Taking the Yangon Circular train is not only a means of transportation but also an experience in itself. The easiest place to start your journey is from Yangon Central Railway Station. The reason being that most tourists start here and thus the people working there have enough experience engaging with tourists to be able to direct you to where you need to go. However, it is possible to start from any of the stations the train stops at.
When you enter the train station, there is a ticket booth in the middle (left most picture) – do not buy the ticket from there. Instead, ask which platform the Circular Train operates at and buy directly at the booth on that platform (middle picture). Each ticket costs 200 Kyat. If you want to get off and get on again, you would have to purchase another ticket.
Take the stairs at the left-most end of the station to get to the platforms.
When I was there in Dec 2019, there was construction going on eastern part of the loop. So unfortunately I could only ride from Yangon Central Station to Insein Station. Hopefully, when you are there in future, the whole loop will be operational.
While there may not be anyone checking your ticket before you board, a train conductor might check once you’re on board. So don’t try to get on without buying a ticket.
Seeing the Japanese characters on the board, the train seems to be an old Japanese train. if you look around the train, you would also find old Japanese advertisement posters.
I was one of the last people to board the train and when I got on, there weren’t any places left to sit so I decided to sit at the train steps. Not long after, someone gave up his seat for me and I was so grateful for that. And after a few more stations, the guy with the white cap sitting down asked me to go to where he was so that I could get the best view from the train.
And because of his kind offer, I had the opportunity to video this. For me, the best place to be on the train is either the first or the last cabin. I was in the last cabin and the view was amazing.
There is never a dull moment on this train. There will always be someone selling something, a conversation to listen to or even a sight that was interesting- a glimpse of local life in its truest form.
I truly enjoyed my time on the train. While I didn’t have the chance to ride through all the stations, what I experienced in that short amount of time was everything I hoped for. People working in the stations were helpful to point me in the right direction, commuters on the trains were extremely kind to give up their seats for me and were even thoughtful enough to let me stand at the best position to take pictures and videos. If you get a chance to come to Yangon, this is something you should not miss.
Address: Yangon Central Railway Station, Kun Chan Road, Yangon, Myanmar (Burma)
People and Places is a cafe tucked away in the industrial area of Taman Mount Austin. When you are about to reach this cafe, don’t be deceived by the industrial buildings and think that you have come to the wrong place – just follow the signs and you will get there.
It is also a cafe once visited by the legendary Jay Chou. So fans of Jay Chou, if you want to step where he has stepped, visit this cafe.
When we went in the afternoon around 1 plus, we had to wait just a short moment before we could get seated.
Dishes are priced reasonably and there’s good variety.
The first dish we ordered was the Englishman’s Breakfast at 29 RM. We also added an additional side of smoked salmon at 7 RM. Each component of this dish was done well: the hash-browns were crispy and salty, the sausage and mushrooms were juicy, the beef bacon was not too fatty, the brioche and scrambled eggs were light and fluffy, the tomatoes were grilled nicely, the smoked salmon was flavorful and the baked beans sauce added a little extra flavor to the dish. The only thing I wished they had that could make this dish even more successful is having more sauce. I would have liked maybe the option of having ketchup or chili sauce or perhaps even more baked beans sauce.
The second dish we ordered was the Mushroom Risotto at 28 RM. The rice was soft and creamy and the mushrooms with the addition of truffle oil added an earthy taste to the dish. However, overall I just feel that the dish could have been more developed. I would think the use of wild mushrooms, truffle oil and Parmesan cheese would elevate the dish but somehow the taste was a little flat to me. It was neither good nor bad.
We also ordered a watermelon mojito. While there is no alcohol in the drink, it was very refreshing.
Overall, I love the ambiance of People and Places. It gave a very young, modern and chic vibe – a good place for networking. The food was affordable and it was not too bad. I would definitely come back again to try their other dishes!
If you search for the best places to eat in Johor, Kam Long Curry Fish Head will definitely appear on any list.
Even though we were there after lunch hours at around 2:30 pm, we still had to queue to get in. But fortunately, I think we only waited about 15 mins or so as they were quick to move people in.
Before you get a seat, they will take your orders first. We were thinking of getting either a medium-sized fish head or a large one but was unsure of the sizing portion. So, we asked what would be good for 2 people and they said the medium would be sufficient.
I thought they only had one level so I was pleasantly surprised to find out that there was a second level that is air-conditioned!
The Curry Fish Head arrived pretty quickly. The first picture on the left was how it looked when it came and the picture on the right-most shows the surfaced fish head after I pushed the tau kee aside.
The first bite was heavenly. The curry was creamy and not too spicy – it’s like your typical chinese-styled curry but done really well. The tau kee was my favorite part of the dish because it soaked up all the curry juices and oil and because of that it tasted sooo good. The cabbage and lady’s fingers were soft and flavorful – thanks again to the wonderful sauce. And lastly, the star of the dish which is the fish head was really good. The meat was smooth, tender and not dry at all. Overall, I loved the taste of this curry.
The only thing I wished was different was the size of the dish. While the pot looked big, we were soon starting to regret not ordering the large portion. This is because while there were a lot of tau kee and vegetables, the size of the fish head was too small for the two of us. If we ever go again, we will definitely order the large portion with an additional serving of tau kee!
If you are in Johor and you don’t know what to eat, make sure to visit Kam Long Curry Fish Head – it is definitely worth queuing up for!
Hours: 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Address: 74, Jalan Wong Ah Fook, Bandar Johor Bahru, 80000 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Tasik Biru is located in a construction/quarry area near Gunung Pulai Recreational Forest. In order to find it, you have to use the satellite view option on Google Maps. But even with that, we still got lost.
Google Maps brought us to the entrance of the site. However, when we reached, there was a warning sign that said “Danger and no trespassing”.
When we saw the sign, we were a little apprehensive about going in even though we knew that other people had gone in before. While we were puzzled and not really sure if we could go in, a construction worker asked us if we were visiting the blue lake and he told us that we just had to drive in and it would be on the right side. Honestly, I thought they would tell us to leave but they didn’t.
It was a little dangerous riding on the rocky paths but it was really fun.
After getting lost for a while, a guy in a truck pointed out the way for us and we finally made it to the starting point.
From there, we had to climb up the steep hill. We were thinking of riding the motorcycle up but I thought it was too dangerous especially with 2 people on a bike. We took a few wrong right turns but we finally found our way. If I’m not wrong (I can’t really remember clearly), do not take the first or second right turn but go all the way up and take the third right turn and go all the way to the end.
At the end, we had to climb down a short path to reach the lake. I think it is possible to climb up to the viewpoint from the first right turn but the easier way to get there would be to climb up higher on the wider paths, turn right on the third path and down a short narrow one as shown above.
While it was really hazy, the view of the lake was really beautiful. It is possible to go down even further if you wanted to but be careful as it is a little steep.
Before we left, we took more photos. It’s not every day we get the chance to ride into a beautiful desert looking area.
If you are thinking of going, don’t be afraid of the warning signs or getting lost inside. There are many helpful people who will point you in the right direction. And while the short steep climb to get to the lake is tiring, the view of the lake is worth every effort!
After reading great reviews and seeing really beautiful pictures, I finally decided to visit Bloom by mok mok. The cafe is located just a mere 18 mins drive from Woodlands checkpoint in the area of Taman Mount Austin.
While the outside of the cafe seemed pretty ordinary, the design of it’s interior is impressive and so very pretty.
We knew we wanted to try one rice bowl, one burger and definitely a dessert.
Our first dish was the Beef Burger with Onion Chips. While ordering, the waitress asked us how we wanted the beef to be done and we said medium-well. I think we said that because we usually had steak done either medium-rare or medium-well and we didn’t think twice. This turned out to be a bad decision. The patty was a little mushy and everything else in the burger had a soft texture as well so the whole burger didn’t taste very appetizing. Perhaps, with a well-done beef patty, it would taste a whole lot better. Luckily, it’s saving grace was the heavenly onion fries. They were so crispy, so salty and flavorful – we ate every single onion chip.
Overall, I think the dish is ok. I probably would not order it again but am open to trying their other burgers.
Our second dish was Gyutan. When I read the description of the dish, I thought it was just a normal beef bowl. When the waitress took our order, she told us that Gyutan actually meant beef tongue. We were taken aback a little, but I love to try new things and knew I had to try it.
When it came, I felt that the presentation could have been a little better. The rice was seasoned well, but I think it could have been elevated. What surprised me was the beef tongue. When I think of beef tongue, I think of something that is very chewy and hard to swallow. However, this dish proved me wrong. The slices of beef tongue actually tasted like normal beef slices. Maybe it is a tiny bit chewier but the difference is not big at all.
I feel the dish can be so much better in terms of presentation and the flavor profile of the rice.
We ordered tea as well to compliment our food. I forgot the name of the tea but I quite like it. It was flavorful and the aroma was really pleasant.
Honestly, after eating the two dishes above, I contemplated on whether I should try their dessert and I’m happy I did. We ordered a Cream Cheese Souffle Pancake with Mangoes. We were told that we had to wait about 20-25 mins for this. When it came, the presentation was beautiful and it just looked so appetizing. The souffle was very light and airy, the mangoes tasted sweet and really fresh, the vanilla ice cream was thick and creamy and the cream with nuts was just heavenly. The whole dish was done very well and each component completed each other in terms of flavor pairings and texture. I loved this dish very much.
While the savory dishes did not meet my expectations, the desert and atmosphere of the place more than made up for it. Perhaps the other dishes would have been really good, but unfortunately, I ended up trying these. If you go, you have to try their onion chips and souffle pancakes. For me these were the areas they excelled in. Also, let me know how the other dishes taste and perhaps I will visit them again someday!
With 19 ActiveSG gyms island-wide, it is easily accessible no matter where you live. To top the icing on the cake, when you sign up for a free ActiveSG membership, $100 in credit will be credited into your account upon verification. That equates to 40 free visits to the gym – isn’t this awesome?
You must be thinking, how does a $2.50 gym compare to others, it must be inferior in some way right? What I can tell you is that the gym is fully equipped and is not lacking in any way. The only drawback is that not all the 19 gyms have the same equipment. The gym we visited was the one at Bedok and here is how it looks!
They have the usual cardio machines such as the treadmill, elliptical trainer, exercise bikes and Stairmaster.
The most unique cardio machine goes to SpeedFit which is a curved self powered running treadmill. When I went on it, I did not expect it to be so uncontrollable. Every moment on this treadmill felt dangerous and exciting! It felt like I was going to lose my balance and fall off the machine at any time!
They have various weight machines to strengthen your muscles! Get ready to make faces while you lift!
My favorite strength machine is this rope pulling machine. It may seem like something that is easy and fun to do but it sure was tough!
Various weights are available and you can stack them till you are satisfied!
Dumbbells, kettlebells, exercise balls, bars and medicine balls(not in the pictures) are all readily available for you use.
Vent your frustrations on a punching bag.
Become a monkey!
Make your own waves!
Whether you are a gym junkie or newbie, ActiveSG gym will not disappoint you. While the 19 gyms do differ with what equipment they have, all are adequately stocked. Also what more can you ask for when the price per entry is so cheap at only $2.50!
While in Johor, I’ve passed by this advertisement numerous times and have always wanted to buy it but the timings were just not right. Finally, while we were in Capital City (because we had nothing much to do lol), we decided that trying it had been long overdue.
What attracted us to this burger was the unique combination of the waffles and the chicken and of course the delicious looking advertisement. Obviously chicken and waffles is a dish that is rather common but still it is the thrill of buying something that is only available for a limited amount of time.
The Zinger Waffle Burger starts at RM13.50 for just the burger, with the 6% gst it comes out to a total of RM14.31. At about $4.80 for Singaporeans, it is neither cheap nor expensive.
The burger does have all the layers stated in their advertisement. However you can’t see the mayonnaise and the maple syrup layers BECAUSE there wasn’t much given. The burger was extremely dry!
The waffles were thick and pretty dense. The taste was ok but it needed more maple syrup. The chicken was acceptable as well, a little too peppery for my liking and it needed more mayonnaise.
Putting everything together was just a disaster. And I emphasize again, perhaps just perhaps adding more sauce to the burger could have saved it.
If you are interested in trying something just because it’s available only for a limited time, do so. But if you care for the calories you consume, I suggest you give it a miss.
Common Grill by Collins serves quality western food at relatively affordable prices. Situated at a coffee shop in Hougang, the stall even has its own cordoned off area just for the stall which makes you feel like you are eating at a restaurant.
The menu is beautifully put together and the information is compiled nicely so it’s easy to order. Step 1 – Protein, Step 2 – Carb, Step 3 – Sides and Step 4 – Sauce.
We ordered the Garlic Bread at $3.50 as our extra side. The taste of the buttery garlic was strong and the french baguette was toasted nicely.
As usual, I always liked to try different things all at once. Thus I settled for the Mixed Grill at $15 which consisted of a sausage, chicken and pork. The sausage did not taste anything out of the ordinary. The pork was tender and juicy even though I thought it looked a little dry. Lastly, the chicken was grilled nicely and was rather flavorful.
My carb was sweet potato fries. They were heavenly! The outer coating was a little crispy, the insides were soft and the seasoning was on point. Very yummy!
My sides were eggplant and sunny side egg. The eggplant was oily and flavorful and the sunny side egg was a sunny side egg. Haha.
Lastly, I chose Italian herb as my sauce. It was ok but I wished I could have tried more of them.
Our second main was the Angus Sirloin at $15 . We requested for the cook to be medium. The beef was very tender and juicy even though it was more well done then what we would usually go for which was medium rare. The seasoning of the beef was also done perfectly where it was not overpowering.
The carb was spaghetti aglio olio. The seasoning was abundant but not too excessive where it was too salty or too spicy. It was good!
The sides were a sunny side Egg and a 62 °c Egg. Basically, it is a poached egg but cooked at that exact temperature. Just for interest, I did a quick google search on poached eggs and it seems like the number 63 popped up the most. The texture was pretty good, the white was soft and gooey and the yolk was runny.
The sauce chosen was the same as the above.
Overall, I liked the food at Common Grill – restaurant quality at an affordable price. Out of the two mains, I preferred the Angus Sirloin, my favorite carb was the Sweet Potato Fries and the best side for me was the eggplant. If you eat there, tell me your favorite dish in the comments section below!
When will you ever have a chance to explore an abandoned Boeing airplane ever in your life? Well now you get to have your chance. It is not a place where you have to secretly crawl through a fence or climb over one. It is as simple as giving 200B to the family who lives at the grounds. While 200B may seem like too much for a place that is supposedly abandoned, perhaps you can treat it as a donation to the family.
Address: 13.764812 100.652406, Khwaeng Hua Mak, Khet Bang Kapi, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10240, Thailand
If you want to get off the tourist path and experience real local life, visit Khlong Toey Market. Immerse yourself in the sights and smells and enjoy every moment of it. Besides selling the usual produce, you can also find eels, turtles, ant eggs, water bugs, silkworms and snails.
Hours: 6 am – 2pm
Address: 1 Kasem Rat Rd, Khwaeng Khlong Toei, Khet Khlong Toei, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10110, Thailand
If you are afraid to eat insects, maybe this restaurant will change your mind. Insects in the Backyard transforms your everyday insects such as ants, silkworms, bamboo worms and crickets into fine dining dishes. Every dish is carefully thought out and incorporates the insects in a tasteful way. Not only did they look creepily nice, they tasted great as well. Do not let the idea of insects scare you away from trying them.
Hours: 2pm-11pm , closed on wednesdays
Address: Chang Chui Market – 460/8 Sirindhorn Rd, Khwaeng Bang Phlat, Khet Bang Phlat, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10700
4) See animals at the animal section of Chatuchak Market
Chatuchak market is known for being one of the world’s largest weekend markets. It is easy to get lost in rows and rows of stalls. But, if you manage to make your way to the animal section, you will be rewarded with interesting sights. Snakes, rodents, dogs, cats, tortoises, beavers, lizards, rabbits – you can find almost any animal that they think are capable of being pets.
Hours: Weekends 9 am – 6 pm
Address: Kamphaeng Phet 3 Rd, Khwaeng Lat Yao, Khet Chatuchak, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10900, Thailand
5) Try to get in Sathorn Unique Tower
I have always liked going to abandoned places and after watching the show “The Promise”, I really wanted to see the tower. I read online that you could bribe the security guards to go inside but recently however, this practice has stopped. Also, some said that you could try jumping from a nearby building to get in but, I didn’t have the guts to do it. So if you are daring enough to take the plunge, you might be able to get in. If not, you’ll just be like me – admiring from the outside.
Follow the tracks moving north from Bang Sue Station and you will reach the cemetery. To get there, you will have to cross the train tracks and that is an adventure by itself. Make sure to look out for trains coming from either direction and make your way quickly over. Also, climb over the fence if you want to take a closer look but be careful of anyone patrolling the area.
Address:104/35 Soi Liap Thang Rotfai, Bang Sue, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10900, Thailand
7) Eat Goong Ten at Rod Fai Night Market Srinakarin
Goong Ten literally translates to “dancing shrimps”. The name is aptly given as the shrimps will move in your mouth because you will be eating them alive. You will be scared at first but the shrimps die pretty quickly after they are taken out of the water – so don’t worry too much about them moving around too much.
I really don’t know how many catfishes there are in the Chao Phraya River but I think they might have an overpopulation problem. It is easy to purchase fish food at the piers and you should be able to feed them anywhere along the river.
9) Eat Wattana Panich the “oldest” soup in Bangkok
This stall is about 60 years old and they have retained their soup in the wok every single night instead of throwing it away. While this may sound strange and maybe unhygienic, it is believed by the Chinese that the longer a wok has not be washed, the tastier and more flavorful the dish will be. We have tasted their beef soup and it tastes delicious.
Hours: 9 am to 9 pm (Closed on the last Monday of every month)
Khlong Toey is one of the largest slums in the city. On the way to the train cemetery, we also discovered slum-liked settlements near Bang Sue train station,
Many of the people live illegally in these squatter settlements and most don’t own the homes they live in. In the 1950s, cheap labor was in demand and many people relocated to the capital. A rental system was established where the people moving in could settle on land at a low cost. However in the 1970s, landowners favored building condominiums and new developments and ceased to provide low housing costs. They also stopped collecting rent and without a payment system, these illegal squatter settlements continued to grow.
These people live in tin-roofed homes over polluted and stagnant water. The areas have also become more and more populated with houses being crammed right next to each other.
Do visit the slums to experience how some people can still be living in such conditions despite being in a modern and developed city like Bangkok.
Khao Yai is often dubbed as the Switzerland of Thailand. Reasons being the cooler weather and picturesque surroundings. Here are the top 10 things to do in Khao Yai.
1) Khao Yai National Park
Go trekking in the jungles of Khao Yai national park and have an adventure you will never forget. Meet wildlife such as deer, woodlouse, leeches, monkeys and even wild elephants if you are really really lucky. Also, visit Haew Suwat Waterfall, the largest waterfall in the park. This waterfall was used in a scene with Leonardo DiCaprio in the movie “The Beach”.
This is one unique restaurant you will never forget. Besides being a restaurant, it is also a museum that has a collection of antiques, old chinaware, creepy looking dolls, old toys, figurines, statues, arcade machines etc. You can also have a go at playing the pinball machine and air hockey. Besides that, they serve delicious food. So many things to see and so many things to do!
Hours: 10 am – 10 pm
Address: 21, Mittaphap Road, Tambon Pak Chong, Amphoe Pak Chong, Nakhon Ratchasima, 30130, Thailand
If you love cats, you will absolutely love this place. For a small token such as buying a drink or a souvenir, you are allowed entry into the cafe. Besides playing with them, you can also purchase wet cat food to feed them. You will definitely have a great time here!
Hours: Tues – Fri 10:30am – 6pm, Sat – Sun 9:30am – 7pm, closed on Mon
Address: 146/1 ม .4 Palio Khaoyai ถนน ธนะรัชต์ Tambon Mu Si, Amphoe Pak Chong, Chang Wat Nakhon Ratchasima 30130, Thailand
Primo Piazza combines stunning elegant Italian architecture with the beautiful backdrop of the mountains of Khao Yai. Get a chance to interact with the sheep and alpacas in this cozy farm by feeding them pandan leaves. While the alpacas are not allowed to roam freely perhaps due to their temperament, the sheep are able to do so. Besides visiting the animals, have a great time using the architecture to take beautiful photos.
Hours: 9 am – 6 pm
Address: 861 Moo 6, Thanarat Road Tambol Nong Nam Daeng Pak Chong District, Nakhon Ratchasima 30130
5) GranMonte Vineyard and Winery
We booked a tour with GrandMonte Vineyard and it was really fun and educational. Perhaps we went in the month with the highest rainfall thus we were the only participants for the tour and we were pretty happy about it. Our guide spoke English very well and she went though the different types of wine produced and the processes they have to undertake. While wine making isn’t something that is uncommon, what makes this place so special is that they found a way to make wine in a country that does not have a climate that is thought of as being suitable for making wine. Do visit them to learn how they did it.
Midwinter Green is a restaurant that looks like a magical castle. You will definitely feel like a prince or princess your own fairy tale once you step foot into the restaurant. Not only is the decor absolutely stunning, the food served was really scrumptious. Get really to be swept away by this amazing restaurant.
Hours: 10 am – 10 pm
Address: 10 88/88 Soi Ban Sai Thong Mu 24 Soi 2, Nong Nam Daeng, Pak Chong District, Nakhon Ratchasima 30130, Thailand
7) Wat Bu Pai
We initially did not plan to go here. But, on out way to Mister Mushroom, we passed by this temple and we were so impressed by the statue that we decided to stop and it was a great decision to do so. Coming here gave us a glimpse of local life. It was not a touristy destination and we did not see any other tourists. Besides visiting the beautiful temple, we walked through a local market that was right next to it. They had various amulets and trinkets, food, produce, clothes and even a blown up bouncy castle. If you want to visit a destination that is off the beaten path, make a trip here.
Address: 105 moo 5 Tambon Wang Nam Khiao, Amphoe Wang Nam Khiao, Chang Wat Nakhon Ratchasima 30370, Thailand
Mister Mushroom is a hidden shopping paradise in Khao Yai. There are just so many mushroom related products that you can easily spend an hour deciding what to buy back. They have spreads, snacks, tea, moisturizers and even ice cream – all made from mushrooms. Even though they do not advertise any tours, if you are interested to see how the mushrooms are grown, just ask the staff if they are available to give you a tour of the farm when you are there.
Hours: 8 am – 5 pm
Address: 155 Moo 2, Sukklao, Tambon Tha Samakkee, Wang Nam Khieo, Nakhon Ratchasima 30370
9) The Chocolate Factory
The Chocolate Factory is a chocolate lover’s dream come true. Not only can you buy chocolate products and eat chocolate cakes, you can even dine in their restaurant which serves an array of western and Thai cuisine.
Hours: Mondays – Thurs 9:30 am – 9 pm, Fri – Sun 9:30 am – 10 pm
Address: Pak Chong, Pak Chong District, Nakhon Ratchasima 30130, Thailand