So you want to know how to travel to Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia in just 10 days!
I always believe if you can you can, kill 2 birds with one stone – you should. I personally don’t like birds; in fact, I am terrified of them, I run the other way when I see them. Literally!
For the purpose of this blog, I am sure you already know by the title that I am not talking about birds.
To ensure this works well you need to do the following:
You need to plan well ahead – like 3 months before
Make good use of public transport
Be prepared to fly with Air Asia
Be sure to have three different currencies
Only stay short periods of a time
Lots of Sleep
Earlier last year, I travelled over to the sunny side of Singapore for a close friend’s wedding in Malaysia, Johor Bahru. While I was planning my trip to Malaysia, I decided that it would be good to ‘kill 2 birds with one stone’ and fly out to Bali for a few days. Want to know how? Read on!
How to travel to Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia in just 10 days
Day 1: Arrival in Singapore
I arrived in Singapore late afternoon, without my luggage! Upset was an understatement! I mean my eyelashes and all my hair products were in that suitcase! So I couldn’t slay on my first day, but I did take the pictures above!
It was agreed that my suitcase would arrive in Malaysia, which is where I was heading that very night! I was given S$70 so despite the delay, happy to use the money for my taxi journey to my friend’s house. We had dinner and got ready to head over to Malaysia.
Day 2: Malaysia
The journey from Singapore to Malaysia was horrendous! We were in traffic for at least 3-5 hours. This worried me slightly because I had agreed to meet the cargo driver for my suitcase and I thought I might miss it. At around 4 am we arrived at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Johor Bahru with just enough time for my suitcase to arrive! Yeah me!
A few hours later…
The morning was the henna party! This is a Malaysian party before the wedding ceremony. There are lots of food, henna designs, talking and laughing. The night ended with a rehearsal and an early night for the big wedding day!
Day 3: Malaysian Wedding
The wedding day was an early start with hair and makeup. I was asked to carry a stand into the room which you can watch on my Instagram highlights. The day went along with wedding ceremonials, music and food!
Day 4: Last day in Malaysia
On my last day, I was invited to my friends family home to indulge in some rich Malaysian food! The night ended with us celebrating the new couple with the new family.
At around 11 pm I decided that it was time to head back to Singapore. I will be writing a piece on how to cross the border so subscribe and stay up to date.
I headed back to Singapore airport for my solo adventure of the year – Bali! My arrival was quite overwhelming if I am honest with you – looking for my taxi driver was hectic with no wifi! Anyways I arrived in the afternoon using AirAsia and caught a Gojeck to my hotel! There were lots and lot of traffic so I wasn’t able to get to my hotel until the early evening. My first night was spent with a massage, facial and dinner.
Woke up early to have breakfast by the pool and get another massage! I had made a friend the day before on my tour who had invited me to meet her at Potatoe Head Beach Club. We ended the day in both KYND and Bali Bola! I was so full up in the evening that I was glad to head home and have a nap!
Day 9: Goodbye Bali & Hello Singapore
It was my last day in Bali so I headed out to the Monkey Forest and Ubud Palace. By mid-afternoon, it was time for me to head home so-called on my taxi friend and caught a short flight back to Singapore.
Day 10: Last day in Singapore
My last day in Singapore was a chilled one heading out to the local restaurants and buying souvenirs.
What a year to share the destinations of 2019, eh?! This year has been full of adventures, laughter, getting out of my comfort zone and lots of tears! From, wedding destinations, Bali swings to my arrest in Greece. I have to say this has been a year of making and breaking this wanderlust.
I will be sharing how to make 2020 the year of travels, but for now, read on my destinations of 2019.
Please note you may see some destinations I have already been to already this year – sorry not sorry!
1. The first destinations of 2019 – Copenhagen
I started off the year with a day trip to Denmark, Copenhagen in February this year. This was a collaboration with Travel Eat Slay and Black Travel Creators. I had never been on a day trip before. So was surprised to see so much and be around such great people! I couldn’t believe how much I was able to see from trying vegan waffles to seeing the colourful house and Christiansborg Palace. I was totally impressed by the day. So impressed that it only led to the birth of my series – Series: A Day with MBV…
Memories in Copenhagen: Listening to music and meeting amazing people in just one day.
2. Another day trip to Prague
In May 2019, I joined Travel Eat Slay for another day trip to Prague, Czech Republic! Again, not knowing what to expect with such a big group of people. I went along to see some of the most beautiful sites in Prague. The city has such fantastic street art and is hella cheap! The city is known for its Old Town Square, the heart of its historic core, with colourful baroque buildings, Gothic churches and the medieval Astronomical Clock. Want to know how my day went? Read: A Day with MBV In Prague
3. Returning to my second home – Singapore
One of those destinations that will last in my heart forever. There are numerous famous attractions within the city-state, notably the Gardens by the Bay, Marina Bay Sands, Sentosa Island, Orchard Road, Jewel Changi Airport and the Singapore Zoo and more of which I will be touching on next month!
Arriving in Singapore made me very emotional and brought back so many damn memories of a study abroad/exchange student. The modern city-state fed me memories of a time when I travelled more than ever (which I still need to write about). The fantastic food and late-night chats and early morning flights around South East Asia are only good memories!
Lessons learnt in Singapore: Don’t be afraid of moving away from home, take the opportunity when it arises.
4. Another place I call home – Malaysia
A quick trip to be a Dulung girl (a bridesmaid) for a special friends wedding. Another destination that I am yet to write about. Johor Bharu is one of those destinations that I will forever consider another home. The Malaysian state of Johor sits at the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula. With a causeway across the Straits of Johor connecting it to Singapore, it’s a gateway for exploration of that island nation.
The city holds a special place in my heart because again, it was a country that welcomed me and fed me well! Hahaha! Stay tuned for content!
5. The Instagram Island – Bali
Still, in South East Asia, I decided to continue my destinations to Bali. I have always dreamed of going to Bali and regret that I only went for the 4 days. The Island is home to religious sites such as cliffside Uluwatu Temple. To the south of the Island, there is the beachside city of Kuta has lively bars. The Island is also known for its yoga and meditation retreats.
The culture, learning about the locals, drinking natural avocado coffee, eating their food and breathing their air made me fall in love with this Island. Bali. I will certainly be coming back again! Thank you for the welcomeness and for allowing my solo destinations memorable.
Lessons learnt in Bali: Don’t allow anyone to stop you from taking that solo trip. Make next year your year of destinations.
6. Solo Day trip to Ireland
I continued my solo travels with another day trip to Ireland. Dublin is the birthplace of writers like Oscar Wilde, and home of Guinness beer and has the famous prison called Kilmainham Gaol.
It was a much-needed break where I learnt so much history about Ireland and the views they have of the British people – eek! I will touch on this on MBVs Day Series (maybe next year). I enjoyed this solo day trip because it was cheap and I could do what I wanted when I wanted. I decided to get Airbnb Experiences and was glad I did. Stay tuned for my day trip to Ireland. Read 7 Fantastic Tools That will Have You Solo Travelling with Confidence.
7. Tears in Greece
When I think about Athens, Greece, my stomach turns upside down – literally. A trip that was supposed to be a smooth run, where I met my partner’s parents and enjoyed the sites of Athens. It instead turned nasty when a guard was malicious to make up a lie, a false accusation against me. I will never forget this trip because it was the first time that I was reminded I was a black female. The positive on this trip was the truth came out and the support I received from my community.
It was a time that you all came together for me and supported and prayed for me. I will never know how to thank you all for your support. There are so many people to name and be thankful for. But trust and believe me, you will forever be in my heart.
A much-needed trip after the experience I had in Greece, Athens. It was a very different trip to Copenhagen when I visited in February this year. I arrived with my boyfriend and met up with family and friends to be a bridesmaid yet again! I was a little anxious from Greece happening so soon before but felt safe with my friends and family around me.
If you are looking for Danish fashion and design, culture and the Nordic cuisine then you need to head over to Copenhagen in August (the best time to visit in my opinion). I haven’t written about this entirely, but I have said it’s a destination to go with a friend, solo, or with a partner. Read: 4 Romantic Weekend European Getaways for Couples
9. Sweden for the first time
From Copenhagen, I woke up early and got a train to a small and beautiful village called Arild in Sweden. Historically the village was mostly concentrated around the chapel and the shoreline. However, it has recently been extended uphill towards Kullaberg, which has now created height differences between the various parts of the village.
We got the train to the wedding with Omio because it was closer to Copenhagen airport. One thing I will say is Sweden has to be one of the most expensive countries I have ever been too in my life ( a bottle of water was £2!)! I will, of course, be writing about this for you, so be sure to subscribe and stay up in the mix.
Memories in Sweden: Being a bridesmaid in Sweden and giving a speech to my beloved friend, which made me cry.
10. The City of Love Paris to celebrate my Birthday
Another day trip! I think you can tell I went on a lot of day trips this year! The city of Bologna was absolutely beautiful known to be lined with arched colonnades, cafes and medieval and Renaissance structures such as City Hall, the Fountain of Neptune and the Basilica di San Petronio.
It has so much culture, history and PORK! The first-day trip that I where I saw some sun and was introduced to a tour guide. Again another piece that is waiting to be tweaked and published for you all to read. For now, enjoy the photography!
Lessons learnt in Bologna: That the fountain of Neptune in Bologna has an optical illusion.
12. Oslo for another day trip haha
A day trip that I was not expecting even to happen, but was glad to be asked! When Jenna of Jennas World Views asked me to come along to Oslo, I couldn’t really so no could I? Ha! To be honest with you I was itching for another trip! Another capital city which is known for its green spaces and museums. Not necessarily on the cheap side but has some fantastic sites. Content again will be coming to you soon, so head over and subscribe.
I was starting to believe that I had no content written for any of my destinations of 2019!
13. Riga for a travel conference
Riga I thought would be my last destination of 2019. A city that is considered a cultural centre; home to many museums and concert halls. This was a very different trip for me – my first ever travel conference abroad. I had never been to Riga, Latvia and thought it would be good to experience both in one go! You know kill two birds with one stone or flight!
Oh my! The coldest country I have ever travelled too in my life! It was -2 degrees! Although it was cold, I was glad to experience the Christmas markets and have brunch with a few amazing ladies that I usually only speak to on the socials lol.
Gdańsk is known for having several historical attractions, such as the Royal Way, a famous promenade street of Polish kings, along with historic cathedrals, medieval ports and heaps of cool cafes. I will be doing a Christmas special on my Instagram so head over and don’t be shy to say hello!
Lesson learnt in Gdańsk: Don’t be afraid to share your experiences and lessons learnt with people.
Thank you to you all…
Thank you to all of you for the support you showed me while I was in Greece, Athens. I will never forget what you all did, and you all have a special place in my heart. I love you all.
Thank you for planning most of my day trips Caroline of Travel Eat Slay they have allowed me to see Europe in a different light.
Final Thoughts on my destination of 2019…
And to you, all, thank you again for reading my destination of 2019. I visited 14 countries this year! Wooow impressive I will say.
I have left each country with a memory or a lesson. Every destination has opened my eyes in one way or the other (some more than others for obvious reasons). Would I change anything? Maybe. Yes? Actually No. All these things happened for a reason. I don’t exactly know why, but God does. I have also met some fantastic people (online and in-person) along the way which I will never forget.
I hope my journey tells and shows you that you can travel and you shouldn’t ever allow anyone to stop you from seeing the world. You are in charge of how you see the world. I hope you subscribe and stay tuned for my post coming on How to make 2020 a Year of Travels.
What about you where did you go this year? Let me know in the comment section below. Do you have any regrets this year/ what was your fave destination of 2019?
Carrying on from my post Indonesia Bali & Travelling Solo where I touched on how you could travel solo to Bali. I was only in Bali for 4 days, and felt like I managed to get quite a lot done! Hopefully I can break down a few things that I was able to do which you too might want to incorporate into your trip to Bali. The Rainy season (Jan to April and October to November).
I didn’t apply for a Visa with a British Passport. However, I would suggest doing some research and confirming what visa (if you need one) you should get. Get your head around the current visa situation there are three main visa types for visitors:
Citizens of most countries can receive a 30-day visa for free upon arrival. The visa cannot be extended. If you have obtained one of the coveted 60-day visas in advance, be sure the immigration official at the airport gives you a 60-day tourist card.
Visa in Advance
Visitors can apply for a visa before they arrive in Indonesia. Typically, this is a visitor’s visa, which is valid for 30 or 60 days. Details vary by country; contact your nearest Indonesian embassy or consulate to determine processing fees and times.
Please note: that this is the only way to obtain a 60-day visitor visa, even if you qualify for Visa on Arrival (VOA).
Visa on Arrival
Citizens of most countries can apply for a 30-day visa. A visa like this can be collected upon arrival. The cost is 528,000Rp, payable by cash (no coins) or credit card; currencies are accepted in amounts equivalent to the fee in Rp. VOA renewals for 30 days are possible.
Some people solo travel to escape their 9 to 5, get a break from reality, family or the simple difficulty in gathering friends to go away with. Whatever your reason is. I believe everyone should travel at least once in their life. Solo travelling is an exciting topic for many reasons.
So What is Solo Travel?
Solo travel is where you go somewhere alone. This can be anywhere you want. Wherever you go, you spend a significant chunk of time alone once you get to your destination. Now, as I said before, I never actually feel like I’m alone when I solo travel. And it’s real, just because you travel alone doesn’t mean you’ll always be alone during your travels. Unless you really want to be.
I absolutely adore solo travelling, but I don’t feel like I do it enough. This year I solo travelled to Singapore, Bali and Ireland. You can go wherever you like, whenever you want. It’s incredible how you are entitled to do exactly what you want when you want.
However, I do understand that booking the first solo trip can be quite a daunting experience. That is why I’m going to give you the tools to schedule your first trip with real confidence.
How to Travel With Confidence as A Solo Traveller
1. Take Baby Steps…
This is advice from someone that has travelled solo for over 5 years. Please don’t do your first solo trip thousands of miles away from home. It might be a shock to the system, and you don’t want it to go to waste. Instead, start small. I recently went to Ireland for the day. It was great and was only a 55 min flight from home. Why not go for the day by yourself ? Or even do a one-night stopover in a city close to you. It doesn’t have to be a huge jump! Make it easy and start off small.
When travelling alone, you have to feel so comfortable in your own company.
You don’t even have to actually leave your city. You could go to the park alone. Or maybe cinemas/movies. Perhaps even think about heading to a restaurant alone. Whatever you do, do something that you are comfortable with. When solo travelling, you have to feel so comfortable in your own company.
I’m someone that enjoys my own company – a little too much in fact. Travelling solo pushes, you to be by yourself most of the time, so think where you want to go first. You will always feel nervous wherever you go (I still get worried, and I’ve been going solo for five years!!) but the more you practise going sooo and test your limits the further you can go. Trust me.
2. Get yourself booked onto a tour
As cheesy as it sounds, it’s actually a good idea and a perfect way to make friends when travelling solo. When I was in Bali this year, I booked an Instagram tour.
Now if I didn’t book that tour, I would have never met another traveller and experienced another side of Bali. Going on tours and meeting with other travellers is an excellent way of sharing stories and tips, too!
3. Do a little you know research
I say this quite lightly because you can do all the research in the world and still be shocked upon arrival! I would say make sure you go with an open mind ready to learn and eager for a new experience.
4. Plan the first couple of nights’ accommodations for your solo travels
This won’t be necessary if you’re only staying for a day.
However, it is essential if you have never travelled before to book accommodation. It’s just so you know where to go upon arrival. I’ve done solo travelling and have booked my accommodation on the day to my destination. This is fine, but I wouldn’t suggest it on your first solo trip. I want you to enjoy your first solo trip, so making sure you have everything planned is key to having to a smooth experience. I would suggest booking.com and Airbnb.
5. Stay active on social media
This doesn’t apply to everyone, of course (not everyone has social media) but if you have a phone, I would suggest keeping your friends and family aware of things you are doing while travelling solo.
When I travelled solo to Las Vegas last year, I was always checking in with friends and family to let them know that I was okay.
6. Carry cash and a credit card and keep your money safe – In several places
I tend to use my credit card everywhere I go. However, I do understand that this might not be an option in some areas. In Ireland and Singapore, this was and is fine. Countries like Bali or Malaysia you may want to have some cash with you – don’t carry massive amounts but enough for you to get by.
My advice to you is, only take what you need for a day’s spend, you will know what to take through lots of planning. And if you have to hide some money in several places and only carry one plastic and have one at home. Do so. Travelling solo you always need back up.
7.Present yourself with confidence hunnie when solo
After all these tools I have stated above, you should have NO problems with travelling solo. Walk with an air of confidence everywhere you go. You’ll give off a self-assured vibe, rather than a vulnerable one, and be less likely to attract unwelcome attention.
It can be hard to not look like a tourist, or a solo traveller, but never tell people where you’re staying unless you feel safe to do so. Although I was solo travelling in the States last year, I never once said to people where I was staying. In fact, I always made out that my boyfriend was at the hotel.
If you ever find yourself lost, which can be fun sometimes (not always) go into a busy local bar, a restaurant or a hotel. Worst case scenario is you will have to pay for a taxi to get you home. I’ve done this before and felt no shame about it!
Never worry about coming across as dismissive if you reject a seemingly kind local’s offers; your safety always comes first. Trust your instincts; they are your best defence.
Use these tools, and I can assure you that solo travelling will be a smooth and one to remember.
Thank you so much for having a read. If you have time, read on my other solo travel posts:
Travelling has become more and more popular in the last few years – particularly solo travelling.
I have to be honest and tell you that I’ve been travelling by myself for years but hadn’t said it publicly for fear of people saying I had no friends. Sad I know, but I remember a former friend commenting when I suggested going alone saying ‘you can’t go by yourself do you not have any friends?’
I was going for a friend’s wedding in Malaysia and it made sense for me to make a quick stop, over to Bali. Had asked friends and family if they wanted to come along, but it just didn’t seem the right time despite letting them know well in advance. So because no one could come along, does that mean I shouldn’t go? Well, of course not! One of my priorities is seeing the world and waiting around for when people can go or when they can afford it, could take forever – so in these cases you have to go alone.
Travelling solo can be amazing if you want it to be, you can wake up when you want to. Go wherever you want to go! Do exactly what you want to do when you want to. I even make it a big deal to walk around naked in my hotel room, because it’s my space and I don’t have to worry about hurting anyone’s feelings but my own!
Here are some tips for travelling solo in Bali:
What to do for transport?
I would recommend checking out some tours and planning ahead. I did a tour with FoverVacationI was picked up from my hotel and taken to all the Instagram HOT spots places! And get this! I had a personal photographer that constantly took pictures of me until I was tired!
The hotel I stayed in had a van that drove me to nearby places. I stayed in Ubud, which is right next to the famous Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary and Ubud Palace and was lucky to get a ride to both of these places.
I would also recommend the apps Gojeck and Grab similar to Uber, but better and WAYYY cheaper. Some areas won’t allow you to be picked up by either of these apps, but if you can meet a nice driver you can make special arrangements for them to have your number and to pick you up when you want. I met a really nice taxi driver and would be happy to share his details – just drop me a message! And let him know that Adel from London gave you his number lol.
Is it safe to travel alone to Bali?
As a black female traveller, I am often asked about safety. Safety is a huge thing for me when I am travelling. I tend to always have braids when I’m travelling, so I am always stopped for this reason by locals who are interested in touching one’s hair. I must say no one in Bali even bothered me once about my hair. Which was shocking.
When I have been bothered I am never harmed, but it can be quite intimidating when travelling alone. All I would say to ensure your safety is use common sense and do your research. I know it sounds patronising, but you would be surprised how many people lack common sense when travelling in general! Bali, in my opinion, came across very safe to travel as a solo traveller.
Is travelling solo more expensive?
Someone recently asked me how much it cost me to go to Bali. I only told them the price of the flight which was £65 (return) from Singapore. I usually refrain from telling people the exact amount I spend on holidays because the price of your holiday can vary depending on what you want to do while you are away.
What I will say is this, you can go to Bali on the cheap and not spend money – but understand you won’t be doing much. Or you can budget yourself a bit and really have a fulfilled experience. I was only there for 4 days and would say I spent around £600 -£800 for accommodation, food and tours etc.
I hope my 3 tips helped you – I will be doing a second post going into more detail about my experience as a whole! So, if you have any further question, do ask away. I will be using this to incorporate in my next post.
Be sure to follow me on my socials @mybreakingviews to see my travel stories in Bali and around the world.
Otherwise, I hope you enjoyed the few pictures I showed you throughout the post. There will be more to follow.