It’s been a while since we’ ve been posting something. But now we’re finally getting back to it.
After a year of studying, hard work and saving all our money, we were able to plan a 2 month trip to South East Asia! We only booked the main flight and two domestic flights. It was our plan to just go and see what would come our way, how long we would stay, where and which places besides the main goals we would visit.
The main goals we had/have are: Dubai, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Baguio, Sagada/Banaue, Puerto Princesa, El Nido, Iloilo, Bohol, Cebu, Kota Kinabalu and Kuching.
We departed from Düsseldorf, Germany to Dubai (it was the cheapest option) with Emirates. When we got on the plane we were very pleased. The plane looked really good, there was enough space between the seats and it was all very modern. Another plus was that the plane wasn’t filled so we could lay down horizontally on the four seats in the middle. Overall, the flight went well!
In Dubai we had a layover for 22 hours, so we had a right to get a hotel from Emirates. You get one for free if you have a layover for over 8 hours. Since we did not know that if you want a hotel you have to apply for it at least 24 hours before… so sadly enough we had to spend our time somewhere in Dubai.
Because we forgot to take something out of our baggage we had to ask the baggage service to take our baggage out of the airplane. We were lucky, that it was no problem, it would only take 2 hours to do so. After everything was done we decided to go with the train for some sightseeing. We bought 2 day-tickets for only 15 euro, so that was relatively cheap. The train connection was along the whole coast of the city. Our idea was to hop off the train somewhere near an attraction/building we wanted to see and walk the last part. But… walking that last part was not possible. We had to take a cab.
After a roller coaster cab ride we arrived at the Palm Island. At some kind of Mall thing (Atlantis) that we didn’t even ask for but okay… we got off and went inside. Besides the shops there was nothing special so after 15 minutes we were done there. We took another cab back to the “nearest” station. “Nearest” because we explained with our map to the cabdriver that he should drop us off at certain station and when we arrived it was not that station we had asked for.. so that..ofcourse.. the costs were higher.
From that station we went on to the biggest mall in the world. Lets call it our final destination. Here we spent the most of our hours. Wandering around, sleeping in chairs, writing stories, eating Mac Do, staring at the big aquarium, making pictures, and so on. At half past 9 we went back to the airport. There we bumped into some sleeping chairs so we stayed there for some more hours. Most of the time trying to sleep. I (Vincent) helped a dad to find his kid because he went on his own trip! And our chair neighbors changed until we had seen every nationality. And then finally after some more hours we could go and board!
So a few tips if you ever go to Dubai or have a layover there:
– Arrange your hotel 24 hours before.
– Don’t expect too many friendly people
– Get used to the bad cabdrivers. And keep your eyes open and don’t feel sorry to say something if you have the feeling that he is making more meters.
– It’s pretty hot, especially in the summer. So be prepared for inside activities. (Unless you book some desert safari – and again: book in advance)
– For the ladies: Dubai is a strict Muslim area, so it’s possible that some ladies will stare at you for wearing a t-shirt. If you feel uncomfortable with that, make sure to have a sarong, scarf of vest in your hand luggage.
Vincent & Johanna