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Top 10 Things to Do in Penang

Street artwork, George Town, Penang, Malaysia

Get the most out of your first trip to Penang by going through this list of top activities and places to visit within this UNESCO World Heritage City.

More About Penang, Malaysia
Southeast Asia Travel Spotlight10

Spring has sprung: Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort slashes rates for early birds by up to 30 percent.

Wednesday April 9, 2014

sheraton bali kuta pool indonesia

Infinity Pool with Sunset View; image courtesy of Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort, used with permission.

Book your stay at the Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort (buy direct) at least 30 days in advance, and you'll enjoy access to the resort, its facilities and its excellent location in Kuta with slashed rates and free additional perks.

The special promotional rate available to early birds slashes 30 percent off all available rooms, and includes a welcome drink upon arrival and access to free WiFi throughout the resort.

"We welcome guests to come experience Bali in a unique, new way," explains Dario Orsini, General Manager of Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort. "Created expressly for Sheraton guests, our new resort, dining and spa offers celebrate our cherished traditions and international influences with unique experiences in a welcoming and beautiful setting."

Bookings start at US$140 USD plus tax and service charge, and promo rates apply for stays booked from now till December 29, 2014, for reservations made 30 days in advance. Blackout dates and other restrictions apply. For more details, visit their site: sheratonbalikuta.com.

For other accommodation options, consult our list of Bali hotels. For tips on how to maximize your cash while visiting the island, read our overview of Money and Money Changers in Bali.

Sunda Kelapa Wharf in Jakarta, Indonesia to benefit from Kota Tua revitalization program.

Tuesday April 8, 2014

sunda kelapa jakarta indonesia

Image Mike Aquino, licensed to About.com.

If Jakarta in Indonesia isn't on your next-to-visit bucket list, maybe it should - a more conscientious local government is planning to revitalize its old town, beginning with the Fatahillah Square, and soon, the Sunda Kelapa Wharf where the city first came to be. As the Jakarta Post reports:

The Jakarta Old Town Revitalization Corporation (JOTRC), a consortium of private and state-owned enterprises including state port operator Pelindo II, has agreed to make the trading port a proper tourism site. [...]
[JOTRC chairman Lin Che Wei] said that initially, the consortium would renovate three old warehouses near the entrance to the port. [...] Lin said it was also important to enliven the commercial activities around the port, like building seafood restaurants, souvenir centers and spaces for meeting, incentives, conventions and exhibitions (MICE) activities.
The analyst said the port was currently ill-maintained and in a state of disrepair, thus, much work was needed, especially if the purpose was for tourism.

Read the complete article here. Find out more about Visiting Sunda Kelapa Wharf, Jakarta, Indonesia.

Vietnamese cellphone provider gives tourists two choices in one SIM card.

Tuesday April 8, 2014

vietnam_selfie.jpg

Image courtesy of Getty Images.

Tourists beginning their Vietnam itinerary don't have to leave their cellphones at home, provided that their cellphones work on the local GSM network; they can just buy a prepaid SIM card from local service provider Mobifone, which offers a prepaid Happy Tourist package worth VND250,000 (about US$12.50). As TuoiTreNews.vn reports:

Subscribers will be provided with two options: Happy Tourist Data offering data and SMS services or Happy Tourist Voice & Data offering calls, SMS, and data services.
According to MobiFone, the Happy Tourist Data offers 3GB of high-quality 3G data services. With this tariff plan, subscribers can send intra-network, trans-network, and international text messages for VND290, 350, and 2,500 respectively while its data service will cost VND9.77 per 50 kilobytes.
Meanwhile, users of Happy Tourist Voice & Data pay VND1,580, 1,780, and 3,960 per minute respectively for intra-network, trans-network, and international calls. It charges VND100, 250, and 2,500 per SMS and offers data at VND25 per 50 kilobytes.

Read the complete news article here. Find out more about Cellphone Roaming in Southeast Asia, or read our Vietnam Travel Guide.

Kuala Lumpur's Low Cost Carrier Terminal to close on May 9 - so why isn't AirAsia budging?

Friday April 4, 2014

lcct kuala lumpur malaysia

Image Mike Aquino, licensed to About.com.

With the new KLIA2 budget terminal in Kuala Lumpur about to open, the Low Cost Carrier Terminal, or LCCT, is quickly becoming redundant. Malaysia's deputy transport minister, Abdul Aziz Kaprawi, has declared as much, stating that operations at the LCCT will end a week after KLIA2 opens its doors on May 2.

Set to move to KLIA2 are current LCCT tenants Malindo Air, TigerAir and Cebu Pacific. Still not completely on board: the LCCT's biggest tenant, AirAsia.

In response to the announcement [...] AirAsia said that "all AirAsia and AirAsia X operations will still be based at the current LCC Terminal even after 9th May due to a number of unresolved pressing issues that still need to be addressed".
It highlighted problems with KLIA 2, including depressions on the taxiways, aprons and runways, which were mentioned in a recent report into the airport's readiness.
"This will prove to be operationally disruptive to a hub airline such as AirAsia Group which has about 400 aircraft movements in a day and at least 70 aircraft in its fleet in LCCT," the LCC said. "We believe it is crucial to ensure that whole remedial steps are undertaken prior to a transfer, which will mitigate risks relating to any potential aviation incidents."

Read the complete news article at Traveldailymedia.com. For more on AirAsia's bone of contention, read our overview of Malaysia's Low Cost Carrier Terminal.

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