• Graphics mounted on the wall at Pasteur Street Brewing Hanoi
    Blog,  Resources,  Travelogue,  Vietnam

    A visit to Pasteur Street Brewing taproom in Hanoi

    There is a revolution that has been slowly brewing in Vietnam since 2015. In a reverse of sorts, it’s been so contagious that it has finally spread from Ho Chi Minh City all the way to the Hanoi. Not to fret though. It’s a revolution of a different kind. Say ‘cheers’ to Pasteur Street Brewing taproom and their excellent selection of craft beers. The Coffee Porter and Jasmine IPA When I first visited Vietnam in 2007-8, there weren’t any craft beers available. At least none that I was aware of. To be honest, I wasn’t too aware of craft beer myself. It’s only in the last 10 odd years, on…

  • Wall painting on NAM Kitchen restaurant for a fresh look and feel in Saigon Vietnam
    Asia,  Blog,  Resources,  Travelogue,  Vietnam

    NAM Vietnamese Kitchen, BBQ & Beer

    It was the last leg of our Indochina trip and with money running low, we wanted to stay in an area that wasn’t expensive. Which is why any decent place around Bui Vien Street made sense. It is, after all, the backpacker quarter district in Saigon, Vietnam. View of Bui Vien street from NAM Kitchen We also wanted it to be in District 1, which is what most reviews recommended. We chose a hotel next to Bui Vien Street. It’s where all the action is, we were assured by some well travelled friends. On hindsight, we should have asked what kind of action it is that they had in mind.…

  • Asia,  Blog,  Cambodia,  Resources,  Travelogue

    Welcome to the People’s Socialist Party of Wong

    Step back in time and have a drink or three in a setting that takes you to the 1920s. Step into Miss Wong in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Sure, a pint of beer at 50 cents is ridiculously cheap on Pub Street in Siem Reap. And that means, a few pints and hours later, you are still sitting on the same seat, in the same bar you have chosen to make your preferred spot for the day, or evening. But it’s not every evening that you can tolerate doing the same thing, only changing the bar depending on the price of beer. If, for some unforeseen reason, you suddenly tire of…

  • Asia,  Blog,  Resources,  Turkey

    Turkey e-visa

    A few months ago, a couple of friends had stopped over in Istanbul, on their way back from one the Schengen states. While their trip was great, what got me curious is why they applied for a physical Turkish visa sticker, when they could have availed of an e-visa. Neither their travel agent, nor the local VFS office was particularly forthcoming with this vital bit of information. Indian passport holders have been able to avail of the e-visa option since the first quarter of 2013, with certain conditions. Whilst there is the usual validity of passport that must be more than six months… the most important condition is that you…

  • Blog,  Resources,  Vietnam

    Vietnam introduces e-visa

    I was in Vietnam in the last week of December, 2018. This was my second trip to the country, having visited, again exactly 11 years earlier, the last week of December, 2007. At that time, as a resident of Dubai, I had applied for my visa at the consulate. Once my Excel sheet itinerary had been scrutinised, and tickets checked, I was issued with a single-entry visa valid for one month. This time though, I opted for an e-visa. For those not in the know, this is something that Vietnam has just introduced for tourists from a list of 46 countries. If you are among the lucky ones, then opt…

  • Asia,  Blog,  Cambodia,  Resources

    Cambodia e-visa or visa on arrival

    In the second week of January, 2019, I made my way to Siem Reap, Cambodia, on the last leg of my Indo-China trip. We were three of us and upon landing from Saigon, at Immigration we headed in different directions. I had opted to avail of a visa on arrival. There were a couple of reasons why I had opted for this, which I shall write about shortly. My two friends who had previously each applied for e-visas went straight to an immigration counter, got stamped and waited for me. e-visa For the e-visa, the process is simple. You need to log on to their registered website and create an…

  • Blog,  Europe,  Norway,  Resources,  Sweden,  Travelogue

    The train from Oslo to Stockholm

    In Oslo, we had time on hand and no clue on where we wanted to head to, or when. Which is how, walking around one evening, we found ourselves, quite by chance, in front of Oslo Central Railway Station. After a bit of discussion, we figured Stockholm was the prime next destination, and bought our rail tickets for the next day. I know there are various modes of transport between these two cities. A direct flight takes about an hour, but that isn’t as much fun. Besides, getting ready and heading to the airport a couple of hours before the actual flight can be a drag, especially when you know…

  • Asia,  Blog,  Laos,  Resources

    Laos visa on arrival

    Applying for a visa on arrival at any Lao port of entry has has got to be one of the easiest and smoothest process I’ve gone through. I landed at Luang Prabang on my month-long tour of Indo-China. On entering the airport terminal from the tarmac, there’s a special booth directly in front of the entrance that you must head to. You’ll figure out which one it as there’s a queue of people standing in line, waiting their turn. Fill in the application form along with the immigration card and keep your passport sized photograph at hand, along with the fees. Fees vary for different nationalities. For an Indian passport…