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Tuesday, 21 November 2017

The Essential A to Z Guide For Those Travelling Abroad

Whether you are thinking about travelling abroad or perhaps considering spending an extended time in a particular country, you may be planning your next journey. Now, while other websites are content to give you a simple overview of advice, we are going one better. This article is a journey unto itself, braving the scales of the alphabet to give you an A to Z guide to all the travel tips we can think of. Quite how we are going to traverse the obstacles that are Q and X is something you are going have to find out for yourself as you read on. Let’s go!

A is for Adventure


Every travel experience should be an adventure. Once you have set foot off the plane (other modes of transport are available), a whole new world awaits. The sights, the sounds, the smells… you need to be prepared for them all. We listed some of the remarkable places we think you should visit at http://www.calistaleahliew.com/, but wherever you go, make sure you carry the spirit of adventure with you, and take a few risks.

B is for Beware

As mentioned, travelling is about taking risks, but you do need to be careful. There is some useful advice at https://www.travelsupermarket.com for staying safe abroad, but wherever you go, do your research beforehand. You probably don’t want to head to a war zone, for example, and as a tourist, you are going to stick out like a sore thumb when venturing around a new country.

C is for Cruises

Get vertigo when flying? Don’t fancy the idea of backpacking? Then travel around the world on a cruise. You can get some fantastic deals in off-peak parts of the season, and you will gain some fantastic experiences on and off board the ship. Shuffleboard anyone?

D is for Drive

Hire a car or take your own, driving is the preferred choice of travel for many, especially if you are travelling with a family. If you are thinking about a road trip in another country, check out the advice at http://www.redbookmag.com, with ideas for where to go and how to travel safely.

E is for Expat

You may be thinking of extending your travels, and the life of an expat may appeal to you. Not only will you be able to savour a particular country in more detail, but you will be able to extend your travels from the place you are living in. You will need to scour the internet for international property sites, such as https://rumahdijual.com/bogor/villa, though you should probably use a translation tool if you don’t speak the language. After all, you don’t want to end up with a money pit!

F is for Focus

In short, make an itinerary for your travels. Depending on the length of your stay, you want to make sure you get to do all you want to do. So focus on your priorities before you leave, making a list of all the things you want to see and achieve while away. You may need to be flexible, as not everything will go to plan, but you don’t want a wasted journey without some ideas beforehand.

G is for Going solo


There’s no harm in travelling solo. You don’t have to compromise with anybody else, so you can do all that you want to do, and there’s nobody else to worry about but yourself. Of course, going solo can also be a lonely experience, and safety may be an issue. There are some excellent tips at https://www.roughguides.com for solo travellers, so have a look if this is something you are considering.

H is for Health

Being away in a new land is fun for a while, until you get ill! Therefore, make sure you get immunised from potential diseases, and always have a first-aid kit stocked with ointment, plasters, sunscreen, bandages, and all the other first-aid essentials. You may be put on the first plane home if you go without these medical precautions.

I is for Insurance

You need to be covered for all manner of disasters while you are away, from travel insurance to medical insurance. As mentioned, you might get sick, and you may lose your luggage or have the frustration of a cancelled trip, so make sure you are protected in the event of any potential disaster.

J is for Join in

There are bound to be activities on offer in the country you visit, so don’t be afraid to take part and experience something new. If you are somebody who travels solo, it’s also worth joining in with other groups of people if permitted, as you may not want to be alone all of the time. Being with other people will also keep you safe when venturing into unknown places.

K is for Keep in touch

Again, this is one for solo travellers. Before leaving, make sure you have all the relevant contact details on hand for your nearest and dearest. Then, should you get homesick, you will be able to call family or friends for a familiar and reassuring voice.

L is for Languages

You won’t get far in a foreign country without some knowledge of the lingo. Desperate for the loo? Need something to eat? Make sure you have the phrases on the tip of your tongue. Buy a phrasebook, or go one better and learn the language in detail online or at a local evening class, ensuring you are prepared for every eventuality. This way, you won’t offend an entire nation by saying the wrong thing.

O is for Oranges are not the only fruit


The use of that popular book title is our way of saying try something new to eat. You don’t have to stick with the foods you are comfortable with, oranges included, so opt for the cultural culinary delights on offer to you. Some of the foods you should try are listed at https://www.bunac.org/, but you should also pick up a guidebook or follow your nose when spending time in a new locale.

P is for Passport

Quite simply, don’t forget your passport. Nothing more really needs to be said, as you won’t be going far without it. Though you should also make sure your current passport isn’t out of date, and if it is, order a new one several months in advance, as processing times can vary.

Q is for Quit while you’re ahead

Don’t try and cram everything into your schedule. You will only burn yourself out, and spend the rest of your travel time in bed from exhaustion. If you are living abroad for an extended time, you are going to have plenty of opportunities. If not, plan your days with care. Your feet will surely thank you for it!

R is for Rest and Relaxation

You might be the adventurous type, looking for action and excitement on your travels. On the other hand, you may prefer to spend a little more time relaxing and resting, away from the worries of your normal life. Either way, you will need some time to recharge your batteries. There is useful advice at https://www.psychologytoday.com to help you do just that!

S is for Save money

Travelling can be expensive, from arranging transport, to finding places to stay. However, there are ways you can save money, as recommended here, https://www.buzzfeed.com. Oh, and remember to save a little money for emergencies. You don’t want to splash all your cash on the first day of travelling, so budget your finances in advance.

T is for Time passing

Thinking about travelling or moving abroad? Then do it. Time passes quickly, and if you continue to procrastinate, you are never going to get anywhere. It all depends on your commitments at home of course, but if you have the chance to visit somewhere new, take it, before time runs out, and you are still where you were ten years ago.

U is for Understanding etiquette

We alluded to this earlier, but you really do need to understand the place you are visiting. This site, http://www.swissotel.com, gives you everything you need to know about worldwide etiquette. Making the wrong hand signal or a certain nod of your head may get you into deep waters with the local people if you’re not careful, so be sure you do your research before you make an international blunder!

V is for Visa

You may not need a Visa for every country you visit, but you do need to check before you travel. Whether you are planning a short or long-term visit, make sure you know how long your Visa permits you to stay in a certain place. It is possible to extend your Visa, so check with your local and visiting government before departure. Otherwise, you may be back on the plane before you know it!

W is for Write a journal


Keeping a journal is a great way to remember all the highlights of your journey. From the favourite places, you visited to the quirky people you met along the way, make a note, so you have no chance of forgetting every priceless moment of your travels.

X is for Xerox

Okay, so we were going to write xylophone and make some reference to musical customs, but that just didn’t seem right. However, Xerox is a much better word as this is something you don’t want to forget. Xerox everything that is important for your trip, from hotel booking information to personal identification. It’s better to take precautions, just in case you lose or forget something. Go the extra mile and scan and save everything to the cloud as well, so you have access to important information from your smartphone or computer, wherever you are.

Y is for You

In short, do what you want to do. Travelling is about a personal experience, so don’t let your time be compromised. This is your time to find yourself, learn new things, and follow your dreams. Enjoy your travels, and create memories that you will cherish for a long time to come.

Z is for Z’s

We’re done. We have climbed the peak of the alphabet, and it’s finally time for us to rest and take stock of what we have written. The same applies to you on your travels. We already talked about rest earlier, and this includes sleep. At the end of each day, get plenty of sleep, giving you the refreshment you need to face your upcoming adventures. Especially if you are climbing a mountain the following day, you do need to be at the peak of your physical fitness!


What are your A-Zs? Comment down below!

Love always, Calista xx

Saturday, 18 November 2017

The Hottest Shows That Are Worth Travelling For

There are lots of things worth travelling for - some people want to see the world’s famous sights and attractions, others prefer natural phenomenons, such as the Northern Lights.. But have you ever thought about travelling to see a show?

It’s well known that some of the best musicals and theater shows take place on Broadway in New York City, and in London’s West End. Plus, there are lots of sports and musicians who tour the world with their shows. So, don’t worry if a particular show isn’t coming to your own hometown; it’s a great excuse to book a flight ticket and enjoy a quick trip and a show!

Here are some of the best shows that are currently on right now - they are all definitely worth travelling for!


“Hamilton”

Based on the life of one of America’s founding fathers, Hamilton tells the tale of Alexander Hamilton. This is the man whose portrait is on the ten-dollar bill, so you might know him already without even realizing it! This musical is unusual to most other Broadway shows as its cast is entirely made up of BAME actors. Not only that, though, but it explains the various things that happened throughout Hamilton’s life in the late 18th century and early 19th century using contemporary hip-hop and rap. It’s a very modern and diverse retelling of a centuries-old tale! Even though Hamilton’s Broadway run has come to an end and the American tour of the show is over, it is about to open in London’s West End. There are still a few tickets available for the show, which will run from January through until the summer. So, ready for a city break in the British capital?!


WWE Tour

Would you rather watch some sport for a couple of hours than sit through a musical? Well, if so, you’ll be happy to hear that there is currently a WWE tour traveling around the US. You can check this website to shop for tickets and see where the tour is heading. Even if you haven’t been to a wrestling show before, and have never even thought about going to one, it’s definitely worth considering this show. The wrestlers are true entertainers and they get up to some pretty comical stuff alongside all their wrestling. Don’t worry, though, no one gets hurt during these shows - it’s all a big act and the fight scenes are completely choreographed.


Taylor Swift’s Reputation Tour

Do you want to know what the hottest thing in music is right now? Chances are you will have already heard! Taylor Swift recently dropped her latest album, “Reputation” and she is gearing up to hit the road with it next year. Hopefully, you have already bought the album or a piece of merchandise as everyone who does will get the chance to preorder tickets for her upcoming tour. But don’t worry if you haven’t bought the album or any merchandise yet as tickets will be on general release very soon. The international tour kicks off with a leg around the US next spring and summer before moving to other countries later in the year. So, if you fancy taking a vacation and catching Taylor while you are away, chances are that it will be entirely possible to do so!


“Girl from the North Country”

If you aren’t completely convinced by musicals but want to see a theatre show that uses some pieces of music, then you should book tickets for “Girl from the North Country”. This play has been inspired by the songs of Bob Dylan, and most of the characters sing some of his songs throughout the show. The play tells the story of a poor family who runs a guesthouse in Minnesota during the depression in the 1930s. The show opened earlier this year to rave reviews, and features an all-star cast, including Shirley Henderson who is known for playing Moaning Myrtle in the Harry Potter movie franchise. Even though the play’s original run at The Old Vic Theatre is now over, it is about to move to the West End from next month for a stint. So, that’s now two reasons why it’s worth booking a trip to London over the coming months!



“The Book Of Mormon”

Want to see a comedy? If so, then “The Book of Mormon” might just be the show for you! It’s a play about a group of Mormon missionaries who travel to Africa to try and convert the natives to the Mormon religion. The show goes on to poke fun at Mormon beliefs and teachings. As this is written by Trey Parker, Robert Lopez, and Matt Stone, who all write for the TV show South Park, you can guess that this is going to include some very close-to-the-bone humor! This certainly isn’t a musical for those who are easily offended.


The Blue Man Group

Like music? Like comedy? Like watching contemporary dance? If you’ve just said “yes” three times, then there’s a good chance you will really enjoy the Blue Man Group. There are a few theaters around the US that show Blue Man Group performances regularly, but if you fancy getting away for a week, you should consider taking a vacation in Berlin, Germany. The Berlin Blue Man Group regularly hosts shows at the Bluemax Theater. The show includes some amazing special effects and, thanks to its awesome effects and music, it has quickly become one of Berlin’s most popular shows. So, be ready to book well in advance!

There are lots of different shows all over the world that are well worth the price of the tickets. The ones mentioned above are just a handful of the best that you can get tickets for right now. If you do fancy going to see one of these, make sure you buy your tickets well in advance as they can often sell out very quickly!

Swiftie for Life,
Calista xx

Saturday, 11 November 2017

Three Remarkable Sites To See In This Lifetime

We only have one life on this planet, and how you choose to live it is entirely up to you. But wouldn’t it be a shame to get to old age, and never see some of the world’s most spectacular places before you get too old to travel? There is indescribable beauty in every continent on the globe; some of it man-made, some of it natural. And although there is almost no way of seeing it all, there are some things that are, in my opinion, unmissable. Here are some suggestions for your bucket list - try and check them out before it’s too late!


Zhangye Danxia Landform in Gansu, China

Let’s start with something a little out of the ordinary - the Zhangye Danxia Landform in Gansu, China. If you ever go to China, make sure this is on your list, as it is one of the most spectacular sites on the planet - making even established artists go weak at the knees. The mountainous region is vast and full of color - red rock cliffs interspersed with the most incredible, multi-colored formations you will ever see. Some of the shapes you spot in the landscape are amazing, too - look out for weird, castle-like structures, as well as outcrops that look like giant people, birds, and beasts.


The Northern Lights in the North of Europe

Also known as the aurora borealis, the Northern Lights are an incredible sight to see - if you ever get the chance. If you have ever wondered what produces an Aurora, it’s a little complicated if you don’t know much science, but in essence, it’s when solar flares collide with atoms and molecules in the atmosphere. The result is just magnificent - greens, yellows, reds and many other colors of the spectrum can light up across the sky, forming unusual patterns. The only issue with the Northern Lights is that no one really knows when they will arrive - you only have two hours or so to get yourself in the right position. Your best bet is to go in-season, stay for a week or two - in somewhere like Scandinavia or Scotland - and cross your fingers. It will be worth the flight if you catch a glimpse!


Meteora in Greece

The Meteora in Greece is a combination of nature and human endeavor at its best. Giant, sandstone peaks erupt from the ground high into the sky, and perched atop of them are some incredible Greek Orthodox monasteries. The monasteries are - quite literally - suspended in the air, and were built between 1356-72, and still used by around 60 monks and nuns to this day. A trip to the Meteora is not for the faint of heart, however. If you are wary of heights, though, I would suggest confronting your fears and give it a shot - the scenic rewards from the top of the peaks is supposed to be incredible.

Do you have any favorite spots in the world you would like to share? Why not leave your remarkable locations in the comments section below?

Saturday, 30 September 2017

Lobster Nasi Lemak at Tavern Kitchen & Bar, Imago

The glorious nasi lemak, every Malaysian's favourite dish. Whether you buy the RM1.50 nasi lemak bungkus, or have it in a 5 star hotel, it's that one dish that is hard to resist and the first you crave if you're overseas.

Saying that, you'd think you'd know exactly how nasi lemak can be made: coconut rice, ikan bilis, cucumber, peanuts and sambal sauce, with the odd piece of friend chicken here and there - perfection! Until of course, you see this masterpiece:
Nasi Lemak Lobster
Kota Kinabalu, Sabah is known for the fresh and affordable seafood, and Tavern Kitchen & Bar in Imago Mall is setting the bar up high for your every day nasi lemak. At only RM49, this full-sized fresh lobster make your mouth water just at the sight of it: juicy, covered in melted cheese and accompanied by all the best parts of your traditional nasi lemak (aka sambal and ikan bilis, let's be honest).
Take a closer look - Nasi Lemak Lobster
As if that wasn't enough, Tavern is really getting into the seafood mood with 2 other options:

Tiger prawns with tuhau
and
Grilled Squid
The promotion is only from October - December 2017, so if you wanna have a taste of it, you gotta hurry! I'll definitely be there, not only for these dishes, but also for the great ambience and music - the amazing Esther Applunius performs there too!

The best compilation
PS: Try the hot pan brownies - personal fave since they first opened.

For more info on Lobster Nasi Lemak,  please visit www.tavern.com.my/lobster-nasi-lemak

Always hungry,
Calista xx

Images courtesy of Moose

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Life Online As A Radio Announcer

I honestly think I would die without internet.

Love of my life - my phone
Exaggeration? Maybe, but only slightly. Anyone who knows me can testify to the fact that I'm always scrolling on my phone, going through every single app when I know there isn't really anything new, or most recently, watching way too many instastories - even when I know they eat up so much data!

Only 4 days into my data cycle 😨
Now that I'm working in radio, I have an excuse to be 24/7 on the internet is more important than ever! I always have to keep up-to-date with the latest gossip and trends, so I can keep my show updated with all the coolest news and music, so I'm one of those lucky people who can go on a YouTube binge and call it work. Sounds amazing, until you run out of data. Luckily though, that doesn’t happen often with Digi, and when it does, you can bet it's topped up within seconds, as you can #JomInternet Your Way with Digi Prepaid Live. I get to enjoy 2GB high-speed internet at only RM3! Honestly what can you get for RM3 these days…

A typical day in the life of a radio announcer (or at least, my life):

Basically every morning
9am         Run out of snooze buttons and drag myself out of bed (after scrolling through all the notifications that happened while I was sleeping).

10am       Reach the office, go through emails, then start doing my show prep (this includes googling latest celeb goss, watching new movie/tv trailers, scrolling through Facebook to see what's viral, sneaking in instagram time BECAUSE WHY I AM ADDICTED etc.

11.30am  Lunch and whatsapp away.

In the studio
12.45pm Time to start the show! Between talking, I'll also be googling extra info on the topic I'm talking about, and replying listeners' whatsapp messages.

4pm        Show done! Time to reply my own messages and update my instastories and social media.
This is also when we'll be taking photos and videos for the station's social mediawriting scripts, having meetings etc. On the lucky days I have none of these to do, I plonk myself in front of YouTube and usually discover a million and one new songs, vlogs and interviews all at once.

7pm Time to go home! Usually I’ll head out for dinner or a catch up with friends, all the while my phone never leaves my sight. Not exactly healthy, but reality.
Instastorying the beautiful sunset
Of course the scrolling never really stops until I actually fall asleep. I survive on the internet and if my data accidentally runs out, I literally don't know what to do and I feel fidgety (maybe I should go to some kind of rehab for this addiction lol)


Find out more about the awesome deal here: bit.ly/calistafbx

💛💛,
Calista xx