2009 - Backpacking to Indonesia

23 Jul <> 07 Aug 2009
16 days to Bali, Lombok & Java, Indonesia
L-R: Bernard Lee,  Choo Chiew Chin, Chan Meng Fye, Chew Leng Soon, Lim Kee Moon, Ching Neng Bin at Borobudur Temple, Yogyakarta

Day 01 (23.07.09) Kuala Lumpur to Kuta, Bali
Day 02 (24.07.09) Kuta > Denpasar > Uluwatu > Kuta
Day 03 (25.07.09) Kuta > Ubud > Kintamani > Ubud
Day 04 (26.07.09) Ubud > Monkey Forest >Sg Ayung
Day 05 (27.07.09) Ubud > Padang Bai > Senggigi
Day 06 (28.07.09) Trekking up Mt. Rinjani
Day 07 (29.07.09) Descend Mt. Rinjani > Senggigi
Day 08 (30.07.09) Senggigi > Kuta
Day 09 (31.07.09) Kuta > Bedugul > Tanah Lot
Day 10 (01.08.09) Kuta > Probolinggo, Java
Day 11 (02.08.09) Gilimanuk > Probolinggo > Mt.Bromo
Day 12 (03.08.09) Mt. Bromo > Surabaya
Day 13 (04.08.09) Surabaya to Yogyakarta
Day 14 (05.08.09) Yogyakarta > Borobudur > Surabaya
Day 15 (06.08.09) Surabaya
Day 16 (07.08.09) Surabaya > Kuala Lumpur

Day 01 (23.07.09) Kuala Lumpur to Kuta, Bali

It was a 3 hour flight from KL to Denpasar Airport arriving at 7pm. Six of us in a van to Kuta for Rp70k.

AirAsia Flight AK364 (RM292 per person)
Nirvana Apartment at Jl Poppies 1, Bali

As July-August were "high season", all guesthouses were full and we almost had to sleep on the beach. After 2hour of searching on the popular Jl.Poppies 1 & 2, we finally found 2 rooms at Nirvana Apartment beside Secret Garden Inn. And with 6 of us, it was 3 in-a-room (2 on the bed and one on the floor). Had expensive and good Balinese dinner at Marde Warong (restaurant).

Sleeping: Nirvana Apt. Jl Poppies 1 @ RM71 or Rp200k a a/c room (Tel:+62361762785)

View Larger Map

Day 02 (24.07.09) Kuta >Denpasar >Uluwatu >Kuta

Morning was an exploratory walk along Kuta Beach to Legian Beach and back to the town centre along Jalan Pantai Kuta, Jalan Melasti and Jalan Legian. Afternoon was renting a van (Rp250k) for the day to Denpasar the capital and Uluwatu for the sunset and Kecak Dance.

Sleeping: Nirvana Apt. Jl Poppies 1 @ RM71 or Rp200k a a/c room (Tel:+62361762785)
Rental of van for a day @ Rp250k (includes driver & petrol)
Dinner at Basil Leaves Subway Food, Poppies 1 opposite our apartment
This is the best place for Indonesian Breakfast at Rp17k per person.
Heavy breakfast at Bali Agung along Jl.Poppies 1
Every aspect of Balinese life has to do with Hindu religion, but the most visible signs are the offering (sesajen) of flowers, glutinous rice and salt in little bamboo leaf trays, found in every Balinese house, restaurant and shops. They are set out and sprinkled with holy water no less then three times a day, before meal.
Daily sesajen offerings

Balinese women - the beauty of Bali.
Bali's most famous Kuta beach.

Reliable waves keeps Bali as surfing destinations

Legian Beach front (Rp20k for deckchair)
Best place for shopping for T-shirts and souvenirs at Merta Nadi, Jl. Melasti

Restaurant on top of fish aquarium along Jl. Pantai Kuta
Along Jalan Legian
Bali Bomb Memorial, Jalan Legian, Kuta. This monument commemorates the 202 victims of the first Bali Bomb attack in October 2002, including 161 tourists from 21 countries. The site of the former Sari Club, obliterated in one of the blasts, lies adjacent to the monument.

Entrance to Jl.Poppies from Jalan Legian
Jl.Poppies 2
Recommended Guesthouse @ IDR65k a room

Serene courtyard & garden

Best lunch at this Bamboo Corner Restaurant, Jln.Poppies 1

Denpasar Central Market. Denpasar is the largest city and capital of the island of Bali.
My hometown SETIAWAN is here!!

Uluwatu is at the southernmost tip of southern Bali. Entrance fee is Rp3,000. As usual, you need to be properly dressed to enter and sarongs and sashes is free at the entrance.
More remarkable is its location, perched on a steep cliff 250ft above the roaring ocean waves.

I am standing on top of a 250ft cliff
Behind this two lovable faces lies the cunning thieves
The temple is inhabited by monkeys, who are extremely clever at snatching visitors' bags, cameras and eyeglasses. You can get it back in exchange for some fruits.
There are more steep headlands on either side, and sunsets over Uluwatu are a sight to behold.
The Kecak dancer
Started with prayers before the Kecak Dance performance
Kecak Dance performances are held at the temple daily from 6 to 7pm. Tickets for tourists is Rp50,000
Taken from the Hindu epic Ramayana, the dance tells the story of Prince Rama and his rescue of Princess Sita, who has been kidnapped by the evil King of Lanka. Unlike other dances, there is no orchestra accompanying it. Instead, a troupe of over 100 bare-chested men serve as the chorus, making a synchronized sound "chak-achak-achak" clicking sounds while swaying their bodies and waving their hands.

The show ended with the  Fire Dance
Day 03 (25.07.09) Kuta >Ubud >Kintamani >Ubud

7.30am breakfast at McDonald. Rented the same van from Mr.Wayan for the day at Rp400k. First stop was at Batu Bulan for the famous Barong Dance. Visited Mar's Gold & Silver Art shop, Stone Carving Centre and Rai Wood Carver, all at Batu Bulan. Arrived Ubud at 12.15pm, we checked-in at Warini Bungalows for Rp100k a room. Continued our journey to view Mt.Batur at Kintamani.

Sleeping: Warini Bungalows in Ubud (Tel:+62361972579) Rp100k a room + breakfast for 2
Rented the same van from Mr.Wayan for the day at Rp400k

Barong & Kris Dance — a ritual dance depicting the fight between good and evil, with performers wearing fearsome lion-like masks. Barong a mythological animal represents a good spirit and Rangda a monster represents an evil one. Entrance fee is Rp80k quite expensive.

Cheapest guesthouse in Ubud (Tel:+62361972579) Rp100k a room + breakfast for two

Terrace rice field at Tegal Lalang on the way to Mt.Batur is well known for handicraft production in Bali.

Buffet lunch here not so good, but nice view of Mt.Batur and Lake Batur
This restaurant sits on the rim of the huge Mount Batur caldera about 1,500m above sea level and provides dramatic views of Mount Batur volcano and Lake Batur. The entrance fee to mountain rim is Rp5k per person.
Mt. Batur volcano at Kintamani
Magnificent view of Batur Volcano
Lake Batur
Somewhere down the mountain, visited a coffee estate. This Civet cat is responsible for pooping out the world's most expensive coffee, called Kopi Luwak. Civets are fed coffee cherries, and during digestion the animal's enzymes mix with the coffee beans producing a unique bitter taste.
Coffee beans for the cats
I helped to roast some coffee beans
Pura Tirta Empul Temple at Tampaksiring. Entrance fee is Rp6k per person

For more than a thousand years, Balinese worshipers have been drawn to Pura Tirta Empul, whose sacred spring is said to have been created by Indra and to have curative properties. The tradition continues almost unchanged at the temple today.
The Tirta Empul Temple includes the traditional Balinese split gate along with shrines to Shiva, Vishnu, Braham, Mt. Batur, and Indra.
There is also a large open pavilion in the main courtyard, useful for relaxing in the shade.

Legend has it that the sacred spring was created by the god Indra. His forces had been poisoned by Mayadanawa, so he pierced the earth to create a fountain of immortality to revive them. An inscription dates the founding of a temple at the site to 926 AD. Ever since - for more than a thousand years - the Balinese have come to bathe in the sacred waters for healing and spiritual merit.
Natural spring water flowing out
A long rectangular pool filled with koi.

Had good dinner here

Free cultural show at the Ubud Community Hall
Day 04 (26.07.09) Ubud>MonkeyForest>Sg Ayung

Ubud is the center of art and dance in the foothills with interesting small Palace, Monkey forest and lots of arts and crafts shops. Very good breakfast provided by guesthouse. Morning was a walking tour to Monkey Forest, Ayung River & Ubud Palace. Afternoon was the 3hour walking tour through the rice-field. We then call the day by finishing the half bottle of whiskey at our bungalow.

Sleeping: Warini Bungalows (Tel:+62361972579) Rp100k a room + breakfast for 2

Breakfast: pancake, fruits & tea

A Hindu temple on the way to Ayung River

Ayung River
Typical Balinese serene entrance to houses
Typical Balinese serene entrance

A guesthouse by the river

Plenty of art and craft shop in Ubud

Artistic flower arrangement on water

Ubud Palace ground
Taking a rest at the Ubud Palace ground
Ubud Palace Gate
Palace courtyard

Palace side-entrance to garden
OK! Where to go next? Chew said "go for beer"
Here we are at Warung Kita by the rice-field, Jl.Hanoman. Mr Chew enjoying Bintang Beer

A 3 hour walking tour to the rice-field and back. Road construction were sponsored by companies and individual as written on.
(L-R) Bernard Lee, Ching Neng Bin, Peter, Chew Leng Soon, Chan Meng Fye

The only cafe in the middle of the rice-field

Chew Leng Soon and Lim Kee Moon, happily waiting for Bintang beer

Day 05 (27.07.09) Ubud > Padang Bai > Senggigi

Getting there we took the 7am Perama bus (RP150k) to Senggigi in Lombok Island. Started with a 1-hour bus journey to reach Padang Bai a coastal port on the east coast., then a 4-hour ferry to Lembar jetty and another 1-hr bus ride to Sengigi town.

Sleeping at Bukit Senggigi Seaview Resort at Rp250k a room a/cPerama bus (RP150k) to Senggigi in Lombok Island
Padang Bai located on a bay is the port for ferries between Bali and Lombok. It is a popular place to break a journey.
Padang Bai ferry terminal
Padang Bai beach front beside ferry terminal

Bus from Lembar jetty to Senggigi
Its time to cool down after a long journey at Senggigi

Day 06 (28.07.09) Trekking up Mt.Rinjani

We took the trekking package from PT.Wannen Tours for Rp600k each for a 2day and 1night - includes 1 guide, 3 porters and 5 meals.

The van picked us at the hotel at 5am for a 2hour journey to the foothill of Mt.Rinjani at Senaru. Had breakfast at the tour office and then proceed to the Rinjani Trekking Centre for registration. Here we met our guide Tari and the 3 porters.

Started with a one hour trek to reach Post 1 passing through villages and farm land cultivated with soybeans, coffee, tobacco, cinnamon and vanilla. Another one and a half hour trek to Post 2 passing through forest vegetation. At Post 2 extra the guide and porters cooked lunch for us, while we all laid by the grass to rest. After lunch we trek another one and a half hour to Post 3. Took a short rest here and continued another one and a half hour back-breaking hike to reach the crater rim and the camp-site at Pelawangan (2,641m). All in all we walked for a total of about 7 hours up the 9.2km trek.

at Rinjani Trekking Centre, Senaru

(L to R) Osman the trek organizer and Tari our guide

at Senaru base camp
at Senaru Trek Centre
Porters unloading
at Post 1 is 2.5km away

Old Men Beard growing on trees

at Post 2 which is 2.4km from Post 1

Bernard Lee said "This is happiness in suffering".
Guide & porters preparing lunch for us

The monkeys begging for food

Post 3 is 2.5km from Post 2

The last part of the climb to the Crater rim is a bit strenuous taking you over sliding sands and steep jagged rocks. I was quite exhausted here with some muscle cramp.
Beautiful clouded valley

Lim Kee Moon showing the way to the peak of Mt.Rinjani

We are standing above the clouds

A military post

Mt.Rinjani is just behind me
A stunning view in the bright fresh air...

Overlooking the crater, everybody said "Oh my god". It was such a fantastic view and feeling to be there.
Mt. Rinjani is an active volcano rises to 3,726m (12,225ft) making it the third highest volcano in Indonesia. The eruptions of 1994, 1995, and 1996 have formed a small cone, Gunung Baru in the center of the caldera and lava flows from these eruptions have entered the lake. This cone has since been renamed Mt. Baru Jari (or 'New Finger').

The most recent eruption was in April and May 2009, and was closed till end of June. It was reopened in July, but we were only allowed to trek up to the crater rim and not to the peak. For those trekking to the peak requires a 3day 2night package.
The 6km by 8.5km oval-shaped caldera is filled partially by a crater lake known as Segara Anak (Child of the Sea) and is about 2000m above sea level and estimated at being 200m deep. The caldera also contains hot springs.

Fantastic sunset view

Dinner inside the tent at 7pm and we all slept at 8pm. Very strong wind and the temperature is about 5C. Actually we all hardly had any sleep because of the crispy cold and uneven ground.

Day 07 (29.07.09) Descend Mt.Rinjani > Senggigi

After breakfast at 7.30am, we took nearly 7 hours to descend down the long trail to Senaru village (601m). Lunch was at Post 1 extra. When we reached Rinjani Trek Center in Senaru, our van was there to take us back to our hotel in Senggigi.

Dinner at Sunshine Restaurant owned by Chinese
Sleeping at Bukit Senggigi Seaview Resort at Rp250k a room a/c

Lim Kee Moon waiting for sunrise

Heavy smoke in the morning due to water condensation at night into the volcano
The black current in the photo is the molten lava.

Very cold in the morning, cannot sleep at night

The open sea at the background

Waiting for lunch near Post 1

Farewell to our guide and porters

Day 08 (30.07.09) Senggigi > Kuta

9am Perama bus (Rp150k) to Kuta. One hour to Lembar Jetty, 4 hours ferry crossing to Padang Bai and another hour bus journey to Kuta, we finally arrived at 7.30pm.

Sleeping at Agung Putra Inn, Kuta @ Rp425 a room a/c
Perama bus from Senggigi, Lombok to Kuta, Bali is Rp150k

at Bukit Senggigi Seaview Resort

Chinese cemetery at Mataram

Bernard slept on-board the ferry to Padang Bai

Perama Office at Padang Bai

Choo gave a dinner treat to celebrate our Mt.Rinjani success

Day 09 (31.07.09) Kuta > Bedugul > Tanah Lot

Again booked Sayan's van for Rp300 to take us to Bedugul and Tanah Lot. It was a half hour drive to Ubong town to get our bus ticket (Rp145k) for Probolingo in Java. From Ubong another one and half hour drive to Bedugul passing through Candi Kuning famous for its fruit, flowers, spice & vegetable market. Had buffer lunch at Mentari Restaurant in Bedugul. Visited the Beratan lake and the Ulun Danu temple by the lake. Afternoon was traveling to Tanah Lot temple which was built on the top of rock in the ocean.

Sleeping: Nirvana Apt. Jalan Poppies 1. @ RM71 or Rp200k a room a/c

Garuda is a mythical bird-like creature that appears in both Hindu and Buddhist mythology
Beratan Lake, Bedugu
Beratan Lake is a shallow lake with the high caldera about 1,231m above sea level and it is located at Bedugul.

Mentari Restaurant, Bedugul
Entrance fee is Rp10k

Ulun Danu Temple is a Balinese Hindu Temple located at Candi Kuning countryside. It is about 50km north of Denpasar set at lakeside of Beratan with beautiful lake view and hills surround it. It is situated in the plateau area with cool atmosphere and hills as a backdrop. The north side of this temple is Pucak Sangkur mount, in the east is Beratan Mount which also referred as Pucak Mangu, in the south is Terate Bang Mount and in the West is Tapak Mount and Watukaru Mount.
Ulun Danu Temple on Lake Beratan in Bedugul

at Tanah Lot temple

Only at low tide we are able to walk here

Talking to the temple priest

Day 10 (01.08.09) Kuta > Probolinggo, Java

The day was very relax as the bus travel to Probolinggo was at 5.30pm. Morning was lazying on Kuta Beach. Afternoon was the good body and foot massage (Rp45k an hour). It was a 3 hour bus journey to Gilimanuk, the westernmost tip of Bali for the 40 minutes ferry crossing to Banyuwangi in Java.

Wisata Komodo Bus fare from Ubong to Probolinggo is Rp145k
Sleeping on bus, ferry and finally five-foot-way in Probolinggo (FOC).

Can you see the plane touching down

Kuta Beach vendor

9pm ferry crossing at Gilimanuk

Day 11 (2.8.09) Gilimanuk>Probolinggo>Mt.Bromo

We arrived at Probolinggo at 2.30am and waited till 6am before we could get the van (Rp25k) to Mt.Bromo. The journey up the mountain was one and a half hour. The van mean for 12 passengers but we had about 20 people in it. After breakfast at the hotel, we all went to sleep for a couple of hours. It took about one hour to trek down the crater into the sea of sand and walked all the way to Mt.Bromo. Walked up the 500 steps to reach the top of the volcano. Evening was trekking through the villages by the mountain side and valley. Very cold at night about 10C.

Sleeping at Cemara Indah at Rp100k economy room
Sleeping at shop-front while waiting for van at Probolinggo
Chew said he counted at least 20 people in the van. Behind Chew and Chan is me.

Sleep in this hotel by the crater rim

The morning mist filled up the whole crater

Smoking Mt. Bromo (2392m) and Mt.Batok (2440m) behind us

The entire top has been blown off and the crater inside constantly oozing white sulfurous smoke

Smoking Mt. Bromo (2392m)

The mist disappeared as soon as the sun gets hotter exposing the sandy floor
Without the mist, it is a sea of sand
Mt Bromo (2,392m) that constantly oozing hot sulfuric gases
Trekking down the 800ft crater beside the hotel

The inside of the caldera, aptly dubbed the Sea of Sand is coated with fine volcanic sand and the overall effect is unseeingly unearthly, especially when compared to the lush green valleys all around the caldera.

Mt.Batok (2440m) is of brown volcanic cone. In recent times, the mountain has witnessed some growth of vegetation that gives it a breathtaking hues of meadow green and yellow. Its slopes are very unique if you inspect closely - alternating ravines and crevices patched by dark and light green, and muddy brown features.

A Hindu temple behind me

about 500 steps up the volcano

Have you ever thought of standing between Heaven and Hell...? Mount Bromo gives you this impression.

exploring around the village

Day 12 (03.08.09) Mt. Bromo > Surabaya

After breakfast, by van (Rp25k) to Probolinggo bus station. Another bus (Rp13k) to Surabaya.
Sleeping at Hotel Dharmawati beside the bus station (Rp140k) a room.
Sunrise view from the hotel

Morning view of our hotel

View of our hotel
Saying goodbye to Mt.Bromo and getting ready to go back

Driving through the villages

Day 13 (04.08.09) Surabaya to Yogyakarta

8am bus (Rp62k) and arriving Yogyakarta at 3.30pm. Check in at Prayogo Baru Hotel (Rp200k) a room. We did a walking tour round the city. Had the best nasi Padang at Duta Minang Restaurant.

Soto daging for breakfast at the bus station
Yogyakarta city centre

Best Nasi Padang

Day 14 (5.8.09) Yogyakarta>Borobudur>Surabaya

Walked to Southern Ring Road bus stopped to take a public bus (Rp10k). It was a one and half hour journey to the temple. Entrance fee is US12 for foreigner. After the temple tour we had a audio video presentation in a hall. We took the same public bus back (Rp10k) to Yogyakarta. After dinner, we collected our backpack from the hotel and took taxi to the bus station. The over night bus to Surabaya is Rp62k.

Sleeping: over-night bus to Surabaya is Rp62k.
we took this public bus
a short stop here

This is Borobudur, an ancient Buddhist temple complex, which was forgotten and abandoned for centuries, although no one knows why. In fact, it was forgotten for so long that it was hidden beneath volcanic ash and overgrown jungle for hundreds of years.
The main entrance

This Buddhist temple has 1460 relief panels and 504 Buddha effigies in its complex.

Borobudur is believed to have been constructed some time during the 8th century. It is a Buddhist temple, but without an altar or sanctuary. Instead, it boasts six square platforms on which sit 3 circular platforms, and decorated with galleries that form a ring around the structure. There are 504 statues of the Buddha. There is also a main dome that is surrounded by 72 Buddha statues.

Borobudur is beset by volcanos, which is why it was covered in ash and debris for many centuries. In 1973, UNESCO came up with a restoration plan for the legendary mountain. It took 7 years to restore (1975-1982). But today, Borobudur is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Indonesia.

Borobudur was built by King Samaratungga, one of the kings of Old Mataram Kingdom. Based on Kayumwungan inscription, it was a place for praying that was completed to be built on 26 May 824, almost one hundred years from the time the construction begun. The name Borobudur, means a mountain of terraces (budhara).

Borobudur is constructed as a ten-terraces building. The height before being renovated was 42 meters and 34.5 meters after the renovation because the lowest level was used as supporting base. The first six terraces are in square form, two upper terraces are in circular form, and on top of them is the terrace where Buddha statue is located facing westward. Each terrace symbolizes the stage of human life. In line with the teaching of Buddha Mahayana, anyone who intends to reach the level of Buddha's must go through each of those life stages.
Borobudur is the biggest Buddhist temple in the 9th century measuring 123 x 123 meters. It was completed centuries before Angkor Wat in Cambodia.

Day 15 (06.08.09) Surabaya

Arrived Surabaya bus station at 5am. We took a local bus to the city and checked in at Sparkling Backpacker Hotel (Rp80k). Again we slept for another 2 hours in the hotel before we explore the city. We had very good local dish for dinner at Warung Bukris with all the special Penyet.

Ayam Penyet

The staff of Warung Bukris

Day 16 (07.08.09) Surabaya > Kuala Lumpur

After breakfast at hotel, the proprietor Mr.Allan Wisata drove us to the airport at 10am to catch the 12.25pm flight to KL.
Mr Allan Wisata (centre)

Total expenses for the 16 day adventure inclusive of air tickets was RM1,700-00 per person.


  1. Ching,
    You and gang have been having a very good life after retirement. Keep it up. Like I always preach, you do not need to have a lot of money to have a good life but you must know HOW to have a good life. Certainly you know how to have a good life!

    Capt Wong

  2. Hi Ching,

    The pictures are magnificent. Congratulations to a successful backpacking holiday. The cost is reasonable if not considered cheap. A retired man like me can join in if invited. Well organized.


  3. Hi! Ching

    Wow! it was such a great trip for your guys. Pls let me know if you are planning for the same trip in next 2-3 years ok. Sounds very interesting, we were at Bali in April 09 with my family for 7 days. Didn't get to see much but more of within the city centre and all tourist spot.

    I don't mind going there again but this time round without my kids. I am planning to go back to Malaysia every 3 years and hope to make a short trip to the neighboring country as well.

    Keep me posted so that I don't miss all my OBA's . At least I can see Portoon (Chew ) and Chan Meng Fye still alive ha ha ha ha ...........................

    Suney Win

  4. Ching,

    I have been to Bali, Yogja, Surabaya and Solo. But your photos make the places so lively.
    Thanks for posting and keep traveling.


  5. Hi Ching & Bernard ...

    what a nice time you have in Bali & Lombok, thanks for those photos and the information in the blog, thanks for sharing, have been to both places on business trips, but we saw different perspective, make me wanna go & explore what you have been enjoying.

  6. Hi Ching, fantastic photos and feedback on your tour. Really helpful for us to plan future trips…

    Ang Leong

  7. How are you, Mr Ching. Thank you for your sharing. I sure you had a great memories in your travels. I like travel too, at the same time i like to take photograph too.

  8. Richard Teoh16 September, 2009

    hi, thanks a lot....really envy you ! wish i cud be around too. if things work out,i will be hitting the road for a 3 months back packing to china next year.

    Looking forwards to it !
    Do keep in touch.


  9. Phillip Tinkler16 September, 2009

    What a fantastic trip and as always your pics tell the story. Wish we could have joined you all. can't get over how the area has still retained character all these years. We were last there in about 1979 and it still looks great.


  10. Hi Ching,

    Wow, great pics story. Seems you had a great comprehensive tour of Bali. Where is your next? Can I join you guys?

    Michael Ng

  11. Hello Ching,

    What an excellent description of your trip to Indonesia. After reading and seeing your wonderful pictures, I feel as if I know the place already. Thanks.

    Kevin Tan

  12. Francis Chiong23 September, 2009

    Very impressive and wow, where on earth do you get all the strength from for a 16 days trekking, from one volcano to another volcano and still left some energy to walk and climb around Borobudur!

  13. hello... hapi blogging... have a nice day! just visiting here....

  14. James Leong07 October, 2009

    Hi! Ching Neng Bin,
    Thanks for the back-packing to Indonesia article which came to my email via Ong Keng Ming in Australia, who is my Classmate back in the fifties. Likewise, Chan Meng Fye is also one of my Archer in Selangor during the eighties/nineties.

    I remember you but that was long long ago in the seventies. I then work in D&C Bank and was close to Ng Ah Seng; Johnson Pang; Joyce Richie and sometime spoke to Molly Tong and Tay Ah Lek who was in Public Finance.with Wong Sek Wah.
    I am retired now and my morning walk pal is Tan Kee Seng who was also with Public Finance before he moved to Mui Bank and thereafter Hong Long Bank.

    Good to keep in touch after our horrible working days. Wong Sek Wah has two crafts shops in Sungei Wang,but his health is not that good, as he has Heart problem.
    Do keep in touch on our Bonus days ahead.
    James Leong.

  15. Hi Ching,
    You have been truly remarkable in journalism all your traveling extravaganza. I envisage to join u in your next trip to Tibet. If I could remember that u are planning to travel by the 1st world renowned train from Shanghai to Tibet. Please keep informed so that I can start to save up and arrange my time schedule. Thank you very much.
    Yours sincerely,
    012-518 2082

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  18. Mr. Ching
    I thoroughly enjoy your photo story. Admire your attention to details of the sites visited and other details despite doing it on a very tight budget. I finally visited Borubudor early this and alone as all my previous plans to get a 'group'failed. Thanks for the description of the Borubudor site.
    Cheah LC