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Australasia

Milford Sound

Believed to have been discovered more than a 1,000 years ago by Maori, Milford Sound is New Zealand’s wettest inhabited place and one of the most known and beautiful fiords.  Despite its popularity, it is still a wonderfully calm place to visit.  The Sound actually received its name from John Grono, the first European settler to land on South Island.  It was named after the Welsh town of Milford Haven in Wales back in 1912.

ms
Milford Sound. Photo by Christine Wagner.

The Sound is just about 2 hours from Te Anau and 4 hours from Queenstown and so you could make this a day trip at a push or even better, spend a night or two at Milford Sound’s Lodge to get the full benefit of this stunningly beautiful area.

What is there to do?

Cruise

This is the must do activity when visiting the sound and whatever the weather, you will be amazed by the scenery.  Enjoy spotting the dolphins, tasting the refreshing water direct from the surrounding waterfalls and you may even have the chance to stand under Stirling Falls.  The cruise lasts from between 1 ¾ hours up to 3 hours depending upon how far you wish to travel and how much you want to see.  We recommend the Discover More Cruise which offers great value including a gourmet lunch, an on board nature guide and access to the Milford Discovery Centre.

milford sound cruise
Milford Sound Cruise. Photo by missbossy.

Kayak

You can add on an hour of kayaking to the cruise package allowing you to get even closer to nature whilst being guided by an expert.   This is an activity suitable for all abilities and ages and certainly worth doing if you have the time.

Hike

Known as the ‘walking capital of the world’ due to its excellent network of tracks, if you love your hiking, add this to your places to visit list.  The walks vary in terms of length (taking from 30 minutes to 4 days!) and difficulty but there is something for everyone.  From rainforest to alpine vistas, you will be constantly entertained by nature.

Tell me more about Milford Sound’s Lodge

This is a perfect place to spend the night after a day of travelling to the Sound and exploring.  It gives you the chance to experience the Sound by night and more time to head out the next day before heading on….or staying another night!

msl
Milford Sound Lodge. Photo by jo cool.

We love the Riverside Chalets with their floor to ceiling windows allowing for terrific views.  However, at just under NZ$400 per night in the summer season, it may not suit everyone and so the Lodge offers everything from these luxurious chalets to camping and everything in between.  If you plan on taking the cruise excursion whilst at the Sound, you can save money by booking this at the same time as your stay.

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Americas

St Lucia in summary

Stepping off the plane and hitting that comforting warm wall of heat and seeing tropical plants bursting from the hills, you know the week ahead in the Caribbean sunshine is going to be just what you need. 

Whether that’s an adventure soaring through the treetops, beach time, partying at the jump up or tasting endless delicious dishes.  There is something for everyone just over 8 hours away from the UK.  We love our weeklong escapes to the Caribbean and although we would love more, often our time doesn’t allow it.  People travel to Las Vegas for less time and usually for a more hectic time and so 8 hours really isn’t that far for paradise.

We have visited St Lucia a couple of times to explore this wonderful tropical island.  I’m not going to lie, the transfers are not as easy ride, so to speak but they are well worth it.  Unlike some of the other Caribbean islands, St Lucia is green, hilly and feels very genuinely Caribbean.  The roads wind left to right and back up and down and so if you are not good in cars, make sure you get a front seat or, if budget allows, enjoy a helicopter ride and sample the undulating landscape from above.

The island is sprinkled with stunning hotels, basic apartments, larger high end apartments such as The Landings, all inclusive properties and more unique stays such as Boucan by Hotel Chocolat.  There is an option for everyone to enjoy what’s on offer here. 

We have stayed at Sandals Halcyon which is a smaller all-inclusive resort perfectly located between the other two Sandals hotels on the island.  We love the grounds at the hotel which are tropically rich and make the resort a cosy haven.  There is the option of a ground floor or first floor room and this low-rise approach makes The Halycon a home away from home.  The smiling staff, wide ranging culinary options, activities on offer (including the Caribbean’s longest pool!) and beautifully furnished rooms make relaxing here a breeze.  You are also able to explore the other hotels on the island using the free shuttle bus and the Grande is next door to Pigeon Island and the Friday night jump up which shouldn’t be missed.  Also, if you are considering a wedding abroad, the Grande does have the most stunning over water chapel.

We enjoyed kayaking, paddle boarding, Big Mable (!), a boat trip to see the Pitons, Diamond Falls Botanical Gardens (and of course the spa which takes 10 years off your age!) and the Tree Top Adventure Park at Dennery to name just a few.  We sipped fresh coconut water from coconuts picked within the hour and watched intricate sushi dishes being made in front of us whilst also enjoying the dusky sea view below.

Then, after a week of drowning our senses in new experiences, we always reluctantly step back onto the plane and walk through the Narnia wardrobe, returning to our version or normal but already planning our return.

Get in touch today to start planning your next adventure!

toni@holidaysplease.com

07951 219293

General

Myth busting: why you should consider using a travel agent

There are lots of challenges I face as a travel agent working in a small village on the edge of Warwick and without a shop window! I hear lots of ‘myths’ from potential customers who are concerned about booking a holiday with a travel agent. I hope this article quashes just a few.

One reason people do not book with a travel agent is because they do not want to go on a package holiday like everyone else. Package holidays are often associated with a week in the sun surrounded by Brits abroad. This is so 90s and very much an outdated reality of what a package holiday actually is today!

The beauty of what I do is that I can book almost anything, even when it appears not to exist. All ‘packaging’ means is booking different elements of a trip together under one nice neat ATOL so you are financially protected and have someone to turn to if things didn’t go to plan. I can be far more flexible with what I can offer compared to a high street agent and also, far more reliable and much easier to contact than a large online booking agency’s call centre.

If you book a little hut in the middle of nowhere in Bali but your flight fails, your transfer fails to show up or when you get there your reservation which you made with a booking site appears not to exist, what would you do?

I am not being nosey. I am not judging you based on how much or little you perceive your budget to be. What you think may be a little I could think is a lot for instance; you are making an assumption about what I will think based on your thoughts alone. If I don’t have a budget, I am having to do a lot of guess work….it’s like playing eye spy without having the ‘something beginning with…..’ part!

I ask because it makes my job easier. It saves me a lot of time if I know what to search for and it stops you from thinking I am too expensive or too cheap. It means you get what you are searching for far more quickly 🙂

I love finding trips for all budgets. I once found a South African garden route and safari trip for just over £1,500 pp and another for £10,000 pp. Imagine you had £10,000 to spend and with it, high expectations, but because you didn’t give me a budget I came back with the £1,500 option; you may think I was incapable in finding a luxury option for you. Likewise, if I gave you the £10,000 option and you had £1,500, you would think I was incapable of finding a more figure friendly option.

I ask for a budget to help me filter the options for you and to get you a trip that you will be happy with. I am certainly not judging you on how much or little you think you have to spend. I will be realistic with you if I think the budget is too tight.

ALSO, people fear if I have a budget I am going to stretch it to the max. I may well go up to the budget, over this but also below it to give you some options. Tell me what hotels you have stayed in before and liked, what facilities are key to have and what you will not compromise on and I will find options within and around your budget. It’s then down to you to decide what is most important.

“I love planning my own holidays and so never use a travel agent”……….YOU ARE MY FAVOURITE CUSTOMER IN WAITING!!

If you love doing all the research, then it will not cost you a penny to come to me with everything you have found and ask me to price check this for you and pop it into a lovely protective package. I am happy because you have done the lion’s share of the work and you are happy because you have exactly what you want at a great price, will receive extra advice you may not have thought about and most importantly, you have peace of mind. YOU ARE NOT WASTING MY TIME if you did not go ahead and book…….this is my job 🙂

Europe

The Ritz-Carlton Abama

The Moorish red palace-like Ritz-Carlton Abama stands tall on the hills outside Costa Adeje.  Flanked by a pristine golf course and banana plants it takes its dominant stance and exudes luxury.  A powerful statement hotel where everything you experience delivers on that promise and where every need is tended to.

The red buildings of the Ritz-Carlton Abama, Tenerife looking out to sea.

Upon arrival you will be warmly welcomed with a glass of champagne , its cool and rich bubbles setting the tone of what is to follow.  This large hotel is big on seamless service and the staff know what you want before even you do.

The villas are located nearest to the adult pool and beach; they also have access to El Mirador restaurant for breakfast.  What better way to start the day than sitting out on the deck being cooled by the welcome morning breeze and tucking into fluffy snow dusted pancakes!

The golden sandy cove at The Ritz-Carlton Abama Tenerife with the turquoise sea to the left and banana planatation above.
Imagine relaxing on one of these sun loungers looking out to sea, soaking up the sun and waiting for that cocktail to arrive!

The seven pools within the hotel’s grounds afford each guest their own space. From the pool where children can enjoy their inflatables to the private pool at Tagor’ Villas there is something for everyone. If you prefer the beach, choose your transport to the soft specks of gold below. Take the zig zag walk down, the mini train or small funicular. Wherever you choose to relax, the attendants will look after your needs, even providing sun lotion!

You will not struggle to find a quiet spot with an abundance of choice for lunch.  Try the garlic prawns followed by the churros at the Club House, the Mediterranean quinoa salad at the Beach Club, or the Mirador salad at El Mirador.  All have beautiful views out to sea and offer shaded spots.

The gym is well equipped with an outdoor cycling hub and battle ropes for those who can brave the heat.  For spa loving guests, the Abama’s extensive facilities include an impressive water circuit, a relaxation garden, a boutique manicure and pedicure room, a cold cabin and a hammam.  Children are welcomed and well looked after at this hotel.  With extensive facilities including a large garden, a games area and cinema area, children will not get bored even if the clouds do turn a little grey. 

Our villa was front line offering clear sight of the vast ocean view. Catching the sun late afternoon on the balcony whilst enjoying a glass of cool cava and local artisan chocolates is the perfect way to end the day.  When it’s time to get ready, you can take a little longer to indulge in a bath enclosed by Moroccan style shutters whilst enjoying the gorgeous Asprey toiletries provided.

When the sun falls, this pretty palace comes gently to life opening Pandora’s box of culinary delights. This hotel most certainly offers travel for your taste buds as you enjoy food from around the world, from Italy to Japan, across 10 different restaurants.  With two Michelin starred restaurants on site (one has two Michelin Stars) you will not have to travel far to enjoy some incredible dishes. Try Kabuki which is set above the hotel near the Club House.  Its sweeping views down to the sea with the hotel almost silhouetted in the distance is a satisfying vision to drink in.  Enjoy beautiful sunsets, imaginative cocktails and a perfectly formed tasting menu.  You will be guaranteed to find service to complement the food and take home memories to feast on for years to come.

sunset over the Abama Hotel looking over the golf course, hotel and out to the shimmering sea

We have put together a very short video to give you even more of a taste of this wonderful hotel.

Get in touch today to start planning your adventure!

toni@holidaysplease.com

07951 219293

Uncategorized

Why book with me?

Service, service and service!

Booking any travel purely on a cost point is fine until something goes wrong and then you will want good service. If you have paid rock bottom for your trip or booked online with a larger operator, often there is little left in the budget for that service you expect and sometimes, you will spend hours on the phone just trying to speak to someone. I am not saying that I cannot offer you a competitive price on travel because I can on almost all trips but why go elsewhere and pay the same and have substandard service when you can come to me?

Still not sure?

People tend to book their holiday:

  1. Online, booking directly with the airline and hotels or by using a booking tool such as Booking.com
  2. Online, booking with a tour operator selling a package (e.g. Thomas Cook or Tui)
  3. With a Travel Agent on the “high street” (either part of a big chain or an independent)
  4. With a Travel Agent which is based online

I fall into option 4 above and so have the ‘visibility’ challenge. I am online; I don’t have a shop window and I don’t have a big brand behind me but I see these things as positives and I want to share with you why.

  • I will not charge you for my services……that’s right……you get me, my knowledge, the support from Head Office for free!
  • I am independent which means I have a very wide choice of operators to go to. This often means a wider choice of flights/accommodation/car hire and experiences to add to your package (a package holiday can be far more than a week or two in sunny Spain!).
  • I have the same protection in place for the travel I book as many other operators (and even more so in some cases)
  • I can save you a lot of time and money. If you love spending hours researching (I know some of you share my passion for travel!) then that’s brilliant for me. Set me the challenge of beating what you have put together. I will be able to tie a nice ribbon around your package and give you that added financial protection (which comes with peace of mind) when travelling.
  • I attend various training events and get to meet hotel owners and executives face to face meaning I have direct contacts to liaise with before, during and after your stay.
  • I am on hand (yes, an actual person with a direct mobile number!) to answer your queries during and outside of working hours. No robots here 🙂
  • We have an emergency phone with another actual human at the other end to answer any emergency queries which may arise whilst you are away.
  • I care. This is not just a statement but goes to the core of all I do. I don’t just sell a trip as cheaply as possible and then run away as soon as you have your tickets. I am here to get you the best experience and to get the best value from the time and money you spend on your trip.

Did you know that……

  1. You receive reward points when you book your travel with me which you can put towards future trips or tasty treats like prosecco and chocolate 💝
  2. If you refer another customer, you will receive a bottle of champagne🍾
  3. I am your concierge! If you need any assistance before during or after your trip I can assist and take all the stress away and save you lots of time – booking seats, making special requests, checking in, excursions etc. 😊

And if you’re still not sure, check out the link to the Holidaysplease site which tells you all about the award winning company 🏆 and our 9.9/10 Trust Pilot score 🌟

Americas, Reviews, Trips

The Beauty of Bequia

There are specks of paradise in this world which become havens of tranquility, where our souls can truly rest and escape the real world. There are places where we feel part of the family from the moment we step foot inside and where even our tears want to leave us and linger when we must leave. A place where you get to sit under the stars watching movies you grew up with whilst eating popcorn from bowls moulded from earth sprung seeds. We have found our slice of paradise at Bequia Beach Hotel.

large straw umbrella nestled in the sand at Bequia Beach Hotel on the island of Bequia in the Grenadines with two sun loungers looking out to turquoise waters

This perfectly understated hotel is nestled in the South of the island, although hardly a stone’s throw from the North due to the island being no more than 7 square miles. The welcome starts before you reach its unassuming entrance which for us was at the small port. A smile, open welcome and our drinks order taken, we zipped off in our island taxi to find out where we would be staying for the next 4 nights. The taxis on Bequia are not your traditional taxis! Imagine an open back pickup truck with a canopy and side benches. They are brilliant fun and have the most hospitable drivers and everyone on the island knows Uncle Bill!

Mint green shack set up as a shop on the island of Bequia in the Grenadines

Stepping out of our taxi and into the hotel, we were greeted by several staff and taken to the lounge which is a museum of a bygone treasured age. Our sunset drinks with cocktail umbrellas were waiting for us and any weight which we may have had resting upon our shoulders melted away.

peach coloured rum cocktail decorated with an umbrella, slice of pineapple, a cherry and paper straw

We were taken to our beachfront junior suite which felt secluded but was just steps away from the beautiful natural sands. Absolutely no filters needed at this stunning hotel where every joy is simple and nature prevails. The rooms are quirky and are fitted with objects which inject the rooms with personality and the occupants with a smile. Vintage travel posters, boats decorated with sails displaying the Star Spangled Banner and chairs which you can sink into help to make this one of the most cosy, comfortable and stylish hotels we’ve stayed in.

a beachfront junior suite with four poster bed at Bequia Beach Hotel

The pool is set back a little from the beach and has the most comfortable sunbeds dotted around with neatly rolled up towels inviting guests to take a break. Not far away you’ll find the beach bar and if you’re there at the right time, a coconut stand where freshly dropped fruit will quench your thirst. 

turquoise swimming pool at Bequia Beach Hotel in the Grenadines

We stretched our way to younger spines with the incredible yoga instructor, Patricia, who will guide you into position and turn you into your best warrior. If you prefer something more active then why not try one of the more adventurous activities on offer such as kayaking. Paddle up the coast to survey the nearby fishing boats and scan back to the hotel to take it all in from a different angle whilst manoeuvring through turquoise waters.

The Bagatelle restaurant is open for every meal of the day. Not only offering tantalising treats for your tastebuds but also a view to satisfy your memory bank. Staff tend to your every need in the Caribbean way and in the evenings this is transformed into an area to entertain and the sand becomes the dance floor.

cycling on Lower Bay Bequia in the Grenadines

If you’re itching to explore the island, take a bike from the hotel (you’ll be given a helmet) but you may be pushing more than cycling as Bequia is not a flat island. We made the mistake of braving the heat and tired muscles to cycle to Lower Bay. It would have been more pleasant to take the half an hour or so walk but we did enjoy the breeze as we raced down the hills! The hotel has a lovely spot at Jack’s on Princess Margaret Beach with turquoise striped umbrellas gifting shade to its sundrenched occupants. The sea is clear and warm and the hardest thing you’ll do is pick which dish you’ll have for lunch from Jack’s. A walk into town is what you’ll need after tasting too much and it’s only a half an hour easy stroll and a great place to pick up souvenirs.

Hammock stretched between two palm trees at Bequia Beach Hotel on the island of Bequia in the Grenadines

After a day lazing on the beach it’s back to cool off in the pool, to drink in the beautiful gardens, sway in the hammock looking out to sea and sink into your sun lounger whilst dreaming of your next exciting adventure.

We have put together a very short video to give you even more of a taste of this wonderful island.

Get in touch today to start planning your adventure!

toni@holidaysplease.com

07951 219293

Asia

Quick Guide to Borneo (the resort of Rasa Ria)

Hotel entrance to the Shangri La Rasa Ria in Borneo with a green lawn in the foreground.

How to get there

You can fly in from Kuala Lumpur or Penang with Air Asia or transfer in from Brunei as other travellers we met had done.  We transferred from Penang airport and it cost just under £50 pp.

Where to stay

The Shangri La Rasa Ria has an on site nature reserve and orangutan rehabilitation centre.  It’s probably one of the best hotels in the world due to its super standard rooms and incredibly friendly and professional service.

What to do

This is largely resort based and Borneo itself has lots to offer but for now, see what you can do mainly at the Rasa Ria:

  • Play golf – the resort has an 18 hole championship golf course adjoining the hotel
  • See the orangutans – when we visited you were able to see the orangutans at the sanctuary attached to the hotel but they have not been there for a few years now. To see them you will need to take a very special and worthwhile trip to Sepilok.
An orangutan swinging through the forest.
A close up of a black and white butterfly on a leaf in the grounds of the Shangri La Rasa Ria
  • Take a trip to Mount Kinabalu and take a trek to remember
  • See the Fireflies – this is weather dependant and so book early in your stay

Where to eat

There is street food available throughout Borneo and not too far from the hotel but do be careful.  If red tide hits when you’re there, we would advise you stick to the hotel restaurants.

A show dish with bright yellow fire exploding skywards out of a pan.

To see our photos of the resort click HERE

Asia

Quick Guide to Penang

Sat on a roundabout in Penang the Queen Victoria memorial clock tower is 60 feet tall.  Split into 5 sections and coloured a pale blue and topped with a gold crown

How to get there

You can fly from KL to Penang and we can recommend the award winning budget airline, Air Asia, to get you there.  If you are heading to Penang from Ipoh or the Cameron Highlands, you can get a coach for about £8 for 2 people with Sri Maju (the bus station is about a 10 minute walk from the M Boutique hotel in Ipoh).

Where to stay

Depending on your budget and the experience you would like, we would suggest two alternatives.

Noordin Mews – for around £70 – £80 per night you can stay at this wonderfully welcoming and cosy hotel.  The door is bolted and locked with a padlock and all rooms centre on the pool in the courtyard.  It’s small and friendly and provides an excellent breakfast and is also in a great location.

a turquoise swimming pool set within a courtyard at the Noordin Mews in Georgetown, Penang surrounded by modern dark wicker furniture

Eastern & Oriental – for £130 a night you can stay at this elegant colonial hotel set in a beautiful location overlooking the water.

What to do

  • Street Art by Ernest Zacharevic located all across Georgetown.  Most hotels will have a map of where this can be found.
A street art scene in Penang with two young children standing on a swing which is partially 3D.  You can sit on the swing in front of them for your picture!
  • Fort Cornwallis – visit early to avoid the heat.
  • The Clan Jetties – Chew Jetty is the oldest – have lunch at Chew jetty right at the entrance as it really is very good.
A view down through the Chew Jetty starting off with bright sunlight and rainbow coloured clapboards and getting progressively darker.
  • Penang Hill – a little bus ride out and so go early as you can twin this with the Kek Lok Si Temple.  You can get a golf cart around Penang Hill but if you can, talk the walk as you may see a bit more!  Don’t forget the monkey cups.
A close up of the monkey cup plant which is a mainly red and green plant shaped like a vase with a wider base and narrow opening at the top
  • Kek Lok Si Temple – situated a manageable walk away from Penang Hill although you can get a bus but why miss out on the all Malaysian restaurants on the way?!  This is very commercialised and is nice to see but can feel quite intense at times.

Where to eat

Gerogetown, Penang is one of the best places to visit if you’re a foodie!  You really are spoiled for choice here and it is difficult to narrow this down to just a few options.  However, we would recommend:

Little Kitchen – a wonderful restaurant on Lebuh Noordin and the smallest kitchen in Penang!  Mr Loh and his family are the friendliest hosts and you can dine very well for about £25 for two people!  If you stay at Noordin Mews, get them to book this for you and you will be treated extra well.

Street food which can be found just around the corner from Noordin Mews on Lebuh McNair.  It’s much smaller than the larger street food selections further into town but we found it a much more intimate dining experience and could relax (and find a table).

To see our photos of Penang, click HERE

Asia

Quick Guide to Cameron Highlands

a view over the tin rooftops of a town in  the Cameron Highlands, showing multicoloured buildings below

How to get there

We took a day trip from Ipoh and hired a taxi for the day which picked us up at 9am, drove us around the Highlands and dropped us back to our hotel for about 6pm. This should cost about £65-70.00.  We organised this with our hotel in Ipoh (M Boutique).

You can also get a bus from various other departure points (see HERE for alternatives) but it really doesn’t give you enough time to explore the Highlands in a day and therefore we would recommend that if you did this, to stay over in the Highlands.

Where to stay

The Lakehouse gets good reviews and is in a very good location to explore the Highlands.

We visited the Smokehouse and it was beautifully English and the service was good and s could recommend you look at this property too.

the Smokehouse hotel in the Cameron Highlands which looks like an old fashioned black and white Tudor building to be found in  the UK. Surrounded by trees and flowers and a short inclining driveway sweeping up to the entrance

What to do

There are lots of things to do including a visit to the mossy forest, lavender plantations, a number or tea plantations and museums but we have picked just a few:

the Boh tea plantation showing rows of richly coloured green tea plants and tiny figures picking the leaves
  • Smokehouse for afternoon tea – we had an afternoon tea for one, a hot chocolate and strawberry sundae for just £11 in a setting which could have been the UK on a hot summers day
  • Sam Poh Temple is worth a visit on the way out and let the fishes kiss your fingers….try it!
the entrance to the temple has cream walls and red signage and is topped with a pergola roof with shining orange tiles

 Don’t forget your strawberry jam as a souvenir.

Where to eat

Singh Chapati Urban Restaurant is currently top on Trip Advisor for a reason.  For tasty reasonably priced food you can’t go wrong.

To see some more photos of the Cameron Highlands click HERE

Asia

Quick Guide to Ipoh

bright rainbow coloured buildings lining a street in the centre of Ipoh

How to get there

From KL Sentral you can get the train to Ipoh for about £6.90 and it will take roughly 2.5 hours.  The trains are clean and come with entertainment!  You can book in advance HERE.

Where to stay

There are a good few to choose from but we loved M Boutique which was not in the centre and so not so hectic but it wasn’t too far to walk in – about 10 minutes.

We loved the quirky breakfasts!

bedroom with a modern four poster bed decorated in a New York apartment style with exposed brick work, a brown leather sofa at the foot of the bed and animal print cushions

What to do

Some of our top attractions include:

  • A general walkabout will have you seeing lots.  There is the Birch Memorial Clock Tower, the train station with the Ipoh Tree outside, Tin Museum (check opening times before visiting), you can take iced drinks from locals at the stands they run near to the river etc.
  • Gunung Rapat: 3 temples – you will need to get a taxi here but it’s quite cheap.  You will find 3 temples on one street and they are quite vast and so allow a couple of hours.  You may want to ask your taxi driver to wait for you (we didn’t and had to start walking back and Malaysia is not good for pedestrians!).  You can buy food at the oldest temple (and the one which is furthest away) to feed the tortoises.
temple coloured mainly with red and purple with a pergola roof set in a small body of water with a larger temple just visible in the background

 Where to eat

Try Restoran Ong Kee (Tauge Ayam).  Now there are a few of these and the Trip Advisor review does not picture the one we tried.  Head to the one which takes over the corner plot, it’s much bigger.  The food is tasty and very reasonably priced.

See our photos of Ipoh HERE

Asia

Quick Guide to Kuala Lumpur

Silver Petronas Towers towering above the Kuala Lumpur skyline

How to get there

From the airport you can take a taxi for about £14 each way or a train from the airport into KL Sentral (on the KILA Ekspres) for about £20 return.

Where to stay

There is lots of choice in KL to cover every budget but we loved:

Hilton Kuala Lumpur

hotel room at the Hilton in Kuala Lumpur with a king sized bed dressed in white linen

Situated near to the train station where you will arrive if you get the train from the airport into the centre and so ideally located for a quick stop in KL.

We love the modern rooms where the bathroom flows into the bedroom and it’s also very quiet.

Shangri La Kuala Lumpur

Lounge at the Shangri La Hotel in Kuala Lumpur with a 6 tiered funnel chandelier

More centrally located than the Hilton and just minutes away from the Petronas Towers and close to the monorail that runs through the city and so very easy to get around.

We love the luxurious feel to every part of this hotel (make sure you have an evening drink in the bar listening to the pianist).

What to do

Get yourself a good guide book and plan your trip well (e.g. the Petronas Towers are closed on Mondays – this is useful to know before you get there).  We really like the DK guides but choose one you like and are familiar with.

Some of our top attractions include:

  • Petronas Towers – book online in advance
  • Batu Caves – a love or hate thing but very cheap to get to from KL Sentral station (about 75p return)
large gold statute at the foot of the steep steps heading into the Batu Caves
  • Merdeka Square – a general walk around here and you will find the world’s tallest flagpole, the city gallery, the Sultan Abdul Samad building and some quaint British styled buildings.
  • Masjid Jamek Mosque – wonderful volunteers made this an exceptionally welcoming and interesting place to visit (if you’re not covering your arms and legs, you will need to borrow a robe with a hood)
Central mosque in Kuala Lumpur in the foreground set against the background of the Kuala Lumpur skyline
  • Don’t forget a walk around China Town and if you can, find and visit Sze Ya Temple, our favourite!

If your trip is part of a stop-over, Wonderful Malaysia provides lots of helpful hints.

Where to eat

You can’t go to KL without a trip to Jalan Alor.  This is a bustling street with a feast of options to satisfy your stomach.  Have a look at this list of foods to try and see how many you can get through!

Very packed street full of food stalls and with lights strung across the street coloured red, yellow and orange

See our photo album HERE