Tag Archives: travel

Penang 2014 – Street Art Hunt Part 2

Beside the Ernest Zacharevic pieces, there are 2 pieces by Louis Gan that are frequently attributed to the former because of the similar styles. He has one more ‘Nostalgic Meal Order’ piece along Kinta Lane that I didn’t have time to visit. Another series is the 101 Lost Kittens project by a group of artists to create awareness of stray animals.

brother and sister on a swing

brother and sister on a swing

children playing basketball

children playing basketball

cats & humans happily living together

cats & humans happily living together

I can help catch rats

I can help catch rats

Bruce Lee cat mural

Bruce Lee cat mural

Skippy the giant cat

Skippy the giant cat

please care and bathe me

please care and bathe me

love me like your fortune cat

love me like your fortune cat

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Penang 2014 – Street Art Hunt Part 1

We were in Penang last week for my sister’s wedding so I took the chance to hunt for some street art. There’s a map indicating where the murals are found and this map is available at the airport and also at some hotels. It was unbelievably hot and we were extremely exhausted from walking around. I strongly recommend getting a trishaw for the day or renting a bike for the street art hunt!

These are the pieces by Ernest Zacharevic. The one of two kids and a cat in a boat at Chew Jetty is almost completely weathered away but I didn’t know that so I walked all the way there for nothing. If only I’d read this particular blog post before my hunt!

trishaw man

trishaw man

boy reaching up

boy reaching up

kungfu girl

kungfu girl

minions

minions

boy with (missing) dinosaur

boy with (missing) dinosaur

kids on bike

kids on bike

boy on motorcycle

boy on motorcycle

girl with (missing) balloon

girl with (missing) balloon

David’s First Overseas Trip – Ho Chi Minh City

Adrian had to go to Ho Chi Minh City for a trip with his colleagues so I tagged along too. We brought Baby D with us because he’s still nursing and Anya because it was her birthday weekend. Poor Adam was left with my parents. David was relatively ok for his first flight ever. He was restless and cried a few times but it was no worse than his usual behaviour. We spent most of our time in HCMC eating and also checked out a couple of tourist attractions, namely the post office, Notre Dame and Ben Thanh market.

I really wanted to go to the Cu Chi tunnels and we even booked a trip but decided that it just wasn’t worth a 2-hour car ride there and back with the kids. Ho Chi Minh City is not a very kid-friendly place. The traffic is terrible and the air is not great. While we were there, we got several concerned looks from the locals whenever they saw David. Back home, we only got nagged by old folks but in HCMC, even young people would stare and point! Turns out that in Vietnam, babies below 3 months of age (and their mothers) are not supposed to leave the house and David was just over 1.5 months then!

Pho Hoa Pasteur

Pho Hoa Pasteur

Anya's bananas!

Anya’s bananas!

the pho and the coffee are so good

the pho and the coffee are so good

had dinner on a boat

had dinner on a boat

driving our dinner boat

driving our dinner boat

enjoyed a cultural performance

enjoyed a cultural performance

checked out the night market

checked out the night market

bought coffee

bought coffee

General Post Office

General Post Office

it's still functional, unlike ours which is now Fullerton Hotel

it’s still functional, unlike ours which is now Fullerton Hotel

Notre Dame

Notre Dame

inside

inside

found the Lunch Lady

found the Lunch Lady

people at the Lunch Lady

people at the Lunch Lady

banh canh cua

banh canh cua

house of flying claypots

house of flying claypots

rice being thrown across the room

rice being thrown across the room

inside Ben Thanh market

inside Ben Thanh market

busy place

busy place

Adam’s First Visit to Legoland Theme Park

We took Anya to Legoland theme park in January but didn’t bring her brother along because he was too tiny then. So while we were staying at Legoland Hotel, we bought the 2-day combo ticket and visited the theme park a few times. Since there are very few rides that Adam can go on (and even fewer for me!), we split up with Adrian accompanying Anya for the fun stuff while Adam and I went on the tamer rides. We started off with a ride on the Legoland Express before heading to Duplo Play Town to meet up with Anya who had gone for the rides at Lego Kingdoms.

Christmas train

Christmas train

happy boy on the train

happy boy on the train

view from the train

view from the train

Duplo Play Town

Duplo Play Town

bumped into Adrian's cousin's family

bumped into Adrian’s cousin’s family

riding the Duplo Express

riding the Duplo Express

with their cousins on the train

with their cousins on the train

Adam spent lots of time here

Adam spent lots of time here

sliding down backwards

sliding down backwards

Adam managed to get on the Lost Kingdom ride and enjoyed it very much. Then it was lunch at Market Restaurant before we headed to Lego City for Junior Driving School (for Anya), the Boating School (very long queue) and the Rescue Academy (we all got on but only Adrian did any work).

Lost Kingdom Adventure

Lost Kingdom Adventure

with the pharoah

with the pharoah

waiting in line

waiting in line

lunch at the Market Restaurant

lunch at the Market Restaurant

Anya zooming around at Junior Driving School

Anya zooming around at Junior Driving School

boating school

boating school

the other two trying to overtake us

the other two trying to overtake us

at the Rescue Academy

at the Rescue Academy

Adrian doing all the work

Adrian doing all the work

putting out the fire

putting out the fire

Adam pretending to help

Adam pretending to help

After visiting The Big Shop and going for one more ride on the Aquazone Wave Racers (something Anya was too short for the last time), we went back to the hotel to check in. Adam had his nap while the other two went back out for more rides before we all met up together again for the carolling and Christmas tree light-up. I think it’s so great that the park is open until 8pm during the holidays! It’s a lot cooler in the evening and most of the queues are shorter as well.

with the mascot

with the mascot

doing the princess thing

doing the princess thing

managed to get on Aquazone Wave Racer!

managed to get on Aquazone Wave Racer!

carollers

carollers

Christmas tree light-up

Christmas tree light-up

We visited the park again on the second day after the Water Park and managed to sit on a few more rides. There wasn’t much of a queue at the City Airport so they went on the ride a few times in a row! The Forestmen’s Hideout playground over at Lego Kingdoms is usually to hot to play on during the day but it was a nice and cool evening so the kids had fun running around there. Then it was a ride on The Dragon’s Apprentice roller-coaster for the taller ones before we left Legoland.

Lego mascot

Lego mascot

at the City Airport

at the City Airport

Anya on her own

Anya on her own

Adam with Adrian

Adam with Adrian

Anya on the Beetle Bounce

Anya on the Beetle Bounce

hanging out at one of the playgrounds

hanging out at one of the playgrounds

walking along the bridge

walking along the bridge

with some help from Daddy

with some help from Daddy

a final ride on The Dragon's Apprentice for Anya

a final ride on The Dragon’s Apprentice for Anya

until the next time!

until the next time!

Legoland Water Park

We spent our second day at the Legoland Water Park and it was a good thing because it was slightly rainy that day. Unlike over at the theme park, we had to pay RM10 for Adam (toddlers 0-2 years old) to enter and were given two pieces of swim diapers. We left our stuff in one of the all-day rental lockers so I didn’t really take that many pictures of the place.

The Red Rush ride was closed that day and they also closed the Joker Soaker ride later in the day even though it was open when we first got there. Considering that there aren’t that many attractions in the water park, it was quite disappointing that 2 areas were closed!

raring to go

raring to go

funny Lego man

funny Lego man

Joker Soaker

Joker Soaker

can you spot Anya?

can you spot Anya?

scrambling around

scrambling around

Red Rush

Red Rush

There are life jackets freely available but you need to pay RM20 to rent towels. Shoe racks are found everywhere so if you don’t want to walk around barefooted, you can leave your shoes at the shoe racks.

There were very few attractions that Adam could do so he spent a lot of time at the Duplo Splash Safari and went around the Build-A-Raft river a few times. Anya couldn’t go on the ones with a 107cm minimum height limit but she still had quite a few options and managed to have fun there.

We were there for about 3-4 hours before it started raining quite heavily. After grabbing some lunch, we went back to the hotel and Adam had his nap while Anya and Adrian rested for a bit before heading back out to the theme park.

Splash Out

Splash Out

Anya's turn

Anya’s turn

Adam in his life jacket

Adam in his life jacket

Duplo Splash Safari

Duplo Splash Safari

Anya thinks Lego girl needs a life jacket

Anya thinks Lego girl needs a life jacket

floating down the Build-A-Raft river

floating down the Build-A-Raft river

paddling with bricks

paddling with bricks

Lego Slides Rider

Lego Slides Rider

having a blast

having a blast

Twin Chasers

Twin Chasers

hand in hand

hand in hand

in the wave pool

in the wave pool

lunch while it's raining

lunch while it’s raining

The Legoland Water Park is fun but I wouldn’t travel specially to Malaysia for it because it seems to me to be quite a repetitive series of slides. It’s worth checking out if you’re staying at the Legoland hotel so you can do the theme park on one day and the water park the next.

Legoland Water Park is open daily from 10am to 6pm. The map is available here.

Legoland Hotel Malaysia

The Legoland Hotel in Malaysia opened on 29 November so we just had to make a trip there to experience it for ourselves. We drove over on Adrian’s birthday and stayed for two nights. The kids loved it! We got there at about 10am and couldn’t check in until 4pm so we left our luggage there (in a very secure holding area) and went to the theme park.

The process of checking in wasn’t the smoothest. We booked a Kingdom-themed room but the room that was meant for us had some maintenance issues so we were asked to wait about half an hour, then upgraded to a premium Adventure-themed room in the end. The good thing is there’s so much for the kids to do in the lobby that they didn’t mind the wait.

Legoland Hotel

Legoland Hotel

kids headed straight for this pit

kids headed straight for this pit

view from Legoland Park

view from Legoland Park

huge Lego figures

huge Lego figures

in miniature

in miniature

castle in the hotel lobby

castle in the hotel lobby

pirate ship in the hotel lobby

pirate ship in the hotel lobby

wall of Lego figures

wall of Lego figures

Lego flowers

Lego flowers

I thought the Adventure room was really fun but Anya had some issues with the Egyptian mummies, spiders, scorpions, etc there. I think she would have preferred the Kingdom room. The room is very decent but strangely doesn’t come with any toothbrushes and toothpaste so we had to buy some from Medini Mall. There are several bottles of mineral water provided though and those were very useful for our trips to the theme park and water park!

There was a treasure map with clues that need to be solved in order to open a treasure box in the room. However, after solving the clues, we opened the box to find… the same treasure map. It was quite anti-climatic to say the least. The ‘treasure’ was supposed to be a box of Lego for the kids to play with. Our box of Lego was already sitting on the shelf and was therefore not in the treasure box. It’s a fun idea in theory, but the hotel staff need to carry it out consistently to ensure that kids have fun finding the treasure.

outside our room

outside our room

Adam getting comfy

Adam getting comfy

the kids' bunk bed

the kids’ bunk bed

they had their own TV!

they had their own TV!

some treasures

some treasures

scorpion in the toilet

scorpion in the toilet

solving clues to open our treasure box

solving clues to open our treasure box

I'm looking really tubby but this is the only photo of all of us

I’m looking really tubby but this is the only photo of all of us

off on an adventure

off on an adventure

We had the buffet dinner in the Bricks restaurant on the first evening because we were very tired and didn’t want to head out to the mall. I wouldn’t recommend the buffet dinner. It’s RM68++ for adults (above 11 years old) and RM39++ for children (3-11 years old). For that price, you don’t even get free-flow drinks from a soda dispenser. Other than coffee, tea and water, you need to pay extra for drinks. The food wasn’t spectacular either and some items were not replenished after they ran out.

cute ice-cream sculpture

cute ice-cream sculpture

Bricks Restaurant

Bricks Restaurant

food for kids

food for kids

cold cuts

cold cuts

meat

meat

dim sum and noodles

dim sum and noodles

some spicy stuff

some spicy stuff

catch of the day

catch of the day

the kids went gaga over this decadent display of sweets

the kids went gaga over this decadent display of sweets

cakes

cakes

chocolate fountain and ice-cream counter

chocolate fountain and ice-cream counter

The Legoland Hotel is so much fun for the kids and we really liked being able to head back for a nap in the afternoon and staying at the park until closing time without worrying about driving in the dark. I think the kids had more fun because they were able to come back and rest in between when the sun was at its hottest (or when it was raining) without rushing or being dragged around the entire day.

We would definitely stay there again the next time we want to visit Legoland theme park and the water park. I hope they improve the buffet meals at the restaurant or at least introduce an a la carte menu though!

Hong Kong 2013: Disneyland – The Rides

Since we were moving around in a bigger group this time and stopped several times to eat and shop, we didn’t manage to take many rides. We started off with Astro Blasters in Tomorrowland while Anya and Adrian went to ride on Space Mountain. Then we took the It’s a Small World ride before heading to Toy Story Land where Anya and Adrian took the Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop before we all went to spin around in the Slinky Dog Spin. After the parade, we took the Jungle River Cruise in Adventureland. Finally the little ones sat on Cinderella Carousel in Fantasyland while Anya went back for another Space Mountain ride.

Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters

Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters

zapping aliens

zapping aliens

Halloween decoration at Toy Story Land

Halloween decoration at Toy Story Land

Pixar Ball and Slinky Dog Spin in the background

Pixar Ball and Slinky Dog Spin in the background

Toy Soldier Parachute Drop

Toy Soldier Parachute Drop

Anya and Adrian

Anya and Adrian

before being dropped

before being dropped

toy soldiers in the flesh

toy soldiers in the flesh

Adventureland

Jungle River Cruise

Jungle River Cruise

the Lobos

the Lobos

great balls of fire

great balls of fire

running away from rhino

running away from rhino

Fantasyland Cinderella Carousel

Fantasyland Cinderella Carousel

Angie & Isaac

Angie & Isaac

a selfie with my boy

a selfie with my boy

happy to sit on his own

happy to sit on his own