If you’ve ever wanted to experience what it’s like to live like one of the richest people on earth, well, I’ve got news for you.
Vietnam has just opened the world’s “first” gold-plated hotel.
Calling itself Dolce by Wyndham Hanoi Golden Lake, the self-proclaimed gold-plated hotel recently opened its doors following the lockdown to show visitors what it’s like to live like the wealthiest people on earth.
According to AFP, coffee apparently comes in a gold cup while guests will be able to have their bath in a golden bathtub.
It cost US$200 million to build and it’s fitted with 24-carat gold plating across its lobbies.
It also comes with a gilded infinity pool, rooms which come with gold cups, cutleries, shower heads, and yes, even toilet seats.
Even meals served at the 25-storey hotel located in Hanoi apparently come mixed with a mysterious “gold substance”.
How much would it cost you to stay a night at the Dolce Hanoi Golden Lake, you ask? It’ll be US$250, thank you.
KANGAR – Siapa sangka Perlis kini mempunyai ladang bunga matahari yang tidak kurang hebatnya terletak di Taman Ular dan Reptilia, Sungai Batu Pahat di sini dan menjadi destinasi pilihan bagi pelancong domestik.
Malah, pencinta bunga matahari juga tidak perlu ke negara jiran yang terkenal dengan keindahan flora itu, lebih-lebih lagi ketika pintu sempadan negara masih ditutup akibat pandemik Covid-19 kerana ladang itu dibuka dengan mengambil inspirasi daripada ladang bunga matahari Lopburi di Thailand.
Suasana indah berlatarkan panorama Banjaran Nakawan menerusi bukit Sungai Batu Pahat pastinya memukau para pengunjung yang ingin meluangkan masa di sini sekali gus menjadi lokasi terbaik untuk merakam kenangan sambil dikelilingi pokok bunga matahari yang kembang mekar untuk dikongsi dalam media sosial.
Ini terbukti apabila ladang bunga matahari milik Perbadanan Kemajuan Ekonomi Negeri Perlis (PKENPs) dengan keluasan 1.21 hektar itu mencetuskan fenomena luar biasa setelah mencatatkan lebih 15,000 pengunjung dari dalam dan luar negara dalam tiga bulan pertama dibuka sejak akhir Disember tahun lepas.
Ladang bunga matahari milik Perbadanan Kemajuan Ekonomi Negeri Perlis (PKENPs) dengan keluasan 1.21 hektar itu mencetuskan fenomena luar biasa setelah mencatatkan lebih 15,000 pengunjung dalam tiga bulan pertama dibuka sejak akhir Disember tahun lepas.
Pengurus Besar PKENPs, Norsiake Kassim berkata, kebanyakan pengunjung adalah daripada golongan remaja, bagaimanapun sejak taman itu dibuka kembali pada 10 Jun lepas sebaik negara memasuki tempoh Perintah Kawalan Pergerakan Pemulihan (PKPP), berlaku penurunan pengunjung terutama yang berkeluarga.
“Kebanyakan pelawat datang pada hujung minggu iaitu Jumaat, Sabtu dan Ahad. Kami berharap jumlah pengunjung domestik akan bertambah apabila sektor pelancongan dijangka pulih dalam masa beberapa bulan ini,” katanya kepada Bernama baru-baru ini.
Mengimbas kembali idea untuk membuka ladang itu, Norsiake berkata, pada asalnya kawasan taman itu adalah lembah (tanah mendap dan berair) serta tidak digunakan, bagaimanapun kakitangan unit publisiti dan promosi PKENPs mahu memanfaatkan kawasan itu sebagai produk alternatif dengan menanam pokok bunga matahari.
“Pada 2017 dan 2018, Pengurus Korporat PKENPs, Hasmadi Ibrahim membelanjakan wang sendiri untuk membeli biji benih tempatan namun percubaan menanam tanaman itu tidak menjadi selain tiada kepakaran.
“Pada 2019 kami cuba benih jenis ‘oil’ dari Thailand dan alhamdulillah, setelah tiga kali percubaan, benih dari Thailand ini beri kesan positif sesuai dengan faktor cuaca dan tanah di sini,” katanya.
Sementara itu, petugas Taman Ular dan Reptilia, Azmilah Kassim, 36, berkata proses penanaman pokok bunga matahari memakan masa selama dua bulan dengan penyemaian biji benih dibuat secara berperingkat bagi memastikan pokok terus tumbuh dan tidak terputus.
Katanya, penjagaan pokok itu juga mempunyai cabaran apabila tanah yang mendap perlu sentiasa digembur selain turut terdedah dengan kehadiran serangga perosak seperti siput dan ulat serta memerlukan pemantauan berterusan.
There’s no need to look too far for a relaxing getaway when our
neighbour Johor has quite a few pristine beaches and resorts that
are just a couple of hours away from the Causeway.
Forget Bali and Japan when you can enjoy the same dramatic sunsets at these beachfront resorts or dip in a hot spring in Johor.
Some of these resorts are sea-facing and situated on private islands that you may even forget you’re in Malaysia.
With the long weekend approaching and the year coming
to an end, you may want to schedule a short getaway at these resorts
that requires very little planning but offers just as much enjoyment
as a holiday far away.
SEA GYPSY VILLAGE
The rustic Sea Gypsy Village is a beach escape from the hustle and bustle on the secluded Sibu island, which seems to have lost track of time.
Be one with nature when you head down to this part of Johor that has beaches surrounded by hills and mountains — you may even think you’re island hopping in Phuket.
Where: Lot 71, Pulau Sibu, 86800 Mersing, Johor, Malaysia
Batu Batu is a private resort on Tengah Island, a mere 20 minutes from Mersing Jetty, boasting blue waters and fine sandy shores.
The Jungle Villa is tucked away in a tropical forest and the private balcony offers an unparalleled view of the sea, while the large bathroom with a standalone bathtub lets you soak your cares away.
Go for a dip in the infinity pool where the edge of the pool meets the vast horizon of the sea.
Where: Tengah Island, Malaysia
SEA HORIZON RESORT
The Sea Horizon Resort takes glamping to a whole new level, complete with air-conditioning, a private bath and hot shower, a private viewing and dining deck, and a hammock.
Sitting on a cliff overlooking the South China Sea, there are only
two Stargazer Domes in the entire resort while the regular suites
If you’re looking for a romantic getaway, here’s where you can cuddle up and admire the stars in bed.
Where: Lot 901, Kuala Sedili Besar, 81910 Kota Tinggi, Johor
ASEANIA RESORT PULAU BESAR
Tranquillity is what you’ll find at the Aseania Resort Pulau Besar, accessible only by boat from Mersing Jetty.
You’ll be staying in wooden huts and there are only 47 rooms on the premises, so the resort won’t be overcrowded with holidaymakers.
While away your time on the deck and watch the sky turn dramatic when the sun sets.
The resort closes during the monsoon season from October to January,
so you may want to plan your vacation from February onwards.
Where: Lot 33,34 & 35, Pulau Besar, Pulau Babi Besar, 86800 Mersing, Johor, Malaysia
TUNAMAYA BEACH AND SPA RESORT (TIOMAN ISLAND)
The Tunamaya Resort is truly a hidden paradise, surrounded by the rainforest and the mountains as its backdrop.
The lush villas in the resort resemble cottages in the woods, an inviting change of scenery for urban dwellers who are seeking a short break.
If you’re a nature lover, the nearby forest will trick your mind into thinking you’re hiking in the Western parts of the world.
Where: Lot 20 & 21, Sarang Burung, Kg. Mukut, 26800 Pulau Tioman, Pahang, Malaysia
KSL HOT SPRING RESORT
You don’t need to travel to Japan to soak in a hot spring.
All you have to do is cross the border and make your way to the KSL Hot Spring Resort to enjoy the same health benefits at the six different healing pools.
Unlike the other resorts on this list, KSL Hot Spring Resort is
conveniently located in Johor Bahru, 10 minutes drive from the
Causeway, so you don’t have to hop on a ferry to get there.
Once you’re done with soaking in the hot spring, you can plan to shop
and eat at nearby eateries along the street or hop on a cab to the
Where: 31, Jalan Kangkar Tebrau, Taman Daya, 81100 Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
RINA BALINESE RESORT
Get a taste of the Balinese life when you check yourself into the Rina Balinese Resort in Johor.
Rejuvenate in the dining pool, where you can soak your feet in the water while chomping on Indonesian cuisine.
Where: 2515, 6, Jalan Seelong Jaya, Kampung Seelong Jaya, 81400 Senai, Johor, Malaysia
ANANTARA DESARU COAST RESORT & VILLA
Slated to open this December, the Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villa joins other luxurious resorts on this revitalised beachfront destination.
Enjoy the panoramic views of the ocean from the infinity pools and book a romantic private dinner to make your partner swoon.
Desperate times call for desperate measures, even if it means risking looking like a fool in public.
A photo shared by a woman in the Philippines recently went viral on Facebook — it showed her wearing all of her extra clothes when her hand carry luggage was rejected for being too heavy for her flight.
The post has since gotten over 17,000 shares at the time of writing.
In her Facebook post on Oct 2, Gel Rodrigeuz detailed how the check-in staff had informed her that hand carries only allowed for a maximum of seven kg, whilst her luggage weighed a whopping nine kg.
Instead of paying for extra baggage, Rodrigeuz did what most of us would have done in that situation if we had the guts to do so. She put on all of her extra clothes. All of them.
That meant wearing three pairs of pants, five shirts, a couple more jackets and button-downs.
Her luggage weight got reduced to six and a half kg. With her excess baggage successfully shaved off, she proudly showed off her new #ootd with the hashtag #ExcessBaggageChallenge Accepted.
As clever as it may be, this trick isn’t exactly foolproof.
A British artist known as Ryan Hawaii got kicked off his flight for attempting to pull off the same stunt back in 2018.
He had tried to board a British Airways flight to London wearing 10 shirts and eight pairs of pants, more than twice of what Rodriguez had pulled on. The flight’s refusal caused such a huge ruckus that the police were even called in.
Though the staff arranged another flight for him on a different airline, the flight captain ultimately decided to offload him after hearing of his behaviour.
Meanwhile, in 2015, another artist might have had more luck in boarding the plane, but he quickly collapsed from heat exhaustion after wearing six T-shirts, four jumpers, two jackets, a pair of shorts, three pairs of jeans, two pairs of jogging pants and two hats.
Travel writer and avid book collector Azhari Mahmood, aka Zari Malaysiana, is a man on a mission. He loves books, especially rare Malaysian books. He aims to grow a nationwide community that appreciates and understands the value of these old books.
“Serious collectors have always been around when it comes to this kind of books. But I think a lot of younger Malaysians are now waking up to the fact that the only way to dig for our lost histories is to look through old books and to discover things. It takes effort, but it’s worth it,” says Zari.
This weekend, Zari is putting together the “Book Street” corner, which he calls “a pocket event” in conjunction with Collector’s Pick Merdeka market at Amcorp Mall in Petaling Jaya from Aug 30 to Sept 1.
The three-day rare book fair, starting this Friday morning, is all about gathering an independent community of vintage book sellers, and the focus will be on a vast selection of collectible and out-of-print books, rare antique maps, prints, photographs, manuscripts and antiquities, some over 100 years old.
A majority of the vendors are specialists in British Malaya-era vintage books and rare South-East Asian publications. An array of Malaysian first edition books from the 1960s and 1970s will also be available alongside contemporary books, indie publications, comics and fanzines.
This weekend’s vendors include GMS Buku, Pelita Dhihin, Balai Buku Raya, Taman Pustaka, Rumah Klasik Kuantan, Padajiwa, Obscura Malaysia, Kedai Hitam Putih, Antique Depot Buku and ITBM (Institut Terjemahan Buku Malaysia).
“I just wanted to start something new with this ‘Book Street’ idea. Vintage markets, admittedly, can be overwhelming, so to have all the book vendors in a dedicated area is a good thing. There will be 17 vendors. Due to space constraints, we had to limit ourselves.
“Book lovers will find a fascinating treasure trove. Think of it as a trip to an exhibit or museum. I’ve organised the Book Street in such a way that newcomers can explore the diversity of vintage books, while regulars will also have plenty to pick from,” says Zari, who will be manning his book stall called Malaysiana.
Zari does admit that rare book prices can be steep for casual collectors, but he has picked out a wide variety of vendors to ensure there will be enough affordable books and bargains to go around.
“At the last book event in Amcorp, a vendor sold a copy of the Malay Peninsula, a 1907 book by German photographer Charles J. Kleingrothe, for RM6,000. It was snapped up quickly by an ardent collector. It was a rare boxed portfolio book. That gives you an indication of the value of such books.
“But that’s not to say you cannot snap up a bargain if you’re on a budget. There will be plenty of books to choose from and you might get lucky with a gem or two,” says Zari.
The Book Street initiative is also a good opportunity to network, especially for an event driven by a community of vendors, collectors and newcomers.
Zari also reveals that more grassroots rare book fairs are being planned to coincide with Kuala Lumpur named as the World Book Capital for the year 2020 by Unesco.
“We believe in community spirit. The Book Street, we hope, is a start of something very exciting for book lovers at a grassroots level. Also, since KL is the World Book Capital next year, we better make reading a habit,” he concludes.
It’s a hot and stuffy morning in Kuala Lumpur, and I’m about to do what my mother always warned against – walk into an alley around Chinatown.
When you have lived long enough in KL, you know better than to wander off in Petaling Street by yourself. Think of it as the urban boogeyman. Much has been said about the vices that take place along these backlanes.
But it’s broad daylight, so what’s the worst that could happen?
From Jalan Petaling, I turn a corner into a slightly smaller street. After passing some wholesale shops and a busy eatery, I find Lorong Panggung (known as Kwai Chai Hong to the long-term Chinese community here) tucked between dilapidated walls of yesteryear buildings.
But wait, what is that pop of colour ahead? A row of pre-war shophouses has been painted in bright bold yellow and blue! It all seems like something you might chance upon in Europe. And yet, I’m at a backlane in one of KL’s most infamous areas.
This beautiful restoration is part of a revitalisation project by Bai Chuan Management, a local space management company. Project Kwai Chai Hong encompasses 10 shophouses (four along Lorong Panggung and six at Jalan Petaling) as well as a charming little hidden laneway.
Visitors to the area will find a nostalgia-tinged arch that marks the entrance of the secluded back alley. Pass over a bridge and you will be greeted by six thematic murals, each with a delightful tale.
The artworks depict the daily activities of the early Chinese settlers living in the vicinity during the 1960s. Above all, they exude an Instagram-worthy vibe that will surely draw avid photographers and the young creative crowd.
What initially started as a commercial project, which took about eight months to run from scratch to completion, is now a potential tourist hotspot.
Bai Chuan Management has secured a 12-year master lease for all 10 shoplots, until 2030.
“When we got the master lease for the shop lots, we started off thinking it’s going to be just a side business to earn money. Properties in Petaling Street are known to fetch good rental,” says Bai Chuan Management managing partner Zeen Chang.
“We definitely saw the money, but at the same time we saw an opportunity in the kind of potential this place has,” she adds, alluding to the vibrant backstory of the area.
The history-rich Lorong Panggung has many stories to tell. The name of the lane in Cantonese – Kwai Chai Hong – loosely translates to “Ghost Lane” or “Little Demon Alley”.
In case you’re wondering, no, the place isn’t haunted. There are no official records on the origin of that less-than-stellar name, though.
Some lifelong residents claim the name came about when mischievous children used to run around the laneways on rainy days. Irate parents would then shout out “kwai chai”, a colloquial slang that loosely translates to “naughty children”.
Another source connects the name to the presence of illicit … “entertainment” that took place here in the past. During the early days of Chinese settlers, it was an area filled with petty gamblers, drunkards, drug addicts and people participating in other vices.
All these traits of Kwai Chai Hong are wonderfully personified in the murals. The artworks serve to celebrate the heritage of the Chinese community and its contribution to the Chinatown area.
If anything, the murals remind visitors of the glorious past and is sure to evoke nostalgia.
One painting shows a pair of lovebirds perched atop a bridge while another depicts children flicking marbles. Meanwhile, old timers might be familiar with an artwork of a Chinese calligrapher helping settlers craft letters to be sent back home.
The murals were all painted by local artists Khek Shin Nam, Chan Kok Sing, Chok Fook Yong, Chew Weng Yeow and Wong Leck Min.
There’s also a century-old antique lamp that’s believed to be among the oldest street lamps in the city. While all the above harken to old world charm, the project also incorporates a nice technological touch. The murals here are accompanied by a QR code, lending the artworks an interactive nature.
Scanning the QR code with your phone will bring visitors to a page with audio clips that accompany each mural.
“Some people might say that adding the QR code ruin the old world feel of the project. But the code helps to add the element of sound to the art,” Chang explains.
Ultimately, Chang hopes the project will land Kwai Chai Hong on the tourist map and change the public’s perception of Petaling Street and its surroundings.
“I want to create something that people will look forward to see when they are in the area. If this project kicks off and attracts more tourists to the area, that is when I feel the passion has finally paid off.”
Worrying about expensive international call rates? Not anymore! Ever since Skype, many online and phone applications can now facilitate texts and calls. And the best part, it’s free! All you need is WiFi.
Most of these applications can only facilitate calls and texts between app users but this is hardly an inconvenience. Just hop over to your mobile app store and download the free app. Some of the apps offer free calls to other landline numbers or offer this feature as a trial for your first few calls. So without further delay, here are the most used apps and what you need to know about them.
These are applications which offer free calls but it requires the other party to also have the app. However, these apps are unable to make calls to others without the app downloaded on their phone. This generally isn’t a problem as these apps are used widely across the world and downloading is simple.
This is the most popular messaging app in Singapore and is widely used around the world. You only need to provide your phone number and you can voice call or video call any other Whatsapp user so long as both of you have an internet connection.
2. FACEBOOK MESSENGER
These days, almost everybody has a Facebook account and that’s all you need to use their messenger app. The biggest advantage of this app is that it lets you voice call or video call any of your Facebook contacts without having to have their actual phone numbers. This works great for if you’ve lost your phone contacts.
3. GOOGLE HANGOUTS
This is basically the same as Facebook Messenger but instead of Facebook contacts, Google Hangouts does it with your Gmail contacts. It allows you to voice call or video call anyone with a Gmail address. If you’ve sent an email to someone through Gmail, it means you can contact them on Hangouts.
Discord is a group chat app commonly used by gamers. However, it’s useful for just about anybody. The app has a voice chat feature, which means you can join voice chats with a huge number of participants or voice chat one on one with another person privately.
Many people consider Telegram to be a more secure version of Whatsapp. If you are concerned about the security of your conversations, this might be the app for you. Though the user numbers are still growing, the quality of their voice calls and video calls are guaranteed.
Another cool feature in Telegram is Telegram channel which broadcast messages to a large group of users
This a default app in all iPhones that allows users to make voice and video calls to any other device belonging to Apple. You can even call other non-mobile devices like iPads and iPod touches because it’s linked to your Apple ID. You’ll need the other person’s phone number or email address to make a FaceTime call.
FREE APPS WITH PAID ADD-ONS
These are the applications which are free if the other party has the app but has a paid feature to call landlines and phone numbers. Some of these apps offer free trails which you can test out.
Since 2016, WeChat enabled users to make calls to non-WeChat users and landlines anywhere in the world. This feature, WeChat Out For Singapore, is offered at $0.056 per minute. WeChat also has a multitude of other features like WeChat Pay and setting up a social profile page.
This instant messaging app has a feature called “Viber Out”, which allows you to make international calls to landlines or mobile phones without the Viber app. You will need to pay to use Viber Out, but rates are reasonable. For Singapore, $4.06 will get 400 minutes calls. Unfortunately, there is no free trial for Viber Out at the moment.
One of the first video chat apps made, Skype offers some of the cheapest rates for overseas calls and gives you a Skype number so your friends and family can call you without having to go through the Skype app. For Singapore, it is $5.42 monthly for 400 minutes or $9.50 monthly for unlimited calls. There is also a 1-month free trial waiting for you to try it.
Tiffani Adams described waking up “all alone” on a “cold, dark” aircraft after flying from Quebec to Toronto earlier this month.
“I fell asleep probably less than halfway through my short 1.5 hour flight,” she said, in a message posted on Air Canada’s Facebook page.
“I wake up around midnight (few hours after flight landed) freezing cold still strapped in my seat in complete darkness (I’m talking pitch black).”
Air Canada confirmed the incident took place, but declined to comment on how Ms Adams may have been overlooked as its staff disembarked.
“We are still reviewing this matter so we have no additional details to share, but we have followed up with the customer and remain in contact with her,” Air Canada told the Associated Press.
Ms Adams said she called a friend after waking up but her phone ran out of battery around a minute into the call and she could not recharge it because the power to the plane was off.
She said: “I can’t charge my phone to call for help I’m full on panicking [because] I want off this nightmare asap.
“As someone with an anxiety disorder as is I can tell you how terrifying this was,” she wrote
“I think I’m having a bad dream bc like seriously how is this happening!!?”
Ms Adams said she found a torch in the plane’s cockpit and eventually tried to exit the aircraft, but found herself 50ft above the ground with no way down.
She said she then used her torch to send out “sos signals” but no one saw them, so she leaned out of the aircraft and called over a passing member of the ground crew, who was able to get her out.
In her post, she said Air Canada personnel asked if she was OK and whether she would like a limo and hotel, but she declined the offer.
She said representatives of the airline apologised and said they would investigate.
“I haven’t got much sleep since the reoccurring night terrors and waking up anxious and afraid I’m alone locked up someplace dark,” she wrote.Support free-thinking journalism and subscribe to Independent Minds
Responding to her post on Facebook, Air Canada said it was surprised to hear the story and “very concerned,” and asked Ms Adams to send a private message with her flight details.
With a beautiful landscape that stretches throughout the country, a road trip is a fantastic way to experience New Zealand’s North Island. It’s a much more convenient and comfortable way to visit the smaller towns and other fantastic regions.
Some of the popular ways to get around the road include by car, campervan or motorhome.
If you are looking to explore New Zealand at your own pace, then a self-drive holiday is the way to go. In North Island especially, where many exciting regions offer unique experiences, getting behind the wheel will give you the ease of mobility.
A self-drive itinerary in the North Island brings travellers through active volcanoes, bubbling mud pools, idyllic islands and cool cities. Auckland, being a major transportation hub, is the perfect gateway city.
Stay a night, dine at award-winning restaurants, enjoy some gourmet ice cream at Giapo or a delicious brunch at any of the Vulcan Lane cafes, and soak in the nice international vibe before venturing on the road.
Malaysians will find it easy to drive in the country. Just like in Malaysia, the Kiwis drive on the left side of the road and the driver’s seat is on the right of the vehicle.
New Zealand’s diverse terrains, especially away from the cities, are often narrow, hilly and windy, with plenty of sharp corners. Some rational judgment and common sense is necessary to navigate around.
When it comes to requirements, Malaysians can legally drive in New Zealand for up to 12 months if you have a current driver’s licence (with English text, which the document does have). Just bear in mind that the common legal age to rent a car in the country is 21.
As for planning your journey, be sure to always allow for more time than you think you’ll need. This is because maps and navigation systems usually don’t show how narrow or windy the roads can be.
Above all, just relax and enjoy the drive. It can be intimidating when you’re driving in a foreign country, especially if you’re alone. But most of the local drivers you come across are usually tolerant and safe. Just be sure to look out for sheep on the road!
It took Anselm Nathanael Pahnke 414 days to cycle right across Africa. And along the way he filmed his impressions of his journey. The result, Elsewhere. Alone Through Africa, recently hit the cinemas and one thing that really stands out is just how little garbage Pahnke produced during his adventure.
Equipped with his own cooking utensils and drinking bottles, the globetrotter only bought unpackaged food at markets and only took water from public springs and wells. This rather extreme example shows how it’s possible to produce less plastic waste if one really tries.
So, how can ordinary travellers follow this example?
Of course, no one can deny that plastic is incredibly practical. It’s light, hygienic, odourless, resilient, heat-resistant and very cheap.
So much so that it is now omnipresent, used in every country around the world.
On holiday, however, many tourists can be bothered by plastic, for example when it litters a beach or hiking trail. It’s not that easy to use very little plastic when on your travels, either. In many countries, for example, travellers are advised not to drink tap water, meaning many people buy bottled water.
The challenge already starts before you leave, when packing for the holiday.
“There are hardly any plastic-free cosmetic products that fit in a small travel bag,” says Natalie Szydlik, responsible for waste-free trips at a sustainable supplier in Germany.
“Many people buy small toothpaste tubs or shampoo bottles especially for their trips because they want to save space.” However, this produces more plastic waste than conventional packaging. For many travellers, saving space is more important than not producing more plastic waste.
“Everyone has different expectations of themselves,” says Szydlik.
“In a place where you’ve never been before and don’t know the supermarkets, you’re more willing to make exceptions,” she says.
Nobody wants to spend their holidays looking for plastic-free alternatives. That’s difficult even back at home.
And if not careful, tourists can end up adding to the problem while on holiday. For example, by using the small packages of jam and butter that are on offer in most hotels or buying drinks served with a plastic straws.
However, if the topic is raised in a friendly manner, most people are willing to listen. “We went diving once in Egypt and while we were there we did a clean-up and took out masses of garbage,” says Julia Schnetzer, marine microbiologist for the German Marine Research Consortium.
Back on the beach, a restaurant employee asked her about what she had done and she was able to explain why it is so important to clear the oceans of garbage.
There are less dramatic ways to make a difference. Szydlik suggests packing a little more to use less plastic locally. You can bring a reusable cup for coffee and boxes to carry meals or souvenirs such as spices.
“Those who like drinking with a straw should take bamboo straws with them,” advises Szydlik. Reusable plastic products should also generally be avoided. It’s better to switch to other materials – glass water bottles and metal lunch boxes are a more sustainable alternatives.
“It is better to take a normal razor with you than to buy a disposable razor,” advises Schnetzer.
If you do end up producing plastic waste, disposing it can be a problem.
“I’ve often seen garbage dumped into the river behind a restaurant,” says Schnetzer. There’s no easy answer to where is the best place to put plastic rubbish.
“I always had the best feeling at public garbage cans,” says Pahnke.
The adventurer also advises turning the avoidance of plastic into a game. “Sometimes it can be annoying, but once you’ve managed to buy plastic-free, it can be fun.” – dpa