quarter (which is interesting in and of itself), more than traffic (which is not as bad as Saigon), more than the pho (which is awesome). So to save time, energy and repetition on…

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Travelling Homebody is living in Hanoi. Find out what the first three weeks have been like!

My first three weeks living in Hanoi

I have been living in Hanoi for just over three weeks, and it’s been crazy-amazing and challenging. I’ve found out things about myself that I didn’t think would apply here, because, well, I’m not in Australia. But I am me whether I am in Australia or Vietnam or the Antarctic—who knew?! Here’s what I’ve been up to (and not) since my…

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Travelling Homebody toured Ninh Binh aka Halong Bay on Land

My first week in Hanoi, Vietnam

I’m here in Vietnam for at least 3 months, volunteering for KOTO. For those of you who don’t know the story, when I was in Vietnam in 2010, as part of the tour I was on we visited KOTO Restaurant in Hanoi for lunch. KOTO (which stands for Know One, Teach One) was started by an Australian, Jimmy Pham, who—while…

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sunset in bali travelling homebody

Sanur – my final stop #BaliDisey

After my retreat, I’d organised to stay in Sanur for another eight days. I’m glad I did because I wasn’t ready to leave Bali. Not by a long shot. I was hoping to get more of my novel written during this time… well, that was the plan, anyway. Of course, that plan went the way of the wind because I…

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bali highlights

Ubud – the first 48 hours #BaliDisey

I had woken early—at around 6.30 am—so with the time difference, had only a few hours sleep. Still, I’ve never let lack of sleep stop me from having a wander around and getting my bearings. Plus I wanted to venture up to Taman Baca, where the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival was being held. Coincidentally, the Festival was on at almost…

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mysore palace india

India: trip highlights and lowlights

At the end of every trip, I like to do a highlights and lowlights summary. I have to say that India is up there with one of my favourite trips of all time (along with Vietnam, Italy, Greece and the former Yugoslavia). I would love to go back again, and take my time so that I can  really immerse myself in this…

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kochi indai

Last stop: Cochin

We arrived at the Trident Hotel, weary after 10 hours of travel from Ooty. The route we took through the Nilgiri Hills via toy train, coach, regular passenger train then autorickshaw was spectacular. The toy train took us through emerald tea plantations, villages replete with flat roofed houses, painted in pink, blue, yellow and green, quaint railway stations. When we…

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Lightning stop in Ooty

We left Bandipur National Park for the city of Ooty, located high in the Nilgari Hills. The drive was stunning. Winding roads snaked through misty mountain peaks and through small villages buzzing with activity. Emerald tea plantations scaled up the sides of hills at impossible angles. Eucalypts were so plentiful I thought I was being driven through the Australian Blue…

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mysore palace india

Magical Mysore

The south of India is so different from the north in the way it feels, I could be in two different countries. Outwardly, of course, the appearance is the same: crowded streets, rubbish strewn in piles, wandering cows. But how the south conducts itself seems different. The people are more relaxed and open. Most are friendly without agenda. The “Where…

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Gorgeous Goa

I loved Goa, although Indira (our trusty guide) says that it is not India. It is touristy and Western and so very, very relaxed. We spent two nights here and it was a welcome change of pace. I needed to spend a day not doing very much at all, apart from a visit to the Post Office, a browse around…

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Lightning stop in Mumbai

We arrived in Mumbai earlyish after an overnight train from Kota. It’s a bustling metropolis and surprisingly clean. Traffic, of course, was crazy—but this is India. I only spent the one night in Mumbai, and I wish it could have been more. It has a lovely vibe—reminiscent of Athens or Naples—because of its location on the Arabian Sea and all…

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Three rules for travelling in India

1. Nothing is ever given for free, including help. (If someone approaches you offering to help you cross the road, find a good spot for a photo, show you where to walk etc. generally they want money for it or they want to sell you something.) 2. Negotiate your price up front, and stick to it. (Sometimes the price you…

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Agra and the Taj Mahal

Agra is a city not unlike others we have visited to date, although it does seem slightly less chaotic, if that is even possible. Almost as soon as we alighted from the train we were greeted by dirty, bright-eyed children begging and men wanting to carry our luggage. I’m wary of the luggage bearers after an experience in Delhi where…

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