Tag Pages For: cost of existence


Dalyan Riverside Walk 16
OCTOBER - NOVEMBER 2020: OVERVIEW: During COVID-19, I was in Phuket, Thailand for 4 months followed by Hurghada, Red Sea, Egypt for 2.5 months. In October 2020, many countries were still closed. The ‘2nd wave’ was well underway. I had few options: Turkey was open to tourists and did not require a ‘Fit to Travel’ health certificate within 72 hours of travel. … we, now, go to Dalyan, Turkey … PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Turkey is the New Turkish Lira (or the ‘TRY’). I will refer to them as T$s. At the time of writing, the exchange rates were: […]

Dalyan – Turkey – Information (COVID-19)


JULY - SEPTEMBER 2020: OVERVIEW: COVID-19 delayed my travels and altered my plans. I was stuck in lockdown in Thailand for 4 months. My Visa Amnesty in Thailand came to an end and I was forced to move on. Many countries were still closed. Daily infection rates in Europe (and many other countries) were on the rise again. I had few options. Egypt had just opened its borders (albeit with restrictions and a 14 day self-isolation period). … we go to Hurghada, Red Sea, Egypt … PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Egypt is the Egyptian Pound (or the ‘EGP’). I […]

Hurghada – Egypt – Information (COVID-19)


MARCH / APRIL 2020: OVERVIEW: My ‘6 Year Around The World’ tour is complete. We are going back to some of the best Retirement Locations in S. E. Asia. … we now look at Patong, Phuket, Thailand … PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Thailand is the Thai Baht (or the ‘THB’). I will refer to them as T$s. At the time of writing, the wholesale exchange rates were: US$1 EU€1 GB£1 Published Wholesale Rate T$32.16 T$35.62 T$39.81 Effective Exchange Rate T$30.59 T$33.89 T$37.89 You will NOT get these wholesale rates (read the ‘Money’ section, below); expect to lose 5%. I […]

Patong – Thailand – Information (COVID-19)



FEBRUARY 2020: OVERVIEW: I flew my 2 daughters out from New Zealand to join me in Saigon / Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Our plan was to tour the Mekong Delta before making our way up through Cambodia to Siem Reap (picking up the best highlights along the way). This is our route: … this is our story … PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong (or the ‘VND’). I will refer to them as V$s. At the time of writing, the exchange rates were: US$1 EU€1 GB£1 Published Wholesale Rate V$23,215 V$25,775 V$30,156 Effective Exchange Rate V$22,538 […]

Mekong Delta (Vietnam) to Siem Reap (Cambodia) – Living Ideas


FEBRUARY 2020: OVERVIEW: Last year, around 8.4 million Medical Tourists travelled abroad to seek healthcare services in S. E. Asia. This number represents nearly one third of global medical consumers. Medical Tourism is well established in Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore. But, now, Medical Tourism is emerging strongly in Indonesia, The Philippines, and Vietnam. The Vietnamese medical sector grows by 18-20 per cent every year. The number of foreigners travelling to Vietnam for medical examinations and treatments is over 80,000 per year. The income is reaching over $1 billion. Vietnam has the advantage of political stability. This makes Vietnam a safe and […]

Hoi An – Vietnam – Dental Tourism


DECEMBER 2019 / JANUARY 2020: OVERVIEW: My ‘6 Year Around The World’ tour is complete. We are, now, going back to some of the best Retirement Locations in S. E. Asia. We start in my, personal, favourite S. E. Asia country: Vietnam. … and, in one of my favourite locations: Hoi An … PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong (or the ‘VND’). I will refer to them as V$s. At the time of writing, the wholesale exchange rates were: US$1 EU€1 GB£1 Published Wholesale Rate V$23,215 V$25,775 V$30,156 Effective Exchange Rate V$22,538 V$25,023 V$29,276 You will […]

Hoi An – Vietnam – Retirement Locations



NOVEMBER / DECEMBER 2019: OVERVIEW: Our ‘Around The World’ tour is complete. I ‘skipped’ India … but, I might go there at a later date. We are, now, going back to some of the best locations in S.E.Asia. We start in my, personal, favourite: Vietnam … PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Vietnam is the Vietnamese Dong (or the ‘VND’). I will refer to them as V$s. At the time of writing, the wholesale exchange rates were: US$1 EU€1 GB£1 Published Wholesale Rate V$23,234 V$25,623 V$29,840 Effective Exchange Rate V$22,556 V$24,875 V$28,9269 You will not get these wholesale rates (read the […]

Hanoi – Vietnam – Retirement Locations


NOVEMBER 2019: OVERVIEW: We have just spent 3 nights in Sauraha (Chitwan National Park). We now head back to the Old Town of Patan near Kathmandu … ABOUT: Patan is the historical name for Lalitpur. It is the third largest city in Nepal after Kathmandu and Pokhara and it is located in the south-central part of Kathmandu Valley. The city received extensive damage in the 2015 earthquake. As of the 2011 census, it had a population of 226,728. The city has an area of about 15 square kilometres. It is believed that Patan was founded in the third century BC. Several historical records (including many other legends) […]

Patan – Nepal – Living Ideas


NOVEMBER 2019: OVERVIEW: We have just spent 3 nights in Lumbini (Buddha’s birth place). We now head to Sauraha for a Safari in Chitwan National Park … ABOUT: Chitwan National Park was established in 1973 and granted the status of a World Heritage Site in 1984. It covers an area of 953 km2 (368 sq mi) and is located in the subtropical Inner Terai lowlands of south-central Nepal. In altitude it ranges from about 100 m (330 ft) in the river valleys to 815 m (2,674 ft) in the Churia Hills. Chitwan National Park is one of Nepal’s most popular tourist destinations. There are two main entrances: Sauraha in the east […]

Sauraha – Nepal – Living Ideas



OCTOBER 2019: OVERVIEW: We have just spent 5 nights in Pokhara. We now head for Lumbini … ABOUT: Lumbinī is locate 260 kms west of Kathmandu and 165 kms southwest of Pokhara. It is a Buddhist pilgrimage site. It is the place where Buddha was born. Lumbini was made a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1997. Lumbini is 4.8 km (3 mi) in length and 1.6 km (1.0 mi) in width. The holy site of Lumbini is bordered by a large monastic zone in which only monasteries can be built, no shops, no hotels, no restaurants. It is separated […]

Lumbini – Nepal – Living Ideas


OCTOBER 2019: OVERVIEW: We have just spent 7 nights in Kathmandu. We now head for Pokhara … ABOUT: Pokhara is located 200 kilometres (120 miles) west of Kathmandu. It is Nepal’s second largest city in terms of population and the largest in terms of area. It spans 12 kilometres (7.5 miles) from north to south and 6 kilometres (3.7 miles) from east to west but, unlike the capital Kathmandu, it still has much green space. The Annapurna Range (with three out of the ten highest mountains in the world: Dhaulagiri, Annapurna I, and Manaslu) is within 24–56 kms. Pokhara is […]

Pokhara – Nepal – Living Ideas


OCTOBER 2019: OVERVIEW: We have just spent a month in Georgia. We ended up in Tbilisi to catch a flight from there to Nepal … PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Nepal is the Nepalese Rupee (or the ‘NPR’). I will refer to them as N$s. At the time of writing, the wholesale exchange rates were: US$1 EU€1 GB£1 N$115 N$127 N$147 Over time, these exchange rates will change. Please check the current rates. GETTING THERE: There are no direct flights from Georgia to Nepal. TBILISI: Getting to Tbilisi International Airport is easy and cheap. Public buses (#37 or #137) leave […]

Kathmandu – Nepal – Information



SEPTEMBER 2019: OVERVIEW: We have just spent 3 nights in Kutaisi, Georgia. KUTAISA (QUICK NOTES): I won’t provide a full write-up of Kutaisi because, to be brutally honest, I didn’t do much. That said, Kutaisi offers many good day trip options: Gelati Monastery, Prometheus Cave, Okatse Canyon, Martvili Canyon, and Imereti to name a few. You can also take multi-day tours from Kutaisi north into Svaneti National Park. GETTING THERE: I started in Akhaltsikhe. I walked to the Central Bus Station and caught the 10:30am bus to Kutaisi. My suitcase went under the back seat. I was not charged extra […]

Mtskheta – Georgia – Living Ideas


SEPTEMBER 2019: OVERVIEW: We have just spent 3 nights in Gyumri, Armenia.  We now go to our first stop in Georgia: Akhaltsikhe. PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Georgia is the Lari (or the ‘GEL’). I will refer to them as G$s. At the time of writing: US$1 EU€1 GB£1 G$2.96 G$3.28 G$3.69 Over time, these exchange rates will change. Please check the current rates. GETTING THERE: Minibuses are the most common form of transport in this part of the World. The problem with these minibuses is that most don’t have any luggage space. If you have a big backpack or […]

Akhaltsikhe – Georgia – Living Ideas


SEPTEMBER 2019: OVERVIEW: We have just spent 3 nights in the capital city: Yerevan.  We are on our way to Georgia. Our next (and final) stop in Armenia is Gyumri … PLEASE NOTE: The currency in Armenia is the Dram (or the ‘AMD’). I will refer to them as A$s. At the time of writing: US$1 EU€1 GB£1 A$475 A$525 A$595 Over time, these exchange rates will change. Please check the current rates. GETTING THERE: You can catch an inter-city minibus from either the Central or the Sasuntsi David Bus Stations. Most leave from Central. The price is A$1,500. The journey […]

Gyumri – Armenia – Journey