Our Far East foodie pitstops travel ideas

As we are currently planning our Spring travel tour to the Far East, we thought we would share some useful information we have gleaned from our extensive research so far in case any of our readers are also planning a trip to that part of the world. So here is our Far East Foodie pitstops and travel ideas for Singapore, Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur on the best places to stay, eat, shop and enjoy sightseeing and evening cocktails:


Hotels –

The best locations with views of the marina are within the Colonial District in Boat Quay and also Clarke Quay. Check out : Swissotel Merchant Court. Also if you want to say in family run guesthouses, then check out Why Not Homestays and Waffles/ Cosy Corner Homestays (for each of these homestays, prices are about SG$ 35 per person/per night).

Eating –

Maxwell Road and Newton Circus have large food centres; coffee shops: Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf (whom we found were good when we visited Vietnam) & S-11 (24hrs chain of coffee shops); Chin Chin (Chinese fast-food chain); and in the Chijmes Area head to East Coast Parkway for seafood restaurants as well as Scotts Picnic Food Court. Though if you are in search of more upmarket fair, then head over to Raffles City, near Raffles Hotel, which has an upmarket food court, as well as checking out Tea Chapter.

Also, ensure you visit 2 Michelin-starred Chef Janice Wong’s 2am Dessert Bar as she has trained at Noma and creates culinary masterpieces, as well as you can partake in masterclasses if you wish. ( http://www.2amdessertbar.com ; for more on Chef Janice Wong visit: http://2amlab.org/about/ ; Twitter: @2amdessertbar ; and for more on the events, food and classes visit their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/2amdessertbar?ref=hl )

Shopping and Sightseeing –

Check out the marina area, as well as satellite towns Tampines and Bedok.


Hong Kong:

Hotels –

You can either stay in the tourist areas of Tsim Sha Tsui; Wanchai, in hotels like the Marco Polo or Novotel; Admiralty, if you want more upmarket hotels like Conrad and Marriott. Though if you want to get the best of both worlds of great location, views and close proximity to restaurants then head to Fortress Hill, east of Causeway Bay, as it has reasonably priced hotels like City Garden and Newton Hotels, and is within walking distance to the Causeway and North Point shops and restaurants.

Eating –

For reasonably priced meals visit Causeway Bay; Victoria City for cheap seafood; Tsim Sha Tsui; Admiralty areas; as well the Outlying Islands for good seafood. Also, if you are after more upmarket meals, visit Lan Kwai Fong.

*Top tip: Avoid Wanchai as it is full of tacky tourist trap restaurants.*

Shopping – Nathan Road

Sightseeing –

Check out Victoria Harbour, Victoria Peak and Hong Kong Cultural Centre.

Tsim Sha Tsui is the well-known touristy area at the tip of the Kowloon Peninsula.

Evenings out – For the best cocktails, visit the rural outskirts of town in Sheko and Sai Kung.


Kuala Lumpur:

Hotels – Ampang is the best area to stay. Check out Hotel Nikko, Hotel Maya, Hotel Zou ; or basic but functional rooms at the Hotel Grand Central President.

Eating – Ampang area, as it is quieter, less touristy than central KL and has good restaurants at reasonable prices.

Shopping – Seri Lubul


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About goantolondon

International food and travel blog by London based British Goan duo: Jason and Chiara Pinto. Twitter: @goantolondon @jasonpinto100 @chiarapinto About Goa: Goa is a small state on the western coast of India. Though the smallest Indian state, Goa has played an influential role in Indian history. Goa was one of the major trade centers in India, thus it had always been attracting the influential dynasties, seafarers, merchants, traders, monks and missionaries since its earliest known history. Throughout its history Goa has undergone continual transformation, leaving an indelible impression on various aspects of its cultural and socio-economic development. History of Goa: The East-West symbiosis of Goa makes it different from other parts of India, more than the historical and social niche. The history of Goa is a sweet and sour story of colonial heritage, oppressive rulers, a glorious culture, and uneventful immediate past. As a land with the identity of its own, Goa was brought into focus when it was liberated of Portugal from its oppressive rule of around 450 hundred years in 1961. Goa was captured and annexed to the Portuguese in 1510 following the urges of trade and demand of spices and also cottons and indigo. But, Goa has a history that starts much before Portugal even thought of Goa being where it is. Goa was coveted and ruled by a great number of Indian kingdoms and dynasties from the 4th century onwards. The first kingdom to rule Goa and Konkan were Bhojas, who were the feudatories of Ashoka in 4th and 5th centuries AD. The city of Chandrapur (present Chandor) was founded by Prince Chandraditya, son of Chalukya King Pulakesin from 566 to 597 A.D. after this, Goa was ruled consecutively by Silahara Dynasty, Kadamba Danasty, and finally Hoysalas from 1022 to 1342 A.D. From the 14th century onwards, Goa became a great trading center on the west coast, especially in the vast trade of horses imported from the Middle East. This was the time for bigger empires to move in and Vijayanagar Empire conquered it in 1344. But there empire was not going to last too long and in 1347, Bahmani Sultans defeated Vijayanagara forces in 1347 and controlled Goa. Afterwards, it was a time of great prosperity and peace for Gpa, especially during the rules of Yusuf Adil Shah and Ismail Adil Shah. They created beautiful houses, fortified Goa, and encouraged local craftsmen. Their liberal and progressive rule was not going to last too long and situation changed in 1510 A.D. Goa for all purposes was not on the Portuguese Radar even after a long time of their presence in India. When the Portuguese nobleman Alfonso de Albuquerque and his cousin Francisco de Albuquerque were sent with a powerful fleet in 1503 on the orders of King Dom Manuel I, the purpose was to defend the cargoes of spices, mostly pepper, against Arab Muslim raiders. The center of spice trade was Calicut at that time and Portuguese had built forts in Cochin and Cannanore. It was in 1506-08 that an opportunistic pirate, Timoja, persuaded Albuquerque to attack Goa and acquire a better land base. This made Goa, Portugal's first real territorial acquisition in Asia. After a brief period of recapturing by the Muslims, Goa Albuquerque finally captured Goa in 1510. The inquisition of Goa in 1540 reversed the previous liberal policy of Albuquerque and imposed strict censorship of literature and new laws to forbade non-Christians from professions. Forced conversions took place continuously, censorship was established on literature, the temples were destroyed, and non-Christian priests, holy men, and teachers were evicted. This led to continuous fleeing of Hindus from Goa to other parts of India. It is not that the relationship with Portugal brought only destruction for the Goans. Portuguese also built great churches like the church of St. Cajetan and Bom Jesus basilica in Old Goa, which is a pilgrimage site for the Christians from around the world. But it is also true that pre-1961; Goa was a highly impoverished region very backward and primitive. It is after the liberation that Goa of today has emerged and it has surprised even the locals many of whom had left their homeland before its liberation. Portugal and India are today friends and Goa continues to be a fascinating blend of Latin and Oriental. Information sourced from: http://www.royalorienttrain.com/goa/goa-history.html
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