10 amazing places of some Asian travels

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1. Rugs in Singapore: Arab street is one of the most attractive and colorful area of the city. Must stroll along the main road and peak into the stores. Rugs here are awesome. Delivered all over and coming from different countries. Especially the silk hand woven made in Pakistan or Middle East. If you are lucky to find this shop owned by a Malay-Pakistani couple. Located at the end of the main road walking thru North. While accepting fresh fruits from them we enjoyed the company sitting on the rugs, watching the defile of patterns, chatting and finally picking the chosen one.

2. Local duo of pottery and furniture in Jonker Street, Malacca: There are several studios with pottery handmade items downtown Malacca. Try to go for the most original shop. It’s not a real shop, it’s a combination of two floors house with a garden incorporated. Stunning. Wood all around you. Downstairs the wife arranged clay exhibition and the linked lab. Upstairs the husband shows beautiful furniture in strong wood and such amazing design.

3. Vietnam Trade Union Hotel in Hanoi: Most strategically located hotel in town. Walking distance from Le Duan Railway Station and practically merging into the urban downtown landscape you cannot miss. Really affordable, enormous and cool. The perfect place to be for a couple, a family, a business group or a huge event people. Now you know where to head in the fascinating capital of Vietnam.

4. Bowrington road market in Hong Kong: One of the best wet market in the whole town. I love it stays open until late at night and that it’s located just a pleasant stroll from Causeway Bay busy hub. This market is famous for seafood but you can find a good variety of local and malaysian or Indonesian picks in fact of veggies, biscuits and sweet stuff. Also great for local tofu and artisanal noodles. But the highlight is the lamb, for lamb lovers only. Amazing and smiling service.

5. Tibet coffe shop in Beijin: Called “Tibet Cafe”. It was such a wonderful coincidence to sit in this coffe place and sipping authentic Tibetan tea and Momo dumplings. If it was not for a lovely friend who is originally moved from Tibet to Beijing. The bold colors of the wall and the playful presence of copper and wood furniture pieces, cushions and drums directly from those mountains of Lhasa are almost lively talking about traditions and stories. Quite a beautiful experience in the heart of the busy capital, in Nan Luo Gu Alley, Dongcheng. Also with a blog at tibetcafe.blogspot.com

6. Futian Book City in Shengzhen: One among few others of these Cities. Huge and well furnished. Interesting section for language learning, food and recipes and art design. You can spend hours in here and browse the paper material. Or taking a break and window shopping upstairs for some handmade trendy. Or a fast food experience. It;s located in front of the local Library,  at Shao Nian Gong Metro station.

7. Food Alley in Xian: Xia’an is in the heart of China with its Great Mosquee and a mixture of souls descending very probably from traders who were concentrating in this important trading route of the ancient Silky road. The old style trading has vanished and what you can appreciate now it’s for appeasing the stomach. Aka snacks, dumplings, kebabs, noodle soups and much more. Delicious stroll. Or by sitting at a table.

8. Ben Thanh Market in Ho Chi Minh: a place for everyone where you can find really everything, any food, clothes, accessories, paintings, home furniture, bed linen or table runners, cushions, fabric. Yes you guessed it: a massive area located on a couple of floors. A touch of tradition and color for the grey financial hub that is the city today.

9. Ricshaw in Nanning: Never fear a rickshaw, you never know where it is ending. Nanning. Boarder city. Peaceful and crowded at the same. Mount on a rickshaw and get prepared to roam everywhere. From the station to the hotel to the park. If you are staying in the city and want to check more than two places out, the fearless rickshaw is your sure choice! Enjoy the ride.

10. Bintan Island: a resort island at the boarder line, just outside Singapore. To enjoy the dreaming beach and a ayurvedic massage. It’s all about super relax and crystal colors unless the monsoon rain has decided  to show off its refreshing powers! But it is still allowed dreaming and watching at the slender palms while sipping a cocktail under the pagoda roof at Nirwana Beach Club.

Inside the flowers of Lamma island

Travelogues about island are not finished yet here. Lamma island is considered probably the coolest one to live in because of its artistical attractions. Lots of European families landed in Hk decided to settle down here although the houses are not modern at all and all kinds of interesting animals (lots of snakes they say) around are ready to visit anytime.

There are plenty of colorful things to watch in Lamma. Flowers, plants and trees have been marked and explained upon small wooden tags but for the aracnide up there there was nothing to read since it was a spontaneous meeting at the beginning of the main path. When arriving at the harbour, about 20 minuts from HK mainland, you may probably meet some native selling hand cooked red bean sweet soup or cookies.

Afterwards by following the main narrow street the wole greenish and easygoing, wild and relaxed environment will disclose in front of you:

There are 2 things you should pay lots of attention while hiking around Lamma. One is the strong smell of its flowers scattered in mass at any corner like in a big garden. All the fragrances fuse in the air, it s like being in heaven and the aroma is so much penetrating that your brain is so happy to swim into it! There are flowers whose petals are starting to yellow because of the Autumn season but they keep the odorous activity tuned, others present rare jungle shapes of colored lianas.

 

Now, why Lamma is considered so artistic?? First of all musicians, painters, dancers, writers and so on populate this place. Not only the fragrance but also the music of a piano flying out from a window for example can accompany you in the trip for a while.  I met a French dancers who has been living here for years while staying in HK and she never regretted to have to travel back and forth for her job was on the mainland, and consider that afyter 11 or midnite there are no more ferries every day. 

The second Art reason is that all the shops and restaurants maintain of course a well trendy made look to catch your eyes. They care about little details, sometimes extravagants, sometimes normal. So you may notice an old singer sewing machine right against the main wall of the street you are walking along or a wooden rocking horse placed like on a pedestal at the end of a street. Romantic sets have been created at the outdoor tables of all the restaurants. Lamma is perfect for the tea time and serves traditional or western home made cakes or for the dinner/lunch with the availability of the tastier and fresher of the fish (expensive!) for you to pick directly from the big tanks outside each restaurant.

AH! before night time, dont forget to enjoy the sunset that on the islands is always so spectacular and regenerating!

Travelouge’s sunset also comes here ~

 

Peng Chau: the island of the bycicles

Peng Chau is the weekend destination of families and couples who seek to escape the imposing environment of Hong Kong city. From Central Pier there is a ferry every hour and you can reach the island in 30 minuts.

The first thing you will notice are the bycicles in line on the pier and scattered around the narrow streets and the small plaza. Peng Chau reserve for you an atmosphere of coziness and colors also perfect for children.

There are several small beaches, all at measure of this tiny island on the west side of the South Chinese Sea (Hong Kong area). The most popular is the long and wide one just in front of the pier since it is close to downtown. The seawater seems to be shallow and secure, that’s why it is the favourite of the local families with kids. The beaches are allined along a path now crossing the village now facing directly the seaside.

Old style houses mix with new buildings. There is a beach not far from the pier which with 2 big tents is perfect for yoga seminars and swims.  Another tiny beach is located at the end of the path, rubber shoes are recommended here since it’s a very rockey one. At least the sunset is awsome from here and you can enjoy bathing in the sunrays water! 

Time for dinner. A couple of traditional restaurants are waiting for you on the pier: fried Chinese rice, fresh pomelo water and sugar cane. Or a Western dining with delicious pizzas and juicy pasta carbonara offers indoor and outdoor comfortable tables. Two place to not miss for shopping are: the local lady who paints and bake beautiful ceramics and the Chinese artcraft store with one century furnitures from China and Mongolia. Peng Chau has it all!