Win free 3 days 2 nights stay in Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore

After every long term travel, I always try to make it a point to let my readers experience the places where I have been.

Not everyone does this but that’s how I try to give back.. let’s wish that can give more in the future.
Now this is a challenge if I get to expensive countries. I thought I figured it out when a former client did a giveaway in this site.. But let me figure it out more next time. Any suggestions? ^_^

For this moment, let’s aim to spread goodness.

As you’ve read from my previous story, I wasn’t able to travel to Singapore. My anxiety and low self esteem as a solo traveler during my long term travel was at an all time low too.

But I don’t want you, dear reader, to undergo the same anxiety and misfortunes that I went through.
Soo let’s have this opportunity to turn a misfortune into something beautiful.

This picture was in the Round Houses in Chiang Dao, Thailand owned by a wonderful lady named Maggi. The place is magical and serene, and the house is not a typical house because it’s creatively designed. I want to own something like this in the future. You can click on the image to see more details.

chiang dao round houses

I always try to do a give away so at least my readers can partake in the joyful moments I had during my travels. Here’s some of my previous freebies. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not rich in material things but who cares about it when I can do freebies and giveaways that make other people happy :P

This was down south of Chiang Mai in Thailand. It’s my second time to be here. It’s a quiet resting place in a city with enough space for a 7-10 people group retreat. You may click on the picture to book

chiang mai retreat center

Ok. Do those pictures make you excited already? ^_^..

Up for grabs are the opportunity to stay for 3 days 2 nights in beautiful places where I stayed at either in Chiang Mai Thailand, Chiang Dao Thailand, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia and Singapore… well, never really had the chance to stay in Singapore but I paid for the place so might as well give it away.


When you win, you can choose 1 place to stay in each country so you can finally get your peace of zen.. And, who knows you might want to stay there forever. There are 3 places to choose from in Thailand so you can pick whatever you fancy.

Most of these places are for people who do personal retreats. So if you’re looking for quiet places for rest, relaxation and meditation, I would recommend you to check out those places. If you’re a party person, sorry but it’s not for you. You can still join in and gift it to someone else that needs it.

This place is a quiet home up a bit northwest, 30-45 mins from Chiang Mai walled city. The rural place has very few tourist and has a very local vibe. For those hypersensitive to technology and needs lots of green spaces, you can check this out. This house was chosen by spiritual guides as a place for healthy energy. Click on the image if you want more details.

chiang mai retreat house

As for the contest, here’s the mechanics.

0. Like Homestay
1. Like Chiang Mai Homestay and Retreat House
2. Like Chiang Dao Roundhouses
3. Like Trekking Collective
4. Like Soholand in Malaysia
5. Like Travel Tips and Stories
6. Like
7. Share this post in facebook, instagram or twitter with hashtag #retreats #homestay #contest #giveaway
8. Comment on this website on why you wanted to win this.

ALTERNATIVE ENTRY: Email me at grasya(at) a story about your latest journey containing a minimum of 400 words – I might publish your story too. Email Subject should be Contest Entry.

At the end of Oct 2017, I will choose the names of the person worthy to stay at different places in Chiang Mai, Chiang Dao Thailand, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia and Singapore for free. I give priority to those who are corporate slaves, single moms, those who do volunteer/charity work and other work that involves helping the underprivilege.

The picture below is in Malaysia. I stayed here twice already. I was traveling solo but there are always couchsurfers in this place hanging out, if you want a city vibe and yet still experience the rural mountains and hotspring, check it out.

soholand malaysia

A piece of happy thought: everyone who will participate here will still get something for Christmas. ^_^ It’s a wee something but it can at least start your journey.

If you win though, you need to redeem the prize and set your booking on or before December 2017. If you don’t have travel plans on or before January 2018, you can still gift it to someone else who is traveling and needs a place to stay, that way, we can pass it forward.


Melaka (Malacca): Heritage Site in Malaysia

Melaka (Malacca): Heritage Site in Malaysia

This is where I spent most of my time in Malaysia.. to me, it is a perfect place to go with your rucksack and just let your creative juices flowing because practically the whole village, even the backyard is like a living art gallery..

Melaka, Malaysia

I’ve seen similar places during my travels where the community maintains the place to be artsy like Chiang Mai. Although of course Melaka is a bit different because it’s like a fusion of Chinese, Indian and Malay artistry in one village..

melaka, malaysia

Even the mosque is Chinese inspired.

chinese mosque

My hostel is in the Chinese part of the place, then around 15 minutes and you’ll arrive in one part that is Indian, then of course there’s the Malay community.

So you see it’s not really a total mix, its more like being unique as Chinese, Indian or Malay, yet these 3 major race are still living beside each other in harmony..

christ church, melaka, malaysia

How much did I spend in Malaysia? $15 a day

How much did I spend in Malaysia? $15 a day

I’m a bit surprised that I didn’t spend so much as I initially expected while I was traveling in Malaysia.. I even traveled to different places (Kuala Lumpur, Klang, Melaka, and Cheras) and ate different foods.. Yet I came home with extra Malaysian bills in my wallet ^_^



Relatively speaking, it is not really expensive when you travel around Malaysia, I just found out some strategies and I’m sharing this with you too.. Hopefully you can get something out of it. Feel free to copy or produce an even better version ;D

That way, we can help more people to travel. At the time of writing, here are the conversion rates:

1 USD = 3.24 MYR

1 MYR = 13.68 PHP


Here are list of important prices to note:


You don’t need to eat in fancy restaurants coz the food at stalls are equally delicious. You can eat buffet style with only 5 – 6 MYR, or less! So you see, the food priced at 10 MYR in the airport was very expensive already ;D

Malaysia has a variety of foods, and it is my first time to see blue and black rice.. and Teh Tarik which means stretched tea!

malaysian food

There are many budget eateries, you just have to find them.. sometimes they are near a school coz they cater to students. But if you are in China town in Kuala Lumpur, look for this place:

where to eat buffet food in kuala lumpur


Or if you are in Melaka, find this wee eatery.. looks rather simple, but its a hidden gem.. only opens in the morning-lunch time though.

eatery in Melaka


Transportation via Bus is not that expensive too! A 1 hour bus costs 3 MYR only.. and not only that, Malaysia provides FREE bus rides in KL too!

10 MYR – Bus from KLCC to China Town

10 MYR – Bus from Kuala Lumpur to Melaka

3 MYR – Bus from KL to Klang

GoKL Bus – FREE (and it has FREE WIFI too! I can work while going around ;D)



Accomodation in the city center is quite expensive but dorms farther out of KL are good enough to rest your head, plus you get to meet fellow backpackers too, I mostly see Chinese, Japanese, and Korean students and the regular travelers from the west.. Some dorms dont have aircon because they cater to Western backpackers who prefer hot climate… too bad for us who grew up in tropical climate ;D.. but you can always opt to stay in places with aircons, it will be a bit expensive though.

Dorm beds range from 15 MYR – 30 MYR

Single Rooms range from 30-60 MYR

Couchsurfing – FREE.. and sometimes you get lucky that you don’t only get a free couch, but a room of your own, complimentary swimming pool and books to read too ;).. This one is courtesy of



And you ask how much did I spend when I was traveling around Malaysia for 15 days? I only spent an estimate of 10203.02 PHP / 745.83 MYR / 230 USD

Not bad huh? ^_^

Now, please take note that I rarely shopped or did activities because I have done some activities during my 1st trip in Malaysia 2 years ago already.. I just chill out, eat food, read books, meet people including a model from Estonia, CS Ambassadors from Iran and USA, and Pinoys whose life drama made me cry..

Anyway, you have to allot additional costs if you plan to do more activities when you visit Malaysia.

Here are a few interesting sights along the way, hope you visit them too..

melaka sights

And thank you to the people who gave me such great information.. Uncle Eric our host, Sofia from Uruguay, Mandy from US, Amy and Daniel from Malaysia, Masoud from Iran, Pinoys who told me where the best buffet food in China town is; and Kendra and Eugene my hosts in Klang..

May our paths cross again someday ^_^


people i met in malaysia


The countries I have visited has been very good to me, there are some annoyances but it really doesn’t matter… I think its a sign… to explore more countries! :)) But first, let me look for more travel funds ;D

This Grasya is in Malaysia

This is my 3rd time in Malaysia.. the first time was last year when the plane went ahead of me so I have to sleep in the airport for 3 days :D

Now, I’m discovering more of what Malaysia has to offer… on a shoestring budget of course. Apparently, this shoestring budget led me to places such as Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Klang, and currently I’m now in Melaka.. And all the while I thought my budget will make me sleep in the airport again ;D

Masjid in Melaka

This is because great souls are out there conspiring to make this trip memorable.. I met all kinds of people here apparently, from Pinoys who have super mega drama story on how they were able to land in Malaysia, to super duper health conscious hosts who shared their bits of health wisdom to me.

As of the moment, while in Melaka, I’m just chilling out.. catching up with backlogs and strategizing on how to move forward when I get back to Pinas. If you are following my mis adventures, thanks for reading this far… ^_^

This blog is a big reason why I am able to travel, and hopefully in the future, I will allow others to travel too.. let’s see what the future holds ^_^

One year on the road less traveled

One year on the road less traveled

I’m back in the Philippines for more than a year.

I’ve considered this my hiatus year. My year of personal retreat. My year of mellowing down to refocus, rejuvenate myself from too much mis-adventures these past few years. But looking back, I’ve asked myself if I really did mellowed down. Well, here’s a run down of my most memorable moments these past year:

Less mis-adventures this year but still got some in Malaysia

I’ve asked myself why God? Why have you forsaken me? haha! joke lang Lord.

It’s okay to be lost when you are in a foreign country like Malaysia. The country where most of the population are Muslim is one of the most hospitable countries I’ve been.

But if your airplane went home ahead of you.. like what happened to me, that’s not okay. Credit to my favorite habit: sleeping on airports and forgetting to set the alarm!

Discovered some hidden paradise

Even if I was already traveling during my early years, I still haven’t discovered much of the Philippines. I was amazed at awesome mountain ranges that looks like crumpled brownish green blankets in Aningalan, Antique.. and because it is difficult to go there, it is best to ride in an army truck ;D.. To be honest, the army boots are cute xD

Read more here

There are still a few places which few people bothered to go, which triggers the curiousity in me are La Manok Island in Bohol, and the place of the Batak tribe in Palawan

There’s a few more unblogged stories like the insides of Tawi tawi and tamed Ozamis City, will save these on future post entries ;)


Ate exotic foods

I do think its yummy but I never thought its (i hope you are not eating) a poo poo of a sea animal. Read more here.

And also, I cant forget the awesome combo when you go to a coffee shop in Tawi tawi (yes they have coffee shops :P)

I still have to taste the coffee that’s made from cat’s poo xD.. i heard its darn expensive.. and speaking of cofffee


Hunt coffee shops

Although there are exceptions, I’d really skip hiking the mountains to hunt for coffee shops. And look what I found!

That’s just a glimpsed of the Kublai Coffee Shop in Davao, you must visit to fill your eyes with awe.

Spending time with the grassroots. This is my favorite moments.

Sometimes its always easy for us to talk what the poor needs without walking in their shoes. The irony is..

I’ve met some of the most talented people who has been to France and other countries, yet they still chose to live with their T’boli tribes in the mountains of Lake Sebu.


I’ve met some of the most honest and caring people that will not take advantage of you despite your so called riches yet they live a simple life in a nipa hut. And despite, they will still invite and feed you during fiesta

I’ve met my neighbors in my humble community and they are really striving to get better.


Being with them always reminds me of an old post I got from reading Paulo Coelho’s blog.

And sometimes, I wonder, even if they lack material riches, are they the ones that are really poor?


So there you go.. If the world will end, I’ll say thank you God it has been a fruitful life. If not, I’ll say cheers to discovering places, people and culture.. cheers to more years of discovering a beautiful life.



This post is an entry to the Pinoy Travel Bloggers’ Blog Carnival for December 2012.
The theme for this month’s carnival is: This Year in Travel
This month’s blog carnival is hosted by Gay Mitra-Emami of Pinay Travel Junkie