Vera and Tom

Joined October 2015
  • Day108

    Bangkok for the last time

    December 17, 2019 in Thailand ⋅ ⛅ 32 °C

    Our 5th and final visit in Bangkok was happy and sad at the same time knowing that our great big 9 months adventure finishes.
    For these last days we have chosen a different area in Bangkok where we haven't stayed before (as we did for all the other times too so we could really get to know the city). Not far from Koh San Road still a quiet backpackers quarter with cheap local food and drinks. Tom grabbed the opportunity for some final photo sessions and Vera checked out Wat Po with a giant reclining Buddha and bought two new pairs of hippy trousers.
    Absolutely fantastic, exciting, adventurous, sometimes challenging travels with the weirdest and most beautiful places.
    The question is, where shall we go next? :)
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  • Day105

    Ban Bang Bao

    December 14, 2019 in Thailand ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

    As we loved it so much in Kho Chang at our hostel looking over the ocean we extended our stay for a total of 8 nights. This most southern part of the island is so untouched and junglish compared to the rest of it. Not that many people are around, our host reckoned that the low numbers of tourists was thanks to strong Thai currency and tourist choosing Vietnam or Laos over Thailand for the better exchange rates.
    Waking up in the morning and opening our attic room's door to the sparkly sea view with no one around and having our morning coffee was one of the most peaceful experiences ever.
    During the day it was super sunny and hot which we enjoyed at a close by beach with fruit juices in deck chairs at our very favourite beach bar.
    The evenings were windy and refreshing sitting on the terrace of our hostel or on the pier with a drink from 7-11 (local grocery store). The host of our accommodation was lovely and kept giving us free water, bananas and massive discounts on their quality food and drinks.
    One day we went for a little walk to a viewpoint with a boardwalk which had seen better days but the view was fantastic.
    We tried to make the most out of the local dishes and order curry, fried rice, minced pork with basil and some more curry for every meal so we fill up ourselves with Asian tastes before our return.
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  • Day103

    Similan National Marine Park

    December 12, 2019 in Thailand ⋅ ☁️ 27 °C

    After talking about it for ages we finally got around to doing some snorkeling. We took a trip on a boat from the pier which took us around the national marine park and stopped at 4 islands, Koh Rang, Koh Thong Lang, Koh Yak Lek and Koh Wai.
    At first we were a little nervous about jumping off the boat because it is a strange feeling to suddenly be able to see the sea floor below you and hundreds of fish swimming right up to you and around you. Luckily we got used to it quite quickly and we could really enjoy the experience.
    At each island we could swim and snorkel and we saw some amazing coral reef and beautiful fish. Between islands the boat crew served a really good buffet lunch and later some spicy bbq skewers and fruit.
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  • Day100

    Koh Chang

    December 9, 2019 in Thailand ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    With only a couple of weeks of our trip remaining, we decided we'd better head for paradise and make the most of it! Koh Chang (Elephant Island) has a reputation of being a more laid-back, quieter, less built-up version of the more famous islands in the south of the country. We were so glad we chose it when we arrived to find exactly what we'd been hoping for.
    A bus from Bangkok, ferry to the island, and finally a songthaew taxi to the south of the island brought us to Bang Bao Pier where our accommodation was. About halfway down the long pier sticking out into the Gulf of Thailand, we had a room on stilts in the sea in a beautiful relaxing spot.
    We spent the next few days relaxing on the beach, paddle boarding, eating and drinking on the pier, and chilling out on the deck.
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  • Day97

    Around the River Kwai

    December 6, 2019 in Thailand ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

    We rented bikes again from the guesthouse and set off across the river and into the countryside.
    After a while we came across a tea shop next to a pond with benches and deck chairs around for families to sit and have a picnic. We tried their mulberry tea, which was pretty good, and had very nice iced coffees and a rest from cycling.
    Once back on the bikes we began to leave the jungle scenery behind and ended up in a hot, flat and dry area which looked more like the wild west than the typical lush Thai countryside. The area was full of horse farms and some kind of military base. By now there was hardly anyone else on the roads and it was very quiet and peaceful.
    We eventually found where everyone else was... at the Giant Rain Tree of course! A surprising number of other tourists had made the trip to see the 26 metre wide tree and there was a wooden walkway around the trunk and a small market to enjoy.
    There was an interesting temple nearby which we were going to visit but quickly changed our minds when the local dogs chased us out and along the road! Lucky we had the bikes or we would almost certainly have been eaten.
    On the way home we took a different and slightly longer route which took us past lots of farms and crossed over a few bridges where we could see fishing boats and get great views down the river. 30km later, and with very sore bums, we arrived back in town and bought a feast at the street food market to take home with us.
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  • Day95

    Kanchanaburi

    December 4, 2019 in Thailand ⋅ ⛅ 24 °C

    We headed towards the Myanmarian boarder to Kanchanaburi, which is famous of its war museums, war cemetaries and the bridge over the Kwai river. Over a few days we spent there we found out that it is more than just its dark WW II. history. The town is visited mostly by "day tourists" and less and less backpackers stay over night - this was also confirmed by a couple of Danish expats over some super icy (as always in Thailand) smoothies - but we think they are missing out on a really nice town to spend a few days in.
    The most touristy area is by the famous bridge - no suprise - with many shops and restaurants. Our accomodation was on the other side of the town (a good half an hour by bicycles) where we hardly saw any tourists. Instead an authentic food market and a fantastic beach by the river. On the way back we had a few beers and wine and we happily continued our way to the beach which has deck chairs and many locals who gather in the evening for some Thai BBQ. Fantastic food and experience!
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  • Day91

    Ayutthaya

    November 30, 2019 in Thailand ⋅ ⛅ 31 °C

    Ayutthaya is an ancient city on an island surrounded by three rivers. In the olden days it was the Siamese capital until the attacking Burmese destroyed most of it. Now a modern town has grown up around the island but there are still ruins everywhere from the old palaces and temples.
    We spent three days exploring the ruins and parks. You can get right in to most of the ruins, climb up the towers which are still intact, walk through the old foundations and get close to the statues and parts of smashed up Buddhas which are everywhere.
    Just outside of town we visited an Elephant village. We had been meaning to go to see some elephants for ages but were waiting for somewhere which sounded nice. Here the elephants seemed healthy and well looked after but you never really know. It was good to see them even if it's a bit sad to see them kept in a little farm instead of in the wild.
    In the evenings there was a fantastic night market and we always went home far too full with fincsi things.
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  • Day86

    Bangkok again

    November 25, 2019 in Thailand ⋅ ⛅ 32 °C

    Back in Bangkok after a short flight from Vietnam. Our little apartmant is a bit outside of the city but has its own beautiful pool and a gym. A couple of times we went into downtown to see a temple, the "giant swing", camera shop and Bangkok Art and Cultural Centre which currently has an exhibition on LGBTQ. We could cook at home or buy our dinner from the local street food market. We had time for dying Vera's hair to PINK and Tom to take photos. Lovely relaxing days mostly by or in the pool.Read more

  • Day79

    Da Nang

    November 18, 2019 in Vietnam ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

    Da Nang for us was a place to relax and slow down from our usual high speed travel routine.
    We booked a mini apartment in a nice hotel with a swimming pool on the roof and enjoyed some easy days of eating, sleeping, relaxing and even getting a massage.
    One day we went for a walk to the other side of the river, we crossed on a bridge whith a giant dragon on. We visited the Museum of Military Zone 5, which is still an active military base but one building is open for visitors. Hardly anyone seems to know about it which makes it extra spooky when you walk by military planes, helicopters and tanks, it is a strange feeling to be the only people in this big building of communist propaganda.
    While relaxing, we thought through what we want from our really last month of travelling and we decided to go back to Thailand for some less "backpacking style - constantly moving" holiday. We bought a plane ticket and left for the airport with excitment. At the check in desk we were informed that we can only enter Thailand for 30 days but the time between this ticket and our ticket back to London is 31 days...
    We were told that probably we only need to pay some money for the extra day once we land in Bangkok but we didn't want to risk it.
    So we bought a new ticket in 3 days time and as we left the airport building a bird pooed on Tom's head. What a lucky day?!
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  • Day73

    Hue

    November 12, 2019 in Vietnam ⋅ ⛅ 29 °C

    Our 13 hour overnight train journey to Hue was rather chaotic and memorable. A party was going on all night in the last carriage which somehow everybody seemed to know about. People were arriving with beers and cake, shouting and screaming (later vomiting) including those who worked on the train. It wasn't much fun for us and with this going on and the light being switched on all night we couldn't get much sleep at all.
    Finally, we gratefully arrived in Hue, a historic town in central Vietnam, home of an Imperial City, the Perfume River, Ho Chi Minh's school and many restaurants with fantastic foods. In spite of all the wars the Viatnamese try to preserve and rebuild the old Imperial city which is an impressive and massive area with a palace, theatre, buildings introducing different crafts and trades, temples, lake etc. It was really interesting to explore and the rainy weather only added to the atmosphere.
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