Japan – Tokyo & A Little Bit More

I visited Japan few years ago on a skiing vacation and vowed to return for both the skiing and the sightseeing. I had the opportunity to return recently and on this occasion was able to do more than just ski down the wonderful snow packed slopes of Hakuba.

Tokyo Sky Tree

The Tokyo Skytree is a broadcasting, landmark, and observation tower situated in Sumida, Tokyo, Japan. It was opened in mid 2012 and at a height of 634 metres, it is the world’s highest stand-alone communication tower.

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Sensō-ji Temple, Asakusa, Tokyo

Sensō-ji is an ancient Buddhist temple located in the Asakusa district of Tokyo. It is Tokyo’s oldest temple, and one of its most significant.

Sensō-ji Temple, Tokyo

Tokyo Disneyland

Tokyo Disneyland is rated highly by many Disney theme park aficionados. This is due to sensational themes, polite and highly efficient cast members combined with world class rides and entertainment. The 115 acre theme park is split into two separate sections, Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea. Many reviews rate DisneySea above Disneyland but my family and I much preferred the latter.

Tokyo Disneyland

Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park, Nagano Prefecture

The principle topic of this post is Tokyo, however, a highlight of my visit to Japan (right up there with skiing) was visiting the Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park. I will discuss these unique animals plus the quality of the ski slopes of Japan in a later post but I could not help but introduce the snow monkeys today.

Jigokudani Snow Monkeys

Shibuya Cross Junction, Tokyo

Cities such as New York and Sao Paulo have hectic pedestrian crossings but the Shibuya Cross Junction in Tokyo is renowned to be busiest of them all. I can well believe it after having visited the crossing during rush hour.

Shibuya Cross Junction

Traditional Kimono

Two lovely Japanese girls agreed to have their photos taken in their beautiful kimonos. This was taken at the entrance of the Shinjuku temple.

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Tokyo Winter Lights

Tokyo Winter Lights

Singapore – An Increasingly Popular Destination

I have often transited at Singapore’s iconic Changi Airport and have always vowed to spend more than a few hours in this bustling island nation. I recently took the opportunity to stay a few nights taking in the sights of Singapore and am extremely pleased I did so. There is so much to see and do in this vibrant city/island/country.

St Andrew’s Cathedral – Singapore

St Andrew’s Cathedral is the largest religious building in Singapore and is the islands oldest Anglican Church. The current St Andrew’s started service in 1861 after being rebuilt twice between the years 1835 and 1860.

St Andrew's Cathedral, SingaporeMarina Bay Sands Hotel

Marina Bay Sands Hotel is the most stunning hotel and casino in South East Asia. Construction on this integrated resort started in early 2007 and it was officially opened in 2010. At a cost of $8 billion it is regarded as the world’s most expensive standalone casino complex.

Marina Bay Sands Hotel

Singapore Botanic Gardens

The Singapore Botanic Gardens was opened in 1859 and is located at the fringe of Singapore’s main shopping belt. This beautiful lush tropical paradise is a testament to Singapore’s reputation as a ‘City within a Garden’.Singapore Botanic Gardens

Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay is a nature park spanning 101 hectares of reclaimed land in the Marina Bay District of Singapore. The Flower Dome is one of the two conservatories in the gardens and is recorded in the 2015 Guinness World Records as the largest glass greenhouse in the world. The Flower Dome is spectacular throughout the year but even more so over the Christmas holiday period.001 Singapore 272

Supertree Grove, Gardens by the Bay

There are eighteen Supertrees in Gardens by the Bay, of which twelve can be found at Supertree Grove. Each structure measures between twenty five and fifty metres in height and two of the trees are connected by a  twenty two metre high Skyway. These unique tree-like vertical gardens are designed with large canopies that provide shade in the day and come alive with colourful displays of light and sound at night. Supertree Grove, Gardens by the Bay

Orchard Road, Singapore

Orchard Road is just over two kilometres long and is the retail and entertainment hub of Singapore. It is quite simply Asia’s most famous shopping street. During the festive season the whole of Orchard Road and some the streets leading into it are lit up with glittering lights and enchanting displays.

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Angkor Temples

Siem Reap Cambodia

Siem Reap Visit

This is my final post on Siem Reap but I hope I will be able to visit Cambodia again in the not too distant future. It is a fascinating country with a rich history and wonderful people.

Angkor Wat

Catching the sunrise over the triple coned towers of Angkor Wat is a breath-taking experience and is well worth the pre-dawn rise.

Angkor Wat Sunrise You can only appreciate the architectural wonder of Angkor Wat by visiting it in person and exploring the iconic structures.

Angkor Wat Temple

Neak Pean

Neak Pean is a small temple situated north east of Angkor Thom. It is almost completely surrounded by water during the monsoon season and is structurally unique compared to other temples in the region.

Neak Pean Water Temple

Ta Som Temple

Ta Som is a short distance to the east of Neak Pean.  Although small, it is extremely popular with tourists as it has a central shrine decorated with intricate carvings and a stunning strangler fig growing on top of the eastern gopura.

Ta Som Temple