Guide to Bali

Bali with it’s distinctive style of architecture built out of volcanic rock, black sand beaches and lush jungles, is a tropical paradise like none other.

Here are some of the things you must do while in Bali –

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Stay in an eco-friendly resort – Travel responsibly; It is entirely possible to experience the beauty of Bali while supporting businesses that take steps to preserve Bali’s natural resources for perpetuity.

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Watch the sunset at Ayana, Jimbaran – Perched on a cliff atop Jimbaran bay, Ayana boasts a spectacular sunset, the likes of which one has never seen.

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Explore Bali’s Wildlife – Bali’s lush jungles are a veritable treat for wildlife lovers, plan a trip to West Bali National park or explore underwater sea life at the islands of Lembogan, Menjangan and Lovina.

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Buy Balinese Furniture – Bali produces some of the best furniture in the world owing to an abundance of locally-grown, high quality wood. The many shops around Kerobokan stock beautiful furniture and are an aesthete’s delight.

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Stay at an Airbnb in Canggu – Choose one with enormous French windows that open up to Canggu’s endless paddy fields and is a short drive from Canggu’s popular organic cafe – The Shady Shack.

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Visit Tanah Lot – Tanah Lot is the most enchanting of the seven sea temples built on the Balinese coast. At low tide one can walk up the trail of rocks leading to the ancient temple.

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Unwind at the Sunset Lounge at Pan Pacific Resort – A great way to enjoy the breathtaking sunset over Tanah Lot is from the aptly named Sunset Lounge at the Pan Pacific Resort. The resort in itself is beautifully landscaped and a treat for golf aficionados.

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Surf Bali’s black sand beaches – Bali’s rolling waves and quiet, beautiful beaches are a surfer’s delight. So much so, that several classic surf movies such as ‘Morning of the Earth’ and ‘Endless Summer’ were shot here.

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Guide to Ceylon

Ceylon is a beautiful country made more beautiful by the kind and genteel people who call it home. Being a small country, one can traverse the hills and the beaches on a short scenic drive.

Here is my guide to Ceylon –

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Colombo 11 – was the home of famous Ceylon-born architect, Geoffrey Bawa. Tours through the home are now conducted 4 times a day and is a treat for those who love art and architecture.

Noritake – is a world renowned Japanese company that creates fine porcelain tea and dinner sets. A visit to their store in Colombo is a must to stock up on wonderful cutlery, that also make for great souvenirs.

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Independence Arcade – The mall adjacent to the Independence Square and the lovely gardens is a beautifully restored dutch heritage building. It has the wonderful T-lounge by Dilmah, a great place to curl up with a book whilst relishing on delicious matcha ice-cream. It also has two beautiful spas and even a multiplex, should you fancy watching the latest blockbuster whilst on a holiday.

Barefoot Cafe – is a bookstore, art gallery and cafe serving lip-smacking food; Of particular note is the ‘Srilankan thali’ consisting of rice, poppadum, salad, lentils and oh-so delicious fish curry.

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Borella Kanate Cemetery – Arthur C Clarke made Ceylon his home from 1956 till his death in 2008. He was deeply attached to the country, drawn at first with the promises of wondrous underwater adventures along its clear coastline. His final resting place is the Borella Kanate cemetery where his tombstone reads – “He never grew up, but he never stopped growing”.

Paradise Road Gallery Cafe – is one of the chicest places to dine in Colombo. The building was designed by renowned architect Geoffrey Bawa; The walls are filled with beautiful art, the food is wonderful and the entire experience is a delight to the senses.

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Lunuganga, Bentota – Lunuganga was architect Geoffrey Bawa’s country estate and is now a beautiful hotel. The expansive, rolling hills skirting a lake, the roman statues and delightful nooks are reminiscent of an Italian villa. If you are merely visiting the gardens, partaking in a traditional Srilankan lunch spread is a wonderful idea. The table is laid out in the impeccably decorated main house facing the placid waters of the Dedduwa lake and is an experience one simply cannot miss.

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Fort Galle – The historic Fort Galle is a world heritage site, owing to the beautiful Dutch & Portuguese architecture within it’s walls. One can spend an entire day walking the ramparts and discovering beautiful villas at every turn.

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Church Street Social – is beautifully decorated in soothing shades of grey and serves the most delicious food in all of Galle. The delectable desserts deserve a special mention, my favourite being the exquisite orange chocolate fondant served with delicious vanilla ice-cream.

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Ahangama Beach – holds a special place in my heart, for it spun many memories that I will always hold dear. It is a pristine beach ideal for surfing and snorkelling. It is also a short tuk-tuk ride away from whale and dolphin watching at Mirissa.

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Guide to Phuket

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Phuket is the largest island off the southern coast of Thailand and is an amalgamation of all the attractions that make Thailand such a popular travel destination.

Things to do

Visit Patong Beach 

Ride a colourful tuk-tuk to Patong beach and party the night away or soak in the sights and sounds and get a massage at one of the many shops along the street.

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Tuk-tuk to Patong!

Visit Nai Harn Beach

This is a pristine beach with fewer people and a great place to relax. On the way to Nai harn is the Kata-Karon viewpoint and makes for a great pitstop at sunset. You could also take the boats out to small islands near Nai Harn for a bit of snorkelling or diving.

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Nai Harn Beach

Learn to cook Thai cuisine

Have yourself an impromptu cooking class on the street, the friendly locals are happy to show you how they make thai curries and other specialities in their carts. Also don’t forget to sample the delicious nutella pancakes you find at every corner.

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Impromptu cooking classes on the street

Goan Rhapsody

Here is a glimpse of the immeasurable beauty of Goa.

The beautiful Portuguese houses..

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Mapusa
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Campal

..and churches.

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Lady of Immaculate Conception Church, Panjim

Delicious Goan food such as aloo bhaji poori..

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Cafe Tato, Panjim

..and ros omlette

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Mapusa Junction

The quaint cafes

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Bardez

And the endless sunshine!

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Morjim
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La Plage, Ashwem