söndag 7 september 2014
I just want to start by apologizing for not updating this blog for quite a while.
I got back to Sweden two months ago now and a lot have happened since. One pf the reasons I flew home was to attend my sister’s wedding witch was a great event and I’m very glad I came home for it.
At the end of my trip through South East Asia the motivation to keep on cycling most days was getting less and less. I still loved travelling but to force you’re self to get on the bike and cycle through rain or burning heat you need to be very motivated. I knew when I got on that plane back home that I might not get back on the road again, at least not at this extent. I was okay with that and started to forward to other things in life except travelling. But the biggest reason why I now have decided to not continue my trip is for a reason probably many of you have made changes in life for; A girl.
Things have happened fast the last month and right now I’m sitting in my new apartment in Gothenburg to which I just got the keys to this Friday. It’s time for me to get back to a “normal” life, whatever that may be.
And I couldn’t be happier. I’ve been so lucky to be able to experience everything that has happened these last two years. Setting out on this trip has been the best decision of my life and something I will never ever forget. I have seen so much and met so many amazing people along the way. It feels like such a long time ago that I got on my bike back home in Skellefteå and rolled down the driveway of my childhood home. I have learned so much along the way and really grown as a person. I’ve overcome so many obstacles, cycled through storms and over mountains. But when I think back at the trip what I remember most is the people I met and friends I made. Travelling would be nothing if there weren’t all these amazing people to share it with. I would like to thank every one of you face to face again but that might not be possible. But I hope you know how thankful I am and I hope and think I’ll see many of you again.
And finally I would just like to thank you Julia for being who you are, for coming into my life and making it so much better!! :-)
onsdag 2 juli 2014
After almost two weeks of laziness on Langkawi I got up early in the morning and rode to the other side of the island to catch the ferry over Penang. Luckily there were no problem bringing a bike on the speed boat, just had to pay an extra 10 RM for it that no one ever checked.
It had been a while since I did couchsurfing so I was excited to do that again in Penang with a guy named Rohan. He was really nice and made me feel at home at his place with one of the best view in town.
I stayed there over the weekend and on Friday we went into Georgetown for the weekly couchsurf meeting which had a good turnout that night and it was really nice to meet other travelers and hosts in a cozy café in the center.
The next day Rohan and I decided to go up the Penang Hill witch you can access by a steep railway up to the top at 735 meter. The hill felt like walking around in a park with many old colonial villas on the hills. And with a smoggy view it wasn’t amazing, most fun was the ride up and down on the train.
After Penang I began cycling south towards Kuala Lumpur witch is my last destination before flying back home. Because I hadn’t done that much cycling the last days I took it a little slower and never pushed more than 100 km per day. I stayed in small hotels along the way and there was nothing really amazing to see along the way. I just felt like I really wanted to get to KL when I now was so close, and mentally I was already on my way back to Sweden.
The last day ended up being the longest and I got up at 6 in the morning to be able to make the 130 km into KL. It’s not easy getting up at that time but it’s worth it once you’re on the bike and can ride for a while with some cooler temperature and without the burning sun.
I was surprised that the road into KL was so good for cyclists. Maybe it wasn’t meant for cyclists but almost all the way into town next to a bigger road there was a separate road for motorbikes, and me. I didn’t get too lost in the city and made it to my host’s place at 4 in the evening. Here in KL I stayed with Felicia and Adam who was amazing hosts and I really felt at home there. I’m not much of a big city guy but enjoyed my time there, did some sightseeing, hung out with Felicia and Adam and tried to stay up at night to watch football (failed many times).
It feels very strange to be heading back home again after being away for so long. It’s mixed feelings but I’m really looking forward to go home and for my sister’s wedding. Cycling in Asia has been an experience of a lifetime and I’ve met so many amazing people that made the trip what it is.
Thanks everyone for the great memories..
torsdag 19 juni 2014
Last Sunday I left Thailand and got on the ferry to the island Langkawi in Malaysia. I didn’t know much about this place and thought I would only stay for a few days. But somehow I ended up staying here for 12 days all because of the nice people I met here.
The second day here a group from the guesthouse rented a minivan and went around the island. At first we stopped for a nice Malaysian breakfast eating Roti witch is kind of a pancake.
After that we continued to the cable car witch is the world’s steepest and a nice ride up to the top of a mountain. We continued the day with waterfall and later a tour around the mangrove forest. A nice day ended with another small waterfall where we could jump off a cliff into the cold refreshing water. It was a great start in Langkawi and a good way to get to know some more people staying at the guesthouse.
The next week passed by with some fun parties at the guesthouse, some motorbike trips around the island and some lazy days on the beach. My plan was to leave much earlier but extended a couple of time just because of the people here. And once I really was about to leave a Swedish guy that I met two months earlier on Ko Chang, Thailand came here and I again decided to stay for a few more days.
But tomorrow I’m really leaving this place and heading down to Georgetown for a few days before cycling the last bit down to Kuala Lumpur.
onsdag 11 juni 2014
Just before 10 pm and curfew time I left Hard Road Café Hostel and rode down to the harbor to catch the night boat to Surat Thani. The night boat I was on from Chumphon to Ko Tao was really comfortable with a bed in an air-conditioned room. But this time I wasn’t as lucky, the boat was a smaller wooden boat with just mattresses on the floor and fans to cool down.
I didn’t have a great night sleep and got off the boat just as the sun came up. But it was really nice to start riding that early in the morning before it was too hot. So even if I was a bit tired I still managed to push on 120 km to a small town where I found a little hotel for the night. I was coming into Krabi province and could see the beautiful rocks along the road.
Next stop was Ao Nang, a place I visited with my family five years ago. I wasn’t sure that I wanted to go back since I had seen it already, but since I still had some time left on my visa and got a really good recommendation for a hostel there I decided to go. And that hostel made the stay really worth it, it was a very nice and social place. After arriving I went with some people to a hill for a climb up to a temple. I didn’t know about it and definitely didn’t know how hard it would be going up those 1272 steps to the top. But it was absolutely worth it and the view from the top was amazing.
The next day a group from the hostel went on a full day island tour around the amazing islands in Krabi. The highlight of the day was BBQ on the beach on an island with one of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve ever seen. And to finish off a great day we stopped in the dark for one last swim with glowing plankton witch was something I’ve never seen before.
Another highlight of Ao Nang’s beautiful nature was a trip to a hidden lagoon close to Railay beach. Me and three other guys rented kayaks and paddled around some islands and then decided to make the climb to the lagoon. It was a really difficult climb, especially the last part down to the lagoon with three steep drops where we free climbed barefoot on slippery rocks holding on to a wet rope. With some cuts and bruises we finally made it down to the lagoon and the reward was absolutely worth the effort. It was so quiet and peaceful as I just floated on my back out into the water and looked up to the sky.
I ended up staying in Ao Nang for one week and could probably have gotten stuck there for longer. But the visa was running out and it was time to head south to Malaysia. It took me three days to get down to the most southern point of Thailand. The last night I ended up in a small town and had some problem finding a place to stay for the night. I was directed to a little guesthouse but once there I couldn’t find anyone there. But one door was open and I knocked on the door and was greeted by a nice Pilipino guy who was teaching English at the local high school. He didn’t know of any place nearby and the guesthouse he was in was full. Marcial was really nice to me and offered me to stay at his place for the night. We had an nice evening eating Pilipino food with another teacher and a young guy from Germany who was going to work in a national park on an island just off the cost.
The next morning I cycled the rest of the way down to Satun where I got on the ferry over to the Malaysian island Langkawi. I had such a great time in Thailand, met great people and really got to experience the country during two months. But it also felt really good to again cross a border and to see something new. I now only got a couple of weeks more left until I reach Kuala Lumpur and from there fly back home to Sweden. It feels good but also strange when it’s coming close to that day. But until then I will enjoy this last time here in Malaysia..
lördag 31 maj 2014
When I started this trip in August 2012 I was never planning on going back home at any point. But things change, last summer I went back and soon it’s time to go back again. My sister is getting married this summer and even if I told her I wasn't sure I’ll be home then, there was no doubt in my mind that I would be back for it. You’re one of the most important people in my life and I wouldn't miss it for the world…
See you soon sis =)
måndag 26 maj 2014
The night ferry from Chumphon to Ko Tao was really comfortable but too short, arriving on Ko Tao at 4:30 in the morning. I was still tired and slept for a while on a bench outside the hostel waiting for them to open for the day. It felt great to be on the island and also that I reunited with Brett who I met in Bangkok and travelled up north with. After settling in we explored some of Ko Tao’s nice beaches. I arrived on the 13:th and on the neighboring island Ko Phangnan there was the famous Full Moon Party the next day. We hadn’t planned on going there but after we saw a sign with boat ticket to Ko Phangan for 300 bath we just said, why not.
Luckily we could leave our stuff at the hostel and just get over there for the night. So the next day we got on the boat and arrived to the busy Haad Rin beach. The beach party was a lot of fun full of happy dancing people all night until the next morning. Brett and I made it back to the boat and headed back to Ko Tao again.
Ko Tao is a lot smaller but really nice with many smaller quieter beaches with some great snorkeling spots. The way to get around is definitely with motorbikes so you can find the beaches with less people. The main thing about Ko Tao is diving and the island is filled with dive schools, and now in the low season it was possible to find a good deal on a course. I found one I liked and paid 7500 bath (170EUR) for the course. It was an amazing feeling the first time you go down and breathe under water. Diving was a great experienced and I enjoyed every moment of it.
After the dive course was over and Brett left to go down to Malaysia I felt I was time for me to move on as well. I was considering going straight to the mainland and start riding south. I decided instead to go back to Ko Phangnan to see more of the island then just the full moon party. I thought for a while I wouldn’t be able to go there since the two first boat companies I talked to me wouldn’t take the bicycle on the boat. Luckily the last company would and I could place it in the back on the boat.
Being here in the low season and when the full moon in over has its perks and accommodation is really cheap. I found a really nice and social hostel with aircon and swimming pool for just 100 bath. There’s a lot of parties on this island and most stick to the moon theme. The second day I was there was the Half Moon Party. After a fun pre party with a friend I met up in Chiang Mai we hit the party full of body paint and joined the rest of the glowing people dancing to the trance music.
The next couple of days in Ko Phangan I took it very slow and visited some beaches and just relaxed. Then one day we got the news of the military coup and there was a nationwide curfew from 10 pm to 5 am. So places closed much earlier than usually and the hostel I was staying at got shut down by the police one night when they played music and served drinks. And the island died off even more after the half-moon party was over and not much was going on in the hostel.
So I decided to leave the island and will be getting on a night ferry to Surat Thani tonight and then ride down to Krabi next. I have had a great time here on the island and met a lot of great people, but it also feels like I’ve seen it and it’s time to move on again.
lördag 10 maj 2014
Riding a bicycle in and around Bangkok is not something I would recommend anyone. Even though I rode 90 km it still felt like I hadn’t left Bangkok, there’s so much traffic and I was just looking forward to get away from that. And it was much better day two when I found some nice small roads to follow close to the sea. For a long while the road went through massive salt fields, and it was really interesting and nice to see the work going on in the fields.
After a beautiful bike ride I stopped for the night in the very touristy town of Cha-am. It’s definitely not a place for me with hotels everywhere, a not very nice beach full of beach chairs, boats and jet ski’s driving around. So I just stayed the one night and save the days on the beach for when I get to the islands. I continued south from Cha-am and passed through Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park. It was a beautiful place to ride through and I took my time that day since I planned to stop at a place in the park for the night. But around there where only fancy hotels and resorts, so I continued on hoping to find something further on. After a calm day the wind picked up in the afternoon and on course that meant head wind. Tired and hungry I was glad to see a sign for camping at a beach I passed by. It was a beautiful place still within the national park and I could set up my tent right next to the beach.
What I hadn’t planned with was how hot it would be sleeping in the tent. And it was like a sauna in there and no way that I would get any sleep, even though I opened everything up. The wind I was struggling with before had completely stopped. So I covered myself in mosquito repellent and lay my mattress on a bench right next to the beach. A beautiful place but I didn't sleep much.
But it was all worth it when the first thing I say when I opened my eyes in the morning was this amazing sunrise.
After a bad night I only did 50 km to the next town and had a great afternoon nap for a couple of hours. Today I was feeling on top again and pushed on for 110 km. In the evening I had to stop and get away from the rain. It was raining a lot, but after one hour it stopped and I was back on the road again. And riding after heavy rain is just great, the air is so fresh and after days and days of extreme heat I really enjoyed riding this afternoon.
Tomorrow I’ll be riding down to Chumphon and get on a ferry to Ko Tao. I’m really looking forward to get back to an island and we’ll see how long I’ll spend there before getting back to the mainland and continue riding south.