[Featuring by TallyPress] Singapore’s Top 10 Travel Bloggers – Poll Starts Now!

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Dear friends,

I have been nominated and is selected as one of the 15 candidates for the Top 10 Singapore’s Travel Blogger by TallyPress (www.tallypress.com), an online media discovering homegrown talent. I will like to sincerely seek your time and help in voting for me, by visiting the link below:

http://www.pollbookapp.com/Share/402402

FYI, you can vote more than once directly using the link shared above. It is very simple, scroll down to candidate no.6 and click on the ‘thumb up’ symbol to cast your precious vote.

TYVM!

XOXO,
Irene

TOP 8 MUST-VISIT ATTRACTIONS IN BANDUNG

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KAWAH PUTIH

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Kawah Putih is a phenomenal tourist attraction that you have to visit and is one of the most popular places of interest in South Bandung. Kawah Putih is an amazing sulphuric lake and you can smell the odour of sulphur as you make your way down the pathway to the lake which is surrounded by the high walls of the crater. The magnificent scenery of Kawah Putih makes it a favourite place for those who enjoy photography and there are many nice photo taking spots to capture your perfect selfie. The mystical atmosphere of Kawah Putih is one of the best places to refresh your mind and soul while taking deep breath of the fresh cool air.

Address: Jl. Raya Soreang Ciwidey, Sugihmukti, Pasirjambu, Bandung, Jawa Barat 40973, Indonesia

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SITU PATENGGANG

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Another popular place of interest to visit in South Bandung is Situ Patenggang and is also known as the Lake Patenggang. Beside the fresh air, the journey to Situ Patenggang is a joy to ride with the natural lush green surroundings of the numerous tea plantations and strawberry farms. Arriving in Situ Patenggang, you will be greeted with the exotic and impressive landscape of the lake. There are many beautiful brightly colored boats that can take you around the lake or you can just sit by to enjoy the serenity and natural beauty of this place.

Address: Jalan Raya Patengan (Ciwidey), Bandung, West Java, Indonesia

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RANCABALI

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Rancabali is a large tea plantation estate and your eyes will be treated by an enormous view of a vast tea gardens with its beautiful segment.

Address: Rancabali, Bandung, West Java, Indonesia

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TEBING KERATON

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At 1200m above sea level, Tebing Keraton is a great place to see best view of the morning sunrise. You will be overwhelmed with the misty looks of the clouds over the mountains while overlooking the beautiful scenery of Bandung. Find a spot, take a moment to relax, breathe and admire the splendid view you are looking at. Enjoy the little moment in life for one day, you will look back and remember these beautiful memories you once had.

Address: Lembang, Ciburial, Cimenyan, Bandung Barat, Jawa Barat 40198, Indonesia

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LEMBANG

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Lembang is a peaceful place in the West Bandung, blessed with pleasant weather and abundant natural wealth. The fresh air and cool climate makes this region as the ideal location of agriculture plantation. There are also many cool cafes in Lembang to visit that make you look great on Instagram. One of the most instagrammable cafes that I went is ‘Lereng Anteng Panoramic Coffee Place’ and the trademark of this cafe is the outdoor area, where you’ll be seated inside a clear tent. You can enjoy the scenic mountain view while sipping your cup of coffee inside the tent.

Address: Lembang, West Bandung Regency, West Java, Indonesia

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FARMHOUSE

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Another popular place of interest to visit in West Bandung is Farmhouse Susu Lembang. Farmhouse Susu Lembang is a family-friendly attraction and will give your children hours of fun. An attraction recommended to see is the Hobbit’s house.

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You may also rent a European ethnic dress which I chose to wear the German traditional dress and walkaround with it. Not forgetting to take photos of myself wearing the traditional dress for memory’s sake.

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Another attraction within Farmhouses is the petting zoo and I just love how adorable the sheep is.

Address: Jalan Raya Lembang No.108, Gudangkahuripan, Lembang, Kabupaten Bandung Barat, Jawa Barat 40391, Indonesia

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DUSUN BAMBU

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Dusun Bambu is otherwise known as Bamboo Village, a popular family retreat in West Bandung. This mountain-top resort attracts many visitors, offering a wide array of activities from camping grounds, petting zoo, traditional food/ souvenir shops and many more. When you are hungry, you can either eat at any of the restaurants or the food court.

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It is lunch time and I am famished! I enjoy a feast of authentic Sundanese cuisine at Burangrang, the biggest cafe at Dusun Bambu, comfortably on a large oval couch with a clear panoramic view of the cafe’s surroundings.

Address: Jalan Kolonel Masturi KM. 11, Kertawangi, Cisarua, Lembang, Kertawangi, Cisarua, Kabupaten Bandung Barat, Jawa Barat 40551, Indonesia

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FOUR POINTS BY SHERATON BANDUNG

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I was gladly invited by Glenn for a 2 nights’ staycation at Four Points by Sheraton Bandung, an upscale 4 stars’ hotel featuring a striking classic-modern European style with monochromatic accent. Strategically located in Dago, the heart of Bandung tourist sites with everything you need is available within walking distance.

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When booking a hotel room for my overseas trip, I will look at the comfortability level of the hotel bed. Having regular and restful sleep is especially important for a frequent traveller like me, I have to feel refreshed and re-energised and be more ready than not to welcome a new day of activities that are planned out. The signature bed of Four Points is customed designed to give you the good quality sleep you have been yearning for.

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One of my favourite hangout spot in the hotel is the 12th floor Edelweiss Sky Lounge, with a view overlooking Bandung landscape day and night. I enjoy the cool night breeze over a glass of cocktail Sangria with the sound of contemporary music mix playing at the Sky Lougne.

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Four Points by Sheraton is your perfect choice of comfortable and convenient accomodations in Bandung. This is where you find a good combination of exceptional service and luxury place to stay with an affordable room rate. Make Four Points by Sheraton Bandung your home away from home by booking directly here. You may find more about the hotel at www.fourpointsbandung.com or follow Instagram @fourpointsbandung.

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I would also like to share this great news with my readers that Four Points by Sheraton Bandung is having a limited time offer for Singaporeans and Malaysians which you need to do is simply clicking fourpoints.ht/2jLTrk6 to book. Kindly note that this special promotion is only valid till 31 March 2017.  

Address: Jalan Ir. H.Juanda, Dago, Bandung, Indonesia, 40115

 

5 Reasons Why You Should Visit Bintan!

Are you planning a romantic getaway and wondering if you should visit Bintan Island in Indonesia? If you are looking for signs as to why Bintan deserves your most sought after escapade, here are the 5 reasons why you should head to an island blessed with beautiful white beaches and year-round tropical weather.

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Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal

REASON ONE: CLOSE VICINITY TO SINGAPORE

Bintan Island is just an hour ferry ride from Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal and the return tickets can be easily booked here. The close vicinity makes it a popular destination for Singaporeans for a short weekend getaway or an impromptu vacation out of the country.

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On board the last ferry ride on the last day of 2016 and do I look like a Deejay with the headphone around my neck?

I have been wanting to visit Bintan again after my last visit to the island where I compete in the Spartan Beast Race. I was enchanted by the exquisite natural beauty of the place and the heartfelt hospitality that I received during my stay. Therefore, I accepted the offer when my Indonesian friend Shandy invited me over to welcome the New Year.

REASON 2: FRIENDLY AND TRUSTWORTHY LOCAL TOUR GUIDE

20161231_222209That’s my friend Shandy beside me and I am so glad that he extended his invitation to welcome me in Bintan for the New Year’s Eve celebration. He is the founder of Travelin, his own travel agency company start-up. Travelin is a short term for Travel Indonesia.

Shandy is a friendly and trustworthy tour guide who knows Bintan really well and just the right man you need to find when you visit this island. I’m absolutely grateful to him for taking care of my itinerary, lodging, meals, tour activities, and so on for the six days I spent in Bintan.

We even made an on-the-spot collaboration to make a carpool karaoke video which we had fun singing while counting down to the year 2017. This unique LED car with Maroon 5’s songs installed on it can only be found in Lagoi Bay Plaza, Bintan Island.

REASON 3: EXCITING AND VIBRANT NIGHTLIFE

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Silk Night Club

Another reason to visit Bintan is its exciting and vibrant night scenes. The newly relaunched Silk Night Club is the best place on the island to party and to get the ultimate party vibes. The dance floor is empty before the stream of crowd arrived at the club late night.20170101_012258The dance was getting insanely crowded with an overflow of partygoers grooving to the music and I was also getting high on alcohol.

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 This is the awesome house band singing and playing the latest clubbing hits at Silk Night Club.

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The girl holding on the mic is one of the lead vocalists in Silk Night Club and she can bring up the party mood in the crowd with her explosive vocal. I also had a chance to sing the latest clubbing hits like “Worth it” by Fifth Harmony live for few minutes to the partygoers.

Silk Night Club

Address: Jalan Indera Segara Site A12, Lagoi, Bintan Island, Riau, Indonesia

Tel: +62 812-7073-602

Opening hours: Opens at 6:00pm till late everyday

REASON 4: EXCEPTIONALLY BEAUTIFUL AND SECLUDED BEACH

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Lost in Paradise

The White Sand Island is one of the best-kept secrets of Bintan Island, merely less than 10 minutes boat ride from Trikora Beach. This island is so secluded and private that Shandy and I were the only visitors in this tiny island.

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Your eyes will be spoiled with an amazing view of the turquoise blue seas and your soul becomes calm that you felt at ease and relaxed. The sand is soft and clean, the sea water is crystal clear and cool. The weather was also wonderful, making it a beautiful day to enjoy at the clean and unspoiled beach.

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Floating in Vitamin Sea, Feeling the coolness of the turquoise blue seas

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You can take all your time to relax and have the hammock to yourself as the beach is so secluded. There are 3 to 4 hammocks and swings in White Sands Island where you can take a break after a swim in the blue seas.

20170105_144105 (2)The White Sand Island is unquestionably one of the places I will visit if I come to Bintan again.

REASON 5: FASCINATING FIREFLIES NIGHT TOUR

Bintan Island is considered one of the best places to see firelies and the fireflies’ night tour is definitely a must-do activitiy during your vacation here. As you journey through the Sebung River, you’d enjoy the enchating sights and serenity around you with plenty of fireflies lighting up in front of your eyes.

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Seeing the fireflies must be the prettiest sight I have seen on the first day of 2017 and it was an enthralling experience to get close up with these tiny little lighting bugs. Be sure to book this tour with Shandy, Travelin to have a memorable trip!

Travel Guide to Switzerland (Day 7)

Day 7 – Preparation for departure back Home

Pack all your belongings and make sure that you have not left anything behind in the hotel room before heading to the airport for your flight departure. The tip is to pack your luggage the night before and remember not to have any LAG (liquid, Aerosol and Gel) that exceeds 100ml in your hand luggage. Next is scan through every corner of the room before checking out from the hotel. My own habit is that I try not to have my “barang barang” (singlish meaning belongings) leaving all over the hotel room

Even as a frequent traveller, I also have my things like make up pouch, glasses, etc misplaced overseas and unable to find it or retrieve back. One of the worst situations that I have experienced myself as an ex flying crew is that I cannot find my make up pouch and I cannot look like I am not wearing any make up for work. Then you have to try your luck by calling the girl on the crew list that you are closer to on the flight to lend you theirs.

Also, seek help from the hotel’s receptionist the day before if the airport shuttle service is available to transport you to the airport for your flight departure.

-End of Day 7-

 

Travel Guide to Switzerland (Day 6)

Day 6 – Arriving in Zermatt from Lausanne

The average travel time bewteen Lausanne and Zermatt is 3 hours and 16 minutes and the quickest route is 2 hour 52 minutes. The departure station is Lausanne (Lausanne station 1003 Lausanne) and arrival station is Zermatt (Bahnhofplatz 9 3920 Zermatt)

 

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Photo Courtesy of Google Image

 

Zermatt lies at the foot of the highest mountain Matterhorn and is a mountain resort renowned for skiing, climbing and hiking. Zermatt is also one of the world’s most picturesque holiday villages.

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Photo Courtesy of Google Image

 

Zermatt is a paradise for adventurers seeking amazing skiing and snowboarding experience with breath taking scenery. Enjoy skiing down the white snowy slope with a spectacular backdrop of mountains.

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Photo Courtesy of Google Image

 

Have your lunch at any of the restaurants in Zermatt. Zermatt’s mountain restaurants are blessed with great cuisine and majestic views of the Alps.

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End your day and pamper yourself with a luxury spa indulgence.

-End of Day 6-

 

 

 

Travel Guide to Switzerland (Day 4)

Day 4 – Arriving in Bern from Lucerne

The average travel time between Lucerne and Bern is 1 hour 15 minute. The train fare costs about 40.20 for 2nd class ticket and you can purchase your train tickets in advance from https://www.trainline.eu/.  Bern is in the German-speaking region and is the capital of Switzerland.

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Photo Courtesy of Google Image

The old town of Bern is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the city is truly a gem of medieval architecture in Europe. The quaint old town is framed by the Aare River and offers spectacular views of the Alps.

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Photo Courtesy of Google Image

Have your lunch at Restaurant Rosengarten, a laid-back eaterie with the outdoor terrance as the main attraction in the restaurant. The restaurant is also the perfect place to relax over a cup of coffee and drink in views of the UNESCO rooftops. The set menu is well-priced for bargain-conscious diners.

Address: Alter Aargauerstalden 31b Bern 3006

Opening Hours: Daily 9am to midnight

Price: CHF 20-40

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Photo Courtesy of Google Image. Berner Munster.

Take a slow stroll after a hearty lunch along the most famous building in Bern, the Berner Münster is also known as the Bern Cathedral. Climb up 254 steps to the tower and the views over the city is impressive with the Alps appear as a backdrop on a clear day.

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Photo Courtesy of Google Image

Another point of interest to visit in Bern is the Cheese Market. Switzerland is famous for cheese and walking through the Cheese Market, you can see the wonderful display of local cheese.

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Photo Courtesy of Google Image

Your body will be tired after touring in Switzerland for the past few days so pamper yourself at Solbad Schönbühl, a large saltwater thermal spa with different saunas, pools and hammams, as well as massage therapies.

Address: Mattenweg 30 Schönbühl Bern 3322

Website: http://www.solbad.ch/

Opening Hours: Mon to Fri 8am-10pm; Sat to Sun 9am-10pm

Admission Price: CHF 30 for Adults and CHF 15 for Children

 

– End of Day 4 –