How to Travel Southeast Asia For 2 Months on a Budget!

Find out how I went on a backpacking budget trip across Southeast Asia for 2 months with just 50,000Php, or just $1,000!


8 Countries – 60 Days – 18 Destinations – 1 Adventure

  1. Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
  2. Legian/ Kuta Area, Bali, Indonesia
  3. Bangkok, Thailand
  4. Phuket, Thailand
  5. Yangon, Myanmar
  6. Bagan, Myanmar
  7. Singapore
  8. Vang Vieng, Laos
  9. Luang Prabang, Laos
  10. Vientiane, Laos
  11. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  12. Siem Reap, Cambodia
  13. Phnom Penh, Cambodia
  14. Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam
  15. Danang, Vietnam
  16. Hoi An, Vietnam
  17. Cua Dai Beach, Vietnam
  18. Hanoi, Vietnam

Travel Dates: 09.13.2016 – 11.13.2016


Hello dearest readers,

So it had been two awesome months across Southeast Asia – that’s a total of around 16 flights, 20+ hostels, 18 destinations, 8 countries, and a thousand miles and countless footsteps in just 60 days! Do you think you could do it?

Don’t worry, I’m here to share with you my itinerary along with many budget advice and travel tips that you could use should you decide to follow my journey in the future! Continue reading

Day 4: Traveling to Brunei from Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia by Ferry

If you’d like to cross the boarders of Kota Kinabalu & Brunei, I suggest you start early. We took a taxi to Point Jesselton Ferry Terminal at around 7:00am from where we are staying at Stay Inn.

Travel tip: Be there earlier if you are traveling on a weekend as there are greater number of passengers.

Upon getting to Jesselton terminal, proceed to counter 4 for Labuan and Brunei ferry service and buy a ticket to (KK-Labuan and Labuan-Brunei) for RM60 (adult) and RM43 (children – 11 years and below).  Another RM3.60 (adult) and RM1.80 (children) will be collected as terminal fee.

Jesselton Point, Kota Kinabalu

Jesselton Point, Kota Kinabalu

Continue reading

(Day 3) Celebrating Chinese New Year at Kota Kinabalu: Island Excursion at Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park& City Tour

It’s January 31 – Happy Chinese New Year! Let’s all welcome the Year of the Wooden Horse, which also happens to be my animal birth year also!

Chinese New Year 2014

Chinese New Year 2014

This travelogue is part of a travel series for my birthday trip to Kota Kinabalu & Brunei, if you haven’t read the previous posts, here’s the link &

Island Hopping at Kota Kinabalu

After braving the mountains of Kota Kinabalu on a cold and chilly weather yesterday, we now will proceed to its serene waters & majestic islands.

Island Hopping at Kota Kinabalu

Island Hopping at Kota Kinabalu

Kota Kinabalu has a few gems lying less than 30 minutes off its coast. A bundle of small islands that are a part of Tunku Abdul Rahman Park that are connected via speed boat make for a great day trip and break from the city.

Tunku Abdul Rahman Park (TARP) consists of a cluster of islands comprising Pulau Gaya, Pulau Sapi, Pulau Manukan, Pulau Mamutik and Pulau Sulug. The five islands of the Marine Park are characterized by shallow waters, sumptuous coral gardens and all boast splendid white sandy beaches. The largest being Gaya Island, while Mamutik is the smallest island in the group.

To make things more convenient, we also availed a package tour for the island hopping covering the 3 Islands of Manukan, Mamutik & Sapi for only 90MYR perhaps the cheapest I found as majority of the tour cost around 130-160MYR.

Port for the Island Hopping

Port for the Island Hopping

Kota Kinabalu Island Hopping Tour (3 Islands) : RM90.00/ pax

Schedule: Day Trip

08.30 am – Pick up at preferred hotel & Transfer to Sutera Habour Resort Jetty.
09.00 am – Speedboat journey of a 15 minutes ride to Island Arrive at’Mamutik/manukan/sapi’ Island. Free & Easy
3.00 pm – Transfer to Mainland.*** The day will be at you own leisure .
*** Water sports such as Para sailing, Windsurfing, Kayaking and etc are available at your own expenses.

Tour inclusive of:

  • Island boat return transfer (On Time Boat Departure)
  • 1 way land return transfer
  • Terminal fees and Sabah Park entrance fees
Items to bring:

  • Sun block lotion
  • Towel
  • Personal toiletries
  • Swimming attire
  • Flip flops
  • Extra clothing

Contact: Borneo BeacHouse (Backpackers)` (look for Nick)
Tel: +6088 218331

Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park Islands

1. Manukan Island

Manukan Kota Kinabalu

Manukan Kota Kinabalu

Manukan Island, which is shaped like a boomerang or some said a dolphin, is the 2nd largest island (51 acre) of the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park (TARP). The island boasts a pristine rainforest and long stretch of beautiful white sandy beaches, surrounded by protected coral reefs.

Manukan Island

Manukan Island

Another thing I loved about Manukan Island is that it’s the first beach island that I’ve visited with Pine Trees in it. So I guess the weather here must be cold to support such.

Manukan Pine Trees

Manukan Pine Trees

Manukan Island beach

Manukan Island Pine Trees






2. Mamutik Island

Compare to Manukan and Sapi, Mamutik is the least crowded, yet it offers almost everything the other two have.

Mamutik Island

Mamutik Island


Lunch is often served here for guests who availed tours inclusive of meals. Mamutik Island offers BBQ style cuisine, with prawns, fish and chicken are the main selections. While having a good time with the tasty meal, guests also get to enjoy the cool breeze blowing in from the sea.

Happy Chinese New Year from Kota Kinabalu!

Happy Chinese New Year from Kota Kinabalu!

3. Sapi Island

Sapi Island, which is shaped like a star, is smaller than Manukan, but is the 2nd most developed and popular island of the Tunku Abdul Marine Park (TARP). The island boasts white sandy beaches and crystal clear turqoise waters. Voted as one of the best snorkeling spots among the TARP islands, there are many colourful fishes and corals that you can find here.

Sapi Island

Sapi Island

Around Sapi Island

Around Sapi Island

Beach Bumming

Beach Bumming

After our Island hopping, we still have time to go around the city since tomorrow we’ll already be leaving for Brunei. So here are some landmarks that are worth visiting to, note though that we haven’t visited all.

Kota Kinabalu City Tour

Jesselton Point

Jesselton Point

Blue marlin statue erected near the waterfront

Blue marlin statue erected near the waterfront

The rest of the City that you could explore:


  1. Atkinson Clock Tower
  2. Sabah Tourism Board
  3. Sabah Museum
  4. Heritage Village
  5. State Mosque
  6. City Mosque
  7. Menara Tum Mustafah
  8. Sabah State Assembly
  9. Central Market
  10. KK Plaza

Day 2 – A Cold Birthday Trip to Kota Kinabalu: Exploring Poring Hot Springs & Mt Kinabalu Park

It’s January 30 – Hurray! Happy birthday to me!

This travelogue is part of a travel series for my birthday trip to Kota Kinabalu & Brunei, if you haven’t read the first part, here’s the link

Birthday Luck Continues..

Our day started early. I woke up with a drizzling rain outside, quite hoping for the sun to shine later, and worried for we haven’t brought any rain gears with us in case this weather will worsen.

Luckily at around 8am, Mr Sunshine already showed up and the rain stopped though the weather’s still cloudy with dark clouds hovering from a distance.

Kota Kinabalu Roads

Kota Kinabalu Roads

Guess my luck still’s with me, for we found out that the tour group we booked had already left and that perhaps there’s no more room for me and my buddy – so instead of joining us with them, we were offered a private tour – a small car with only the 2 of us (my travel buddy & I), and the tour guide, Nicolas, and his fiancé.

Sounds good to me for we could manage our own time, talk to the guide and have him all to ourselves without any other people joining the tour – for the price of a regular tour (more expensive to really opt for a private tour I guess).

So here’s our itinerary for today.

Mt. Kinabalu Park and Poring Hot Spring Tour

  • 8.00am: Pick up from hotel
  • 10.00am: Reach and explore Kinabalu Park.
  • 12.00pm: Lunch and head to Poring Hot Spring
  • 2.00pm: Canopy walk and leisure time in Poring Hot Spring
  • 4.00pm: Head back to Kota Kinabalu city

What to Bring:

  • – Camera
  • – Swimming Attire / Towels / Toiletries
  • – Extra Clothings
  • – Comfortable Walking Shoe
  • – Flip-flop
  • – Sun-Block Lotion / Insect Repellant / Hat / Binocular
  • **Temperature up in the mountain can dropped to 15c-25c during the day, so please bring some warm clothing to cover up.

Poring Hot Spring Tour Pictures

Poring Hot Spring Tour

Poring Hot Spring Tour












Around Mt Kinabalu Park







Birthday Gift

After the tour, Nicolas even gave me a gift from the travel agency knowing it’s my birthday today. So say hello to my newest pal, the Probosci Monkey – one of the popular species of monkeys known in Kota Kinabalu.


Where to stay in Kota Kinabalu?

After our tour, we checked in at Stay Inn Hotel – Quality yet affordable hotel at the heart of the city

This one’s already a 4-star hotel complete with amenities and strategically located just near the Seafood Restaurant – for only 1,000Php per night for 2pax (so that’s like 500Php per person), value for money indeed!

Eating Around Kota Kinabalu

The rest of the evening was spent exploring the city, looking for places to eat.

Here’s what dinner looks like here at their Seafood Restaurant – where literally they have their foods ‘fresh’ as in fresh from water, alive and kicking pa nga in an aquarium. Just choose whichever you want and have it cooked.

Tried this Nasi (which means rice) Goreng (meaning beef) USA

Nasi Goreng USA (8MYR)

Some soto ayam..