klia2

Snapshots of KLIA2–AirAsia’s new airport at KL

Walking time to departure gates at KLIA2

Most important photo of this post: Walking time to departure gates at KLIA2

KLIA2 is the new terminal for budget carriers flying in or out Kuala Lumpur. Malaysia’s largest budget airline AirAsia moved its operations from the Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) to KLIA2 on May 9.

I was flying to KL on May 10 so I had the chance to see the airport while it was still new. Here’s a peek at what the new airport looks like.

Why KLIA2 is so huge?
Before flying, I’ve read advisories from AirAsia telling travellers that the boarding gates are quite far so everyone needs to be early. The walk from the arrival gates to the main terminal did feel quite long, although the view of airplanes from the large windows helped pass time.

Things were still kind of bare when I was at KLIA2. I didn’t get much photos of the arrival hall because I wanted to catch my bus to KL Sentral.

KLIA2 FAQ person

There were these human-FAQ walking around at the airport. They’re helpful with directions and bad at finding a normal trashcan.

The buses are located at Basement 2. I had booked a shuttle bus to KL Sentral from AirAsia. Turns out I could just hop on the bus and show my ticket.

Leaving KLIA2

AirAsia checkin counter at KLIA2

Not many people check in their luggage so the counters are bare.

I had more time to take photos when I was leaving KL. The departure level is the highest of the building and getting here takes more time than I expected.

I like that there are a lot more restaurants at KLIA2 than LCCT. Finally, more food choices. But I only got a cup of latte from McCafe since I ate multiple meals before leaving the city center.

After having my coffee, I had a really difficult time finding a normal trashcan to throw my cup. The human-FAQ couldn’t help me and only pointed to the recycling bins.

More than 95 percent of the trash cans are recycle bins.

KLIA2 is overdoing the recycling bins. It seemed like every corner I see one of these but not a regular trash can. Recycling won’t work if everyone throws their regular trash inside.

International Departure at KLIA2

Departure lounge

Walking time to departure gates at KLIA2

Walking time to departure gates at KLIA2

Long walkway at KLIA 2

The walkway to the international departure lounge was pretty far. The shops weren’t opened so the walk was boring.

KLIA2 depature hall

Empty KLIA2 depature hall

Resting lounge at departure lounge at KLIA2

Resting lounge at departure lounge at KLIA2

How Malaysians celebrate Chinese New Year

Liau Yun Qing:

I’m back in Malaysia for Chinese New Year. Here’s a post from last year about how I spend my CNY. Gong Xi Fa Cai.

Originally posted on YQ travelling:

Chinese New Year lantern

Today is Chinese New Year eve, the second most important day of Chinese New Year (CNY).

CNY eve dinner is an important time for family to gather together, eat good food and be nagged by elders. [Note to YQ: Do not be a patronizing aunt when you grow up.]

Enough bitterness, I want to share a two-part series of collaborative posts to mark CNY.

Early this week, I asked on Facebook for information on how different people celebrate Chinese New Year in different countries. For the feature, I was planning to have many Chinese folks in different countries to talk about their traditions.

Unfortunately, not many random strangers on the internet took up the challenge. I guess this might also be a good thing since it makes the post more cosy.

How Malaysians overseas celebrate CNY

First up is Max Yam from maxayam.blogspot.sg. Max is a fellow Sabahan who…

View original 320 more words

Ghee dosa

FoodFriday: Ghee dosa

Even though I grew up in multicultural Malaysia where Malay, Chinese and Indian are the three biggest races, I am terribly unfamiliar with Indian food. It’s because we don’t have as much Indians where I live.

To tell you the truth, the only Indian dish I can order confidently is plain roti canai (which is yummy and flaky).

So when my friend Debbie introduced me to the wonderful world of Indian food, I was curious. And now, I am proud to say that I have a favorite Indian dish: ghee dosa.

Continue reading

yq visits melaka

I’m going to Melaka for a weekend trip [Weekend Traveller Series Part 9]

Welcome back to the fortnightly Weekend Traveller series where I share tips and strategies for travelling during the weekend so you can travel more using less work leave. You can find all of the previous posts for weekend end travel here.

Today’s post doesn’t have any travel planning tips. Instead, I want to share about my upcoming weekend travel. I will be going to Melaka for a 3-day trip next weekend.

Since my round-the-world trip, I’ve stopped most of my short-term (aka 2-day) trips because I do not have the budget and I already have too much free time.

However, my friend Debbie suggested that we take a trip overseas since she has an extra day of leave. We initially planned to head to Medan because of cheap plane tickets but there was volcano activity last month.

Check out the rest of the post…!

kuala terengganu

A street with two names in Kuala Terengganu’s Chinatown

[I haven’t written a lot about my last Visit Malaysia trip which I did with my friend Debbie. As a break from my past posts about my round-the-world trip, I’d like to take you to Kuala Terengganu.]

When I was in Kuala Terengganu, I was surprised to find that the street passing through Chinatown had two names: Jalan Bandar (City Street) and Jalan Kampung China (Chinese Village Street). If someone told me this sooner, I might have felt less anxiety when I was searching for a food outlet.

When preparing for our trip to the east coast of Malaysia, Debbie scouted a list of food places to check out. Among the eateries was Madam Bee’s Kitchen in Kuala Terengganu’s Chinatown which specializes in Peranakan food.

On Madam Bee’s website, her address was Jalan Kampung Cina so I set that location on my Google Map.

Detour from Madam Bee’s

When we arrived in Kuala Terengganu, we were famished so we decided to head to Madam Bee’s. All was well as we walked to the street, based on my Google Map app.

We decided to get of the map and turn into a very Chinese street. The whole road was over-the-top Chinese with many lanterns and colorful walls. It was already a month after Chinese New Year so I don’t think the deco were put up for the festival.

End of Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

End of Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

While on the street, I kept checking my Google Maps app to see if we were on the right street. The apps showed that we were on Jalan Bandar so I thought that we might run into Jalan Kampung Cina if we just keep on walking.

We walked and walked. It didn’t help that the only sign I looked at listed Jalan Bandar.

Sign with Jalan Bandar

Sign with Jalan Bandar

I was quite embarrassed that I’ve brought us to the wrong place.

Then suddenly, we saw Madam Bee’s Kitchen with its prominent sign. Hurray!

Madam Bee's Kitchen at Kuala Terengganu's Chinatown

Madam Bee’s Kitchen at Kuala Terengganu’s Chinatown

I also saw that one of the road signs kept the old name Jalan Kampung Cina.

Jalan Kampung Cina sign at Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

Jalan Kampung Cina sign at Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

Sights from Kuala Terengganu’s Chinatown

The only thing I knew about Terengganu was that it has a large Malay population so I was curious about Kuala Terengganu’s Chinatown.

The street had many Chinese-influenced shop houses but since it was a public holiday period, I didn’t see a lot of inhabitants.

Kuala Terengganu Chinatown shophouses

Kuala Terengganu Chinatown shophouses

Retro hair saloon sign at Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

Retro hair saloon sign at Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

Reflection of Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

Reflection of Kuala Terengganu Chinatown

Do you know any streets with two names?

Related posts:

jogoya buffet

Glutton at Jogoya buffet, Kuala Lumpur

Welcome to YQtravelling’s FoodFriday. The day of the week when I show off some of the lovely eats I had while travelling.

Today we’re flying to Kuala Lumpur for an amazing all-you-can-eat buffet.

 

Here at YQtravelling, I don’t usually talk about one particular restaurant on FoodFridays.

Usually, it’s either a dish or a particular place where I’ve eaten. Today everything will change because I went to the most amazing buffet place while mom and I were out in Kuala Lumpur on September 11.

Prologue

My mom loves sashimi so when I told her about eating in KL, she requested that we go to an all-you-can-eat buffet and EAT ALL THE SASHIMI!

I did a bit of research and found a buffet restaurant near where we were heading to. (Mom needed to do some paperwork in KL, that’s why we went on the 1-day trip.)

From Jogoya’s website, I found out that they have a RM56++ lunch and supper promo where we can eat all we want for 2 hours. Initially I thought that if we paid the regular fee of RM89++ we were able to sit from 11:30am to 4:30pm, but I think I got it wrong. Anyway, 2 hours of stuffing our faces is more than enough.

The restaurant is located in Starhill Gallery which is kind of a maze since it wasn’t obvious how we could get onto the third floor. (We’re indeed a pair of country bumpkins.) We got directions from one of the security guards and found the place.

At Jogoya, you pay before heading and the person would jot down your deadline on your receipt. I’m not sure if they will remind you about the timing if you happen to stay a bit longer since we left before out time was up.

Jogoya’s decoration was nice, the furniture were all dark brown. We were seated at the two-persons seat area and there weren’t a lot of customers around.

Beginning of a feast

Starters of sashimi and raw oyster

Starters of sashimi and raw oyster

At first, mom and I piled only salmon sashimi onto our plates as the sashimi stall was nearest to us.

Sashimi as appetizer

Sashimi as appetizer

Later, when I went out to check what other things were available, I was amazed. This wasn’t just a buffet place. This was a food court disguised as a buffet restaurant.

Many of the stalls would stir fry or steam dishes for you. Others served cooked soups in little bowls. Two ice cream stalls were around, one serving Haagen Daaz out of buckets while the other selling New Zealand natural ice cream and waffles.

Jogoya's dessert stall is like a bakery

Jogoya’s dessert stall is like a bakery

The dessert stall had a display fridge that you find in bakeries filled with small cakes and pastries. The drink stall had sweet iced drinks and there was even a several drawers of tea bags which you use with the teapots there.

I’ve lost count of how much salmon sashimi mom ate. I was almost filled to the brim with food so I only had one (!) green tea ice cream with a tiny serving of bread pudding.

Mom brought over a plate of fruits with purple dragonfruit and watermelons. After the fruits, our brain started signaling to us that we were done with the meal. Of course, I washed everything down with green tea and rose tea.

There was a promotion going on when we were there. We paid a total of RM130 for the two of us, after the service charge and tax. I’d say it’s a very reasonable price considering they have salmon sashimi (which didn’t taste fantastic but we just make do with what we have).

I’ve read reviews about Jogoya where the reviewer had food poisoning because he/she visited the place for supper. We didn’t have major problems on the day but the next night, I had stomach problems and even threw up my dinner. I’m not sure if there is a correlation between Jogoya and my sickness but just take note if you have a weak stomach.

Do you like all-you-can-eat buffets? Which is your favorite restaurant for buffet?

If you enjoyed this post, you might like:

Lamuko’s Lokanta: A delightful Japanese restaurant in Pamukkale
亚罗斯打人早餐吃什么?晚餐[YQ游大马]

what i miss home

Things I’ve missed about home

I’ve been home in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah for about a whole month now. That’s the longest I’ve been home since I started working in Singapore in 2009.

Before coming home for this long stretch, I was confused about where home was for me. In Singapore, I had a rented place, a job and friends but in Sabah, I have my family, my old bed and friends too. You see why it’s a bit confusing for me to pinpoint which exactly was home.

But after 4 months on the road and coming home, I’m glad to say where home is. It’s temporarily Sabah, and specifically my parent’s place. Eventually, I will still need to get out of here and find a job.

Until I do move out of the country, here’s a list of things I’ve missed about being home (in Sabah):

Clothes dried in the sun

I've got a pocket full of sunshine.

There’s a branded softener that even has a scent with the word “sunshine” in it. That’s how popular the indescribable scent of sun-dried clothes is.

At home, we have a backyard where we hung our clothes. When there is a lot of sunlight in the day and you collect the clothes at the right time, the clothes feels soft and has a strange chemical-like smell. (Or maybe that’s just our soap…)

Back when I was in Singapore, I didn’t have a lot of space to hang my laundry. In the tall rise HDB (Housing Development Board) flats, I either hung them inside or outside where most of the times the clothes are shaded. Wind-dried clothes just aren’t as good as sun-dried ones.

While travelling, my only option for laundry was to handwash them in the hostel bathroom sink and hang them from the laundry rope I tied to the under-bad planks of the upper bunk. The clothes dried reluctantly in dorms but I still wore them because they were my only 5 (or is it 6?) garments I have with me.

Only twice in the entire trip did I “splurge” in laundry when I sent them to the cleaner’s in Arequipa. I even had to shop for the cheapest laundress. When I spilled my laundered clothes onto my bed, I was delighted at how clean they were and I might have waltzed with my jeans for a bit.

Good Chinese food

Roughly translated as "Raw meat noodles".

I always thought that I was very open about food and wasn’t a food snob when it comes to how “authentic” a dish is. But right before I was flying to Hong Kong, I started vividly imagining all the Chinese food I would get to eat. I would space out on the bus or even at a restaurant and see plates of rice with crispy pork, noodle soups (Peru doesn’t do good noodle soup).

While the food choices back home aren’t as much as in Hong Kong, I enjoy eating all the food that are familiar to me and visit new places.

Driving and having a car

Times I don't have a car

In Singapore, I didn’t need a car to travel. The public transport is so perfect that I didn’t even have to take taxis much. I love that part.

However, not every place I went to during the trip had good public transport so I walked a lot. A lot. I didn’t rent any cars on the road because I cannot afford to splurge when taking buses are a lot cheaper and safer.

Here back home, we need a car to get anywhere. I’ve forgotten how nice it is that you don’t need to walk a whole kilometer because you don’t have door-to-door transportation. I could get used to this.

My parents

I didn’t get to see a lot of my parents when I was working. A phone call here and there doesn’t really match seeing them face-to-face.

Recently, I think I’ve been seeing them a little bit too much because we are starting to get on each other’s nerves.

Oops.

Do you live away from home? What do you miss about home? Share them in the comments below!

Read other posts on YQtravelling:

museums backpacker homestay
Museums reflect how I travel My first backpacker moment Homestays are not for me
polo bun from hong kong

Final day in Hong Kong=Eat all the food! [YQrtw Day 130 Aug 18]

Location: Hong Kong

[I am now blogging at Hong Kong International Airport. I’ve managed to misplace my camera (as well as break my glasses). I dislike posts with no photos so I’ll be recycling some of my Twitter photos of the day. That also means there’s only photo of food. Boo.]

Like yesterday, I woke up at an ungodly hour. However, I’ve made improvements with my jetlag and today wake-up time was 4am instead of 2am.

After posting my posts and a bit of Facebook games, I packed my suitcase for the final time. Since I only bought 20kg with AirAsia this time, I had to strategize my packing.

I packed most of the liquids into my suitcase and other lighter things such as clothes into my backpack. If I discover that the suitcase is overweight, Ill transfer some of the things to my backpack. If the suitcase is underweight, I’ll toss my backpack into my check in quota.

After everything was ready, I head out for breakfast. There wasn’t much choice around before 8am so I went back to the porridge place and got their signature dish as well as a “spring roll”. That meal was actually for 1.5 persons but I didn’t have dinner last night so let’s all forgive me for being a glutton.

Ocean Empire signature porridge and spring roll

After breakfast, I walked around the area, thinking up places to visit. Sadly, the shops weren’t open so I did the next best thing: Eat more food.

Next on my list was the egg tart from the cafe in Excelsior hotel. I had them on the first day and the memories of the flaky pastry is still in my mind. Plus, they have a coffee and egg tarts set. I’ve not had coffee for three days.

Egg tart and coffee set

After coffee and desserts, I needed to pass time before check out time. As usual, I opt for the most comfortable way of sightseeing–public transportation! I took the tram from Causeway Bay to one of the terminals and back to the same place.

While I was on the tram, my sister helped research things I could eat nearby. One of her finds were a “bolo bun” place which I noted on Foursquare.

I got back to the hostel and checked out. Since the reception area was in another building, I had to drag all my things there. The landlady allowed me to leave my things before my bus to the airport.

Now that checkout is done, it’s time for more food. My stomach couldn’t handle a full meal so I head to the “bolo bun” place with the aid of Foursquare.

Despite the name “bolo”, meaning pineapple in Cantonese, the bun does not contain any pineapple. It’s supposedly in the shape of a pineapple, thus the name.

Bolo bun in Hong Kong

After the meal, I still have about 2.5 hours to waste. I decided to take the tram to Happy Valley where the horse race tracks are. Coincidentally, this is where a few foot massage shops are (according to Foursquare, again).

I found the recommended foot massage place and sat for 50 minute of good-painful massage. The masseuse kneaded my foot like it was dough. While slapping my lower leg, he even commented that it was very stiff. Four months of travelling does bring stiff legs.

After the massage, it was about time for me to head back to the hostel and to the airport. Before I went to get my luggage, I checked out a few skincare shops (Watson and Sasa) to find something my sister requested.

There wasn’t any of what she wanted but I managed to buy something I want. I was thinking that I was losing interest in skincare since I’ve been doing the very basic while travelling. Thankfully I still have the urge to buy things. Long live consumerism!

To the airport

Near the hostel, there’s a bus stop where the direct bus to the airport stops. After bidding the landlady farewell, I dragged all my things and waited.

The bus arrived and there weren’t a lot of people. However, more people boarded at subsequent stops and the luggage storage place was crammed full of luggage.

The bus passed the sides of central Hong Kong, went into the underground tunnel and then the bridge to Lantau Island where the airport is. From the bus, I saw shops, mountains, cable cars and the road sign to Disney Land.

Pretty soon, we reached the airport. I dragged my stuff with me to Terminal 1 for a bit of shopping. I did get one bag which will replace my current slingbag for my future travels (in September!). It was a lot pricier than I expected but I really need one as the current is breaking at the seams.

Next was to Terminal 2 where my check in counter was. There was a free-to-use weigh so I checked to see if my bags were under 20kg. The total weight wasn’t so I had to do a bit more shifting before I got the weight undercontrol.

I checked in and went to the bathroom. I managed to break my glasses. I also discovered that I couldn’t find my camera after I got into the boarding area. Thank goodness all these happened on the last day!

A break for now

After today’s post, I’m taking a 2-week break from blogging to recharge and to find a stable internet connection (my parents cancelled the home phone line so no broadband for us).

If you miss my posts (aww shucks), please do go back and read the old posts.

around the world with overexposed model

Around the world with The Overexposed Model

There’s a side of me on the internet that I’ve not shared on YQ Travelling, until today.

Back in December 2012 when I was in Singapore, I created a Tumblr called The Overexposed Model (OEM) to record ads which I’ve come across that feature an ambiguously raced young lady.

The tumblr was actually a follow up of a blog with a similar goal. The blog was called The Overexposed Big Mouth Model but it disappeared when I was trying to submit my sightings.

Since OEM was in so many ads as the generic smiling women, I thought it was fun to chronicle my discoveries. I shared the blog link with a few friends but I mostly kept it as a semi-private collection.

Then one day, a freelancer from the Phillipines asked if he could interview me about the blog as part of a feature on the model. I can now honestly say that I was in Esquire Philippines (or something like that), however not as a bikini model.

In March, the Singapore media ran out of story ideas and featured The Overexposed Model in various print and web outlets. Some readers started submitting their own sightings of OEM to the tumblr. I put those up too.

Naively, I thought that the tumblr will hibernate while I go on my four-month journey. I still keep seeing OEM.

In the beginning, it was fun spotting OEM but now it feels kind of like a nightmare. Each time I see her, there’s less giddy surprise and more “NOT AGAIN!” Of course, I still obediently take out my camera and snap her photos.

Overexposed Model in Malaysia

OEM selling ulcer medication in Sabah, Malaysia.

OEM selling ulcer medication in Sabah, Malaysia.

My first overseas sighting of OEM was back home in Sabah in a clinic. She was in a ulcer medication ad.

Overexposed Model in Greece

Overexposed Model in an optician ad in Athens, Greece.

Overexposed Model in an optician ad in Athens, Greece.

In Greece, I found OEM hawking glasses in Athens.

Overexposed Model in Argentina

Overexposed Model in Buenos Aires airport

Overexposed Model in Buenos Aires airport

I thought I was safe from OEM but I found her at Buenos Aires airport, selling some sort of travel card.

Overexposed Model in Peru

Overexposed Model on Cruz del Sur website.

Overexposed Model on Cruz del Sur website.

I found her on a bus company’s website, ready to go for an unplanned weekend travel.

Overexposed Model in a clinic ad in Arequipa, Peru.

Overexposed Model in a clinic ad in Arequipa, Peru.

In Arequipa, in a lonely building, I found her in a life size printout. I thought I should stand next to her to prove that I spotted her.

Overexposed Model in the papers in Peru.

Overexposed Model in the papers in Peru.

Then I saw her again in the papers.

Overexposed Model in San Salvador

Overexposed Model in a pharmacy ad in San Salvador

Overexposed Model in a pharmacy ad in San Salvador

When I was out window shopping, I saw her outside a supermarket.

I don’t think I will ever get used to seeing OEM in an ad. It’s funny how she’s featured in so many different countries. Does her looks makes her the everyday person of the countries she’s been featured?

Have you seen the Overexposed Model? Share where you’ve seen her in the comments below.

Food in east coast Peninsula Malaysia keropok lekor, tapai, nasi kerabu, patin

Glutton in east coast of Peninsula Malaysia

D and I visited the east coast of Peninsula Malaysia during a 5-day trip in March. We crossed out Pahang, Terengganu and Kelantan (again) off our list of 13 Malaysian states.

Five days is a lot of food so I will only be highlighting some of the best yummies we had.

Glutton in Kuantan, Pahang

We visited only Kuantan while in Pahang. On our first day, we visited the famous Akob Patin House which was (almost) right behind our hotel.

The Malay eatery is a medium standalone stall/house. It serves ready-cooked food for customers to scoop into their own plates.

The most famous dish there is their patin fish. I got a small piece cooked in tempoyak (fermented durian). The fish melted in my mouth but the fermented durian tasted strange (sort of like stinky tofu in Taiwan).

D found something strange in her plate of mixed rice. The strange food looked like a sliced cucumber but was mushy. Then D discovered that it was green durian cooked in curry. BANANA COOKED IN ITS SKIN!!

For dessert, there was tapai which was sticky glutinous rice wrapped in leaf. Sticky liquid dripped out. It turned out to be rice wine which was really strong and hit me in the head. BAM.

Find Akob Patin House: Tapak PCCL Jalan Besar 25000 Kuantan Pahang

Glutton in Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu

Madam Bee's Kitchen

In Chinatown of Kuala Terengganu, Madam Bee’s Kitchen serves peranakan food. D and I head there for a late lunch and tea on different days.

Some of the items on the menu were not available that day (watch out for the orange round sticker!)

The food was tasty but very down-to-earth. The menu did not have fancy peranakan food such as buah keluak or kong ba pao.

Find Madam Bee’s Kitchen: 177 Jalan Kampung Cina, Kuala Terengganu 21100, Malaysia

D and I stumbled upon Warung Pak Aziz while looking for breakfast in Kuala Terengganu. (McDonalds was not open until 9am!)

This little stall was in the middle of a carpark, next to office buildings. All the patrons looked like office people and we were the odd one out.

The best food here was the keropok lekor which was a deep fried fish cake. (I usually think of keropok as being thin.)

The owner, Pak Aziz, was delighted that D wanted to have another serving of keropok lekor. (Yes, I ate a lot of them too.)

Warung Pak Aziz address on Foursquare: Parking Kotitab

Glutton in Kota Bahru, Kelantan

Right opposite our hotel in Kota Bahru was a 24-hour hawker center. For our late-late-lunch, we had martabak and nasi air.

Martabak is a pancake-like dish with great filling. I had beef with mine.

Nasi air was a new discovery for D and I. It’s an interesting porridge-like bowl of rice and soup. The rice always seem to be in an interesting lump, instead of the watery grains found in Chinese cooking.

Have you had any of these dishes?