Bangkok vs. Kuala Lumpur: Where to Travel for the Long Weekend?

In Singapore this year, we have some long weekends due to the holidays. Christmas is on Monday, which means we have Friday, Saturday, and Sunday off as weekends. New Year is also on a Monday, which gives us the long Friday, Saturday and Sunday weekend.

In 2018 we still have some long weekends due to holidays, such as the Chinese New Year (which falls on a Friday and Saturday), and Good Friday (on a Friday). These holidays provide the perfect opportunity for some exotic travel to either Bangkok or Kuala Lumpur, our exciting and fun-filled neighboring countries. But then, you know you can only pick one since it is a three-day holiday. There are arguments about which is better, and, since have traveled to both places for the holidays, I can be considered an expert of sorts.

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Bangkok vs. Kuala Lumpur: Food

While food is less expensive in Kuala Lumpur, if you are used to Malay cuisine, you won’t find anything new there. Food in Bangkok is much more exciting because of the many restaurants selling foreign cuisine. Also, the food is less spicy than Malayan food (unless you love spicy food, which I do).

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Bangkok vs. Kuala Lumpur: Shopping

Of course you would want to go shopping while you’re on holiday (I know I do). Kuala Lumpur has malls as big as those in Singapore, and so does Bangkok. Shopping is also cheaper in Kuala Lumpur. However, Bangkok has an edge over Kuala Lumpur because of the street markets. Bangkok is teeming with street markets that give you a variety of choices when shopping, and you can get great prices as well.

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Bangkok vs. Kuala Lumpur: Nightlife

Bangkok goes on long after most people’s bedtime. The city is also safe at night, so you don’t have to worry about staying out past midnight. Restaurants stay open late to cater to hungry people on any kind of budget. There are bars and night clubs for you to go and hangout and have fun, as well as a host of other entertainment choices for you and your family or friends.

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Bangkok vs. Kuala Lumpur: Culture

Bangkok is rich in Thai culture and history that is quite undiluted, because it is the only country in South-East Asia that never got colonized by foreigners. The capital has a lot to offer for you to experience and enjoy, from the dances to the temples to the heritage. Malayan culture is a blend of Malay, Indian, and Chinese, giving it a distinctive culture of its own. Kuala Lumpur displays Malaysian culture in all its splendor and beauty, but personally I prefer Thai culture in Bangkok.

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Bangkok vs. Kuala Lumpur: Nature

The beaches in Thailand are cluttered with civilization. You can go to the beach and see bus routes and food stands, with very little ‘nature’ next to the water. The national parks are no different. They are not secluded and quiet and free of man and his toys. You can enter a park hoping for peace and quiet, and you will see food stands, resorts, and hiking trails that are very easy and not far from civilization.

Malaysia is still untamed when it comes to nature. The beaches are still pristine and free of human intervention. The Borneo jungle is still alive, despite poaching and deforestation. The national parks are still nature-oriented, with very little presence of resorts and restaurants. Malaysia is still doing its best to establish oil palm plantations, displacing the wild life that exists in the country, but you can still enjoy nature better in Malaysia than in Thailand. However, if you aren’t so deep into nature, Thailand is the place for you.

Conclusion

Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur have their pluses and minuses. Each has something different and unique to offer to visitors on your exotic travel. While I may prefer visiting Kuala Lumpur for the holidays, you may prefer going to Bangkok. With this list of what both cities have to offer, you can choose which city best fits your style and plan and exotic travel for your 3-day holiday. Or just askus@ladyredot.com!


 

Kally Kally is a former Sales and Customer Service manager turned Writer and Founder of MiddleMe.net. She came from Singapore; lived in Shanghai and now calls Kuala Lumpur her home. After hanging up her corporate briefcase, she now pursue her passions – Writing, Traveling and of course, hunting for good food.

Connect with me @ Kally@ladyredot.com

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3 Major Festivals in Philippines

The Republic of the Philippines, a widely Christianized country, is distinctly known for the many feasts and festivals that are celebrated the whole year round all throughout the country. These feasts and festivals are its citizenry’s way of honouring the different Patron Saints that they have grown up believing in, thereby making these celebrations an integral part of the Filipino culture. They are, more often than not, done in the most grandiose and fanciest of ways including the hanging of the most colourful bannerettes all over the town or city celebrating the feast day, grand fluvial parades and street parties, to say the least. Moreover, as these festivals are usually religious in nature, the observance of a High Mass is a customary event. Below are 3 of the biggest and famous festivals in the Philippines that you should watch out for in 2017:

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The largest and most popular of them all festivals in the country is the FEAST OF THE BLACK NAZARENE. Held every 9th day of January in Quiapo, Philippines, this particular festival is the most crowded of all, with reports showing as many as 10 million attendees in the most recent festival alone. Multitudes of devotees and believers swarm around the life-sized statue of the Poong Itim Na Nazareno while it is carried in a procession along a usually 6.5 km route. The Black Nazarene is not only believed to be very miraculous with the uncanny power of healing those with terminal illnesses, but many followers also testify that the Nazarene even grants petitions and wishes fervently asked for.

Second on the list and my personal favourite amongst the many festivals in the county is the SINULOG FESTIVAL in beautiful Cebu City, fondly called by the locals as the Queen City of the South. Held every 3rd Sunday of January, Sinulog Festival is celebrated to praise and honour Senior Santo Niño, the child Jesus. It is, in my opinion, the grandest and most colourful of all festivals in the country as it is always celebrated in style. And by style, I mean parades in the most impressive of sorts complete with enormous and gigantic floats decorated frivolously.

Sinulog is a dance ritual performed to pay homage to the great, miraculous image of the Child Jesus. Performers, young and not-so-young alike, flock the streets of Cebu year after year, cheered on by believers and non-believers alike. On the day of the Sinulog itself, whichever part of the city proper you go, a festive mood hangs in the air – you will find all sorts of people grouped together chatting, laughing, drinking, eating, bathing in beer and rejoicing in it, forming new bonds of friendship between people who have just met each other. But the thing I love the most about Sinulog is how devotees and believers and followers of the Child Jesus come together to the old Basilica Minore del Santo Niño to pay homage, to worship and pray, to wave their hands high up in the air in front of the image of Santo Niño while asking, thanking, pleading, venerating Him. On Sinulog days, you get to see how people heartily exalt the name of the Lord through the image of the Child Jesus and later on party together to celebrate Him.

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Every year, during the third week of August, the people from the peaceful city of Davao in the southernmost part of the Philippines celebrate the Kadayawan festival. Unlike the first two feasts as mentioned earlier which honour patron saints, Kadayawan is held every year in thanksgiving for bounteous harvest and mostly in grateful recognition for the gifts of nature and the gift of life. Different group Mish worked as a travel expert, customer service specialist and a communications trainer in the past. After working for eight years straight since she graduated, she decided to give up her corporate job. She now focuses on her 4-year old son, works as a freelance writer and a real estate assistant. She is a sun-worshipper, a water baby, and an earth warrior. And oh, she’s tiny but she is an Olympic-level glutton. Let her bring your tummy around the globe! You can reach her at LinkedIn.s of street dancers also grace the event, and the usual merry-making can be observed. This is perhaps one of the best times to go to malls and stores to horde on stuff because they usually cut the prices and offer promos as their way of celebrating Kadayawan.

So you see, these are only 3 out of the hundreds, and probably thousands of festivals celebrated in the Philippines the entire year, one after the other. This is one of the reasons that it is more fun in the Philippines than anywhere else in the world.

If you like to experience the local’s warmth hospitality and engage in their festivals, just askus@ladyredot.com to allow us to arrange everything for you.


mish
Mish worked as a travel expert, customer service specialist and a communications trainer in the past. After working for eight years straight since she graduated, she decided to give up her corporate job. She now focuses on her 4-year old son, works as a freelance writer and a real estate assistant. She is a sun-worshipper, a water baby, and an earth warrior. And oh, she’s tiny but she is an Olympic-level glutton. Let her bring your tummy around the globe! You can reach her at LinkedIn.

Chinese New Year in China

We are approaching what is called the biggest festival among the Chinese in the world. Of course, the biggest country that will be celebrating Chinese New Year is China. Do you know that a lot of offices and factories closes for at least 7 days for this big event for the Chinese workers who hasn’t seen their family for a year to travel home for Chinese New Year. It is deem unfilial not to go home with gifts during this period hence every year, China has this human migration all over the country, flocking to go home.

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History
There are a number of versions of the history of the Chinese New Year, but the most famous revolve around the mythical beast Nian. Legend says Nian is fond of threatening and eating humans, especially young children. The people, except for one old man, decided to flee and hide from the terrifying creature. The brave man decided to stay and ward off the horrifying best by using red pieces of paper and firecrackers. The people left the old man anyway. Upon their return on the next day, they were astounded to see the town was just as they left it: nothing was destroyed. The townspeople began to conclude that the old man was actually a deity who saved them and that loud noises and the colour red fend off Nian. From that day on, the people made sure to wear red clothing and decorate with red lanterns and red spring scrolls every time the New Year comes. Nian never showed his face to the people again.

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Significance
Also known as the Spring Festival, it starts on the 23rd day of the 12th lunar month of the Chinese calendar. In 2017, it falls on January 28. It is a key public holiday for the Chinese people, and it usually lasts for about 23 days. Most shops, restaurants and business are closed for several days, but supermarkets and public transportation are available (although most of the time overcrowded). Chinese New Year is celebrated not only in Mainland China but also in Singapore, Taiwan, Macau, Hongkong, Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Indonesia.

Aside from honouring the Chinese deities, the festival is time to celebrate their hard work all year long and to wish their families and friends a prosperous New Year, just like the non-Chinese New Year.

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Celebration
Aside from decorating their homes with red lanterns and red posters, wearing red clothing (the color red was a sort of an amulet, but now symbolizes happiness and fortune), Chinese people make sure to thoroughly clean their homes days before the New Year’s day to rid of bad luck and to welcome good luck. Families with members from different generations gather around tables to enjoy the “reunion dinner” or the New Year’s Eve dinner. They also gift gifts, usually money inside a red envelope mostly to children and seniors. Adults do not usually receive money unless it is from an employer.

Customarily, fish and dumplings (usually in Northern China) are served for the New Year’s Eve dinner. Foods like New Year Cake, Tang Yuan, Congee, and a lot of others are served depending on personal preference.

Aside from the celebration in their homes, cultural activities are also organised. These include imperial performances, ancestor worship and the famous dragon dance. They also pray in temples for bountiful fortune and luck. Firecrackers are set off; the louder they are, the better.

It is also believed that asking for money on New Year’s and cleaning the house within the first three days are huge taboos in a traditional Chinese setting. Doing so will not attract good luck.

If you are looking to travel to China during Chinese New Year or you would like to experience first hand on Chinese New Year culture in China, we can arrange for you! Just askus@ladyredot.com and we will ensure that you will savour the full experience of local festival celebration.


mish

Mish worked as a travel expert, customer service specialist and a communications trainer in the past. After working for eight years straight since she graduated, she decided to give up her corporate job. She now focuses on her 4-year old son, works as a freelance writer and a real estate assistant. She is a sun-worshipper, a water baby, and an earth warrior. And oh, she’s tiny but she is an Olympic-level glutton. Let her bring your tummy around the globe! You can reach her at LinkedIn.

I am a Female Traveler, Hear Me Roar

Her Health is in Tip Top Condition
Travel health effects are already a well-known fact. Tourism can not only prevent cancer, heart disease, cardiovascular disease, thrombosis, and prevent any health issue related to stress. This is because when you travel, you truly let yourself go and explore the globe. You are stress-free and relax. Of course, you got to turn off your mobile phone first!

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She certainly has a good figure
In addition to disease prevention, tourism has an impact on your beauty as well. Tourism can improve the body’s metabolism. When you are traveling, you tend to walk more, climb more and haul heavy stuff like luggage bags and shopping bags more often than your daily life.

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She must be elegant and refined
Frequent travelers know how to appreciate the beauty of a culture, the taste of the sceneries and the appreciation of a wide diversity. If you can learn to dress elegantly, however, elegance is a derived from the inner characteristics that could be subconsciously hone when expose to traveling.

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She knows how to live life
She knows when to relax and when to have fun. She is adventurous and loves a good party but she can be quiet, immersing herself in the enchanting view with a glass of wine.

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She is knowledgeable
Women who often travel love all kinds of culture, visionary with a broader view of life have to offer. She picks up traditions and perhaps a fair bit of their languages.

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She is the expert in social occasions
People who travel frequently know how effective social skills, armed with the know how to act gracefully and graciously, she is able to recite stories from her travels that leave one mesmerize, wanting to hear more. A boring person, she is definitely not!

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She is attractive
It is the charm she oozes out that capture people around her. Frequent travelers often have a sense of confidence within them and a confident lady is definitely an attractive one.

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She is attentive
Travels require one to be attentive to details and meticulous in their planning as well as intuitive to their surroundings whether it is to move away from harm or sniff a great bargain at the alleyway.

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She is a food specialist
Delicious smell of good food can’t escape her nose. She knows all kinds of delicacies and is willing to try those that she hasn’t eaten before. From exotic food to exotic fruits, she is always game to try anything.

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She is independent
Traveling will cultivate a sense of self-belonging and allow one to be comfortable in your own skin. Donning thick foundation and fake eyelashes is a fatal mistake when sweating out on a trek in the jungle and she knows it, opting to go au natural instead. Her confidence will not allow her to fear judgment by others, instead, laugh and cringe inwardly at those buffoons.


Writer’s Profile

Kally

Kally is a former Sales and Customer Service manager turned Writer and Founder of MiddleMe.net. She came from Singapore; lived in Shanghai and now calls Kuala Lumpur her home. After hanging up her corporate briefcase, she now pursue her passions – Writing, Traveling and of course, hunting for good food

Connect with me @ Kally@ladyredot.com