Monday, April 27, 2015

Four More Hours....

Time flies and my flight to Hong Kong is just four hours! :D

Saying that I'm looking to the trip may be an overstatement.  Frankly, I've been so busy lately I didn't have time to plan much, lest feel excited about the trip.  Packing is only just done...currency just exchanged and well, mood not quite there.  Hopefully, when I arrive at the airport later, I'll start to feel excited.  The worse is, the kids exams are this week!  And I totally forgot to check when I was booking for the trip.  Now, this is gonna be a guilt trip, having to worry about my babies at home and feel like a lousy mama out there enjoying when the poor kids are cramming for exams! :(

This is how my itinerary looks like.  Didn't put much effort into planning, but here's something decent!

Day 1
- Arrival in Hong Kong
- Disneyland

Day 2
- Visit to Kokka showroom (Lai Chi Kok)
- Sight-seeing at The Peak
- Wine & dine at Lan Kwai Fong

Day 3
- Shopping in Tsim Cha Tsui (K11, Harbourbour City & Granville Road)
- Shopping in Causeway Bay (SOGO, Times Square & Jardine's Crescent)
- Shopping in Ladies Market
- Dinner/Shopping at Temple Street

Day 4
- Visit to Stanley Street
- Shopping at Stanley Market
- Visit to Blake Pier
- Wine & dine at Murray House
- Sight-seeing at Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade (including visit to Avenue of Stars & Symphony of Lights)

Day 5
- Departure to Singapore

I guess most people going to Hong Kong are looking forward to the great food.  I've also planned on a gastronomical experience to enjoy the various cuisines and mouth-watering food.  Some outlets I'm eyeing on include the following:

1. Maxim's Palace @ Central (dim sum)
2. One Dim Sum @ Prince Edward
3. Australian Diary Company @ Jordan (scrambled egg toast)
4. Sun Kee Cheese Noodle @ Tsim Sha Tsui (grilled pork cheek)
5. Sham Tseng Chan Kee Roasted Goose @ Mong Kok
6. Wai Kee Restaurant @ Temple Street (claypot rice & deep-fried oyster cake)
7. Sun Wah Cafe @ Cheung Sha Wan (egg tarts) 

Hope this will be a fun trip anyhow!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Off to the Pearl of the Orient!

It's been a long while since I last travelled!  Urmmmm....not quite actually, just four months since my last Perth trip in December but the travel bug in me is itching and bugging me to pack my luggage and embark on my next escapade!  Well, my next travel plan is confirmed and this time, I'm taking a jet ride to the Pearl of the Orient...Hong Kong!

It's happening in less than two weeks time!  Woohoo....I should have updated my blog much earlier but have been really bogged down by work and family commitments.  The trip takes place from 28 April to 2 May.  It's quite a last minute and short trip, as my main intention is to visit the Kokka showroom in Hong Kong to work out my plans for my fabric wholesaling.  And of course, to take this opportunity to chill too, as it's been a very stressful four months for me at work.  I've not been to Hong Kong since eight years ago, thus it'll be nice to revisit this vibrant city again.

I'm in my final stages of itinerary planning.  Gary has never been to Hong Kong and I'm bringing him to all the exciting and happening places that he should be checking out!  We are heading for Disneyland to unravel that young child in us after we arrive in Hong Kong, and spending the remaining four days in the city.

These are the places we intend to visit and do!

1. Disneyland
2. Shop and dine (Mongkok, Tsim Sha Tsui, Causeway Bay, Yau Ma Tei, Stanley Street etc)
3. The Peak
4. Lan Kwai Fong
5. Avenue of Stars

Sounds exciting huh?  Will be sharing more details once I finish my planning!  Can't wait!

Hong Kong....wait for us!!! :D

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Perth Day 8 - 10 December 2014

Today's the last day we spend in Perth before we return to Singapore tomorrow. 😞 We were blessed with hot, sunny weather and left for Penguin Island at 10am.  

Over at the Shoal Islands Marine Park, we decided to trek our way through the shallow waters to Penguin Island instead of taking the ferry.  Though me and the girls were apprehensive and nervous at the beginning, we soon began to enjoy the leisurely walk and cool seabreeze across the calm waters.  We were totally engulfed by the beauty of the coastlines and calling of the seagulls, which made us forget our fears pretty quickly.  The walk across the sandbar took us about half an hour to make it across to Penguin Island. 

My! This island is absolutely beautiful, with white and sandy pristine beaches lining the coasts. I love how the sandbars emerge from beneath the crystal clear water to give the island its unique character with intonations of brown, blue and green. Such breathtaking beauty and a paradise on earth!

After touring the island, we headed to one of the nearby beaches for snorkeling. The waters are crystal clear and shallow, making it perfect for snorkeling. It took us a while to get used to the snorkeling gear, especially the girls who had never tried snorkeling.  They didn't seem to enjoy it though due to the cold water and fear of the sea!  We had wanted to venture further to see more beautiful corals and fishes but decided to head back shore anyway for the penguins feeding session. 

It was so cute seeing the penguins feeding!  These little chicks are fairy penguins, the smallest penguins in the world. Love how they wobble and waddle as they walk and how they flap their little wings!

We left Penguin Island by ferry about 3pm as the sandbar was closed due to the strong currents and we couldn't walk back this time.  Everyone felt really tired after the walks and snorkel but fulfilling at the same time as the trip was so enjoyable!  The sights on this beautiful island totally took our breath away!

Being great hosts, David and Uncle Jerry took to the kitchen again to prepare dinner! Dinner was a sumptuous roasted pork belly with pumpkin, potatoes and mashed cauliflower. Yummy!

Uncle Jerry gave the girls a surprise on our last night here in Perth!  Check out the cute koala plushie!

I'm starting to feel melancholic and miss this beautiful place already 😪. We will be taking the early morning flight home to Singapore tomorrow morning. 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Perth Day 7 - 9 December 2014

Today was cloudy and windy. Hence we had a change of plans to postpone our trip to Penguin Island tomorrow and to do some shopping at Fremantle instead. 

We first visited an embroidery and haberdashery shop in Mint Street, Victoria Park.  Though it's a small craft shop, they stock up a great variety of embroidery and tapestry thread.  I was also very amazed by the tapestries displayed in the shop as they are absolutely beautiful and intricately crafted! I'm not exactly into embroidery or tapestry but I reckon this could be something I wanna explore in the near future.

David showed us some awesome places near the coast along the way to Fremantle, which are a paradise on their own.  We first did a stopover near the Healthcote Museum & Gallery which overlooks the Perth city.  As we strolled along the waterfront, the sights of the beautiful Perth City kept us all in awe, while enjoying the cool sea breeze.  What a wonderful place to chill out with our loved ones!

Our next stopover was the Point Walter Reserve in Bicton.  It is a national park overlooking the Swan River.  We even spotted some black swans swimming in the water. How beautiful and breathtaking!  I love how the sand bar extends into the river, with some sections submerging under the water.  Great place to pack your picnic baskets for a fun day out with kids!

We had kebabs at Nick's Place in Fremantle for lunch. The chicken and lamb were succulent and tender.  Even the kids who had never tried kebabs enjoyed it!  

This is our third trip to Fremantle over the past one week. We just can't get enough of this charming town!  My intention of coming here today is because I needed to shop for vintage clothings, which I didn't have the time to do so during my first two trips. We shopped around Market Street, Adelaide Street and Cantonment Street areas and finally found a few nice vintage shops at the Atwell Arcade in Cantonment Street. Bought a pretty flora dress at the Broken Doll Vintage shop at Atwell Arcade. 

So, what's for dinner?  Steak!!! All thanks to David & Caz, who kindly took the time and effort to whip up a delicious dinner for all of us!

We are praying for good weather tomorrow, so we can head for Penguin Island!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Perth Day 6 - 8 December 2014

We hit the theme park today!  The girls had been eagerly requesting to visit Adventure World and although I'm not a theme park person, I had to include it in our itinerary as I didn't want  to disappoint them.  It was a fine sunny day at 25 degree celsius today and a wonderful day for a theme park outing!

We started our day with kiddy rides as a warm up such as Dragon Express, The Barnacle and Sky Lift. Thereafter, the girls went for extreme rides such as Abyss and Black a Widow! I gave these rides a miss as I I'm height phobic and won't be able to withstand all the twists and turns and extreme drops! The only thrill ride I took was the Bounty's Revenge which made my stomach churn!  Check out the videos of some of the adrenalin pumping rides below!

We also took some family fun rides such as the Paddle Boats and Bumper Boats which were enjoyable too!  I made the mistake of not bringing along my swimwear as I didn't expect so many water rides. There were a number of aqua attractions such as Aqua Super 6 Racer, Rocky Mountain Rapids, Water Mountain Mat Slides and Kahuna Falls which the girls enjoyed thoroughly!

We are going to Penguin Island for a day of fun tomorrow! Stay tuned for my updates tomorrow!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Perth Day 5 - 7 December

We had a fun and fulfilling day today!  Our itinerary started with a trip to the Caversham Wildlife Park. It's located at the border of the Swan Valley and houses many of Australia's wildlife. We got up close and personal with kangaroos, koalas, wombats, parrots, owls, farm animals and more! It's an awesome attraction for all young and old alike!

After leaving the wildlife park, we made our way to Swan Valley for a tour of its many attractions. We stopped over at Lamont's first for lunch and wine tasting.  The lunch was yummy and wines were of the finest quality! We bought 3 bottles of wines there. 

Our next stop was the House of Honey.  I was amazed by the wonderful collection of honey products such as raw honey in numerous flavours, skincare, confectionaries and more! We bought honey, candies and jam.

We went for our second wine tasting at the Oakover Winery. The wines being served were too dry for my liking and we didn't buy anything. 

We carried on the tour with a visit to the Mondo Nougat and Morish Nuts stores, followed by the famed Margaret River Chocolate Co.  Bought lots of nuts, nougat and of course chocolates!  There are so many varieties of chocolates available, we are spoilt for choices!  

There was another winery named Providore beside the Margaret River Chocolate Co which we popped in to visit too. They serve excellent high quality wines which are sweet on the palate! In addition, they also produced lots of sweet sauces, salad dressings, chutneys and seasonings which were really yummy! We bought a few bottles of wines and chocolate liquor while Uncle Jerry bought me a bottle of vinaigrette for salads. 

Cape Lavender was our last stop for the day. This shop housed a gift shop cum restaurant. There were quality lavender products on sale such as skincare, room sprays, jams and essential oils. I left with a room & linen spray and a bottle of essential oil.

We left for home about 5pm.  It was a long & tiring day but one that is the most enjoyable in our itinerary!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Perth Day 4 - 6 December 2014

It's another awesome day of fun shopping in Perth! Today, we headed for shopping in Perth City, starting our retail therapy at the Watertown Outlet Shopping Centre. Over there, we were so overwhelmed by all the well-known brands such as Just Jeans, Adidas, Cotton On, Forever New, Rip Curl and more! 

We only had 3 hours and there was unfortunately not enough time to browse all the shops! 😞 We left the place with tee & shoes from Cotton On, jeans from Jayjays, skirt, jumper & blouse from Forever New and bikini & surf shorts from Rip Curl (plus lots of damages!).  The prices are amazing, as most items are marked 50% and more below cost! Wished we had more time there. 

We went to Perth City after Watertown for more retail therapy. The ultimate intention was to visit the T2 shop at Hay Street for tea. Bought 6 boxes of tea for myself and friends.  Total damage is 84aud, equivalent to almost 100sgd! 😱 I'm a tea lover and it's just irresistible seeing the extensive variety of tea available there. The shop wasn't as charming as the Tea Rooms I visited in the Dandenong Ranges in Melbourne, but good enough to entice all tea lovers!

Sadly, there's only time to visit the T2 shop, as most shops close at 5pm!  We took the train from Perth Underground Station to Cockburn Station, as it'll be fun to experience taking the public transport in Perth.

Here's a snapshot of some loot we've gotten in Perth so far!

We have an exciting itinerary tomorrow as we are going to the Caversham Wildlife Park and Swan Valley. Stay tuned for my updates tomorrow night!