A Travellerspoint blog

Kuala Lumpur!

storm 32 °C
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Arrived in Malaysia last night and went to sleep. We booked a room in a hotel at the airport as we only have today and then we fly to Borneo. KL has been really good fun though. We got the bus at about 9 this morning and took the monorail (!) to near the Petronas Towers. Then we went to the aquarium to get in the mood for some fishes. It was really good. They have a 90m underwater walkway and lots of information and examples (some in jars, but most still alive). They also had a few other beasties for fun. Some scorpions, spiders and geckos.

After amusing ourselves for a few hours we went and got some lunch - no curries - and pottered about town. the city is very cosmopolitan and feels a little western. Lots of expensive cars and shops. Then, it rained! Not that it touched the humidity, but our first rain in a while. We even had a little thunder and lightning. Unfortunately that sort of put the knockers on us going up PT or the nearby Menara Tower. Next time maybe.

On the bus back Joe met an interesting Australian. I was sat next to a very quiet Malaysian girl. And now we are back at the airport getting ready to fly over to Malaysian Borneo (Kota Kinabalu) in the morning.

See you on the other side.

Claire and Joe

Posted by ClaireJoe 06:18 Archived in Malaysia Comments (0)

Delhi again

sunny 36 °C
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Tuesday in Pushkar was spent mostly relaxing in and around the hotel before we headed out into the desert on our camels, Rocky and Jonny. Camels are really huge! But quite fun once you get the hang of it. Beautiful sunset out in the desert.

On Wednesday morning, we said goodbye to Raj and went down to Pushkar lake, which is a holy place for Hindus. We threw flowers onto the holy water and recited mantras from the holy man before having red spots put on our foreheads and our wallets lightened from the donations. Pushkar is a very small little town, popular with backpackers and has a nice vibe, although electricity seemed in short supply. We tried a few times to access the internet only to find that the power was out!

Wednesday afternoon was our first foray onto Indian Railways (only 400 crashes a year!). We took a Shatabdi Express from Ajmer Station and arrived back in Delhi about 7 hours later. A journey of 392km as the crow flies, but it was made much more interesting by the amount of complimentary food provided! The Indians definitely know a thing or two about eating. We can't match them!

Now we're back in Delhi. We've been up to the Old City to see the Red Fort and ridden the shiny new Delhi Metro. Now we're sat in Connaught Place, the centre of the British capital of India, despite having two rickshaw drivers take us places we didn't want to go because of a) a festival and b) a demonstration against corruption happening in the centre of town! (Neither of which existed).

Expecting a chilled out day tomorrow, then on to Malaysia on Saturday!

Posted by ClaireJoe 05:56 Archived in India Comments (1)

Pushkar

sunny 32 °C
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We made it to Pushkar!

Jaipur was really good, really amazing astronomical centre there called Jantar Mantar. We also got stopped and asked for photos three times. Locals wanted to have their photos taken with us. Apparently we're still that pasty white. Although not as much as we were and we haven't burned (almost, I burned a little yesterday, but it´s already gone).

We went to the Hindu temple in Jaipur and one set of engravings listed Socrates, St Peter, Jesus Christ, Moses and Confucius. I'm not entirely sure why - answers on a postcard please

We also went to the Amber fort twice, once in the morning - we were there for about two hours and didn't come close to seeing it all, it's huge and really confusing, but does have a mirrored hall where you can light one lamp to light the whole room. Then we went back in the evening to the light show, where they light up the whole building and tell the history of the evening. It was really good, there was lots of song and we may have learned something, although I wouldn't like to bet.

Pushkar looks like it's going to be a laid back couple of days (complete with camel ride tomorrow), before we head back to the mayhem of Delhi. It's lovely and cool here, only 32 at 5pm according to Joe's watch.

Posted by ClaireJoe 04:24 Archived in India Comments (3)

Day 4 and we're in Jaipur!

sunny 33 °C
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Agra was busy, smelly, and very hot. It comes with droves of sellers who are very persistent at pushing their wares on you in order that you buy them. Being a tourist here is tricky as apart from the thousands of people trying to scam you or swindle you, it isn't a very nice place.

The Taj Mahal, on the other hand, is exquisitely beautiful. Definitely worth the 750Rs foreigner's ticket price (Indians pay 20Rs!). It was very busy with other tourists though, so it was nice when Raj took us on a little drive to the far side of the Yamuna river to see the Taj Mahal from the other bank at dusk. Very quiet and peaceful.

On Friday morning, we visited Agra Fort, where Shah Jahan was imprisoned, but with lovely views of the Taj. Then we drove out west to a town called Bharatpur. The hotel here wasn't too sparkling, but we liked a 2½ hour cycle rickshaw trip into the Keoladeo National Bird Sanctuary.

Then today, we drove all the way to Jaipur - the capital of Rajasthan. We stopped off on the outskirts to visit a Monkey Temple tucked away in the hills where the resident monkey tribe liked to swim in the temple's pools and take peanuts from visitors! On arrival in Jaipur itself, it was nice to find that a mistake with the hotel booking resulted in us being upgraded to the Hotel Glitz. Very nice :) And we get to spend two nights here! So far, we have driven up into the mountains to visit the Amber Fort (with the largest cannon in the world), Tiger Fort, and finishing with a Kingfisher beer on the mountaintop, watching the sun set over Jaipur.

Posted by ClaireJoe 08:13 Archived in India Comments (2)

Day one- we survived a whole day in India!

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After trying to get a jet-lagged nap in our room (quite noisy as it was carrying on being the middle of the day outside) we were picked up again by our favourite rickshaw driver, Fari (Any trip 10Rs). He took us to the DTTS tourist transport office, where we engaged the services of Raj for our stay in India. He will be our driver now, as any train tickets worth purchasing had really long waiting lists. We began with a city tour of Delhi, taking in India Gate, the President's residence and Parliament buildings (with monkeys), Humayun's Tomb, the 'Lotus' Baha'i Temple, a government subsidied bazaar which sold the wares of about 450 families who reply on the custom, and finishing with a visit to Raj's Sikh temple, where we were invited to join him in a free communal meal of lentils dahl and chipati. Yum.

Definitely time for some sleep now. Early start to travel to Agra tomorrow.

Claire and Joe

Posted by ClaireJoe 08:53 Archived in India Comments (1)

Arrived!

sunny 33 °C

Mostly just to let people know that we've arrived safely and checked into our hotel. We're really tired as there wasn't much time to sleep on the plane last night.

We had an interesting time getting to the hotel. We decided to walk because it's not far - maybe 300m. But we were misdirected by several helpful individuals. So eventually we decided to get a rickshaw cab. We'd been told that we should pay abut 10Rs to the hotel and the first one we hailed said it would cost 100. We did find a guy willing to take us, but he didn't know where it was and after a detour to his office he said it would cost 60Rs. So we jumped out and found anouther guy willing to take us for 10. By this time it was about 9.30 and about 28 degrees. We got in the second rickshaw, but it wouldn't start. The poor bloke was sat there, trying and trying, but no luck. So eventually we got a third rickshaw. And finally made it to the hotel that is literally 350m from where we started an hour previously. We decided to take a nap after checking in.

The city is very busy, but not as chaotic so far as I thought it would be. Which is not to say it's not chaotic.

We're off to the Quantas office and to get train tickets now.

Claire and Joe.

Posted by ClaireJoe 01:05 Archived in India Comments (0)

Test

rain 12 °C

13 days to go before we leave and we're so disorganised. It's only just starting to feel real...

Posted by ClaireJoe 13:14 Archived in United Kingdom Comments (2)

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