Oct 28, 2011

Punakha Dzong @ Bhutan

Overall view of Punakha Dzong
Remember the extragavant wedding between Tony Leung and Carina Lau? And also the grand wedding between the current Bhutan king and his wife? The wedding was held in Punakha Dzong. In Bhutan, dzongs are also known as fortress because they are used to defend the city during war.

Punakha Dzong is one of the oldest dzong in Bhutan and located at the confluence of Pho and Mo Chu river which are also known as the male and female river. Punakha used to be the capital of Bhutan before Thimpu. No photographs are allowed in the dzong and we need to be appropriately dress, with no sleveless shirt and  shorts allowed. Somehow I love the interior architecture of the dzong. Very rustic and different from the moden interior building.

The wedding and the famous stairs 

view of the Punakha Dzong from Pho and Mo Chu river
The best view is from one of the park before reaching the dzong

amazing architecture

Inside the dzong courtyard

Oct 23, 2011

In The Pursuit of Happiness

Druk Air, the only airline which fly into Bhutan


To some it could mean having lots of money.

To some it could mean having a happy and loving family.

To some it could mean having a high flying career.

But to the Bhutanese, it is more important than the economic development of the country.

Bhutan also known as the last Shangri-La, is a small country landlocked between India and China, only recently opened her doors to tourism.

In Bhutan, there are a few distinctive features which differentiate her from the others.

In Bhutan, all buildings are only allowed the maximum of 5 storeys high and required to be Dzong design, even the airport is using the same design as the normal house in Bhutan.

Yes..this is the airport and we spend 15 minutes taking photo at the runway

In Bhutan, all the Bhutanese are required to wear their national costume to work and school whereby men are required to wear gho and women, the kera.

In Bhutan, Gross National Happiness (GNH) is used to measure the happiness of the people rather than GDP.

In Bhutan, crime rate is very low, almost zero and we never saw a single beggar while we were there for 5 days.

In Bhutan, the national sport is achery but strangely they never win any Olimpic medal. The archers need to shoot the arrow from a distance of more than 10 feet and the Bhutanese play in teams. Both teams can insult or distract their opponent and dance of victory if one of their members managed to hit the target.

Archers celebrating their shot to target

In Bhutan, the ‘official’ food is chili cheese. We tried some, it was way too hot even for Malaysians like us.

In Bhutan, the current King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck is loved by all the Bhutanese. Unlike William and Kate, his union with Jetsun Pema was only a close country affair. And my travelmate has a huge crush on him!

The current king and queen of Bhutan (credit to bbc.co.uk)

In Bhutan, most importantly we learn that sometimes having a simple life is happiness itself.

A morning market. This is some of the stunning scenary we saw during the trip.
More than 80% of Bhutan still covered in forest

Oct 14, 2011


Some of the sunset shots from my balcony

Oct 9, 2011

Thamel, Kathmandu

Colourful, vibrant, dusty, chaotic, noisy

These are just a few words to describe Kathmandu. Every minute, we will hear some vehicle honking either behind us or even in front of us. What we learn after a few days in Kathmandu is, you just need to cross the road and the cars will try to avoid you. If you wait for the traffic light to turn to green, you will never cross as there are no traffic lights in the city. There are only polic traffics. In Malaysia, honking is very rare but in Kathmandu, it is a way to tell people that there is a vehicle coming through.

We are lucky to stay in one of the most happening place in Kathmandu, Thamel.

Thamel is very popular tourist spot in Kathmandu whereby there are many shops selling souvenirs, plenty of pretty Arabian pants (which I got myself one), colourful scarfs, many unique trinkets and not forgetting affordable books. Yes, in Kathmandu, there are plenty of book stores selling Everest base camp trekking maps, books about travel, books about Dalai Lama (I bought one since books about Dalai Lama in Tibet are illegal) and not forgetting books about religion.

The colourful signage in Thamel
For information, we booked the tour package which includes Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan from Visit Nepal Tibet. Check out the website for our testimonial and a photo of us. Highly recommended. Special thanks to Birendra for organising such memorable trip for the 3 of us.

Oct 4, 2011

New Toy, New Pictures

I am seriously very impressed with the photos taken using my new toy. 

Havent got the time to fully explore all the functions but pictures turned out very sharp and very pretty :) I am falling in love the second time!

Photos below were taken using my new gadget at my new home. 

View of sunset from my balcony

Night view from my home

Special thanks to Mel for pointing out the problem of commenting on my blog. I have fixed the HTML. 

Oct 2, 2011