Our Reports !!!
Eintrag 84 - 75
Austria - Schetteregg 26.12. to 30.12.2005
we went with a group of friends to Schetteregg in Vorarlberg, Austria and stayed there in a hut next to the slopes. And like every year we had heaps of snow. Amazing after so much time in sunny and warm countries. We went skiing, snowboarding and had of course a lot of fun inside the hut
. Outside we built up a bar out of snow for the (usually) later evenings!
A great time to end the trip around the world!
Greetings to Karl, Christian W, Ellie, Leo, Christian R., Andi G., Sabine, Traudl & Raphael, Nescha & Sandra, Steffi & Pierre, Mäx & Tine and our underaged vistors Simone & Gerlinde!
Qatar - Doha 15.12. to 21.12.2005
Doha, the capital of Qatar, is a bit like Dubai. Maybe a bit less sophisticated. The people here are divided into two classes: The Qatari people own eveything and get the profit. The mainly indian and pakistani workers do the hard work. Very normal here with the income out of the 3rd largest natural gas sources and its oil. We lived at Christianes place and visited here frequently at the Sheraton for listening to the Christmas Chorus and the free german christmas cookies afterwards!
Besides that we did a citytour, a little trip into the desert and also hang out three times at Palm Tree Island.
An artificial leisure island very close to the mainland. The evenings were perfect at the place of german Qatar Airways pilots: The had a fridge with german beer in it!
Greetings to Christiane, Thomas, Stefan, Steffen, Klaus, Steffi, the german cooking team and Bruno and his family!
United Arabian Emirates - Dubai 12.12. to 15.12.2005
You may believe it or not but Dubai is a crazy place. Money rules and workers are mainly from third world countries like India or Pakistan. And work is definitely available. Every few days they decide another incredible project like the Snowdome for indoor skiing, the Dubailand or the few huge artificial islands in the sea. A problem here is the public transport. It's almost not existing so you need plenty of time to get around. The only cheap accomodation is the YHA. And even that is quite posh with pool and included breakfast. But still, it's nice to visit!
Greetings and thanks Hania!!
Thailand - Bangkok 07.12. to 11.12.2005
Bangkok is definitely a great place to do your shopping for the whole year. And honestly...despite strolling from shop to shop we didn't do anything at all.
No sightseeing! But therefore we used our 64 kg Baggage weight limit completely! Finally we catched a flight to Dubai. Bye bye South East Asia!!
Greetings to Diana, Laura and all others!
Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai
Thailand - Chiang Rai 02.12. to 05.12.2005
Chiang Mai 05.12. to 06.12.2005
Chiang Rai is quite nice! It's got a lovely nightmarket and some more nice temples to visit. We did a tour to the border of Myanmar, crossed the border for one hour to get the stamp for the last missing country of South East Asia and went then to the Golden Triangle. There we got some pretty nice impressions of Opium. After trekking for two days to visit some hilltribes and see the jungle of northern Thailand we continued then to Chiang Mai. There we had a quite rainy day but still did some sightseeing and shopping at the Night Market before taking the VIP back to Bangkok.
Greetings to Julia, Simon and Sumporn!
Laos 25.11. to 02.12.2005
Vientiane: That's so far the quietest capital we've had so far. It's quite nice to walk along the river and stroll around but besides that there's not that much to do.
Vang Vieng: That's a highlight in Laos. The village is wellvisited by travellers who want to relax and hang out for a while. Famous is the floating down the river on tubes and having a Beerlao stop
every few hundred meters.
Mostly with the possibility to jump in the river with a swing. Really cool. For Amsterdam-Lovers: The menu contains all kinds of "Happy-Shakes" imaginable. From Opium tea to mushroom shakes and mushroom omelettes....just crazy!
Luang Prabang: A very nice city! Plenty of temples, travel agencies and a lovely nightmarket. It's just to expensive
to join the offered trekking tours.....
To get back to Thailand the options are flying, taking a pretty dangerous fastboat or the 2-day slow boat. We had the last option and had a great time on the boat with chatting, reading and a few Beerlao.
Summarized Laos is a very nice and relaxed country. You just need enough time to reach the good places and you should bring also lot's of money!
Greetings to Thomas, Xenia, Andrea, Neamh, Ashling and Sarah, Tina, Moni, Heidi, Ashlly & Jenny, Claire & Rob, Corinna, Damien!
Koh Phi Phi
Thailand - Koh Phi Phi 19.11. to 23.11.2005
Koh Phi Phi was one of those islands that got totally wiped out by the Tsunami christmas 2004. The people are trying to rebuild but unfortunately give the wrong things priority. Waste and dirt are still spoiling beaches and grounds
. Therefore a lot of the given money has been used to rebuild and create new top class resorts. Local guesthouses have been neglected unfortunately.
Respect and thanks to all volunteers that have been working on the island
to regain its beauty!!
Diving is also a highlight of Koh Phi Phi. The local divesites are fantastic and the further Hin Daeng and Hin Raeng are just amazing. Manta Rays!!
Greetings to Aylin, Penny, Eileen, Steffi and Luisa, Trine & Ann-Marie, Kat & Sarah and of course divebuddy Chris!
Thailand - Koh Phangan 13.11. to 19.11.2005
Koh Phangan is too often referred as "the" party island due to its amazing full moon parties. Every full moon there are thousands of people dancing to techno beats
until late in the morning
. Less people but still a lot join regularly the half moon and black moon parties
. But besides partying there are plenty of nice lonely beaches with a few bungalows for hanging out and relaxing of Haat Rin party life
. Thanks to Igor for showing us around at the island and for the free haircut for Martin. He was the only one cutting Martins hair twice: in Australia and in Thailand !
After a whole week we got definitely tired of all those beach party life and made it finally to book a trip to Koh Phi Phi at the Andaman sea in western Thailand.
Greetings to Igor, Claire, Jenny, Marion & Jodi, all Irish, Yossi and all other Irish, Israeli and Danish people on Koh Phangan!!
Thailand - Koh Tao 10.11. to 13.11.2005
After a little while in Bangkok we went straight to the diving island Koh Tao in the south chinese sea. Tile started his diving carriere and Martin did his AOW course while I did some really amazing fundives. Diving here is so cheap...it's only beaten by Utila, Honduras. Except diving we hang out at the beach and hmm...not much more.
But still it's a beautiful island that would be pity to miss at a thailand tour.
Greetings to Dean, Darren, Jazz, Claire (!), David, Jenny, Julia and hmmm ;-) sowas.....
Cambodia - Angkor 05. to 07.11.2005
Siem Reap, the jump off point for Angkors temple is just packed with Guesthouses, Hotels and touristy stuff. We bought our day ticket to Angkor Wat(20 Dollar US!) the day before and got a one hour impression with heavy rainfall. The next day we got up early but had to wait for a couple of hours for the rain to stop. Then by rental bicycle the 8 km to the main temple area. Angkor Wat has been huge and impressive but for us not that special. A lot better's been the Bayon temple with its four faces at each tower and Ta Prohm. This one is overgrown by jungle and was one of the casting areas for Angelina Jolies Tombraider movie.
Martin decided to stay a day longer and Tile and me went by bus the next day to Thailand. It took us 7 hours for the 120km to the Thaiborder as the dirtroad was just existing of chuckwholes. The worst busride ever ever!!
Greetings to Fabrice, Livia, and all others of the Smiley Guesthouse!
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