Jan 29, 2011

O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?

Juliet's balcony

Sound familiar? That's the famous quote from the balcony scene of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. I had a chance to visit the 'birthplace' of the famous Romeo and Juliet in Verona, Italy, an easy day trip from Venice. The journey took about an hour plus from Venice to Verona Porta Nouva and we had the whole day to explore the town on foot. The town is easy to navigate and most attractions can be reached on foot. It was here in Verona that Shakespeare set the scene of the famous play. Among the highlight of the attractions is off course the famous Juliet's balcony where Romeo declared his love. There are also the Montague house as well as Juliet's tomb.

nope it's the Arena

the Arena is still being used

inside the Arena

view from top of Arena

Although Verona is not as famous as Venice, Florence or Rome, the place is worth spending time in. It's a good place to just chill out and discover the romantic traces of the star crossed lovers.
After all, there are less tourist here and you can tried out their famous horse meat which sadly we couldnt locate any restaurant selling the meat.

Juliet's tomb

two layers in Verona

Juliet's house

Juliet's statue
supposingly to rub her breast for luck

the Balcony

lovers around the world declare their love here

the town

Romeo's house

Jan 22, 2011

Cape Peninsula, South Africa

view of Cape of Good Hope

catching my own reflection

Cape of Good Hope is also known as the most southern tip of the African continent. We drove from Cape Town to the Cape Peninsula stopping along Simon's town for the colourful dressing rooms, Boulder's beach for the cute penguin and lastly the Cape Point for the sunset. The whole drive from Cape Town to Cape of Good Hope was about 3 hours. It was said here, one could see the most mesmerizing sunset on earth as it was considered one of the most beautiful places on earth!

Cape of Good Hope is the divider between the Indian and Atlantic ocean. To get into the cape, we paid some entrance fees for the park as well as fee for the car. By the time we reached there, it was late afternoon and we had to rush between Cape Point and Cape of Good Hope. The scenary up the light house is amazing and one can view the Cape of Good Hope from here. One need to leave the park before it's close or you will be fined for lateness.

map of the Cape

chilling out or more like pretending to be model

the lighthouse

stunning view of Table Mountain
(which looks like those ancient Chinese paintings)

standing at the most south western point of the African continent

love the colour of the sky here

I managed to shoot some stunning sunset view from the Cape and the classic shot with the ostrich in it.

Adri and May, my models

sunset view with the ostrich silhoutte

sun finally set in

Jan 17, 2011

And now I might be a Ophiuchus?

A new zodiac has emerged and according to my birthdate, I might be a Ophiuchus instead of a Sagittarius. But I like to be the Archer!

Here's the might be new chart

Capricorn: Jan. 20 - Feb. 16
Aquarius: Feb. 16 - March 11
Pisces: March 11- April 18
Aries: April 18- May 13
Taurus: May 13- June 21
Gemini: June 21- July 20
Cancer: July 20- Aug. 10
Leo: Aug. 10- Sept. 16
Virgo: Sept. 16- Oct. 30
Libra: Oct. 30- Nov. 23
Scorpio: Nov. 23- Nov. 29
Ophiuchus: Nov. 29- Dec. 17
Sagittarius: Dec. 17- Jan. 20

Jan 15, 2011

Dead Sea, Jordan

Also known as Killer Sea and the lowest point on earth. And for those who do not know how to swim, fret not as you will practically float. We had a chance to swim and mud bathing at the Dead Sea while enroute to Amman.

Notice those white stuff

They are salt formed from the sea

Dead sea mud

Jan 11, 2011

2011 Expectations

Hmm..the title sound cliche but then I guess, everytime a new year comes, I would always have this list of things that I wanted to achieve. For 2011, there are plenty of plans especially on travel. Gonna see Sun Moon Lake upclose in March courtesy from my free travel voucher. Going oversea for work..keeping my fingers crossed for the cheap Coach bag..:) and lastly the ultimate trip to Nepal, Tibet and hopefully Bhutan if things go according to plan in Aug.

And because of the ultimate trip above, need to keep myself fit for all the walking and hiking at 3000m above sea level. Not gonna let myself suffer from altitude sickness. Thus, I have been hitting the gym at least 3 times a week to get myself ready for the challenge. And hoping to lost a few pounds along the way.

Gonna spend tonnes of money into my non moveable asset..been ploughing through magazines and internets for the best choice.

Because of that, I need to cut down on shopping especially shoes and my beloved MNG and ZARA clothes shopping as well as lens shopping..:(

What's my wishlist for 2011 then?

1. Canon EOS 7D

2. iPad

3. iPhone

4. Make more money so that I can achieved the above..haha!

Jan 7, 2011

The Rose Red City

It's a wonderful sight to see Petra peeking out from the Siq

Finally, after 1 km of walk

The majestic view of Petra

The Rose Red City or Petra debuted in the Hollywood in 1989 in the Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade movie. Petra used to be the capital of the Nabataens and now has joined the ranks of Taj Mahal and Great Wall as one of the new seven wonders of the world. It was no wonder that this architecture was concurred with the prestigous rank as it was a wonder that how such city could be carved to the walls of the stones. Petra is especially stunning during the sunset and it is no wonder that Dean Burgon penned her majestic beauty in his poem entitled Petra.

" It seems no work of Man's creative hand, 
by labour wrought as wavering fancy planned;
But from the rock as if by magic grown,
eternal, silent, beautiful, alone!
Not virgin-white like that old Doric shrine,
where erst Athena held her rites divine;
Not saintly-grey, like many a minster fane,
that crowns the hill and consecrates the plain;
But rose-red as if the blush of dawn,
that first beheld them were not yet withdrawn;
The hues of youth upon a brow of woe,
which Man deemed old two thousand years ago,
match me such marvel save in Eastern clime,
a rose-red city half as old as time."

the beginning of the 1 km narrow gorge, the Siq

Some of the sights along Siq

a horse cart passing by the Siq

The whole experience into Petra is made especially made memorable with the Siq. Detail map of Petra can be found here.

We hike 900 steps all the way up to no. 24, Ad-Deir Monastery

Petra is part of the 12 day tour that we followed from Egypt to Jordan. We stay overnight in one of the hotel in Wadi Musa and had the whole day to explore the rose red city. It was summer in Jordan when we was there and extremely hot and humid. The whole Siq was an amazing journey and it was surreal to finally seeing Petra peeking out at us at the end of the Siq. Although one could take a horse cart along the way, I highly recommended to walk. Our tour guide left us to explore the rest of the site at noon and we decided to hike up the 900 steps to The Monastery, another site where Transformers: the Revenge of the Fallen was filmed. Since my friend being such a smart alec and decided not to bring any water during the whole visit inside Petra and let me carried my 1.5 litre of water and lugging my big ass camera, I decided not to share my water with him..Hah! Yea, I am evil when I wanted to.

upclose of Treasury of Petra

colourful sand bottles made from real sand colours of Jordan

The Royal Tombs

Temple of the Winged Lions

the beginning of the 900 steps hike up the Monastery

Monastery as seen from inside a restaurant

After the more than an hour hike up and had some fun with some perspective shots, we decided to hike back down and left Petra around late afternoon as we were tired, thirsty, hungry but contented with what we experienced. We spend a few minutes sitting at the bench in front of Petra. I was totally overwhelmed by the colours of Petra turning into reddish. I absolutely *heart* Petra !