Penang Travel Guide – The perfect blend of Asian cultures

Penang is a perfect mix of different cultures where Chinese, Indians and Malays reside together. Penang has a population of 1.8 million and there’s plenty to keep you occupied! Here’s a list.

Blue Mansion

Also known as the most photographed building in George Town, this beautiful building was built in the 1880s. The 38 room and 228 window mansion contain several unique features, each explained through guided tours. You must listen to the story of Cheong Fatt Tze, the ‘rags to riches’ Hakka merchant commissioned the blue mansion for his 7th wife.

Penang National Park

15 minutes from PARKROYAL Penang Resort and easy to get to from any Penang hotel, the Penang National Park is Malaysia’s smallest national park. There are trails with varying distances, each serving gorgeous views of nature!

Butterfly Farm

For a completely beautiful and surreal experience, you mustn’t miss the Butterfly Farm! Over 15,000 free-flying butterflies together with 200 species of varying fauna, you get to learn all about butterflies and their lives.

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+

SCUBA Diving in the Maldives – For Some Underwater Fun!

On land , the Maldives is everything; the perfect island paradise. It is all that and much more, underwater, with spectacular marine life and colourful coral structures. As such it has become a must-visit location for snorkelling and

Tchami, Maldives (32684393662), CC BY-SA 2.0

SCUBA diving enthusiasts.
Coral structures are abundant in the Maldives and a conscious effort is being made by hotels and resorts situated on the islands to preserve the corals and provide them with a rich habitat to thrive in.

Diving in the Maldives
Maldives diving is mostly done from liveaboards with the current acting as the anchor that drives you forward. It makes one great ride as the currents ebb and flow through the atolls and bring you in close quarters to all the wide varieties of fish. Diving facilities are often provided by resorts like Kandolhu Maldives.

Features of the Sites
There are two features at dive sites that scuba divers will encounter, and they are the pinnacles and current swept channels. If you are exploring the channels you will come across caves and caverns and are lush in soft coral.

The pinnacles are often found in atoll lagoons and shoot straight up almost breaking the surface. They are home to sessile life forms that act as a great base for sponges and soft corals. This, in turn, makes it the perfect habitat for crustaceans and schools of fish.
Swimming out from the reefs will bring you in close quarters of the pelagics which include eagle rays, manta rays and a great many species of shark.


Hiking in the Hills – Get Ready to Hike Ella Rock, Sri Lanka!

You can experience a different side of the country that is a far cry from the sun and surf of its world-class beaches by going into the mountains. At 2,000 m above sea level, Ella Rock is 5 km from the town and one of the most picturesque stretches of rolling moorland in the hills.

The Right Path

There are several trekking trails in Ella and not all of them are clearly marked so it would be beneficial to do some thorough research on which trails you plan to use on your hike. Hiring a tour specialist such as Nature Odyssey would ensure that you get to see all the hidden treasures and be guaranteed to make it safely up and down the slope.

Railway Stations Frozen in Time

An independent hike would take approximately 3 – 4 hours beginning and ending at the Ella Railway Station which, in itself is an image from a postcard, frozen in its colonial elegance. Trekking in Sri Lanka from such locales can take you through a myriad of beautiful locations, both man-made and natural, that are usually overlooked.

Through the Tall Grass

You can walk up the tracks to the next station, Kithal Ella and turn left at the 166 ½ marker. After a while, you will come to a footbridge crossing and a fork in the road. Take the path to the left. Traversing past a tea plantation and a narrow stretch of long grass will bring you to the interim viewing point.

Bird’s Eye View

After that, it’s a straight road to the top. The whole world spills away into the distance as far as your eye can see. A bird’s eye view of paradise awaits

Filled with wanderlust that seeks to explore distant shores and captivated by the colors and vibrancy of exotic cultures, Kanya Mae writes on the beautiful, exciting, and enchanting wonders of the world. She is a writer who not only has a passion for travel, but also has a background in fashion, art and media. Google+

Encounters with Sri Lankan Leopards – The Island’s King of the Jungle

Did you know that Yala National Park has the highest density of leopards in a national park in the world? That makes it the ideal location to spot the Sri Lankan Leopard while on a safari.


Leopards | Image Credit : © Mahoora Tented Safari Camps ( / CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons, Leopard in Yala National Park, CC BY-SA 4.0

Yala National Park

The 950 square kilometre Yala National Park can be found on the south-eastern coast and is the preferred location for a leopard safari in Sri Lanka. You can visit this reserve on an eco-friendly adventure tour offered by the likes of Nature Odyssey. If you’re lucky, you will also spot jackals, elephants, deer, monkeys, sloth bears, water buffalos, land and water monitors and over 200 species of birds.

Sri Lankan Leopards

The Sri Lankan Leopard is a dapper russet yellow big cat with dark spots and is the largest subspecies of leopard in the world. At roughly 78 kgs, the males are 30% larger than females and are found throughout the country in various habitats. While leopards are considered nocturnal, it is common to spot them in the early mornings or late evenings.

An Endangered Beauty

However, the leopard count in Sri Lanka has fallen to 250 animals due to poaching and fragmentation of habitat. The Sri Lankan Leopard has been listed by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) as endangered.

Big Cat Conservation

The Wilderness and Wildlife Conservation Trust (WWCT) is working together with the Government of Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka Wildlife Conservation to study the leopard and aid in its conservation. It is hoped that with a concerted effort the leopard population will once again thrive in Sri Lanka

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+

Malaysian Grand Prix Travel Guide – Explore Sepang!

Sepang started hosting the Formula 1 Grand Prix in 1999 and it quickly became a success due to several factors which boosted its allure. Sepang itself is a city of many attractions and this is the reason why people flock to Sepang even though the Grand Prix is no longer hosted here. Want to find out more about Sepang?

1). Why Sepang?

The Sepang International Circuit offered views unlike no other when it came to vantage points of the race and also, tickets were amongst the cheapest found on the Formula 1 calendar. While you’re ticking off things to do in Sepang if you happen to be looking for accommodation, there are several options, like Avani Sepang Goldcoast Resort for example.

2). Traits of The Track

The Sepang Circuit has offered for some adrenaline-inducing views with its wide, long straights that follow into tight corners which make for dramatic overtakes!

3). Deadly Weather

From 2001 to 2015 the races were consistently slotted in between March and April even though that is when the western monsoon came to town, bringing with it heavy rains which make for terrifying driving! Thankfully, this was later shifted.

4). Activities in Sepang

Take a break from the city, cars and head to GK Organic Farm where you will be taught how to select organic food! Or go to Flight Landing View, pull over and enjoy spectacular views of aircraft landing within close proximity!

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+

A Thrilling Safari at Wilpattu National Park – Wild Adventures Abound!

Does your idea of an exciting holiday include the chance to encounter everything from stealthy leopards to regal elephants? If so, you will love a safari at Wilpattu National Park in Sri Lanka!

Getting There

The country’s largest national park, Wilpattu can be found on the northwest coast and is one of the best places for a wildlife safari in Sri Lanka. It is around 188 km from Colombo and 30 km from the town of Puttalam. The best times for a safari are generally in the mornings (6 am to 10 am) and evenings (3 pm to 6 pm).

Two of Wilpattu’s “Stars”

While on a safari, organised by travel specialists the likes of Nature Odyssey, keep your eyes peeled to spot two of Wilpattu’s most famous residents; the somewhat ponderous Sri Lankan sloth bear and the majestic Sri Lankan leopard! Seeing these creatures in the wild is truly unforgettable.

Not Just the “Supporting Cast”

Of course, it would be wrong to say that these are the only animals of significance you can spot here. On your safari, you may see cautious spotted deer, sunbathing mugger crocodiles, playful purple-faced langurs, unhurried pond turtles, unperturbed monitor lizards and not forgetting wise-old elephants!

Feathered Friends

The Wilpattu National Park features many lakes which attract a large number of birds too. Bird lovers have the chance to see wetland species such as whistling teals, purple herons and large white egrets. Endemic birds including the Sri Lankan junglefowl, Ceylon lorikeet and the red-backed woodpecker are also a part of the colourful avifauna here.

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+

Travel guide to Hong Kong – The ultimate pointers for a memorable stay

Despite being known as a business hub, this is only part of Hong Kong’s fabric. There are a plethora of different sides to Hong Kong that contributes to its diversity and liveliness. Listed below are just a few places you must include in your itinerary.

Chi Lin Nunnery

Chi Lin Nunnery | Image Credit : Clément Bucco-Lechat, Chi-Lin nunnery 2, CC BY-SA 3.0

Chi Lin Nunnery

If you’re interested in all things history related, you’ll find this attraction fascinating. This nunnery dates back to 1934, and not a single nail was used to build this nunnery. The main hall is the most fascinating part of the monastery. You can reach this attraction within 25 minutes from Hotel Purple Hong Kong or any other such Causeway Bay serviced apartments.

Hong Kong Museum of Art

A landmark art museum, this is where you’ll find a rather extensive collection of Chinese art. All of the masterpieces are well organized into their own thematic galleries. A mix of calligraphic scrolls, textiles, Qing ceramics, and contemporary canvases among several other things for you to witness.

Ladies’ Market

In Tung Choi Street, you can browse through a variety of different items found in stalls! You can put your bargaining skills to practice over here.

Hong Kong Park

This green space is extremely welcome amidst all the skyscrapers surrounding it. You’ll find leafy pathways and a mix of rock and gardens in this park. The Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware and Edward Youde Aviary are also found in the park!

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+

Fun Adventures in Hikkaduwa, Sri Lanka – Sun, Surf, Sand and More!

If your holiday plan includes spending long days on the beach, surfing the waves, going on foodie tours and partying on the shore, then Hikkaduwa in Sri Lanka is the place for you!


Hikkaduwa | Image Credit : Николай Максимович, Hikkaduwa – panoramio, CC BY 3.0

South Coast Escape

This laid-back town can be found along the island’s south coast; it is around 98 km from Colombo, the commercial capital and is easy to reach via the Southern Expressway or by train. Hikkaduwa resort, hotel and Airbnb options abound offering accommodation for varied budgets.

Hikkaduwa Beach

Golden sands bordered by azure waters await at Hikkaduwa Beach where soaking up the sun is a way of life! Beachside resorts the likes of Hikka Tranz by Cinnamon offer the ideal coastal base to also enjoy diverse dining and the happening nightlife scene in and around the beach area.

Ocean Escapades

Hikkaduwa also features thrilling water sports; there are some excellent waves for surfing especially for beginners, while snorkelling lets you explore the local marine national park home to assorted coral and marine life. For more in-depth exploration you can go diving to hotspots the likes of Black Coral Point and Kirala Gala.

More Adventures

There’s much more to do in Hikkaduwa; you can visit the nearby Seenigama Muhudu Viharaya, which is a temple on a small island, see turtle conservation in action at the Sea Turtle Hatchery & Rescue Centre and indulge in rejuvenating spa treatments. There’s always something new to discover!

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+

Jeddah’s Best Art Galleries – Fabulous galleries with amazing artwork

Taking a stroll around the streets of Jeddah is enough to discover plenty of art galleries featuring Middle Eastern creativity. Here are some of the best art galleries that you should not miss.

Tahlia Street Galleries

Tahlia Street Galleries | Image Credit : Ahmed Abdulbasit (Pakistan), Jeddah galleria, CC BY 4.0

Arabian Wings Gallery

Known as one of Saudi Arabia’s largest galleries the Arabian Wings Gallery boasts over 1500sqm of space to create the illusion of endless space. Making full use of its huge girth this gallery is a treat to explore up-and-coming artists as well as established names such as Damien Hirst, Banksy, and Heba Amed.

Athr Gallery

The Athr Gallery is one of Saudi Arabia’s classiest and most celebrated galleries in Jeddah for contemporary art. It displays montages, ink drawings, photographs, sculpture, scripture, and abstracts. The works of renowned Saudi Arabian artists are displayed at this venue located at Tahlia Street, which is 11 minutes away from Ascott Sari Jeddah, one of the best Jeddah apartments in the city.

Darat Safeya Binzagr Gallery

This gallery was established to accommodate the work of Saudi Arabian artist Safeya Binzagr and while it continues to showcase a wide selection of the artist’s work, there are other displays too covering and exhibiting the work of international and local artists.

Al-Alamia Gallery

The exhibits at this gallery are wholly enchanting; there you are treated to stunning landscapes, floral painting, authentic Islamic artwork and lots more. There is also a fine selection of celebrated Arabic artists work up for sale, which gives you a chance to take home some unique masterpieces.

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+

Best Things to Do on Koh Phangan – The Best Ways to have Fun

Be it lazing around on a pristine beach, enjoying local delicacies or even having some fun in the wild, Koh Phangan is what you are looking for! Here’s what you absolutely can’t miss out on when on holiday on this atoll that is a part of Thailand.

Beach hopping

White sand, clear blue waters and a whole bunch of fun water sports is just what the beaches of Koh Phangan have to offer. Don’t forget to book up a room with Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas or any other stunning Koh Phangan resort for some self-pampering. Also, you simply have to experience a moon party at Haad Rin Beach.

Waterfall hunting

Experience the way the locals have fun by paying a visit to the waterfalls that are favourites among all tourists visiting Koh Phangan. Head over to Paradise Falls and have some splashy fun with the local kids. Remember not to make the mistake of visiting in the dry season!

Night market

Where better to find a night market than in Thailand? The Thong Sala Night market is an absolute must visit! If you are up for a culinary journey, then hit the night market to find all sorts of cuisines to entice your taste buds.

Slip N Fly

It’s all about the thrills and spills at Slip N Fly! Slide down water slides and into the plunge pool or enjoy a game of water volleyball. This is an ideal spot to hang out with friends and family.

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+