Grey Danang

23 December

Hi peeps and greetings from Siem Reap, Cambodia! I've now been traveling Asia for 2.5 weeks, and it's almost the end of my solo-travels - on the 25th I'll be flying back to Thailand to visit a friend and then I'll have friends flying over from Europe to travel with me until I fly back home to Finland! It has been soooo much fun despite me being very nervous about it beforehand, and I've met so many amazing people during my time. I can 100% recommend traveling solo - it has definitely forced me out of my comfort zone and made me more confident as a person. Approaching people isn't always easy but when you're alone you just gotta do it! I can't wait to travel again with friends though, and constantly have someone to share the experiences with! 

Anyways, a little throwback to my Danang-time in this post! I wasn't originally planning on visiting Danang as it didn't seem too special a city, but since my friend was doing her internship there, I decided to pay her a visit and thus started my 2-week Vietnam journey from there! I stayed in Danang from Friday the 8th until Sunday evening the 10th of December.

I personally wasn't a huge fan of Danang as a city - to be honest, it was the only place in Vietnam I visited and really did not enjoy too much - it was just another bland and grey Asian city. During the summer I bet it is a lot better since you can also enjoy the beach, however when I visited it was quite chilly (hoodie & leggings weather), so I just skipped the beach entirely (except for a quick shot). After some scootering around we did manage to find some special spots that I would definitely recommend! 

I stayed at Barney's backpacker hostel for two nights (6€ per night), and would recommend it a 100%!! I arrived at the hostel and they already knew my name - something that I have never encountered in a hostel before. The staff was just simply amazing and gave me such a good first impression of Vietnamese people. A shoutout to Amy and Hailey who were so welcoming and took me to a local (insane!!!) market and the movies (Coco, it was amazing!) on my first day. 

In the evening I met up with Hellen, who had her last day of internship on the 8th. We ended up going to Wanderlust, a really cool cocktail bar with great staff, great cocktails and a nice design! Afterwards we headed out to check out some night clubs of Danang, which was definitely an interesting experience for me, since I was literally the only non-asian in the first club - apparently Danang is a popular travel destination amongst Koreans and Japanese people.

Next morning we jumped on Hellen's scooter and headed towards the Marble Mountains, one of the main tourist locations in Danang. It surprised me by being a really interesting place with a magical atmosphere (let the pictures do the talking!). Since we had a bunch of energy left afterwards, we decided to continue to the Monkey Mountains where Hellen lived, and check out some spots that she hadn't previously. I loved the Monkey Mountains. The weather was literally perfect so we managed to get some amazing shots. We also encountered a bunch of monkeys, and one even attacked Hellen on the scooter! (It was funny because seconds before I had asked Hellen if I should be scared of the monkey and then suddenly it was jumping on her).

After the long day of scootering around we went for really nice Vietnamese dinner and ice cream served in a coconut. Hellen's Japanese friend Saki joined us and we just played cards for ages until we were ready to pass out.

On Sunday morning I woke up early and hit the gym (damn I was proud of myself!). It was called VPT Club Fitness & Yoga Danang and only cost me 30,000 Dong (approx. 1,1€). The staff members were really surprised to see me there so I assume there aren't too many Western customers, but anyways the gym was great and cheap and did the job so I was more than happy. After the gym I hopped on a scooter and headed again towards the Monkey Mountains to Intercontinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort. After 5 months of working, Hellen had earned herself and a friend a free Sunday brunch at the hotel. And oh my goodness was it amazing!!! Probably one of the best meals of my life (although buffets are terrible since I always end up eating too much...) and they also played amazing live music throughout the entire brunch. Afterwards Hellen showed me around the hotel, which was just insanely beautiful. As a hotello I find visiting other hotels extremely interesting, and this hotel in particular was just something different - it felt more like an amusement park than a hotel!

That was my Danang-time in a nutshell! After visiting Intercon, we headed towards the next destination, Hoi An, which I will write more about in my next post.
Have a great day xx Ella


Hectic Bangkok

14 December

Greetings from Hoi An, Vietnam! My time in Koh Samui eventually came to an end, but now I get to travel around South-East Asia for 1.5 months, so I'm definitely not complaining! I will write a post about Koh Samui soon now that I actually have time again, and share some tips about the top spots to visit, as I believe after 5 months I am somewhat an expert of Koh Samui, haha.

On Wednesday the 6th I started my traveling journey from Bangkok. I had heard some mixed comments about Bangkok beforehand, but to be honest I really enjoyed my time there (although my god the traffic was horrendous, just as bad as people had told me! Just crossing two streets took me 10 minutes) It was great to be in a big city again after 5 months on a tropical island. I stayed at a hostel called Bed Station Hostel, which was definitely the nicest hostel that I had ever visited before! It cost around 300 baht (around 7,80€) for a bunk bed, which I thought was quite reasonable considering the great location, really comfortable bed with curtains, and free breakfast (toast, cereal and fruit). I did not spend too much time in the hostel since I had only two days to explore Bangkok, but there was a nice communal area with bean bags, a Playstation and a bunch of books, and the atmosphere felt quite nice and sociable.

I decided to do my shopping on the arrival day, as I wanted to stay around the area for my check-in at 2pm. I first headed to Platinum, which is a huge shopping center with 6 levels (?) selling pretty much everything for very cheap. I had a look around but did not end up buying anything from there, but in case you wish to find clothes with a very affordable price, Platinum is the place to go to! 
Afterwards I headed to check out all the Siam shopping malls, and went a bit too crazy with my shopping... Bangkok really is a shopping paradise! 

I also checked out the Sea Life Aquarium to pass time before meeting up with a friend, as couple of my guests from my hotel recommended it to me. It cost me 900 baht (23 euros), which I thought was quite pricey. I probably should not have spent all that money on it considering I am on a travel budget... I enjoyed it but it was not worth the money for me.
Later I met up with a friend, had some Thai food at a food court and afterwards headed to Caturday Cat café! I randomly spotted it on the street, and as a cat lover I just could not not go! It was the cuuutest spot, and their blueberry and vanilla tea was yummy (the desserts also looked incredible but I was desperately trying to stay healthy...)! The cats of course were adorable but unfortunately did not really enjoy being petted.

I was supposed to do the proper sight-seeing on my second day, but things did not turn out too good... Being the clumsy person that I am, I managed to break my phone when I was half asleep. And instead of just breaking the screen, the phone got broken underneath with ink spreading all over the screen. Therefore instead of heading to the Grand Palace early in the morning as I had planned, I had to go buy a new phone instead as I did not want to go solo-traveling without a working phone (I'm a 100% dependent on google maps, lol). So I went and splurged on a new phone and lost a massive amount of my travel budget...(damn spending that money hurt my soul! But at least I know have a phone with a great camera to take photos with during my travels!)

Only after meeting up with a school mate I headed towards the Grand Palace. I wish I could have gone there in the morning and had a bit more time to explore with less tourists (!!!), but it was still a nice experience. Remember to cover your shoulders and wear a long bottom part as well, otherwise they will not allow you to go in, and buying clothes from there is very pricey as they try to rip tourists off. Also I am not sure if you're allowed to wear flipflops in the area, because they forced some people with flipflops to leave the queue (however I saw many people with sandals inside the area?). The price for the Grand Palace was 500 baht (13€), although I believe you can get a ticket for a bit cheaper online.

In the evening I met up with a friend again and then headed back to the hostel to get all packed up since I had an early flight to Vietnam! I wish I would have had a bit more time to explore, but at least there's a reason to come back! Next time I definitely want to check out Ayutthaya, the infamous Khao San road, and the floating markets.

Anyways, I am currently being eaten alive by mosquitoes, so I think it's time to finish for the day! Next off I'll write about my experiences in Danang and Hoi An! :) 

Have a great day!  ♡

koh samui

Blogi uuteen nousuun

30 September

Morjesta ihanat! Mun viimeisimmästä postauksesta on kerennyt vierähtämään tovi jos toinenkin, mutta nyt inspiroituneena eiköhän olisi aika pistää blogi uuteen nousuun! Vaikka mitä on tapahtunut sitten helmikuun, ja elelen tällä hetkellä ihan täysin erilaista elämää kuin mitä puoli vuotta sitten - tätä postausta näpyttelen nimittäin Amsterdamin sijaan Samuin saarelta Thaimaasta! Muutin tänne heinäkuussa tekemään vaihtoharjoitteluani hotellissa, ja tarkoituksena olisi pysyä tällä puolen maapalloa ainakin tammikuun puoleen väliin asti. Harjoitteluni loppuu joulukuun alussa, jonka jälkeen suunnitelmana olisi reissata ympäriinsä Kaakkois-Aasiaa - lähtökohtaisesti ajateltuna haluaisin nähdä ainakin koko Thaimaan, Vietnamin, Singaporen ja Filippiinit, mutta saa nähdä miten suunnitelmat muuttuvat matkan varrella :)  Nyt lähikuukausina blogini tulee siis olemaan aikalailla reissupainotteinen - takaisin Amsterdamissa rustailen sitten taas samantyylisiä terveys- ja lifestyle-tyylisiä postauksia kuin aiemmin! (Harmikseni muuten Photobucketistä tuli maksullinen, ja kaikki vanhojen postauksien kuvat katosivat... Palauttelen niitä pikku hiljaa kunhan kerkeän!).
Hi lovelies! It's been way too long since I last logged on to Blogger and posted anything, and since I am all inspired at the moment, it's about time to kickstart this blogging thing all over again! A lot has changed since February - everything really about my life - because instead of Amsterdam, I am currently typing this post from a café in Koh Samui, Thailand! I moved here in July to do my internship from school in a hotel, and I'll be staying on this side of the planet until at least mid-Jan! I'll be finished with my placement in the beginning of December, and afterwards the plan is to just travel all around South-East Asia - I really cannot wait!! I will probably cover all Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore and perhaps the Philippines but we will see what happens- I have no set plans! So the next following months my blog will probably be filled with a bunch of travel posts! Once I am back in Amsterdam I will continue with the similar health and lifestyle posts I used to write previously. (So sad btw, Photobucket now charges for image hosting and all my pictures disappeared... I'll be reposting my old posts whenever I have time!)

Onko teitä ruudun takana enää ketään seurailemassa? Tervetuloa taas lukemaan! Pian postailen kasan kuvia viimeisien kuukausien ajalta täältä Koh Samuilta joten stay tuned! :)
Stay tuned for a bunch of Koh Samui photos from the past months! :)

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