Saturday, June 10, 2017

Twenty Something Travel to [The Taaras Beach and Spa Resort at Redang Island]

Rise and shine from my favourite beach vacation spot - Redang Island! 

The previous post on Redang Island is rather visual-heavy so here's a post with detailed information about the resort we stayed, how to get there, best time to visit etc.

Taaras' beachfront

How to get there

View from the airplane window

The most convenient way of getting there is by taking a domestic flight from Kuala Lumpur International Airport to Kuala Terengganu. The airlines which you may check for available flights are Air Asia, Firefly, Malindo Air and Malaysia Airlines

After reaching the Kuala Terengganu Airport, also known as the Sultan Mahmud Airport, you need to take a taxi to Shahbandar Jetty. From there, there are two ways in which you can get to your resort: 

1. By public ferry

There is a public ferry departing from Shahbandar Jetty and will arrive at Redang Jetty. From there, most resorts will offer a complimentary ride on a shuttle bus/van to the resort. The public ferry transfer rate is about SGD 18 per person per way and will take approximately 1.5 to 2 hours to reach Redang Jetty. You can purchase the ferry ticket at the Shahbandar Ferry counter. 

The ferry departure time are as follows:

Shahbandar Jetty to Redang Jetty: 1030hrs or 1500hrs

Redang Jetty to Shahbandar Jetty: 0700hrs or 1300hrs

2. By the resort's speedboat

Taaras' Speedboat
Some resorts do offer their own transport for transfer the minute you touch down for a fee. This is a more convenient and easier way to arrive at your resort because everything will be arranged and you do not need to worry about missing the shuttle bus/van or not being able to hitch a taxi on time to catch the public ferry at the jetty. 

Additional Costs (subject to change)

To enter Redang Island, all guests will have to pay a Marine Park Conservation Fee and a Jetty Fee. The costs can vary depending on your nationality, 

Marine Park Conservation Fee

Malaysian: approx. SGD 1.60
Other Nationalities: approx. SGD 9.70

Jetty Fee 

Standard for all: SGD 0.32

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Redang is between April to July because the weather is clear and the water is peaceful and calm. In September, the weather starts to be slightly gloomy with occasional sea storms so traveling to Redang may not be very ideal. Most resorts close between November to end of February because Redang is affected by the Northteast Monsoon. So during this period, the sea will be in a raging mess, with strong waves, high tides, and stormy weather.


I'm not sure about other resorts on Redang Island, Taaras offered WIFI in all room types but the connection was as good as non-existent. The connection was "strong" and "fast" enough for Whatsapp and basic Googling only. Luckily we got our SIM from Digi at the airport with 2GB of data + RM10 credit for approx. SGD 11.30, so we could watch some Youtube during our free time at night. So if you are a heavy internet user, get your SIM/pocket WIFI beforehand!

Our Resort: The Taaras Beach and Spa Resort

We chose Taaras because we loved their modern decor and interior! Besides, the fact that they have a private beach is a plus for people like us who do not like crowded places. Our stay with Taaras was pleasant and we really enjoyed every second spent there! Thanks Taaras for the wonderful beach vacation!

p/s: Although Taaras claims that it's a 4.5-star hotel, I would say you get what you pay for. The resort is really not for fussy guests. If you choose Taaras thinking that it is on par with Ritz-Carlton or Marriot or other 5-star Maldives resorts, I would say you should look elsewhere. Taaras is really not for nitpicking guests. 

The Room 

We booked our room few months in advance and opted for the Garden Deluxe, which was the cheapest available room. We were upgraded to Cliff Hill Deluxe and of course, we were elated! The room was really spacious and the sheets were so comfy! It came with a patio with garden view which offered total and complete privacy away from everyone. There was also daily complimentary buffet breakfast that came with every room type so we get to fill our tummy before all the water sports and activities!

The bed with super comfy sheets!

Our bath tub

There were also a walk-in wardrobe, a separate standing shower and toilet which are not featured in the pictures above. 


The private beach at Taaras is just a swim away from the Turtle Island and there is also a snorkeling spot with beautiful coral reefs right in front of it. You can just swim over to snorkel with the fishes and sea turtles. There is really no need to sign up for their additional snorkeling/turtle viewing day trips. If you do not own a snorkeling gear, you can rent it at the recreation centre for a small fee (I would recommend bringing your own to minimize expenses if you plan to snorkel every day). Life jacket can be rented at no cost. 

I hope the information above is detailed enough for all of you who wish to visit this beautiful island! If you have any further questions, drop them in the comment box below and I'll answer them as soon as I see them!

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Twenty Something Travel to [Sun, Sea & Sand - Redang Island Edition]

Redang Island is an island in Kuala Nerus District in Terengganu, which is an east coast state of the Peninsular Malaysia. The island is an important conservation site for sea turtles, coral reefs, and terrestrial habitats. It also has one of the clearest waters and finest white sands, which makes it the perfect place for snorkelling and diving! Still one of my favourite beach vacation destinations after so many years!

In this post, I will be sharing some pretty pictures we took during our stay at this breathtaking summer paradise. I will also do a follow-up post to fill all of you in with some information about the resort we stayed, how to get there, best time to visit etc. So stay tuned for that!

View from our beachfront resort 

We did some kayaking on the crystal clear water.

We also went snorkelling with sea turtles and fishes. They were just right in front of us. 

We saw not one but two sea turtles!

I guess everyone looks hideous underwater with their snorkelling mask on. 

We got to hold these little tiny cute baby sea turtles too!

Self-directed + self-timed pictures. *you need an incredibly rugged camera that is sandproof, waterproof, shockproof etc. for this because you need to plant your camera on the wet sand* (that's what you do when you don't have a tripod/cameraman/third party/third wheel/whatever you want to call it)

We decided to visit the beach after 5pm on the second last day to take some pictures before heading home. (That explains why we look really "dry" here)

 Sunset view at the beach and our How-To-Pose-Like-A-Pro (Bikini Edition) uide.  

Touch your hair and look anywhere except the camera. JUST NOT THE CAMERA.

Show off your burnt ass and just look away from the camera. 

Suck your stomach in, pretend you kicked something, look at the camera, now smile. 

Pop your sunburnt ass out, flip your hair, look in front!

Wait, is that a middle finger? No it's not. It's a failed peace sign that looks like a middle finger. Sometimes, it's all about that angle. 
The sky is turning dark. 

We never get jump shots right. 
I miss Redang so much and I'm still in awe over how stunning this island is as I'm arranging these pictures! I'm definitely coming back here again Redang!

All pictures are taken on Olympus Stylus TG-860.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Food Hunting at [Taiwan - Taichung and Taipei Edition]

My exams are over! It was pretty draining for me this time because my papers were almost back to back. Glad I'm still alive and breathing! I told myself I would never do that again because that's just...suicidal. 3 exams back to back, NO WAY.

Anyway, it's time to relax now and I can't wait to get on the plane and start flying again!

Here's a Taichung + Taipei Food Guide for you! :)

I really miss the street food in Taiwan! My stomach is growling as I'm typing. Not a fan of editing Food Guides, pictures of food make me feel hungry even though I just had my lunch 15 minutes ago.

p/s: I have tried my best to translate some of the food names to English. Some of them are just impossible to translate.

台中 Taichung 

逢甲夜市 Feng Jia Night Market 

大肠包小肠 (Da Chang Bao Xiao Chang): they are essentially sausages 
大肠包小肠 (Da Chang Bao Xiao Chang)
Look at the crowd! Love the night market vibe!

起司鸡排 (Fried Chicken Chop)

木瓜牛奶 (Papaya Milk) *this stall sells the best papaya milk!
红茶臭豆腐 (Red Tea Smelly Fried Toufu): I prefer the red tea flavoured one over the original!

This was the place where we queued for the famous Takoyaki Balls

章鱼小丸子 (Takoyaki Balls)

老铺子汤包 Lao Pu Zi Tang Bao

“小”笼包 (Xiao Long Bao): This was extremely good!

蛋饼 (Pancake)

怀念人所在 (Huai Nian Ren Suo Zai)

醉鸡 (Drunken Chicken)

任何百货商店 (You can get this at any supermarket/grocery stores)

满汉大餐牛肉面 (Instant Beef Noodles with Beef Cubes!)

振松记米粉 (Zhen Song Ji Mi Fen)

芋头米粉 (Yam Bee Hoon): MUST TRY*

云南风情 (Yun Nan Feng Qing)

三杯鸡 (Roasted Chicken)

十八度巧克力厂 (Feeling 18)

Belgium Chocolate, Rum & Raisins, Strawberry Vanilla

台北 Taipei

猫空 (Mao Kong)

茶叶蛋 (Boiled Eggs infused with Tea)

Best Green Tea ice cream!! **MUST TRY

上引水产 (Addiction Aquatic Development)
*for Sashimi, Sushi and Seafood Lovers

Pick your crab and cook it immediately! FRESH SEAFOOD YASS!

Alaskan King Crab Leg
Assorted Sashimi (THICK and FRESH!)

饶河夜市 (Rao He Night Market)

Shaved Ice 

饶河胡椒饼 (Rao He Hu Jiao Bing)

鼎泰丰 (Din Tai Fung) *SOGO outlet
*Long queue before it opens! So go early and start queuing! 

Fried Rice

小笼包 (Xiao Long Bao)

红烧牛肉面 (Beef Noodles) ** MUST TRY!

With my loveliest MUM <3 

My favourite black sesame bun! 黑芝麻包

士林夜市 (Shi Lin Night Market)

花生卷冰淇淋 (Ice cream, peanut and pancake)

臭豆腐 (Smelly Fried Toufu)

蚵仔煎 (Oyster Omelette) **MUST TRY

炸螃蟹 (Fried Mini Crabs)

芋头冰沙 (Shaved Ice with Yam) **MUST TRY at 辛发亭 (Xin Fa Ting)

Agnes B. Coffee 

永和豆浆 (Yong He Dou Jiang) *Ximending outlet

豆浆油条+蛋饼 (Soya bean, You Tiao, Pancake)

蛋饼 (Pancake) **MUST TRY

阿宗面线 (Ah Zong Mian Xian) *Ximending outlet

7-eleven Ice Cream (Light and Yummy!)

Drop me a comment if you have any questions! Hope you enjoy reading this post!