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Day 3 of Nepal

6 September 2016 (Tuesday)

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These few days I have been a sleepyhead, catching up on my sleep deprivation but still…. I want to complete my blog posts.

On the 3rd day at Nepal, I booked a Day tour from the travel desk to visit another 3 attractions, Dakshinkali Temple, Pharping and Kirtipur. I had the whole car to myself, like a VVIP. Hehe..

Judging from the road condition that I had been here in Nepal for the past few days, it is dangerous for any inexperienced drivers to drive here and I think you can’t rent a car here without a driver too.

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It began to rain a little but it did not put a damper on my spirits to sightsee~

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The roosters are so plump!

Spotted the two ladies wearing ethnic dressing and they requested to be in my photo also.

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Dakshinkali Temple

The approach to Dakshinkali Temple from the bus stand/ car park winds through a religious bazaar. The temple is dedicated to the goddess Kali and only Hindus can enter the temple courtyard where the image of Kali resides. Non-hindus/ visitors can watch from the surrounding terraces which I did.


 

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Pharping

The next destination was Pharping. As a solo traveller, there is always bound to have strangers approaching you to be your tour guide but just give a firm ‘NO’ answer to them if you don’t need one.

 

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Kirtipur

The last destination is Kirtipur, an ancient city of Nepal.

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Then it was back to hotel after the end of the tour and I went to the hotel’s restaurant to have an early dinner. Had the best combination of chicken butter masala with butter naan. Sinfully delicious and I like to dip the naan into the gravy.. The gravy was so good that I asked for second serving. Gosh…..I feel like eating it again!!! Good food makes me happy and it is very true!

….To be continued for Day 4…


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Day 2 of Nepal Trip

5 September 2016 (Monday)

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Greeted with this rich and colourful morning view when I woke up for the breakfast at the hotel’s balcony restaurant..

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My breakfast, with a view overlooking Tribhuvan International Airport.

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Had the hotel’s receptionist to help me book a taxi to my next hotel, Hotel Shanker.

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Cosy hotel room with king-sized bed to have a good rest.. Just the way I like it.

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At this point of time, I thought of someone who said will fulfil my dreams and bring me to Nepal but seriously, anyone who is fit and healthy with a strong pair of walking legs can make it here.

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Went to the travel desk and booked the Day tour to visit 3 UNESCO World Heritage Site for USD 40, which excludes the entrance fees. I have lost count of the UNESCO sites I have visited.


 

Bhaktapur City

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The first UNESCO World Heritage Site that I have visited is Bhaktapur City. There is an entrance fee of around Rs. 1000 to 1500 per person and part of the money I believe goes into the restoration and conservation of the city. Some of the buildings are still badly damaged from the April 2015 Nepal earthquake.

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A ‘selfie’ with the local guide Raju, whom has given a good presentation of the city.

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Bhaktapur Pottery Square

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Watching the potters at work

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Buffalo slaughtered by the butchers. Look at all the different type of sharp knife they used.. Grosssssss…

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Need to take a break from all the non stop walking and rest my legs to have lunch. Lunch consists of this traditional cuisine Dal Bhat, most widely eaten dish in Nepal.


 

Pashupatinath Temple

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The Pashupatinath Temple is a famous, sacred Hindu temple and it is also on UNESCO World Heritage Site. The entrance fees is Rs. 500. Over here, you can witness cremation of the dead body here on the banks of the Bagmati river and it was an eye-opening experience to see actual ‘Hindu Funeral Rites’, which some of the scenes I find it disturbing to watch.

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Family members helping to dress up the corpse and preparing for the body to be cremated next.

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Believe me, as much as I look calm, I was a little glorified by the open-air cremation and I had some difficulties to sleep when I went back hotel that night. Had to occupy my thoughts by doing some light reading instead.

On a lighter note, you can pay about USD 5 to USD 10 to take photographs with the extremely photogenic Holy men (Sadhu). Expensive siol~

Just had to strike some pose to blend in with the Holy men and the photos did turn out pretty nice.

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The Great Boudha Stupa

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The 3rd UNESCO World Heritage Site that I have visited is The Great Boudha Stupa, also known as Boudhanath. Boudhanath Stupa is the largest stupa in Nepal and the holiest Tibetan Buddhist temple outside Tibet. I manage to spot some Tibetans wearing their traditional costume.

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I have seen pictures of my batch boy turning the prayer wheels in Nepal so I also want to turn. Turn the small prayer wheels to the bigger ones..

The video of me turning the bigger prayer wheel looks exactly like the Tibetan monk turning the prayer wheel on the cover page of the Lonely Planet book that I borrowed from the library.

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The top part of the stupa is undergoing some restoration work but the Great Boudha Stupa is still standing tall and is a magnificent beauty on its own.

…..To be continued for Day 3…



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Day 1 of Nepal Trip

4 September 2016 (Sunday)

Singapore -> Kuala Lumpur -> Kathmandu

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Originally, I was supposed to be on the flight MH 5730, operated by SilkAir. I had difficulties in the online check-in process with Malaysia Airlines mobile application because I didn’t know that the first sector of my flight from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur was operated by SilkAir instead of Malaysia Airlines.

Nonetheless, I know I still can do a check in over the counter at Changi Airport which I am glad that I did. With the advice from the ground staff, I changed my original flight MH 5730 to MH 0624 with an earlier departure time. Furthermore, this MH 0624 flight is operated by Malaysia Airlines and I do not have to check in again at Kuala Lumpur International Airpor (KLIA) for my second sector flight from Kuala Lumpur to Kathmandu.

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Changed SGD 556 to USD 400 because Changi Airport doesn’t carry Nepalese Rupee to change to.

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Killed some time by reading the book that I borrowed from the library to understand more about Nepal. Didn’t want to be a blur sotong or be at a complete loss when I arrive at the destination.

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Window seat view from ’10F’

Arrived at Kuala Lumpur International Aiport (KLIA) after a short one hour flight with more than 3 hours of stopover.

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Hmmmm.. Which airline should I take next and it is friendly to my pocket?

At an age of 26 years old, I have been to many major cities in the world which I consider it as an achievement itself. Though there are days I might miss myself as a cabin crew or look impeccably groomed with my uniform..

I also know that it impossible to turn back the clock and I do not wish to wake up at unearthly hour to rush for flights anymore. May feel a tinge of disappointment at times that I didn’t manage to get my 5th year flying gratuity…and also I miss those gorgeous and wonderful hotel/resort stay!

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Have to fill my tummy again… but this plate of char siew hor fun is too salty.

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Dinner serve in 2/3 size tray.

There were two choices for the dinner service and I ordered the tandoori chicken set. Appetizer is cucumber with feta cheese, main course is tandoori chicken with rice and dessert is pandan kaya cake.

I was formally a cabin crew and I had served in so many flights so I was well-expected how the entire service sequence will be. Ooops!

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It is a requirement for foreigners to get visa and it can be easily done on arrival. The cost of the visa will depend on the duration of your stay in Nepal and I paid USD25 for the 15 days Visa.

The horror was trying to change my US currency to Nepalese currency at the currency exchange counter because many will try to cut queue. And at the same time, I had to be extra careful with all my belongings, making sure my essential travel items like cash and passport are kept properly. Out of the departure hall, I purchased the local sim card with 5gb data plan each to keep myself entertained throughout the journey in Nepal.

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For my first night, I stayed at Hotel Shanker, an airport hotel and I also requested for the complimentary shuttle service to the hotel. Had to make sure I get proper and sufficient rest before I am out sightseeing the next day.

….End of Day 1…


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Itinerary for Naturally Nepal 2016

Nepal 

I will be heading to Nepal next month for a 10D9N trip from 4th to 13th September 2016. It will be my first time to Nepal but I have heard a lot about this beautiful country. My philosophy in life is travel while you are still young and don’t leave any regrets. I wanna live to tell a travel tale..

September is the end of the monsoon brings unpredictable weather but temperature remain warm, and the land is lush and green. High water levels make for especially exciting rafting.

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Flight details:

4th September 2016 (Sunday)

MH  5730 Singapore to Kuala Lumpur (SIN – KUL)

  • 1610 – 17:10 (1 h flight time)
  • Airbus A320-200

Stopover: 2 h 55 m

MH 114 Kuala Lumpur to Kathmandu (KUL – KTM) 

  • 2005 – 2230 (4 h 40 m flight time)
  • Boeing 737-800

 

The return airfare costs SG$540.80.

* Note: Kathmandu GMT is GMT+5.45, which is 2:15 hours behind Singapore (GMT+8).

Exchange Rates:

1 Singapore Dollar equals 79.85 Nepalese Rupee


Day 1 – 4th September (Sunday), Kathmandu

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For the first night at Kathmandu, I will be staying in Meridian Suite Hotel which is located just 500 metres from Tribhuvan Airport (KTM). The room price for the 1 night stay is SG$48.17. I have also arranged the free shuttle service from Tribhvan Airport to Meridian Suite Hotel.

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Meridian Suite Hotel

Address: Near Tribhuvan International Airport, 44600 Kathmandu, Nepal


Day 2 – 5th September (Monday), Kathmandu

Check-out time from Meridian Suite Hotel is 12noon.

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After check-out from Meridian Suite Hotel, I will flag a taxi and travel to my next hotel – Hotel Shanker, which is an approximately 20 minutes taxi ride. I will be staying in this historic high-end hotel Hotel Shanker for 2 nights and the room price cost SG$139.96

* There is an additional 10% off when you key in Promo Code: UOBSG (First 6 digits of UOB Card) at the payment page.

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Hotel Shanker 

Address: Lazimpat, Kathmandu 44600, Nepal. Phone: +977 1 4410151

Upon check-in, I will enquire with the hotel’s receptionist and rent a car to travel around the capital. The first attraction I will visit is Boudhanath Stupa, a UNESCO world heritage site.

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Boudhanath Stupa

Woah.. Hopefully, I will be able to capture a stunning photo of the Stupa when I am there.


Day 3 – 6th September (Tuesday), Kathmandu

Full day white water rafting trip on the Trishuli River


Day 4 -7th September (Wednesday), Kathmandu to Pokhara

Checkout from Hotel Shanker is 12noon.

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The car ride from Hotel Shanker to Hotel Landmark Pokhara is 5 h 23 m.

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For the next 3 days 2 nights, I will be staying at Hotel Landmark Pokhara and the room price costs $136.48.

Address: Lakeside, Pokhara Nepal., Pokhara, Nepal 33700, Nepal. Phone: +977 61-426908


Day 5 – 8th September (Thursday), Pokhara

Sarangkot day hike from Pokhara

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Ohhhmyyyygoshhhhh… Can’t wait to see such scenery with my own eyes. It will be a difficult hike but I am sure the effort will be worth it.

 

https://www.tripadvisor.com.sg/AttractionProductDetail?product=9984P19&d=293891&aidSuffix=xsell&partner=Viator

 


Day 6 – 9th September (Friday), Pokhara to Langtang National Park

Checkout from Hotel Landmark Pokhara is 12noon.

I will take a one-way domestic flight Buddha Air from Pokhara back to Kathmandu. Departure from Pokhara (PKR) is 3:00pm and Arrival to Kathmandu (KTM) is at 3:25pm, 25 minutes flight time.

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En-route to Nagarkot

Travelling from Kathmandu Airport to Bhaktapur  Nagarkot

Just go outside the Kathmandu Airport gate, again this is past the roundabout and by the main road.  From there, you will see a bus station on the left side from the main exit. Make sure you listen well, as they will only call out their destinations.  Look out for buses calling to “Bhaktapur ”. Or the easiest would be to simply ask locals where to find buses to “Bhaktapur” and they will easily give you the bus number and company name.  Just catch the bus to Bhaktapur and get off at the last station. and catch again next bus to Nagarkot.  – See more at: http://www.nestadventure.com/blog/87/kathmandu-to-nagarkot-bus.html#sthash.eNqzNCWh.dpuf

Club Himalaya

http://clubhimalaya.com.np/web/places-of-interest/index.html


Day 7 – 10th September (Saturday)


Day 8 – 11th September (Sunday)

End of 3 days 2 nights stay at Club Himalaya


Day 9 – 12th September (Monday)

Flight details:

12th September 2016 (Monday)

MH  115 Kathmandu – Kuala Lumpur (KTM – KUL)

  • Mon, 12 Sep, 23:30 to Tue, 13 Sep, 06:25 (4 h 25 m)
  • Boeing 737-800

Stopover: 1 h 40 m

MH 601 Kuala Lumpur to Singapore (KUL – SIN) 

  • Tue, 13 Sep, 08:05 to Tue, 13 Sep, 09:00 (55 m)
  • Boeing 737-800

……To be Continued…..

 

 


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First Bora Experience (Day 3)

Boracay, Philipines 

Day 3 – 4th August (Thursday)

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The early sunrise view which I woke up at 5.40am to see the mesmerising changing colours of the sky. I have the habit to wake up earlier than usual only when I am in overseas to catch the beautiful view of sunrise.

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Taking a ‘selfie’ before I am off to sightsee.. Oh yes, I know how to ride a bike..

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The two taiwanese friends I know while I was having breakfast at the hotel’s lobby. Haha.. Seems like I make friends pretty easy.

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With ‘江刨冰 

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Went out of my mind and decided to challenge downing 5 exotic shooters in 11 seconds, which I won a COCO BAR Shirt. Siow~

After downing these 5 exotic shooters, I still manage to ride back to the hotel. Champion man~ But the after-effect of the 5 shooters was unpleasant and made my stomach churn out the dinner I had.

……..To be Continued…….

Finally, I have tendered my resignation for a job that I didn’t really like.. cos I feel that it is starting to lead me to depression. Rather stay at home for the time being… Can do my face mask.. Play games.. Read books to occupy myself.. and also update my Travel’s blog.