Putrajaya Challenge Park – For Some High Adventure

One of Asia’s most extensive extreme park facilities, Putrajaya Challenge Park was open to the public in 2009 and is situated in a 30-hectare park in Putrajaya’s Precinct 5, accessible from any of the hotels in Putrajaya. It has three attraction divisions:

Image by: StockSnap via pixabay| CC0

Rock Climbing

The indoor rock-climbing complex is situated within a 2,100 sq. ft. gymnasium. It’s trapezoidal climbing walls are up to 20 metres tall. The complex is divided into 6 zones; zone A Expert Bouldering Wall, Zone B Beginners Bouldering Wall, Zone C Expert Lead Wall, Zone D Top Roping Wall, Zone E Speed Climbing Wall, and Zone F Intermediate Lead Wall. There’s also a complex for children.

Skate Park and Thrill Park

The Skate and Thrill park have been designed for skateboards, inline skating, BMX biking, stunt biking and rollerblading. You can hire a bike at the location which has a concrete contoured area, a dirt track and slop style jumping. Entrance is free.

Mountain Bike Trails

The Mountain Bike Trail is 9.1 km and customised to suit the bikes. The trail is considered “very technical and one of the best in Asia” by mountain biking enthusiasts. The trail twists through a former rubber and palm oil plantation. They rent bikes as well as have 6 courses graded from easy to moderate and difficult.

When to Go

The Putrajaya Challenge Park is an 11-minute drive from Dorsett Putrajaya on the Jalan P5. The skating track and the biking trail are open daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and entrance is free, while the entrance fee for the Rock-Climbing gym is fairly reasonable.

 

Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+

The Garden of Stars – Hong Kong’s Latest Magical Creation

Located in the Tsim Sha Tsui district of the Kowloon Peninsula, Avenue of Stars is Hong Kong’s version of the Walk of Fame with panoramic views and a dramatic skyline. It has recently been renovated.

Avenue of Stars| Img by: Wing1990hk via wikimedia commonsCC BY 3.0

The Walk of Fame

The Avenue of Stars was designed as a public space in 1982, but gained more and more popularity, quickly becoming the most visited location for tourists and locals alike in Hong Kong. It became so famous and collected such a lot of foot traffic that it needed some renovation.

Renovation

The Avenue of Stars was part of the $ 2.6 billion, Victoria dockside renovation project which also involved a flagship shopping mall, a new concept of luxury living with 287 residential units on 14 floors, a 66-floor skyscraper for offices, an ultra-luxury addition to its international hotel chains and outdoor public spaces.

Cheng and Corner

The project was helmed by Adrian Cheng of New World Development and James Corner, the founder of James Corner Field Operations, urban design and landscape architect.
The Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront was iconic during the colonial times and then disregarded for the rest of fast developing Hong Kong, so it was Adrian Cheng’s idea to update the location and bring it to the 21st century, according to James Corner.
The canopy has been extended to feature trellises and trees and 800 times more shade in keeping with the heat and humidity in Hong Kong so visitors would want to linger.

Hong Kong’s Green Direction

Hong Kong has taken a green direction as of late with Salisbury Garden and the Avenue of Stars, a welcome change. It was reopened to the public on the 30th of January 2019 after a three-year hiatus. It is roughly a 30-minute drive from Dorsett Hotels & Resorts.

 

Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+

First Timer’s Guide to Hong Kong – Unforgettable is what Hong Kong is!

A place filled with urban beauty while harbouring scenic natural beauty at the same time, the description fits none other than Hong Kong! If you are a first-time traveller to Hong Kong, then read through to find out about experiences you cannot miss out on!

Dennis Tang, View of Hong Kong from Victoria Peak, CC BY-SA 2.0

Ferry rides
The famous Star Ferry offers rides on 3 unique ferries. The fun fact is, these ferries have been given 3 wonderful names; Morning Star, Celestial Star and Twinkling Star. What makes these Stare Ferries stand out is it’s their 1920s theme that allows the traveller to experience a ride as if it were back in time.

Tsim Sha Tsui
An awesome location to visit on your travels to Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui East Promenade is unquestionably one that can’t be missed! Sone of the main attractions in the area are; Clock Tower, Hong Kong Cultural Centre and Hong Kong Space Museum. Places to stay include hotels like The Murray Hong Kong with excellent facilities available.

Lamma Island
This small island is just13sqkm of land is covered in rich greenery and is a popular escape with tourists and locals alike. The place is perfect to wind down away from the hubbub of the city. Even the population is just about 5000 people which makes it less crowded.

Shopping in Hong Kong
As one of the Asian countries that vaunt a rich culture, shopping in Hong Kong is more than just an agreement among the buyer and seller. Shopping here is one of the most loved leisure time activities by the locals. Therefore, you may find malls with your favourite brands and great deals. Some of the best hotels in Hong Kong offer special packages for shopaholics too.

 

Museum Bahari of Jakarta – Recognizing maritime history

Indonesia is a vibrant country to visit and its capital, Jakarta is a fascinating place to explore. Museum Bahari of Jakarta is ideal for you to go through the sprawling treasures of the rich maritime heritage.

 

Sunda Kelapa

Sunda Kelapa | Image Credit : Danumurthi Mahendra from Indonesia, Pinisi Sunda Kelapa, CC BY 2.0

Significance

The Museum Bahari highlights the legacy of Indonesia’s maritime industry. The museum is a symbol of the nation’s maritime activities, even to the present day. 45 minutes away from Citadines Rasuna Jakarta is where you’ll find this museum.

What to see

Visitors to this museum will see an entire range of maritime equipment and vessels, that were used by various nations across Indonesia. Historic spice warehouses built by the Dutch East India Company in the 1600s is what the museum occupies. Sadly, in January 2018, a fire ripped through the heritage buildings causing much damage to the collection. Nevertheless, the museum is open to the public with what was salvaged, enough to warrant a visit. For those of you looking to get away from the comforts of Jakarta serviced apartments and are interested in unique things, you’ll leave the museum awestruck!

Other things to do

The visit to the museum is combined with a few other things as well, as it is a 15-minute walk from Fatahillah Square, where you’ll find the entrance to Jakarta’s historic harbour, Sunda Kelapa. Located on the same street, you’ll find Menara Syahbandar, the harbourmaster’s tower which was built in 1839 by the Dutch.

Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+

A visit to the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage – Get up close to the gentle jumbos!

If you have an interest in elephants or simply are an animal lover, make sure that you visit Sri Lanka’s splendid Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage. Here are some facts about this wonderful place.

Image result for Pinnawala

Bernard Gagnon, Pinnawala 01, CC BY-SA 3.0

About
The Orphanage has the distinction of featuring the world’s most numerous herds of tame elephants. You will find more than 80 elephants here including males, females, and calves. The Orphanage was created to provide protection and care for the many baby elephants who are lost, orphaned or abandoned by their mothers. These orphans, usually still dependent on milk, would otherwise not survive in the wild.

Getting there
The Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage located close to Kegalle plays a significant role in rehabilitating and ensuring a safe future for elephants that have been badly affected by the human-elephant conflict. If you plan to travel from your hotel accommodation the likes of Birds Park Polgahawela you are sure to be at the orphanage within two hours, making it one of the best things to do in Kurunegala.

What to see
Around eighty elephants roam freely in the premises. They are guided by their mahouts who seem to know the art of communicating with them. The elephants are fed and bathed at specific times. You could be part of these daily rituals. As the elephants comfortably splash around and play with each other, you can watch, a safe distance away and hope those sprinkles of water reach you.

Get personal with jumbos
The jumbo bath times are 10am-12 noon and 2-4 pm. Make sure to perfectly time your visit, so as to be a part of this memorable experience. Endearing and huggable, baby elephants are the centre of attention at the orphanage. Bottles and bottles of milk are gulped down by these precious beings.

 

Explore the Rainforests in Sri Lanka – Discover the Bounty of Nature

A vital part of the country’s ecosystem, the rainforests of Sri Lanka are rich storehouses of endemic flora and fauna, each one offering something new to discover.

Udawatta Kele

Udawatta Kele | Image Credit : Nyanatusita, Udawattakele Forest scene 4, CC BY-SA 3.0

The Sinharaja Rainforest

When it comes to primary tropical rainforests in Sri Lanka, Sinharaja is the last viable area and thus of immense importance. Nature lovers can stay at a Sinharaja eco lodge Sri Lanka has to offer at the reserve’s border such as The Rainforest Ecolodge and explore this UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve; it is home to over 147 bird species as well as a vast amount of endemic trees, butterflies, mammals and reptiles.

The Makandawa Forest Reserve

Located near the island’s white water rafting hotspot of Kitulgala, this pristine reserve features a secondary lowland rainforest. The forest ecosystem is blessed with waterfalls, rock pools and a wide number of rare fish, bird, butterfly and dragonfly species.

The Kanneliya Forest Reserve

Another UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in Sri Lanka, Kanneliya has lowland rainforests which have plenty of endemic flora and fauna. Amongst the highlights here are the varied snake, fish, lizard and bird species along with natural attractions like the Narangas and Anagimale waterfalls.

The Udawatta Kele Sanctuary

Located in the hill capital, Kandy, this sanctuary is made up of small forest areas where one will find a wide range of plant species as well as endemic bird species. Easy to explore, the Udawatta Kele Sanctuary is also known for its endemic mammals as well as amphibians and reptiles.

Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+

Bird Watching in Sri Lanka – Embark on a fantastic birding tour

With a wide variety of environments ranging from forest to jungle, wet to dry zone, and low lands to the hill country, Sri Lanka has no shortage of fascinating sites to spot diverse bird species.

BirdWatching|Via-Pixabay,adinavoicu,CC0

Sinharaja Forest

Being the most bio-diverse wet zone forest cover in the country, Sinharaja must be explored by foot. The place declared a World Heritage Site in 1989 is home to a wide variety of endemic as well as migratory bird species. You can spot a Green Billed Coucal, Yellow Fronted Barbet, Ceylon Blue Magpie, Scaly Thrush, and many more fascinating species. Sinharaja is an ancient forest home to many magical aspects and is covered by local tour operators like Cinnamon Nature Trails.

Kumana Bird Sanctuary

When it comes to bird watching in Sri Lanka, you should not miss visiting the Kumana Bird Sanctuary. This bird sanctuary features a massive swamp lake which plays host to a wide range of nesting waterbirds, especially between May and June. Migratory bird species that can be spotted here are the Indian cormorant, lesser whistling duck, little egret, purple swamphen and spot-billed pelican.

Kanneliya Forest Reserve

Accessible from the coastal city of Galle, Kanneliya is another forest reserve where one can spot many endemic bird species. Keen birders can keep a lookout for the oriental dwarf kingfisher, brown-capped pygmy woodpecker, black eagle and Indian blue robin that have also graced the reserve with their presence.

Bundala National Park

The first Ramsar wetland site in the island, the Bundala National Park offers birdwatchers some of the best avifauna sightings be it for migrant water birds or resident species. The lagoons within the park attract many birds including large flocks of migrating greater flamingos, one of the highlights of bird watching here.

Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+

A Fun Day at the Dino Water Park in Khon Kaen – Thrills Galore For the Family

If you are holidaying in Khon Kaen with the family, make sure you put down Dino Water Park on your itinerary. From thrilling rides to laid-back fun in the water, it offers a memorable day out for all.

Getting There

Billed as Southeast Asia’s largest water park, this popular attraction can be found on Mittraphap Road (or Highway Number 2). Within a 20 minute drive from AVANI Khon Kaen Hotel & Convention Centre, this site is right near the Pratunam Wholesale Market.

The Thrilling Rides

Spread across 40 acres, Dino Water Park features nine zones with different attractions. Kamikaze, Looping Rocket, Aqua Tower, Freefall, Giant Body Slide and Space Hole are amongst the most exciting rides to try here. Tip; since there is so much to do, plan to get here early from your hotel in Khon Kaen so you have more time to enjoy.

Laid-back Fun

This water park is not all about action-packed rides; The Lazy River which offers a relaxed adventure, the Wave Pool which simulates an ocean setting and the Aqua Tower play structures that encourage creative minds can be enjoyed by the whole family.

Opening Hours & Tickets

Dino Water Park is open from 10am to 6pm from Monday to Friday and from 10am to 8pm on Saturday and Sunday. A Casual Day Pass and Lite Day Pass are around 200 and 300 Thai baht respectively and offer access to a few attractions. The Premier Day Pass on the other hand, which is about 600 Thai baht, offers access to all zones.

Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+

Sri Lankan Sloth Bear – The nocturnal solitary bear of the island

Sri Lankan sloth bears with their shaggy black coats are now restricted to the Northern and Eastern lowlands jungles of Sri Lanka. They normally aren’t easily seen as they are quite the shy animals and enjoy their solitude.

Sri Lankan sloth bear

It is a sub species a little different to its Indian cousin and are omnivores, so they enjoy eating small fruits, bee hives and even small insects like ants and termites. They have specially developed a lower lip for gathering these small insects. You will most often find the young cubs sometimes ride on their mother’s back or perched on top of a tree as these animals are excellent climbers.

Habitat

Sri Lankan sloth bears are found in jungles especially in the dry zone. This bear can easily be spotted in Yala and Wilpattu national parks. There are many instances where humans have been attacked by the she bears with her cubs and some tribal villagers have suffered as a result of this. Therefore, close encounters are best avoided while on your jungle trek.

How to view these sloth bears

The best way to see them is to get assistance from a tour operator like Cinnamon Nature Trails, one of the many Sri Lanka wildlife tour operators that provide customized packages for customers.

Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+

Exploring the Isaan – adventure hats on!

There’s an old saying which says, ‘if you haven’t explored Isaan, you haven’t experienced Thailand’, this rings true to almost everything that’s on offer here. Want to know more?

Image by Diego Delso, Isla Tapu, Phuket, Tailandia, 2013-08-20, DD 36, CC BY-SA 3.0

1) Ton Tann Night Market

Generally considered a little more upscale than the conventional night market, here at the Ton Tann Night Market you will find various traditional food stalls and street vendors. There are many boutique shops as well, and even a large centre stage that features an array of live performances.

2) Bueng Kaen Nakhon Lake

Of all the lakes in Khon Kaen, the Bueng Kaen Nakhon Lake located to the southeast of the city centre features a variety of bars, coffee shops and restaurants all around it. Food stalls which pop up towards the evenings serve an assortment of local delicacies. If you’re looking for a hotel, Khon Kaen has many that you can check out, such as the AVANI Khon Kaen Hotel & Convention Centre for example.

3) Wat Nong Wang

Learn about the culture of Buddhism and the history behind it at the Wat Nong Want temple which feature many relics as well as a gorgeous panoramic view of the town.

4) Horse Races

The horse races on Sundays are something to treat yourself to. You can grab a bite and even bet if you feel like it, all while enjoying a spectacle of a sport.

 

Fritzjames Stephen is a travel writer, who writes content based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life. Google+