Huacachina is a unique village in Peru built around a small natural lagoon. An oasis in the Atacama desert surrounded by tall sand dunes that dwarf the village. Though there are a little over 100 people who permanently reside there this oasis has become a main stop for thousands of tourists and backpackers each year. The main attraction is the thrilling dune buggy and sandboarding activity offered. Feel the thrill of rollercoaster like drops over 30 meter tall sand dunes. Enjoy the gorgeous sunsets and the local restaurants around the palm-lined lagoon.
Miraflores is a rather upscale district of Lima. Cosmoplitan, chic and safe to walk. It's south of downtown Lima and safe to walk. I went for a walk using the straightest path to the coast which led me to the Larcomar mall which I couldn’t resist checking out. It’ right along the cliffs where a long pedestrian and bike path runs up/down the coast. The cliffs run high and for miles.
Arriving to Tulum Centro by ADO bus ($4 from Playa Del Carmen) I walk to the hostel (Mimosa Hostel) with a small bag for a 2 night stay. I did bring my personal 3mm shorty wetsuit.
Playa Del Carmen is a highly touristic place. However it is quite lively with many restaurants, shopping, bars, nightlife and enterainment. On the adventurous side you have many scuba diving sites on the reefs/cenotes, parasailing, skydiving, adventure parks and much more. To get to Playa Del Carmen you need to fly into Cancun then find a shuttle over.
The Lub D hostel in Patong Beach-Phuket is one of the finest hostels with great bang for the buck. It has many fine amenities of a resort such as pool, bar/cafe, exercise equipment, lounges and services. At first glance you’ll see that it is a large hostel situated in a lively area of Patong Beach.
One happening touristy pedestrian street night spot in Siem Reap is Pub Street. Lined with restaurants and bars with beers ranging from 50 cents to $2.50 USD. Everything in Siem Reap is priced in USD. Bright lights, loud music, street vending of anything on a stick, and buckets of alcohol, no really, buckets. Backpackers, young, old, everyone visits this street. How long you can hold up along this street is up to you.
As we approach Singapore in a Qantas flight I’m watching an eerily space-like image from the plane’s tail cam view. Remembering 10 years ago I visited Singapore briefly and I told myself I need to return someday. Back then, after a Tibet/Nepal Everest trip me and a fellow traveler had a long stopover in Singapore. We met up with my old friend and colleague who lives there to give us a tour. We had a delicious salt and pepper crab dinner and a night out. Such a fascinatingly modern and clean city I’m looking forward to exploring Singapore further.
New Year's Eve 2020 I arrive in Auckland from Sydney Australia. Checking into the Verandahs Backpackers hostel, I had plenty of time to settle and get ready for a party at Fhloston Paradise just across the street from Verandahs. Fhloston Paradise was the name of the vacation-cruise planet from The Fifth Element SciFi movie.
As my Uber ride from the airport arrived in downtown Queenstown my eyes opened wide seeing myriads of interesting looking places to eat. I already knew I would have trouble choosing and never be able to sample enough of them. Even less than a block from my hostel there were more places to eat than I could manage. I quickly checked into my room and darted out to check out the town.