Asia – The Traveling Dutchman
Asia – The Traveling Dutchman
It’s every diver’s dream destination: Raja Ampat in West Papua, Indonesia. The archipelago, also known as the Four Kings, consists of 1,500 small islands, shoals and cays and has the richest marine biodiversity on earth, period.
The area is home to 75% of the world’s known coral species and hosts a wide range of big pelagic fish as well as manta rays, dolphins, migrating whales and several shark species.Read more
Nyepi, a Hindu celebration, is celebrated mainly in Bali on the last day of the Balinese calendar, although it is a public holiday everywhere in Indonesia.
From 6am to 6am the next day no-one is supposed to engage in any activities. No entertainment, no electricity, no work, no travel and for some even no talking and food.
It’s a day reserved for self-reflection.But Nyepi has another, more interesting purpose. The night before Nyepi, the Balinese ride a number of Ogoh-Ogohs through the streets, accompanied by loud orchestral music. These are skillfully crafted monsters, mostly build by youth organizations. Each village typically build one Ogoh Ogoh.Read more
People often ask me which countries they should visit in South East Asia. Most of the time, they have Thailand, Vietnam or Cambodia in mind. I often ask if they’ve considered the Philippines. Most of the time the answer is “no.”
I’ve been to the Philippines almost ten times and I’m not sure why the Philippines isn’t on the top of the list of countries to visit for most people, but I definitely think it should be. Here’s why. Read more
Malapascua Island is a small island off the northeastern coast of Cebu in the Philippines. It features warm, tropical waters, palm trees, white beaches, and excellent dive sites.
The island has a long stretch of white sandy beach, where most of the resorts are located. There are a number of local villages on the island. Fishing and tourism are the main sources of income for the locals. Read more
When you think of surfing in Asia, Indonesia (Bali in particular) probably comes to mind first. But one of the best surf spots lies on the island of Siargao in The Philippines.
It’s signature break is called Cloud9. This right-breaking reef wave provides surfers with excellent surf opportunities and has a reputation for thick, hollow tubes.Read more
One of the strangest places I’ve been during my travels has to be the demilitarized zone (DMZ) in South-Korea. I had no idea one could even visit this notorious area.
The DMZ is a 2.5 mile wide strip of land that stretches across the Korean peninsula, separating the South and the North. Installed at the end of the Korean War, it is meant to serve as a buffer zone, to prevent hostilities between the two countries that, officially, are still at war.Read more
Imagine having a close encounter with more than a handful Sea Turtles, a giant school of Jackfish, a few Frog fish, a Moray eel and a Sea Krate in a time-span of less than an hour. This dive has certainly been one of my favorites!
Balicasag island is a 30 minute boat ride away from Alona Beach, located in the province of Bohol in the Philippines. The best diving that Alona Beach has to offer is around this island. Read more
The island of Bohol features a surprising number of unique highlights, given its small size. It’s home to the world’s smallest mammal, the Tarsier, it features over 1000 cone-shaped hills, the Chocolate Hills and it hosts one of the oldest churches in the Philippines.
During my stay in Alona Beach, I decided to rent a car and a driver for the day to check out what this island in the Philippines has to offer. My friendly driver Larry arrived spot-on at 9am in the morning and off we were! Read more
The main reason I came to Malapascua Island was to dive with the Thresher Shark. The island is the only place in the world where Thresher Sharks can be seen pretty much any day.
I really enjoy diving with sharks. It’s quite a thrill to see these scary looking predators swim towards you, turning away only after coming almost within a few meters. For some reason I’m not scared of sharks. I get so excited when I see one that I forget that they could kill me if they wanted to. Read more
Over the last few years I’ve stayed at hundreds of resorts, hotels, hostels and B&B’s. I normally don’t review them on my blog, unless I think it’s an exceptional place and I would naturally recommend it to my friends, like the Travellers Oasis in Cairns, Australia.
Ocean Vida Beach & Dive falls into this category as well. The resort is located right in front off the main beach in Malapascua Island in The Philippines. I loved it so much, I ended up extending my stay twice! Read more