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March 1, 2019

Sydney has the one magnificent advantage lauded by real estate agents: location, location, location. The city spreads around a series of convoluted bays, indentations, and coastal cliffs and beaches, and it could hardly be easier to explore on...

Manisan: Tropical Fruit Delights
February 1, 2019

Eating fresh fruit may be good for you, but it doesn’t need to be served up the same way every day. Preserving is a convenient way of getting the nutritional benefits while adding a bit of...

February 1, 2019

Any time I step foot in Solo, I cannot help feeling excited and, at the same time, very peaceful. The slow rhythm of the city, as well as the warm and friendly nature of the people, makes me feel wholeheartedly welcome, and a world away from the hustle and bustle of Jakarta. While it is renowned for its rich Javanese culture, Solo is not all about batik, luscious delicacies or even its celebrated abundance of well-preserved historic destinations....

January 30, 2019

Shinkansen bullet trains sleek in and out of Nagoya Station. Darting back and forth, to Tokyo one way and Osaka the other, they’re as quick as greased lightning. Soon, the trip to Nagoya will be even quicker for international travelers, when Garuda Indonesia starts direct flights from Jakarta to the region’s Chubu Centrair International Airport in March.Nagoya’s airport-to-city express trains take about 30 minutes, a fraction of the two,...

November 29, 2018

We’re passing the green hills of Limburg, the most southern province of the Netherlands. Belgium and Germany are nearby. The train stops at the town of Valkenburg, situated in a valley cut out by the small river Geul.On entering the railway station, built in the shape of a small castle, I find a pleasant café. It’s the oldest existing station building in the country, the waiter tells me, built from marlstone – marl is something I will...

The Story of Dodol
October 29, 2018

There’s a cultural revolution in the narrative power of food. It’s all about the story, and even Michelin-star chefs are succumbing to the tales of taste, to kitchen myths and the heritage of home cooking. In Indonesia, cultural traditions and cuisine go hand in hand, and the more powerful the fable, the better the flavour.Enter, dodol. This curiously named toffeesoft, caramel-flavoured, elegantly sweet, small and chewy confection goes back...

October 3, 2018

Ipoh got rich quick thanks to its tin reserves. Though the mining industry is long gone, the one-time El Dorado is capitalising on other treasures: its rich heritage and happening foodie scene.Nestled snugly among limestone hills in the Kinta Valley, Ipoh is two hours north of Kuala Lumpur on the epic railroad that runs all the way from Singapore to Bangkok. The Eastern & Oriental Express train service shunts back and forth on this very...

August 31, 2018

There has been an evolution in the heart of Southeast Sulawesi, transforming a hidden port into a modern city with iconic architecture nestled around a bay. I stopped by to witness the Kendari dynamic.A decade after my first visit, the face of Kendari has truly changed. Then, the views across most of the city consisted of flat and peaceful peatlands. Now, Kendari is awash with new colours. It’s like visiting somewhere totally different.A...