Friday, 21 December 2018

Irish cheeses for Christmas

So the Irish times^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hno, Fionn sent me an RTE article on suggested cheeseboard and we had some nice cheesy boards over christmas. With fruits and assorted chutneys or jams. Yummy.

We at least had crozier blue(sheep), St Tola's ash(goats), Gubeen and a cheddar(unpasteurised cows). Yum. 
Crozier blue from the originator of Cashel blue only with sheep's milk.
Goats from near Inagh in County Clare.
West cork cattle. Near Schull.

The Ultimate Cheeseboard with Onion and Fig Jam - by Nevin MacGuire  
 lovely. sorry, eyes nearly rolled there. it really is lovely though.

200g (7oz) packet Cooleeney (soft moulded creamy cheese)
190g (7oz) carton Ardsallagh soft goat's cheese
275g (10oz) wedge mature cheddar cheese, such as hegarty's
250g (9oz) wedge crozier blue
Ardsallagh Goat Farm is located at Carrigtwohill County Cork. Three types of cheese are made from their own herd and from locally sourced goat's milk. The cheeses are suitable for vegetarians. Wikipedia
Not Roscommon  . . . Tipperary, friesan cows
"Durrus, Gubbeen, St Tola and Milleens. To even enunciate the names of these cheeses feels like a religious ritual. Of course their are more: Cashel, Hegarty’s, Young Bucks and Corleggy."

Tuesday, 20 November 2018

day work/home log, mon/tue nov 19 20 2018. busy @ work

In Cobh on weekend, drive back up in afternoon. Grand on road but gets very slow at roadworks coming up to Naas. Need the loo and diesel so detour into Naas. Google map route and car maps useful. Get home in time to give Kate lift to snowboarding.
LIDL shop Stillorgan bread milk ham cheese etc.
Kate lift from snowboarding.
Cold enough I walk up to slope they're still on last run down the big slope.


Chilly enough now cycling. Giving some training in work in morning jenkins, install/upgrade/download/event scripts & tools Dev QA Staging Live process. Some install/test docker image changes are causing trouble fix in scripts and release and fix on site. By evening sites have recovered loaded and tested latest release. Preparing older site for upgrade and test upgrade, find some simple but awkward things, one rpm partly downloaded but at install time a later rpm gets installed and then .. is un-installable. Interesting. Can't use --force on rpm -e erase, -noscript doesn't work, -F|--freshen, mmmh.
Later on ready for upgrades on live site at 9pm but it's had a busy day, message store over 50% alarm, we wait until 11pm Dub time then upgrades, lash on rpms, restart processes, one issue alarms raised on inactive elements, activate them and sessions established alarms gone. All looks good.
Bed > 1pm.


Colder again, lashing rain. BB and  I look out at the rain and BB goes out without me noticing . . the rain pretty quickly stops, BB takes fright at something and comes back in fast.
Wind pretty strong against me. I dodge the rain on way into work. It just starts spitting when I'm in town. Lovely strong  rainbow when I get into town.
Busy, I have testing to do, check site that was upgraded previous night, login to external site and check with others how to solve awkward java tomcat versions thing, QA regressions running ok but release out late and new release out later in morning. Status meeting. Testing IMS user resolution over Diameter UDR and PUR. Setup of testing waiting for machines/resources a bit takes ages to get config and scripts working eventually by afternoon get messages sent and on review all makes sense phew! I have a couple of fruits and buns and a coffee during the day.


0x132 306 UDR/UDA User-Data-Request/User-Data-Answer

0x133 307 PUR/PUA Profile-Update-Request/Profile-Update-Answer

  -  0x2BC 700 User-Identity AVP

       -  0x259 601 Public-Identity AVP

       -  0x2BD 701 MSISDN AVP

Very dark when I lock up and get out 7pm ish. Wind is strong sort of with me. At home ears cold enough to be a bit uncomfortable.

Nice yum savoury mince rice cabbage stuff @ home. IPA with skulls on. Porridge later. 'The Stag' film watch with Kate and Fionn. Very funny and a bit cute :). day work blog particularly busy at work.

Monday, 10 September 2018

weekend log, Fionn in Cork, house bits, mtb blackberries mushrooms, scout plc, moon pie book finish

Earlier in week evening morning evening finished fixing bench. 2 wooden pieces with bolts just a small 1cm too short. Ugh. Wood from attic bunk bed side. 1 bit almost perfect length cut already. Cut. Varnish ends and scratches. Use scout knife to plane one side flat (worked well as did using it to plane rounded edge on back piece). Mark and drill holes. Screw in bolts whicch are really stiff difficult to screw in. Varnish for protection. Screw wood to cast iron back. In morning after rain bench has gotten longer again it seems like. Have to unscrew bolts alot persuade them into holes but it fits well in end. Pheuf.

Fixed laptop screen too. Replaced it.

Fionnuala and Daire in Cork visiting my mum in hospital and family. Fionnuala headed down Fri morn in car. 

After work Fri headed home. Relaxing night with Kate & Maeve. Found we had loads of eggs so cooked lots of them. Spinach omlette. Daire came back. Good report about my mum & Cobh. Daria came back after evening movie pizza at a friend's place. 

Sat up 9, breakfast, Daire already up unloaded dishwasher. Maeve off to speech&drama. Rain passing over.  French student has a cold rearranging day will stay at our place & rest. House bits then I head off bike to Carrickmines hunting printer ink washout neither harvey norman nor pc world carry the right cartridges any more. Nor are there other bits I'm looking for. Back home  lunch is like sandwiches and stuff. Maeve off to toewn with Ava to go as far as Henry St to get home economics sewing stuff in Hickeys. Head to pharmacy and shop and get lemons and stuff for sore throat with&for French student. 

After miscellaneous jobs I fish out MTB, tighten saddle and head out with no bag/tools. Up to Ticknock. Saddle a bit too up pointy but myeh. Lower it a little and twist gear change to b more comfy. Half way up arg oops no helmet! The guys in the bike hire place give me a helmet. Nice run loop down & up to three rock top, good blackberries and nice mushrooms around, some big shaggy ink caps and loads of orange ones in woods. Whaups my feet come off pedals a couple of times. Must sit a bit keep weight on saddle even if standing up sometimes. Lovely weather. The bermy run down is now extended down to the bike hire place. Cool.
1 hour 30 in total to/from home. Up top 40mins 6.28 km, 

Cook tea: eggs & black pudding & beans in chicken sauce and boiled new potatoes. Eat with Kate & Daria. Then bike it with Kate to scout meeting. Maeve and Ava arrive from Luas. Organise names. Brainstorm activities, make a calendar, then tricky organising personnel PLs APLs and patrols. Fionnuala comes with bike carrier to bring us all home.

Sunday up in good time again. Breakfast and newspaper and radio. We all 6 of us go visit DSPCA meet animals looking for a cat, some young cats there soon after spayed operations. A black one called keri is selected doesn't like being fished out & held though I get some scratches on my tummy. We say hello to goat and dogs and pick up a bee on footpath and find a yellow flower for it too. Home. Lunch. Daria heads off to visit with other family. Fun day is startingon green. Maeve is stressing about getting flower photos printed for art project so I head on bike her on luas to carrickmines and we get them printed. I catch end of fun day ice creams and litter pick up. 

Kate cooks lots of fried rice. We have it for lunch and it is boxed up for school lunches.

Crosswords, sudokus, newspaper. House bits clear out boots need to hang back up fix hooks in bike room.

Reading old 2000AD annuals. And finish moon pie book very good compelling got quite serious.

Thursday, 9 August 2018

diary/blog(bench repair, cycle to work, cars) and how Writing is like Engineering components that interfaces with brains

This morning mmmmhmm,
 I set off the alarm when I open the back door,
 I varnish planks for bench repair,
   I hear Fionnuala unmloading dishwasher,
  Quiet house, girls went to Cobh yesterday morning to visit
grandparents & cows & cat & dog & farm generally.
Bye to Fionn, quick coffee, cycle to ParcelMotel in Sandyford . . .
 Traffic in Sandyford village is slow, there must be a funeral ? cars
parking on pavements on the lower part of the hill away from the
shurch. I squeeze past/through.
 At the ParcelMotel bip bip bip bip bip bip - bip - wrong pin ? oops
enter mobile and pin bip * 10 bip * 6 bip kerchunk YAY.
  Unwrap. Shoe goo.
   Into bag.
 Cycle on to work.
   Through Moreen, zoom cycle around roads, onto Drummartin bypass
traffic around but quiet enough,
   still it gets backed up as usual so bike catches up and undertakes
cars at each set of traffic lights,
   and I stop but then go walking pace through some red lights - very
quiet - no traffic moving through.

vibrant chain of thoughts after shower in work

Writing something is not like engineering and yet . .

With engineering each part has to function and mesh with other parts
and work together.
   The function and the mesh can be polished like a diamond or a
Toyota or a new Kia!
       And the whole works smoothly and it is a joy to behold.
   The function or the mesh might be a bit degraded,
       Yet the whole can still work albeit not perfectly.
   The function or the mesh might be degraded enough such that the
whole doesn't work any more.
   Maybe some repair could be done but it doesn't work.
The working or not working of the whole is obvious with engineering:
   a bench
   a road
   a bridge
   a canal system
   a bike
   a car
   a watch
   a computer ? maybe sometimes working is not so obvious!
   software . . . ?

With writing it is not so obvious if the parts do not work together.
   Writing has to connect with the mind of the reader,
     and mesh with modules of knowledge already there,
     and enhance some modules,
     and perhaps create new modules.
   Good writing will be efficient and state the minimum necessary to
engage with the mind of the reader.
Some writing is factual and some writing aims to impart facts and
techniques or methods.
   The mind of the reader is given information to load into modules,
   the mind of the reader is given instructions,
   so writing controls the mind and actions of the reader.
After reading,
  if the methods cannot be followed,
    it is less obvious if the writing is broken OR if the reader is
missing knowledge or skills or . . . something.
    Perhaps the writing would mesh better another reader with a
different set of knowledge.
    Perhaps the original reader would need to read other items or
practice skills before being able to understand.
    Or perhaps the writing is defective, incorrect in places or
misleading - correct but under certain conditions and complexity has
been left out.

Minimal and TLDR; versus comprehensive.
Need comprehensive yet simple documentation/info exchange, yet people
are too impatient to wait for or read comprehensive docs.
Combine writing with diagrams.
Reference to other documents. Divide up topic.

In school books were my friend.
Learning off by rote names or dates or lists of counties or chemicals
was not really my thing.
 Or poems or worse prose or irish quotes. Or french words or verbs!
 Or maths theorems.
Why learn things off if they were already written down ?
I always found that hard and convinced myself it was optional for a
clever chap like me.
  somehow a decent vocabulkary of English words built up in my head.
 On occasion a more unusual word would come out in conversation
sounding normal in my head yet catching the ear of others who might
occasionally point out the novelty.
 Somehow lists of chemicals and facts about trees and physics and
maths and all sorts built up in my head.
 Some cool and simple enough poems like McCavity the Mystery cat,
Ozymandias, some Kavanagh stayed in my head for a while.
  Although the exact sequence is very hard to retain.
  As an adult learning song lyrics takes work . . and is very hard to
get to a rote state.
   First lines of verses will obstinately not pop into my head at the
right time :-7
   But with pratice and taking a step back to learn songs at different
levels works . .

With computers and software the engineering definition of "working"
seems to have become more fuzzy.
And as computers or more complexity are added into cars, washing
machines, lightbulbs the fuzzy workingness is becoming ubiquitous.
Our Renault Grande Scenic - great space inside - seats fold down to
make van space.
 Worked well for us for years, last couple of years the fundamental
problems were:
    1. air blowers stopped working, air heater stopped working,
       IF we had only known KEEP your air intakes (below windscreen
under grille at top of bonnet) free of leaves/gunk !!
    2. cylinder coil went in the end, too much to repair
 Various other issues were:
  Parking brake warning and stopped fixed nicely by Welsh parking
brake fixy people and local mechanic.
  Periodically a cylinder coil would degrade and need replacement.
    need to reprogram if battery went dead,
    near the end once a window went down by itself and stayed down,
for a week . . . and then started working again
       (I did clean/lubricate but not much),
    otherwise fine for us despite stories of funny window behaviour by
other owners.
  Sunroof: (need to keep lubricated - on new Kia as well)
  Seats (need to keep lubricated, clear rubbish so they fold or click
upright correctly.
  Very frequently blew light bulbs (dipped beams, main beam, others) :-P
  Keys: my key fob died and I killed it altogether trying to open the
case and solder a fix too hastily.

  Battery replaced periodically . . . serviced oil/air filters, oil,
windscreen wash . . . tyres, steering parts

The older fiesta similar major problems:
 1. Heater/air blower:
   mostly didn't work so cold and foggy windscreen in the winter
   occasionally did work but got stuck on hot so long trip down
country people overheating windows down
 2. rust underneath and coming up sides/doors
   repaired a few times to get through NCT
 Key twisty roundy needed to get replacement and program it.
 Paintwork rusty patches sprayed in very patchy manner.

Engineering software if I look at how some parts of system works . . .
Distributed system - a seemingly simple operation like checking
version - not designed, could be done in various ways. Answer now not
a simple "vx.xx.xx" but might be multiple versions + elements of
config. Complex systems. :-P  Yet not that complex. Bring back the
says of 64k RAM! Maybe :) It comes back to DESIGN. Design and
architecture of software components, how they mesh together. Same for
writing, architecture of what documents are needed, design of chapters
and diagrams, writing, implementation.

The Bench
Strong cast iron with wooden seat and wooden + cast iron back.
The wood was very poor and not treated well and started rotting very
quickly a year or so after buying bench.
I replaced most of the the bench seat planks retaining front most
curved one and rear and wood-stained all but didn't dismantle bench to
paint all surfaces. Lasted a few years with a clean and top up of
woodstain some time.

Now the planks on bench back are rotten (from the unpainted surfaces
in contact with cast iron).
And older unreplaced planks are more rotten so replacing almost all
now with new.

Measured. Bought wood. 2 planks:
 plank #1 W2 x L*2 x H
 plank #2 W x L*2+20cm*2 x H
  Let L = bench width 170mm I think.
  Let L2 = shorter plank at front ~168cm.
  Let W = 7cm new (original about 65mm) narrower planks on back sides
and on seat.
  Let W2 = 9cm new (original about 8cm) two wider planks on back.
  Let H = 18mm (or 20mm new planks (or 16mm smaller older planks)).
  For back:
    2 W2 x L x H
    2 short sides 20cm x W x H
  For seat:
    1 W x L x H at back
    1 W x L2 x H at front

Kate cut the planks to size(making a mistake cutting wide plank for
back slightly shorter length for front) but will work around that
using one narrow one wide plank on back. Kate took off one rotten
plank from front of bench. Kate hand drilled holes for front plank and
wood cracked a bit with force of bolt going in. Will varnish and
gorilla glue support the crack.
  Tue: Took rotten wood off back. Oiled bolts. Cleaned off bench/parts.
  Wed: I finished cutting. Measured and drilled bolt holes.
Sanded/cleaned wood. Applied white spirits and coat of varnish.
  Thur morn: applied another coat of varnish to new planks.
  TODO: Varnish on old wood on bench (take off all planks and do it properly?).
    Another coat of varnish on new wood.
    Burn cool/cute things on backside ?

My Bike(s?):
  Pedal needs replacing on my hybrid commuter.
  And bell and water bottle holder.
  AFter JamboRi took carrier off MTB and put back on my bike and fixed
up mudguard.
  Mudguards are held with sisal and old broken bungee :-7 is ok for now.
TODO: Kate brakes, Kate mudguard lost on JamboRi I think
TODO: carrier for MTB >;) and pannier.

Wednesday, 8 August 2018

jenkins continuous integration: most useful methods for jobs to trigger other jobs

Jenkins has quite a flexible choice of methods for jobs that need to interact with one another. 
There is a built in "Post-build Action: build other projects" and there are a couple of plugins which can be used. The "Post-build Action: build other projects" is probably most suitable. And the "Lockable Resources Plug-in" can be used to make the jobs mutually exclusive.
* SIMPLEST METHOD "Post-build Action: Build other projects" *
  1. Install Lockable Resource plugin and add a lockable resource "stream1" and configure jobs stream1_build and stream1_test1 to lock on that resource.
  2. Configure the stream1_build job, Add "Post-build Action: Build other projects" Build job stream1_test1 if the build job is Stable.
You can chain multiple jobs together in a pipeline or stream like this. 

* LIST of useful built-ins and plugins: *
It is also useful to use FSTrigger plugin, build jobs or other jobs may generate logs or image files or test reports. Jobs can be triggered to run when these files or directories appear or are updated. Jobs in remote jenkins or external to jenkins can be used to trigger jobs using this method.
  1. Built in Post-build Action: Build other projects
    * Trigger only if build is stable   
    * Trigger even if the build is unstable 
    * Trigger even if the build fails   
  2. BuildResultTrigger Plug-in - This plugin makes it possible to monitor the build results of other jobs. Similar to "Post-build Action: build other projects" only at top of job config as a trigger with cron schedule.
  3. Filesystem Trigger Plug-in - The plug-in makes it possible to monitor changes of a file or a set of files in a folder.
  4. Parameterized Trigger Plug-in (which adds Post-build Action: Trigger parameterized build on other projects) Similar to "Post-build Action: build other projects but convenient to pass build information e.g. in parameters.ini style file or boolean or other params from one job to another.
  5. Lockable Resources Plug-in This plugin allows to define external resources (such as printers, phones, computers) that can be locked by builds. If a build requires an external resource which is already locked, it will wait for the resource to be free.
I came across this older question "Jenkins: Run only if other job is cleanwhich did not have good answers. As I said in my preamble to answer it took a while for me to discover how to use these methods, surprising as "Post-build Action: build other projects" is built in. It is easy to overlook.

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

car and computer troubles around the feast of St. Oran. . . and Neil Gaiman's poem In Reilg Odhrain - about a different St. Oran.

At home car Renault something happened Sat morning, misfiring, very low on power. Brought to garage and was thinking it was a coil pack gone. But they said cylinders are randomly misfiring not just one so it's not a coil pack problem it's something else. . . To be continued . . .

in scouts: We went mountainbiking in Ballinastoe. Hired bikes from Janos was our instructor. Great fun. I went MTB in Ticknock later in the afternoon.

Earlier car news this year: In January after holidays battery was weak. We had to get help jump-starting a few times - at home (started with trickle charger), in Sandyford garage, in Kilternan Ski slope. Put in a new battery. Replaced front light bulbs as usual. Also trying to get air blower working again. Cleared out air intakes and found cabin air filter and took out. Got a wrong one delivered :-7. Fan in car - with broken cigarette plug connection now. Also wipers put back on properly after clearingout air intakes.

In work fun with jenkins, install/deploy jobs. A job to upgrade the running jenkins itself from jenkins.
Cleaning up a series of unwanted builds if a job goes crazy:
for i in $(seq 824 867); do curl -vv -u user:password -X POST http://jenkinsserver:port/job/jobname/$i/doDelete; done
And things like:

Feb 19th - fun in work a central DNS and other services server got into trouble, became unresponsive. All the usual IT people were away so we got to power-cycle. Toggle switch off at back powered it down but not up. Brief moment of worry before trying reset switch on front. Then later fun restarting services and re-mounting things that didn't start up properly @ boot time.

Feb 20th also there was a directory containing many many files it shoudln't. We thought a job/script rsync of copy had gone crazy. All the files removed from inside that directory. A few minutes later it was noticed all files were gone from homedirectory of server! :-o ssh keys, config files, .bashrc, .bash_profile, key exchanges, scripts/tools all had to be recovered and put back in place.

We checked star alignment, solar flare state and found it was apparently feast day of St. Odran. And there are a few different Odrans:

1. - drove chariot for St. Pat and killed by a spear intended for St. Pat. Circa 430 AD. Killed in revenge for the destruction of the pagan god Crom Cruach. Saint Odran's feast-day is 19 February.

2. -  520 AD church in Tipperary, 563 AD to Iona. Legend that he was buried alive under chapel on Iona. And some time later from the grave said: "There is no Hell as you suppose, nor Heaven that people talk about". Neil Gaiman re-tells the legend in the poem In Relig Odhrain:
    "Heaven is not waiting for the good and pure and gentle
      There's no punishment eternal, there's no Hell for the ungodly
      Nor is God as you imagine—". 

Reilig Odhráin is the cemetary around Odhran's Church on Iona. This St. Odhrán's feast day is on 27 October.

3. - Odhrain_Ua_hEolais - A scribe and scholar. Born into the Túath called Conmaicne Magh Réin. Died 994 AD. - a true story about murder and saints - read by Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman - In Relig Odhráin

When Saint Columba landed on the island of Iona
His friend Oran landed with him
Though some say Saint Oran waited
In the shadows of the island, waiting for the saint to land there.
I believe they came together, came from Ireland, where like brothers
Were the blond and brave Columba and the dark man they called Oran.

He was odhran, like the otter, was the other. There were others
And they landed on Iona and they said, We'll build a chapel.
It's what saints did when the landed. (Oran: priest of sun or fire
Or from Odhra, meaning dark haired.) But their chapel kept on crumbling.
And Columba took the answer from a dream or revelation,
That his building needed Oran, needed death in the foundations.

Others claim it was doctrinal, and Saints Oran and Columba
Were debating, as the Irish love debating, about Heaven,
Since the truth is long-forgotten we are left with just their actions
(By their actions shall ye know them): Saint Columba buried Oran
Still alive, with earth about him, buried deep, with earth upon him.

Three days later they returned there, stocky monks with spades and mattocks
And they dug down to Saint Oran, so Columba could embrace him
Touch his face and say his farewells. There days dead. They brushed the mud off
When Saint Oran's eyes blinked open. Oran grinned at Saint Columba,
He had died but now was risen, and he said the words the dead know,
In a voice like wind and water:

He said, Heaven is not waiting for the good and pure and gentle
There's no punishment eternal, there's no Hell for the ungodly
Nor is God as you imagine—
Saint Columba shouted "Quiet!"
And to save the monks from error shoveled mud onto Saint Oran.
So they buried him forever: And they called the place Saint Oran's.
In its churchyard Kings of Scotland, Kings of Norway, all were buried
On the island of Iona.

Some folk claim it was a druid priest of sunlight that was buried
In the earth of good Iona just to hold the church foundations,
But for me that's much too simple, and it libels Saint Columba
(who cried "Earth! Throw earth on Oran, stop his mouth with mud this moment,
Lest he bring us to perdition!") They imagine it a murder
As one saint entombed another underneath that holy chapel.

While Saint Oran's name continues,
Martyred heretic, his bones still hold the chapel stones together,
And we join them, Kings and princes, in his graveyard, in his chapel,
For it's Oran's name they carry. He's embraced in his damnation
By the simple words he uttered. There's no hell to spite the sinners
There's no Heaven for the blessed. God is not what you imagine.

And perhaps he kept on preaching, for he'd died and he had risen,
Until silenced, crushed or muffled by the soil of Iona.
Saint Columba, he was buried on the Island of Iona
Decades later. But they disinterred his body and they took it
To Downpatrick, where it's buried with Saint Patrick and Saint Brigid.
So the only saint is Oran on the island of Iona.

Don't go digging in that graveyard for the kings of old, the mighty,
Or Archbishops and their riches. They are guarded by Saint Oran
Who will rise up from the gravedirt like the darkness, like an otter.
For he sees the sun no longer. He will touch you,
He will taste you, he will leave his words inside you.
(God is not what you imagine. Nor is Hell and nor is Heaven.)

Then you'll leave him and his graveyard, and forget the shadow's terror.
As you rub your neck, remember only this: He died to save us.
And that Saint Columba killed him on the island of Iona.

A short stopmotion animated film of Neil Gaiman's poem 'In Relig Odhrain'.

In Reilig Oran - by Neil Gaiman

Saturday, 17 February 2018

scouts mountainbiking in Ballinastoe and James MTB in Ticknock

In scouts: We went mountainbiking in Ballinastoe. Hired bikes from Janos was our instructor. Great fun. I went MTB in Ticknock later in the afternoon.

TODO: enhance the trailforks bike trail map for printing:
Want direction of the runs.
Nice if contour lines and streams/roads would stand out more.
For each run summary distance, height gain and loss.
Did this by hand drawing on maps and laminated for the day.

Ballinastoe trails:

Coilte Ballinastoe site has a good trail map .pdf for walking:

Ballinastoe start of the trails map (Leader went with Scouts who were nervous and opted out of the full trip).

Ticknock track:

Friday, 19 January 2018

vacation suggestion - 2+ weeks Thailand/Cambodia/Vietnam

Nov 1 2017 The initial tentative plan . . . 

vacation suggestion - 10 days Thailand/Cambodia/Vietnam & 10 days Sydney.

1. Fly to Bangkok, Saturday March 17th

Spend 2 days Bangkok,

2-3 days Siem Riep, Angkor wat temples   ancient city

2days, Phnom Penh   - guided cycle tour of Cambodia

2 days Ho chi Minh (Saigon) Meh kong delta

Fly Saigon to Sydney  (fly out Tuesday March 27th evening )

Arrive Sydney 11.30am on Wednesday. Cousins still in school - maybe Kate&Maeve could go to school on the Thursday or Friday.

Stay around Bilgola for 3-7 days / Head outback 4 - 7 days.

Maybe take an outback trip - see what John & Carls would suggest - we have one week with them during the kids Easter hols.

Head back to Dublin, leaving Sydney at 2pm on Saturday April 7th getting into Dublin Sunday morning.

Flight cost ~1300 each.,+Thailand/Krong+Siem+Reap,+Cambodia/Mekong+River+Delta/Ho+Chi+Minh+City,+Ho+Chi+Minh,+Vietnam/@11.8945656,101.3214982,7z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m26!4m25!1m5!1m1!1s0x311d6032280d61f3:0x10100b25de24820!2m2!1d100.5017651!2d13.7563309!1m5!1m1!1s0x3110169a8c91a879:0xa940aaf93ee5bbfa!2m2!1d103.8448134!2d13.3670968!1m5!1m1!1s0x31a09bba522eed6d:0xa5cd3e8fd29a2fe6!2m2!1d105.5943388!2d10.063363!1m5!1m1!1s0x317529292e8d3dd1:0xf15f5aad773c112b!2m2!1d106.6296638!2d10.8230989!3e0

What we actually did:

1. Fly to Bangkok via Dubai,December ?

Spend 2 days Bangkok,

Bus/transfer to Koh Chang

7 days with family on Koh Chang

Jan 1 2018: Bus/transfer to Battambang in Cambodia

2 days in Battambang

Jan 2

Tuk Tuk driver Johnny . . we knew we wanted to see bat cave but mainly asked tuk tuk driver where would be good to go.

Visit to town . . local politician's big house :-7
 Rice Paper And Spring Roll Restaurant Out of town up to North a little. Visit place where they were making rice paper and we had some lovely fresh spring rolls. Much better.

Ek Phnom - a temple 12km to N of Battambang

We stopped at a well dodgy place for lunch, I really liked it. :)

Bamboo train

Se Rey cafe - a co-op farmer/local cafe and farm visit, ok cart ride around the fields, see fresh noodles being made, eat them. Quite slow placed. Very friendly guys seem to be just kind of figuring out what tourists might like. We had a guide university student with good english. Ox cart driver was old dude no English. Proper trip around the rice fields was very good.

Google MAPS link  - very close to Phnom Sampov

  This eco-initiative is SO MUCH MORE than a cafe. Our tuk-tuk driver brought us here saying we might be interested in an ox-cart tour, we went along and were treated to the most amazing 1 hr+ tour. The cafe and it's business, but then a tour of the rice paddies by ox cart, with a guide regaling local mythology about sheep mountain and crocodile mountain. Informative interludes about rice farming, palm oil, tamarand fruit, then a stop by at a local workshop seeing rice noodles being made and sampling the fresh product.

Phnom Sampov, temple on Sheep mountain, bat caves
Good to visit this later in afternoon.
Walk or lift up steep hillside to temple and killing cave on top :-o
Walk up/down road or steps.
When it gets dusky you can watch the bats streaming out of the caves and heading out to feed.

Then dark drive back into town and to hotel.

Jan 3
Slow boat from Battambang to near Siem Reap on Sangker River.
Dry season so the river had low water but navigable fine.
High banks near Battambang, lots of things to see, various ferry crossings people crossing on foot/bike/moped, some temples by river, fishing nets. Banks get smaller and countryside more rural.
Stopped at a floating village where there was a shop you could buy some food.
Arrive at big lake Tonle Sap eventually.
Phnom Krom meet driver and drive to Siem Riep.

Jan 4,5,6
3 days in Siem Riep, Angkor wat temples, ancient city, Siem Riep city

Jan 4 visit loads of temples 
(big ones, quieter ones in jungle, . . . ) and visit Siem Reap city/town in evening

Jan 5 dawn temples, Siem Riep city
Fionn & James dawn cycle to visit temples, then go to Siem Reap city.
 Fins a nice place with pool and food.
 James donates blood.
 Find the family again, walk around, visit some nice shops. nice temple, talk to a monk, party/restaurant streets, supermarket.

Jan 6 travel North to more temples, ancient ruins on hillside/river and jungle national park, then landmine museum
travel 30km North to Banteay Srei another ancient temple
 travel another 10km North to Kbal Spean - national park, hillside jungle, old statues and carvings in and around river.
On way back visit landmine museum.
 Later on . . .
 Find laundry, washing not yet ready.

Jan 7 bus Siem Riep to Phnom Penh, evening in Phnom Penh
up early, in to town, collect laundry, get bus to Phnom Penh.
 Bus stops at a place by water where we get some food.
 Arrive in Phnom Penh, get tuk tuk to hotel and check in.
    Mekong Dragon Boutique hotel
 Evening walk in Phnom Penh,
   big parks and temple, big monuments,
   loads of people around exercising or chillaxing in parks.
 We walk over near the river.
  Drink in International journalists club.
  We eat in a nice cambodian place nearby.

Jan 8 - morning in Phnom Penh   -   boat to Vietnam Chau Doc
   Big Temple Sangkat Chey Chumneah
   Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum - pretty grim but good
   guided cycle tour of Cambodia - we did not do this.
   BOAT river ferry on Mekong

K'am Samnar Kraom Village - the Cambodia - Vietnam border
Cambodian customs do paperwork.
Some chickens and kids around.
Then onto boat, cross border, and Vietnam customs/immigration do paperwork in a weird building/cafe/shop over water.

Boat to Chau Doc.
Much bigger river. Down the Mekong. Cross a short canal to Bassac river, . .  
Arrive in evening, just before dusk.
Boat guy helps us call a taxi. Taxi to hotel. Dong Xanh Hotel
3 of us hungry walk from hotel looking for food, no foreigners around at all! We find a big bright shiny shopping mall in the midst of very old/ordinary other buildings. Big food court. A Vietnamese guy says hello in very good english and explains some food and token system and helps us buy dinner. Nom nom. A bit of food/other shopping. Hotel.

Jan 9 - Chau Doc to Vinh Long and Nam Thanh Homestay
We are looking up transport options to go further south.
We get a taxi in morning intending on getting a bus . . . but ask him how much to go to Vinh Long and he brings us all the way there.

Ferry across from Vinh Long to Nam Thanh Homestay
Tricky to figure out how the ferry works.
No foreigners around still
The island is pretty cool. We have some bikes and explore.

Wed Jan 10 on the island on the Mekong
We hire a boat and boat driver, he shows us fish farms and brings us to different places - bee farm, floating market, fruit market boat, . . . we paddle little boats . . .
In evening across the ferry hunting for ATM
Evening market buy some fresh tamarind, other fruit.

Thur Jan 11 - we somehow figure out bus from Vinh Long to Saigon/Ho Chi Minh city
Ferry across, walk? Or tuk tuk to bus company, I have address.
Relieved to find the bus depot, they find a minivan for us and other people.
121km 2hr 20min to Saigon
Another 5km 20 min in taxi to hotel.
Hong Hac Hotel Ho Chi Minh City
Independence Palace
Lots of walking around and exploring
Fionn and myself go out later down to by the river and drink/food in tall old style colonial place . . . SH garden ?

Fri Jan 12
Bus tour to craft factory, jungle and war tunnels.
Ben Thanh market.
Fly back to Dublin via Dubai

PLANNING, further details

Fionnuala my partner & girlfriend and wife is a really good planner of holidays and other things . . . .
Holiday for family of 3 adults and two teenagers.

WARNING: we are slightly adventurous so off beaten track a little! (not too much)

The more research you do the more connected you will be with the country and people.
And it will make for less stress.
  Get travel books from library
  Look up the internet
*** MAPS and locations to visit - accomodation and activities
** people, customs and culture. Language.
* Food

GET YOUR VISAS and Vaccinations/Insurance and Flights and Accomodation sorted well in advance.

Make a folder you can bring on holidays with:
Flight details
Accomodation details: addresses and phone numbers
Insurance details, certificate, contact numbers
Activity plans, other contacts.

Make a kit list
passports, visas, travel folder
electronics :- phones, chargers, camera,

We got a local sim card with data.
And had an old phone acting as hotspot in box with booster battery.
So we could lookup maps e.t.c.
OSM open-street-map cached maps with locations in on it were really useful.
Before you go and as you go and book accomodation and activities then find the places on the map and put it in. It can be handy to know if you are getting close. Or to show map or location to driver.

MONEY: American dollars or local currency ?

Hard to know exactly before you go there.
In Thailand and Vietnam local currency is used, generally not US dollars.
In Cambodia free mix of dollars and US currency.
THere is a low maximum limit on amount of money you can widthdraw from cash machine so you get hit with transfer fees alot if you do not bring own currency.

Vaccinations, Travel advice(security status and custome) and Insurance
The doctors place I went to with hurt shoulder do travel vaccinations

We are a family of 5 travelling to Thailand/Cambodia/Vietnam this winter.
We are not planning on going too far off the beaten track or into rural areas much.
Can you do travel vaccinations for us?
How much would they cost?
We are ages 44 + 44 + 19 + 14 + 12
Thanks & Best Regards,

These guys also do vaccinations:
Call us today on 01 295 5010 to book an appointment or find out more about our services


Unit C7 The Plaza Beacon South Quarter Sandyford Dublin 18.

Opening Hours

Monday to Thursday: 08.00am to 1:30 pm / 2:30 to 7.00pm
Friday: 08.00am to 5.00pm
Closed Mon - Fri : 1:30 pm to 2:30pm

Saturday: 10.00am to 1.00pm

Tropical-Medical-Bureau at top level Dundrum new shopping centre was where we went . . . 
TMB appointment friday 9:30 dundrum

Good info BOTH on vaccinations AND on security status & registering with Irish Dept of Foreign Affairs:

Vaccinations for Thailand

For most standard tourists the usual recommended vaccinations for Thailand include cover against the childhood diseases (Tetanus and Diphtheria, Measles, Mumps and Rubella) as well as cover against the food borne diseases of Typhoid and Hepatitis A. For  those trekking in the Thai countryside or staying for longer periods then cover against Hepatitis B and Rabies should be considered.
When travelling from Ireland to Thailand there are no compulsory vaccines required for entry into the country. Nevertheless if your passport shows that you have travelled via a yellow fever endemic country then the immigration authorities in Thailand will usually check to see that you have received adequate vaccination cover against that disease.
Most travellers should start their vaccines about 4 to 6 weeks before they leave Ireland. However those planning a longer visit, or where their planned trip is likely to bring them to more rural parts of Thailand, should attend earlier to ensure that they have sufficient time to complete the vaccine courses.
Malaria prophylaxis may need to be considered depending on the expected itinerary .
ALSO Dengue fever and Zika virus both mosquito borne so protection against mosquito bites is important. 
Cover up day/evening/night and insect repellent avoid water/marsh/countryside where&when mosquitos are active  e.t.c.
MALARIAW.H.O. report malaria transmission in this country in certain areas. Prophylaxis may be recommended in some circumstances. Please consult your Doctor or Travel Clinic.

Vaccinations for Vietnam

There are no compulsory vaccinations for Vietnam required by law for travellers from Western Europe to gain entry but certain vaccinations are strongly recommended.

Read More ...

MALARIAW.H.O. report malaria transmission in this country in certain areas. Please consult your Doctor or Travel Clinic.

Vaccinations for Cambodia

We got quote for AA single trip travel insurance

Policy and destination
Single Trip - Worldwide exc USA,Canada,Caribbean
Travel dates Departure Dec 21, 2017 Return Jan 12, 2018
Traveller information Traveller type family Travellers 5
AA Single Trip Value

AA Single Trip Essential

€100.78 AA Single Trip Extra

We got VHI  Travel Insurance Certificate
Thank you for choosing for your Travel Insurance needs. Please see a summary of your insurance cover below and print for your records. Full Policy Wording is available online and please be sure to read same. A copy of this policy will be emailed to the address you provided within 1 working day. 
Policy Number: JC - 206657
Amount: 83.45 EUR 
Details of Cover: 
Family Single Trip Policy (VHI Company Plan Plus Level 1 member)
Area Covered: Worldwide including USA / Canada
Start Date: 21/12/2017
Date of Return: 15/01/2018
Winter Sport cover included: No
Remove Excess: No
Golf cover included: No
Cancellation cover included: Yes
Gadget cover included: Yes
Baggage cover required: Yes

Issued Date: Sat 11 Nov 2017 15:24

Names of Insured: 
Adults: u, v
Dependent Children 2 - 22: w, x, y

In the event of a Medical Emergency while abroad, JustCover Ltd uses the facilities of Intana Assist Emergency Service.
This is a 24 hour emergency service that can help in the case of a serious medical emergency.
This policy does not cover pre-existing medical conditions. 

Phone no. UK +44 208 865 3100 
It is important to quote reference"JustCover Ltd".

Remember: The first Eur 65,000 of hospital in-patient treatment is covered by your VHI / Laya Healthcare policy. Therefore if you require hospital in-patient treatment, please contact your Private Health Insurer for assistance. 

VISAs for Thailand were fine I think for EU citizens didn't have to do anyhing, for Cambodia . . . were fine you had do do something before travelling but interesting scam at borders Thailand to Cambodia! It's ok but a bit awkward if you know what is happening, VISAs for Vietnam required a bit of work

Watch out  requirement for 6 months - or 1 month ? - validity of passport after exit date from Vietnam

 for visa says one month validity
 "Otherwise passports should have six months validity for visa-free nationals"  so if travelling without visa you need + 6 months
This online application looks legit and looks handier than the other one maybe:

ACCOMODATION . . . . and TRAVEL . . . and ACTIVITIES in the order we did them or investigated them . . . 

Thailand - Bangkok and Koh-Chang

As Tan isn’t really into email, it’s best to call him or send an SMS if you want to book a trek direct with him.  Or you can do so through any tour agent on the island.
Tel: +6689 645 2019  or +6689 832 2531

Day Trek Price
Monday & Friday 1. Klong Son Trek (+ Elephant Trek) 900 Baht   or 1,300 Baht
Tuesday & Saturday 2. Klong Prao Trek 900 Baht
Wednesday & Sunday 3. Khao Jom Trek 1,000 Baht
Thursday 4. Half Day Family Trek 600 Baht
Price include transportation from & to your hotel, lunch, fruit, water, backpack (* Half day trek – lunch not included )

There are two other great guides on Koh Chang:

‘Jungleman Raht‘, a Koh Chang native, leads treks into the hills around Kai Bae valley as well as a hike up to the top of Salak Phet mountain which at 744 metres is the tallest on Koh Chang.
"Jungleman" Raht
E-mail: Tel: (66) 089-763-0832, 080-773-7009

Also Toon, another local based in Pearl beach, runs a good website for trekking – on Koh Chang and offers a variety of treks including the toughest you can do here – the cross island trek and also birdwatching treks for any avid twitchers. 
13/5 Moo4 Koh Chang, Trad, 23170, Thailand
Mobile Phone Number:+66 (0)81-588-3324 (Speak English / ไทย)

E-mail :

วันพฤหัสบดีที่ 7 พฤษภาคม พ.ศ. 2552

Kongoi Jungle Trekking : Biography of jungle guide : ) Raht

Kongoi Jungle Trekking : Biography of jungle guide : ) Raht
1. TAT license # 13/503,
2. Special Guide license # 15/0066 (green card) by Tourism authority of thailand (T.A.T.)
Jungle guide Certificated from Chiangmai Rajabhat University: ecotourism, etnic group, sustainable tourism,
3. Special Guide license # 19/0215 (purple card) Natural tourism on Kohchang by Tourism authority of thailand (T.A.T.)
Sawadee khab or Hello! I am explored guide who do jungle trekking on kohchang more than 8 experienced years. My name is “ Raht ” who will take you to visit the tropical rainforest, which path start walking from the south kohchang northward to middle heart of island. I have to explored the jungle path every year deeper for given you new experience in hidden green forest. There are many flora & fauna that sometime I have never seen them before. And I will take photos for search internet or asking someone who have known well, my friend from USA, Dan have experienced about Boa and reptile who give my knowledged extend. I wish to share opinion with you one of the most beautiful rainforest areas in Thailand.
On the jungle tour, not only I will be accompanied with you, I also look after you in Kongoi Jungle Trekking. Me&friend had explored, make the jungle path as hard as the beautiful, to inviting you to walk in new site every year.
This is a full day excursion and is geared for the more adventurous ones that aren’t afraid to sweat. Would you like to challenge yourself one time for this trip? You’ve traveled this far, why not try experience the spectacular rainforest of Kohchang, the 2nd largest island in Thailand?
I hope to see ‘n make you an enjoy day of “kongoi jungle trekking” when you do valued holiday on Kohchang.
Best regards,
"Jungleman" Raht
E-mail: Tel: (66) 089-763-0832, 080-773-7009

วันอาทิตย์ที่ 26 เมษายน พ.ศ. 2552

Program I: Kohchang Trekking in Kongoi Jungle, South Kohchang (Every day) Price is 800 baht ea. Total time: Exercise by walking about 6-7 hours, one day excursion in the hidden spectacular Tropical Rain forested and Refreshing waterfalls.
08.00-08.20 a.m. pickup from White sand beach, Klongprao beach. 08.30-08.40 a.m. pickup from Kaibae beach, Lonely beach. 08.50-09.00 a.m. pickup from Bailan beach, Bangbao village then I bring you to kongoi jungle, southwest of kohchang.The jungle is located next to Ban Bangbao Fisherman's Village in the south of Koh Chang Island. This hidden, natural paradise is called the Kongoi Jungle. It is the beautiful spectacular rainforest area that is part of the National Park. My name is "Jungleman" Raht. I will safely guide you starting in the south and proceeding northward by foot. We will walk a easy path in the valley that leads us into the middle of the island. The path is a one-way loop that is almost totally in the shade of the rainforest trees. Our day will last about 6-7 hours. Most of the trekking path is a leisurely walk, however, there are some areas that may require some climbing, crossing streams, walking on river stones or atop waterfalls. There are 5 of these Kongoi waterfalls and I have pioneered 10 trials throughout this area to see them. There will be frequent stops along the way to observe wildlife or scenic overlooks. Some of what you can expect to see aside from the waterfalls are the giant tree, flora&fauna, tarzan rope climbing, bamboo forest and herbal plants used locally in Thai culture. There are also several zones known for viewing monkeys, birds, tarantula spider, reptiles, insects and snakes.I wish to share opinion with you one of the most beautiful rainforest areas in Thailand.Pricing for my jungle trek includes lunch, water, soft drinks, snacks and fruit. It also includes transportation to and from your hotel and the National Park fee. In addition, I will provide insect&mosquitoes repellent and the use of rain ponchos, backpacks and first aid supplies if necessary.I hope to see you for a day of trekking and that you enjoy your stay on Koh Chang Island.Best regards,"Jungleman" RahtE-mail: kohchang_trekking@yahoo.comTel: (66) 089-763-0832, 080-773-7009Price including: lunch, water, soft drink, fruit, snack and free taxi.

Program II: The Highest Peak on Kohchang, 744 meters, Salakphet mountain (Every Friday) Price is 1200 baht ea. Total time: walking up about 5 hours and down 2.5 hours for challenged people, one day excursion on forested mountain.
08.00-08.20 a.m. pickup from White sand beach, Klongprao beach. 08.30-08.40 a.m. pickup from Kaibae beach, Lonely beach. 08.50-09.00 a.m. pickup from Bailan beach, Bangbao village then I bring you to kongoi jungle, southwest of kohchang.We will begin our trekking adventure with a leisurely one hour walk to the “Monkey Table” at waterfall #1. Here We will take a short rest while taking in the beauty ‘n tranquility of the water fall. Once rested & refreshed on a mountain view ‘n its surrounding at high level of 330 meters, then we will start our journey up the green mountain through forested.On the way, You can notice the flora & fauna change as we gain altitude up to the peak. we spend time viewing the spectacular plant life of the tropical rainforest at many levels. It will takes about 4 hours ascent to the highest peak at 744 meters. This is the summit of Salakphet Mountain.Once we reach the top of Salaphet Mountain, you will realize why you came here. You will be breathtaking and enjoying the spectacular panorama 360 degrees view of the lush, jungle covered terrain as it meets the sea. You will have the opportunity to look out the brilliant blue ocean and down upon the birds fly on the sky as if in heaven! This is where you reap your reward for enduring the challenging trek up the green mountain.Finally, we will descent down two an haft hours the same path return to the “Monkey Table”, and then return upon a different jungle path out to the car and finally take everyone back to hotel.This is a full day excursion and is geared for the more adventurous ones that aren’t afraid to sweat. Would you like to challenge yourself one time for this trip? You’ve traveled this far to visit Kohchang, why not experience the summit of the 2nd largest island in Thailand? You will be accompanied by the jungle guide named Raht, an 8 years experienced, who takes care of you on the jungle tour. We explore the jungle path a bit hard and challenge you to walk as high as your dreams.Best regards,"Jungleman" Tel: (66) 089-763-0832, 080-773-7009Price including: lunch, 3waters, soft drink, fruit, snack and free taxi.

Koh Chang Full Day Trekking Tour
Klong Plu – Than Mayom Waterfall trail (The western to the eastern of the island )
          Klong Plu – Than Mayom Waterfall trail is the most adventures on the island. Distance of over 12 kilometers of rainforest full of wildlife and plant species.

          This program from Klong Plu Waterfall. The first is a short walk from the stream to the cold water. Later they moved up and down about three mountains. The highest mountain about 500 meters.
          In this area you are going through the rainforest and dry evergreen forest. You will see a clear difference in plant species. If we walk to a quiet enough, you may see wildlife such as wild boar, barking deer, monkeys and langur, too.
          About 3-4 hours from the beginning. You  will  walk down to the end. This area, you will see the origins of Than Mayom waterfall, a few people have seen. After we walk to the top of Than Mayom waterfall in the heart of the jungle wristwatch that will certainly review other groups.
          If we went to a quiet enough, you may see wildlife such as wild boar, barking deer, monkeys and langur as well.
          Only Monday, Wednesday and Friday
          1,200 ฺbaht/person
          Price Includes : Transpotation, Backpack, Mosquito Repellent, Drinking Water and Fee.
          Pick you up from your hotel between 8:30 - 9:00 am.   Contact Us / +66(0)81-588-3324
Overnight Jungle Trekking Tour 
          The first is a short walk from the stream to the cold water. Later they moved up and down about three mountains. The highest mountain about 500 meters. After you will walk down to the origins of Than Mayom Waterfall and sleep overthere. You can swim while we are setting up camp and cooking foods. Nighttime, You can shine a light to see wildlife, If lucky you may see Slow loris and Civet. In the morning you will wake up and see the sunshine. Around you is filled with the sound of birds,and had breakfast and coffee.When storage is complete. We will travel through the beautiful jungle for about 4-5 hours.
2,000 ฺbaht/person ( minimum 2 people)
Price Includes : Transpotation, Tent/hammock, Mosquito Repellent, Drinking Water, 3 Meals and Fee.
Pick you up from your hotel between 9:00 - 10:00 am.
Contact Us / +66(0)81-588-3324

Khao Chom Prasat2 Summit Tour (The Sharpest Peak on Koh Chang, 626meters)
          Climbing up to the top from White Sand Beach. A 5-6 hr walk through the rainforest. All the way to the outstanding peak with 360 degree view of Koh Chang and other island of the national park.   On the way up you will see great views,wild plants, insects and birds on the trailside.   This program is specially for those who find themselves fascinated with adventure and the discover of nature.
1,000 ฺbaht/person ( minimum 2 people)
Price Includes : Transpotation, Backpack, Mosquito Repellent, Drinking Water, Meal and Fee.
Pick you up from your hotel between 8:30 - 9:00 am.
Contact Us / +66(0)81-588-3324

Khao Lam Summit Tour (The most favorite mountain on Koh Chang, 605 meters)
          Walking up from Salakphet village.   A 4-5 hr walk through the rainforest.   On the mountain is the most great view of Koh Chang. Overthere you will see all of Salakphet gulf and other side Bang Bao village. You can sleep there if you want to see the most buetiful sunrise at Koh Chang.
1,200 ฺbaht/person ( minimum 2 people)
Price Includes : Transpotation, Backpack, Mosquito Repellent, Drinking Water, Meal and Fee.
Pick you up from your hotel between 8:30 - 9:00 am.
Contact Us / +66(0)81-588-3324

13/5 Moo4 Koh Chang
Koh Chang

Mobile Phone Number:+66 (0)81-588-3324 (Speak English / ไทย)

Information:For booking,
E-mail :
Call : +66 (0)81-588-3324 (Speak English / ไทย)

Koh Chang Animal List

1. Slow Loris (Nycticebus coucang)
2. Pig-tailed Macaque (Macaca nemestrina)
3. Crab-eating Macaque (Macaca fascicularis)
4.Silvered Langur (Semnopithecus cristatus)
5.Asian Palm Civet (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus)
6.Red Muntjac (Muntiacus muntjak)
7.Boar (Sus scrofa)
8.Sunda pangolin (Manis javanica)

Koh Chang Bird List

1. Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) 
2. Black-capped Kingfisher (Halcyon pileata) 
3. Greater Coucal (Centropus sinensis) 
4. Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopacea) 
5. Indian Roller (Coracias benghalensis) 
6. Dollarbird (Eurystomus orientalis) 
7. Vernal Hanging-parrot (Loriculus vernalis) 
8. Himalayan Swiftlet (Collocalia brevirostris)
9. Asian Palm Swift (Cypsiurus balasensis) 
10. Pacific (Fork-tailed) Swift (Apus pacificus) 
11. House Swift (Apus affinis) 
12. Brown-backed Needletail (Hirundapus giganteus) 
13. Pink-necked Green Pigeon (Treron vernans) 
14. Thick-billed Green Pigeon (Treron curvirostra) 
15. Emerald Dove (Chalcophaps indica) 
16. White-breasted Waterhen (Amaurornis phoenicurus) 
17. Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus) 
18. White-bellied Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster) 
19. Shikra (Accipter badius) 
20. Crested Serpent Eagle (Spilornis cheela) 
21. Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) 
22. Great Egret (Casmerodius albus) 
23. Intermediate Egret (Mesophoyx intermedia) 
24. Pacific Reef Egret (Egretta sacra) 
25. Chinese Pond Heron (Ardeola bacchus) 
26. Little Heron (Butorides striatus)
27. Brown Shrike (Lanius cristatus)
28. Ashy Drongo (Dicrurus leucophaeus)
29. Crow-billed Drongo (Dicrurus annectans)
30. Greater Racket-tailed Drongo (Dicrurus paradiseus)
31. Hair-crested (Spangled) Drongo (Dicrurus hottentottus)
32. Large-billed crow (Corvus macrorhynchos)
33. Black-naped Oriole (Oriolus chinensis)
34. Pied Fantail (Rhipidura javanica)
35. Blue Rock Trush (Monticola solitarius)
36. Asian Brown Flycatcher (Muscicapa dauurica)
37. Red-throated Flycatcher (Ficedula parva)
38. Oriental Magpie Robin (Copsychus saularis)
39.Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis)
40. Hill Myna (Gracula religiosa)
41. Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)
42. Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica)
43. Black-headed Bulbul (Pycnonotus atriceps)
44. Black-crested Bulbul (Pycnonotus melanicterus)
45. Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier)
46. Radde’s Warbler (Phylloscopus schwarzi)
47. Arctic Warbler (Phylloscopus borealis)
48. Striped Tit-babbler (Macronous gularis)
49. Scarlet-backed Flowerpecker (Dicaeum cruentatum)
50.Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis)
51. Olive-backed Sunbird (Nectarinia jugularis)
52. Purple-throated Sunbird (Nectarinia sperata)
53. Crimson Sunbird (Aethopyga siparaja)
54. Grey Wagtail (Monticilla cinerea)
55. Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer Montanus)

Hike in Koh Chang Dec 25 to Dec 31 ?

Organising my family who was going to go was tricky :)
Mix of adults and kids.

Wed, Dec 20, 2017, 1:37 PM

to kohchang_trekking, me
Hello, Sawatdee khrap,

We are an Irish/Australian/English family and we are on holiday in Koh Chang from Monday 25 December to Sunday 31 December.
We would love to do some hiking while we are in Koh Chang.

We are interested in a family hike one day and perhaps a more strenuous hike another day for some of us.

Our group is:
 7 adults (from 19years old to 44 years old).
 6 younger members ages: 15, 12, 12, 11, 9, 9 
We are all reasonably fit and do some hiking and sports and scouting and swimming . . . .

I want to ask you are you available on these dates to guide a hike?
And can you cater for our group size?

Please send me email in response :)
My Irish phone is xxxxxxx
We will get a Thai phone when we arrive.

Thank you very much,
Khawp Khun Mak Khrap,

Thu, Dec 21, 2017, 4:05 AM

to me
Hello ( sawadee khab ) James,
It’s very nice to hear from you, I have been an available on that day right now, on these day for your group should be :-
Pro 3 medium level is crossing the mount Kaibae 400 meters to Klongprao jungle, 6-7 hours, it cost adl 800 baht ea, chl 500 baht ea.
Pro 2 highest peak can crossing from bangbao to Salaphet village, 7-9 hours, it cost adl 1250 baht ea, chl 800 baht ea. ( incl : national park fee or/ I pay for Taxi when crossing the peak ) 
Remark : all price include lunch water snack. 
  If you are booking between 23-24 before the other group booking that will be better for me, I can re arrange the schedule for your group. 
Deposit: 30-50 % of amount

Best Regards, 
Guide Raht

Sat, Dec 23, 2017, 3:24 PM

to me
I have a group go to Salaphet mount on Monday please call me 0897630832 if you would like to join with me.
Best Regards,

Sun, Dec 24, 2017, 12:21 AM

to Raht9
Thank you guide Raht,
Monday does not suit me I am afraid, but I would like to join in hike with you some day from Tuesday to Saturday. Just 3 or 4 or 5 of us. I am arriving in koh chang today. Thank you, khawp khun krap, James

Sun, Dec 24, 2017, 11:41 PM

to me
Please tell me soon what the day your group would like to trek 
The trek : 700 baht ea. /Adult
     500 baht ea /child 

B Rgds 

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 3:59 AM

to Raht9
Thank you for your reply.
Yes, please can we go on hike, is tomorrow(Tuesday)possible? 6 of us would like to go. 4 adults, one 15 year old, one 11 year old. I have Thai mobile phone number is +66943413410 . . 
Khawp khun krap

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 4:03 AM

to me
Jungleman" RahtE-mail: Tel: (66) 089-763-0832, 080-773-7009

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 7:25 AM

to me
Tomorrow I go easy trekon Kaibae jungle. Car can pick up 07.40 am
Please let me know if you would to join our group.

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 7:42 AM

to Raht9
Yes, that is good. We would like to go. 
Pick us up at KB resort ok?
There are 9 of us that would like to go. 5 adults, 1 teenager, 3 kids aged 12 they are good hikers. So total 5700 taxi and lunch and water included ok?
Wear good shoes for hiking and bring swim togs and towel, yes?
Khawp khun krap,

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 7:56 AM

to Raht9

7 of us would like to go.

5 adults 1 teen 1 kid.
So total 4700 ok?
Sorry about the numbers changing, this is a pretty definate number now.

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 8:14 AM

to me
Ok that right, pick up time 08.40-08.50 am. At KB resort Kaibae area.

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 8:17 AM

to Raht9
Sounds good. See you then.
Can you say name of hike and approximate distance? Thank you. James

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 8:30 AM

to me
8 km approximate and high 200 meters totally.

Mon, Dec 25, 2017, 9:51 AM

to Raht9
Thank you.
Sounds good.

Cambodia - Poi Pet border - taxi to Battambang - river trip to Siem Riep - bus to Phnom Penh - boat to Chau Doc 

Cambodia jan1st to jan 6th

Bus from Koh Chang to Cambodian border.We wanted to go to different smaller border crossing BUT . . . myeh.

Taxi from Poi Pet to Battambang.
Introduction to Cambodian roads and traffic! :-o
Arrived evening time.
Check-in at Blue Diamond

We settled into hotel, had a swim in pool and then walked in to Battambang.
It was dark and quite interesting walking in mix of quiet and busy roads.
Battambang is a big town/city.
We explored a little, found a restaurant
Tuk tuk back to hotel

We arranged a tuk tuk driver for the next day with hotel.

Buffalo/rice cafe
Bamboo train               
    Circus ? we did not go to
    Green Orange Canoe trip ?
Killing fields, Bat cave               

9am slow boat (Angkor Express ;)  to Siem Reap       
Arrive at . . . harbour, met by a guy driving a big ish toyota taxi van.
Drive to house at Siem Reap
4pm arrive at Savant's house           
5pm collect Angkor Wat 3-day entry tickets       
 sunset at ???       
food? :)

Siam Riep Temples,
Siam Riep city
Cambodian Landmine museum   

Krong Siem Reap

Check In 

Mon, January 1, 2018 
Check in time is 12PM (noon) - 11PM
Check Out 
Fri, January 5, 2018 
Flexible check in time

Touring the Angkor wat ourselves by bike would be good,
BUT the bikes might all have punctiures!
Bring puncture repair kit and bike pump yourselves maybe.
OR we did find a puncture repair kit later in a shop in Siem Riep!
Guys at side of road do puncture repairs the old skool way , . . but we ended up not doing that.
We had 2 working bikes from this accomodation.

Sambath looked after us in Tuk tuk:

We got a Giant Ibis BUS from Siem Riep to . . Phnom Penh . . 

From: "12Go Asia"
Date: 5 Jan 2018 20:32
Subject: Booking confirmation #12go1515158958879

Dear James Coleman,

Please find your detailed itinerary attached to this mail.

Please print or otherwise have your booking number on hand when exchange to the Giant Ibis Transport ticket at the Siem Reap Giant Ibis Main station (or as advised below).

You are going Siem Reap Giant Ibis Main-Phnom Penh Giant Ibis, 07 Jan 2018, 09:45 (Arrival 16:45)

*Please note that arrival times are not guaranteed. They are estimated, based on the operator's provisions, experience and statistics. They may vary. Please do not base your connections on these figures, or at least add enough time till your next departure. We are not responsible if your trip took longer or your arrived before the time mentioned*

General Information

Free ride on adult lap for infants under 2 years of age. If your child older than 2 years - full price applies.
Please come at least 30 minutes before departure to the boarding point. Cambodia VISA information
Giant Ibis charges a 5 USD fee for batch visa processing at the border. If you do not have a visa you need to pay 35 + 5 = 40 USD for a tourist visa and 40 + 5 = 45 USD for a business visa. If you already have a valid visa in your passport there is no such fee. The facilitated batch processing guarantees a smooth border crossing. Taking Giant Ibis on a cross-border you do not have the option to go yourself through immigration, as it would disrupt the VIP process.

Vietnam VISA information
Vietnam does not offer a Visa on Arrival (VOA) for land border crossings. You must have already arranged for a Vietnamese entry visa should you require one or you will not be allowed to board the bus.

Total paid USD 75

Thank you very much for using 12Go Asia service!

Best regards
12Go Asia Team

We did not go with Mekong Eyes:

The boat companies will try get you to fit in with their schedule a bit! :-) Some are quite basic.

Phuc – Operator of Mekong Eyes Company.
Thank you very much for your inquiry. We are more than happy to welcome you on Mekong Eyes Cruise which is available on 07 Jan 2018.
But our shortest trip from Siem Reap is around 06 days/05 nights. It’s a combination of tour on land and 01 night on board.
We would like to send you the following information for the trip with 02 options:
- Boat’s name: Mekong Classic
- Trip duration : 06 days/05 nights (01night on board, 04 nights in hotel on land)
- OPTION 01: Luxury hotels (04-05 stars)
- Price for a double or twin room (02 persons): US$ 2556. (A deposit of US$ 500 will be required upon your reservation)
- OPTION 02: Regular hotels (02-03 stars)
- Price for a double or twin room (02 persons): US$ 2164. (A deposit of US$ 500 will be required upon your reservation)
- Note: there will be a surcharge of US$ 10/pax for the transfer to Tan Son Nhat airport (or 15$/pax for transfer from pier to Cambodia’s airport) as request.
- The itinerary would look like the following:
                                                (6 days/5 nights)
07 Jan
Angkorwatt (Meals: L)
Pick up at the hotel. Full day tours in Angkor Watt
Night at hotel in Siemreap
08 Jan
Angkorwatt (Meals: B/L)
Pick up at the hotel. Full day tours in Angkor Watt
Evening at free disposal
Night at hotel in Siemreap
09 Jan
Siemreap- Phnompenh (Meals: B/L)
Pick up at the hotel. Full day trip to Phnompenh via Kompong Thom
Evening at free disposal
Night at Amanjaya PANCAM
10 Jan
Phnompenh- Chau Doc (Meals: B)
Pick up at the hotel, spend half day for Phnompenh city tour (option 1 Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda, National Museum or Wat Phnom or option 2 Toul Sleng prison and killing fields tour)
Transfer to Sisowath pier
Departure of speed boat to Chau Doc
Night at hotel in Chau Doc
11 Jan
Chau Doc- Can Tho- Cai Be (Meals: B/ L/D)
Pick-up at the hotel in Chau Doc. Drive to Can Tho (shuttle bus service)
Boarding of the cruise vessel and check-in
Panorama cruise and lunch on board around 13.00
Guided land excursion – walk in orchards and small villages
Return to the boat for refreshment and to enjoy the sunset on the top deck
Dinner on board. Night on board
12 Jan
Cai Be- Sai Gon (Meals: B/L)
Morning cruise and morning tea break served on board
Check-out of cabin. Excursion on rowing sampan, exploring small canals of Tan Phong islet, coconut candy producing family.
Bicycle ride on back roads or walk in a small village along the Mekong Canals
Departure to Saigon
Lunch at Mekong Rest Stop
~ 15.30
Arrival in Saigon
Important Notice:
Please be aware that visa on arrival for Vietnam are NOT available at Tan Chau border post.
Visa free entry (max. 15 days) to Vietnam is only applicable for some nationalities. Please check with Vietnamese authorities for more information.
Kind regards,
Ly Huu Phuc (Mr.)
Sales Consultant.
Mekong Eyes Cruise

we would like to suggest another tour which is available on 08 Jan 2018:

Boat’s name: Mekong Classic

- Trip duration : 03 days/02 nights (01 night on board, 01 night in hotel on land)
- Price for a double or twin room (02 persons)US$ 968. (A deposit of US$ 200 will be required upon your reservation)
- Note: there will be a surcharge of US$ 10/pax for the transfer to Tan Son Nhat airport (or 15$/pax for transfer from pier to Cambodia’s airport) as request.
- The itinerary would look like the following:


08 Jan
Phnompenh-Chau Doc (Meals: none)
Pick up at the hotel in Phnompenh to Sisowath pier
Departure of speed boat to Chau Doc
Night at Victoria hotel in Chau Doc
09 Jan
Chau Doc- Can Tho- Cai Be (Meals: B/ L/D)
Pick-up at the hotel in Chau Doc. Drive to Can Tho (shuttle bus service)
Boarding of the cruise vessel and check-in
Panorama cruise and lunch on board
Guided land excursion – walk in orchards and small villages
Return to the boat for refreshment and to enjoy the sunset on the top deck
Dinner on board. Night on board
10 Jan
Cai Be- Sai Gon (Meals: B/L)
Morning cruise and morning tea break served on board
Check-out of cabin; excursion on rowing sampan, exploring small canals of Tan Phong islet, coconut candy producing family
Bicycle ride on back roads or walk in a small village along the Mekong Canals
Departure to Saigon
Lunch at Mekong Rest Stop
~ 15.30
Arrival in Saigon

 Blue Cruiser. Please remember that we are GMT + 7h.
Here is the information that you submitted.

If this request is submitted after working hours or weekends (for a nextday departure)( please call Mr Quang 0914162036 in Chau Doc to confirm availability or Mr. Thay in Phnom Penh at 016 868887

We travelled on this Blue cruiser boat from Phnom Penh to Chau Doc

Adult Travellers: 5

Children 5-8 (1/2 price):

Children under 5 (free): 
Date of Trip: 08.01.2018
Direction: Phnom Penh - Chau Doc


General Information
Phnom Penh to Chau Doc ($44 USD per person)
**** All passengers entering Vietnam from Cambodia must have appropriate Visa (Visa's are not issued at Border Crossing) ****
Blue Cruiser boat pick up passengers at Bluecruiser Representative Office at 13:30PM. Boat leave Phnom Penh International Port (Sisowath Street) on Tone Le Sap River to Khoorm Som Nor & Vinh xuong border gate. Passengers shall make complete entry procedures at Vinh Xuong (visa must be obtained beforehand) then go on Hau River to Chau Doc. Visa to Vietnam takes 2 days processing at Embassy in Phnom Penh.
**** All passengers entering Vietnam from Cambodia must have appropriate Visa (Visa's are not issued at Border Crossing) ****
Effective from 01/July/2016 to 30/06/2017, visitors from the following countries may not need a visa to Vietnam for less than 15 days: Germany, France, the UK, Italy, and Spain.

Chau Doc to Phnom Penh ($55 USD per person)
 Departure by Bluecruiser boat at 7:00am on Hau River to Vinh Xuong border gate. Passengers shall make complete entry procedures at Vinh Xuong, then goes on Tone Le Sap River to Phnom Penh International Port (Sisowath street). Finished travel. Visa for entry into Cambodia can be obtained at the border, the boat staff will handle the visa process, cost for Visa is $30.00 USD and processing fee is $4.00 USD.

Welcome to Bluecruiser high-speed boat
Cruise with the wind on the Mekong Delta

 Dear  Fionnuala Callan
Thank you very much for your interest to our services.
Our boat is available for you on 08/1/2018 from Phnom Penh to Chau Doc.
Please provide your Hotel information in Phnom Penh 1 day before trip departure so that we may send our guide to check your passport and collect payment. If you agree to price and conditions, we will send the booking confirmation for you as an attached file.
Route: Blue Cruiser boat pick up passengers at Phnom Penh International Port (Sisowath Street) at 13:30PM. Boat leave on Tone Le Sap River to KhoormSomNor&Vinhxuong border gate. Passengers shall make complete entry procedures at Vinh Xuong(visa must be obtained beforehand)then go on Hau River to Chau Doc. The boat brings passengers to go along Mekong River and across  landscapes as: Tan Chau, … Finished travel at Chau Doc – Viet nam around 17:30 PM.
The price: 44 usd/ticket/ per person.
- Children ages 5 to 8 are 1/2 price
- Children under age 5 are free.
This price is inclusive : mineral water , hot coffee, hot tea, soft lunch, wet tissue  and insurance for passengers (exclusive: hotel, meal, visa, car, visiting fees and any service not mentioned).
I will send a booking confirmation for you, once you accept this option we will reserve your seat on the boat. Payment by cash when you arrive at Phnom Penh.
Looking forward to hearing from you as soon as!
Do not hesitate to contact us if you need more further information.
If you are interested in this option, please advise our sales office sales@ bluecruiser.comwith number of passengers and date required and we will be pleased to provide a quotation for this portion of the trip.
Experience the Mekong Delta with our modern, high-speed boats, and our expert and knowledgeable crews.
We also provide contract service for businesses requiring frequent river transport of employees.
We speak English, Vietnamese and Cambodian.

Thanks & Best regard,

Thanh Thuyet (Mr.)

Blue Cruiser ®

VIETNAM:                                                CAMBODIA:                                                                      USA:
59/3B Pham Viet Chanh, Dist. 1           No 38, St. 90., Sangkat Wath Phnom                           John Wyman
Ho Chi Minh City                                     DownPenh, Phnom Penh                                            
Tel: (84 8) 3.9260 253, 3.9260 290       Tel: : (855)  0236333666– Mobile: 016 868887        1 6145825299        .
Fax : (84 8) 3.9260 173                                                

Thanks! Your booking is confirmed at The Mekong Dragon Boutique Hotel
Confirmation number: 1929069192
PIN code: 5018 

Thanks Fionnuala!

Your booking in Phnom Penh is confirmed.

The Mekong Dragon Boutique Hotel is expecting you on 7 January
You’ll pay the property directly. The Mekong Dragon Boutique Hotel handles all payments, so please check below for more information
Make changes to your booking or ask the property a question in just a few clicks
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The Mekong Dragon Boutique Hotel Outstanding value for money on the dates you have chosen.
 Value Deal
No. 134, Street 51, Beoung Keng Kang I, Chamkar Mon, Phnom Penh, , Cambodia -
Phone: +85516688860
Email property
Can't see this map? Click here to view location and directionsHotel information
Your reservation1 night, 2 rooms
Your group3 adults, 2 children (16 and 12 years old)
Check-in (from 14:00)
Check-out (until 12:00)
2 rooms
10 % VAT is included.
10 % service charge is included.
2 % City tax is included.
Total priceUS$105.35
 We Price Match