Catch a Crab Cruise and Tour, Brisbane, Australia

One of the activities that we participated in Brisbane is the Catch a Crab Cruise along rhe Tweed River. The highlight include feeding pelicans, yabbie pumping, fishing and trapping for crabs. The cruise last for about three hours. Combining the natural scenic beauty of the Tweed River with Aussie style family fun and a great crab lunch. All equipment for activities, fishing rods and bait supplied. Some of the pictures taken:-

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Visit to Australia Zoo

While in Gold Coast this time, we decided to travel north to Mt. Perry again to meet Margaret from whom we purchased our pug Boofie five years ago. This time, we took a different route from Gold Coast to Bundaberg via Pacific Motorway (M1), Gateway Motorway and then Bruce Highway all the way to Bundaberg. On the way back from Bundaberg, we exited at Beewah exit to Doreen to visit The Australia Zoo, the home of the (former) Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin. Spent the morning there and was at the Animal Planet Crocoseum to watch the Wildlife Action.

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Visit to Tangalooma Wild Dolphin Resort

During our recent trip to Gold Coast, Australia since our last visit in 2003, we visited Tangalooma Wild Dolphin Resort with about an hour ferry ride from Brisbane. Dorren come along with us this time. The highlight of the stay at Tangalooma, a former whaling station, was Wild Dolphin Feeding and Sand Tobogganing on a 150-foot high sand hills. We were given the chance to feed wild dolphin by hand without touching them. Some of the pictures taken are as below:-

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The Forbidden City , Beijing, China

I browse through Google Earth today and have a look again at The Forbidden City of China which I have visited many years ago. It will be a place that I will visit again but not now as major restoration process is being undertaken now to bring the best out for visitors that is expected to flood Beijing during the 2008 Olympic Games. By 2008, the area to be open for visitors will be 12% more than the area open to visitors earlier. The whole restoration project will complete by year 2020, the 600th anniversary of The Forbidden City. The restoration process will surely ensure that the The Forbidden City will stand and be around for many years to come for the benefits of the future generations. The Forbidden City still stand there today after more than 500 years, credit must be given to Emperor of the Qing Dynasty who continue to use the same venue after they overthrown the Ming Dynasty and continue to improve them. Most earlier dynasty tend to burn down the palaces of their enermy and rebuilding them or move the administration center to a new location. The Chinese TV Network has film and release several documentaries on The Forbidden City and The Emperor of Qing Dynasty and I shall rely on those for better understanding on The Forbidden City before our next date with it after 2008 🙂

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Snow and flight delay

When we travelled to Hokkaido in early February, we touched down in Japan via Narita Airport and we saw a group of tourist protesting. We later came to know that Narita Airport was closed for two days due to heavy snowing and many missed their flight and were not able to leave Japan as everyone were fighting for the available seats to leave Tokyo after the airport reopen. The heavy snow caught Narita unprepared and the airport authority simply did not have sufficient equipment to clear the thich layer of snow from the aircraft fast enough. On the day that we are leaving Hokkaido via Chitose Airport 新千歳空港, snow has apparently start very early in that morning and when we walk to the check in counter from airport hotel, we were immediately told that all flight were cancelled during to snow. We were told to come back at 10am to check and we head back to hotel to relax. By 11am, we were still at the hotel waiting for news but we had to check out and leave for the terminal again to wait. By that time, we know by then that we will miss our connecting flight to leave Japan via Narita at 2:00pm. The wait turned out to be a long one. Many arrangement were made to leave Japan via other place such as Kansai International Airport (Osaka) but non of them materailize as snowing continue till later afternoon. The airport was full with tourist and business traveller and tension run higher and higher as the delay continue. By late evening, a group of Hong Kong tourist started their protest at the airport while others continue to relax and wait. Knowing that there will not be sufficient seat available to all to leave Chitose, many had to leave the airport to look for accomodation else where and try their luck on the next day. We waited at the airport and finally managed to catch a late flight to Tokyo and check into airport hotel in Narita. On reaching Narita next morning, we were not able to get a direct flight back to KLIA and had to grap the available seat to Singapore and still not sure if we are able to get any seat to fly from Changi to KLIA. We were lucky to find out in Singapore that some shuttle flight seat from Singapore to KLIA were available and we managed to fly back to KLIA on the same day. All in all, the trip from Hokkaido to home took almost two full days but those are the things that we had to face when we travelled to snow country 🙂

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Visit to Rusutsu Ski Resort, Hokkaido

One of the highlights during our visit to Hokkaido was the visit to Rusutsu Ski Resort. A popular ski resort that attract skiier from all over the world. There are plenty of ski activities at the resort and visitors to the resort get a chance to learn and try skiing. Those who do not wish to ski can enjoy the hot spring bath which is very popular in valcanic area of Japan as well as doing shopping at more that 30 stores situated at various wings of the resorts. We spent one afternoon and the next morning at the resort but we were not able to visit much places or doing anything outdoor the next morning as it was again snowing heavily. We made the right decision to travel on the southern part of Hokkaido this time as we later learnt that those who had chosen to go for the ice breaking cruise at the north faced some problem with snow as the heavy downpour made their visit to certain places not possible.

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The Lost Horizon

During my previous trip to Li Jiang, Yunnan, I purchased a book titled The Lost Horizon, a book talk about Shangrila, a beautiful and scenic place in Yunnan, China. The book talked about the hidden paradise of Shangrila and is a nice book to read and learn about this scenic place that I did not had a chance to visit during that trip. The original book in English is as follow:

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Long Leg Crabs, Hokkaido

During the same visit to morning market of Hakodate, Hokkaido, we had a chance to take a close look at the long leg crabs. These live crab can be purchased at a price of 14,000 Yen (about RM 490.00). The crab was then prepared (BBQ) on the spot. During our stay in Hokkaido, we had the chance of tasting this tasty crab almost every meal and they are best eaten boiled. Hokkaido is famous for its catch of variety of crabs (‘kani’ in Japanese), such as ‘kegani’ (hairy crab, the most popular), ‘tarabagani’ (king crab) and ‘hanasakigani’. ‘Zuwaigani’ (snow crab) is often called ‘the king of winter taste’. ‘Tarabagani’ and ‘hanasakigani’ have long legs and in fact they belong to hermit crabs. Their recipes include ‘nabemono’ (a one-pot dish), ‘yakimono’ (grilled) and ‘sunomono’ (vinegared), but best eaten boiled.

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Visit to a local wet market in Hakodate, Hokkaido

The first city we landed in Hokkaido is Hakodate, the southern most coastal city of Hokkaido. Hakodate used to be a popular port city in old time. On 2nd day of visiting Hakodate, we drop by a local wet market and got to try out the fishing of squid and then have the squid sashimi prepared by the store owner and ate the squid fresh. The cost is 1100 Yen which is about RM 35.00, fairly cheap to try 🙂

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Visit to Otaru, Hokkaido, Japan

During our recent visit to Hokkaido, we drop by Otaru, a city popular for its glass ware and music box. We were there by noon and spent the whole afternoon visiting some stores selling glass ware and music boxes. It was snowing heavily with temperature in the range of -8 degree C. It was a fruitful afternoon as we managed to get some nice glasswares that are good for house decoration. Otaru, Hokkaido, Japan Long Leg Crab on display for sale. No freezer required. Afterall it is soo cold Snowing heavily just shortly after lunch Music boxes featuring many dog breeds Music Boxes with Merry Go Round. All electric powered and able to play some 30 songs Tons of Music Box on display Forming the ice sculpture outside a restaurant 1000 Yen shop Snowing getting worst.

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