The Stonehenge Experience

During my trip to England, one of the places we did not plan to stop was Stonehenge. As we head home from Bath, we thought we will just pass by it to take some photographs. Stonehenge closes at 4pm hence we could not enter.

It turns out to be a blessing as I had the most wonderful experience of witnessing the most beautiful sunset. I stand by the fence and shoot photos through the holes of the fence netting. Stonehenge looks even more majestic in that setting, with a background of multicolored sunset sky. There were some campers on the other side of the plains making it more picturesque.

Although I was unable to see the Stonehenge up-close, the view from the fence was breathtakingly beautiful. I would not have been able to see it if we came earlier during the day. It is such a mysterious place with so many questions remains unanswered. As the sun sets, it became interestingly eerie. If I had another chance, I would return just before closing time, to witness the majestic stones and the beautiful sunset again. If.

And the drive from Bath to Amesbury was an experience itself. That would be for another blog update.

Here are some of the pictures I took at Stonehenge. Enjoy!!
(for details on Stonehenge, just go to Wikipedia)

When we arrive, everyone has left the Stonehenge compound, hence the place looks abandoned. It is actually very nice to take a photo without anyone walking or blocking the important object.
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As it gets darker, the sky started to change in colour.
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The sunset is slightly to the right of Stonehenge so I took some photos of the sun setting. There are some campers on the plains – that is the square silhouette on the right of the photo.
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Just breathtakingly beautiful.
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A closeup picture of one of the Stonehenge rock with 2 birds resting on it. I took so many pictures, only a few turns out well. So this was quite a challenge for me as I was quite new in photography.
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Do visit my my flickr with more pictures of my visit to Stonehenge.

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Memorial Benches of Richmond

I have not been writing about my travels. Only one word to describe that….procrastination. Sigh.

I want to write part of my travel…those that I felt left a beautiful mark on my heart. I love nature, people, and history and maybe just a little bit of art. You cannot see and visit everything when you travel but I think we do our best to visit slightly unknown places.

My sister in law lives in London…..a big plus when travelling to this ridiculously expensive part of the world. For so many years, I have been confused when referring to England, Great Britain and United Kingdom. Found out it is really simple:

• United Kingdom consists of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland (though most of Ireland is now independent).
• Great Britain consists of England, Scotland and Wales
• England is just England.

Anyway, I visited England . My sister in law lives in Richmond; naturally I visited many beautiful places surrounding Richmond. I wrote a little bit on Richmond Hill last year.

One of my favorite things to see is the benches. Most of the benches in Richmond are memorial benches. The first time I sat on one of those benches, I imagine myself taking a picture of one bench a day for 365 days! The inscriptions were beautiful, funny, heartfelt and very personal. Although it is not cheap (I was told the price is above £1000 per bench), it is a brilliant way to remember your loved ones and support the city council too!

These memorial benches can be found if you walk along The Thames, in Richmond Park, Richmond Hills and even at Hampton Court. If you’re in a hurry, you just won’t be able to appreciate these benches. Go for a stroll. Here are some of the pictures taken by me….enjoy!

Below: Richmond Hill (I was told one of those homes belongs to Mick Jagger. I was hoping for him to walk his dog so I could see him…no luck).
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Below: My husband with one of the bench dedicated by a man to his wife who happens to be “Nora” just like my nickname. Errr….
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I love the location of the bench near this pub by The Thames. Beautiful. 7704106098_4bbc6057cd_k

And this one which really makes you want to sit and read a book or just watch the river flows, birds flying and the ducks play. Can you imagine how beautiful this place would be during other season?
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Do visit my my flickr with more pictures of the benches – Wooden Bench of Richmond

Gratitude 009

My family.

Last weekend I got to spend some quality time with my family. We have not had a decent getaway for a couple of years now. It was a very restful and interesting bonding time for us.

I love them and very thankful that we appreciate each other differently during this short vacation. We have our bad times and it is good to just chill.60124106462-1388286063

Richmond Hill

I love Richmond Hill. My sister in law lives in Richmond and it is natural to introduce this historic beautiful place. I was lucky to see this place in 2 conditions – with and without snow. It was an unforgettable experience.

It felt like I was transported in time when I stand on Richmond Hill with The Thames in front, The Roebuck behind me and surrounded by inscribed benches. I love the fact that everyone can continue to enjoy this view in all seasons for many years to come. Not all countries have laws that helps to protect beautiful open places like this.

Richmond Hill is protected by Act of Parliament (covering the Richmond, Ham and Petersham) – Open Spaces Act passed in 1902 – to protect the land on and below Richmond Hill and thus preserve the fine foreground views to the west and south (source:Wikipedia).

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Pictures: Nura Ahmad.

Travel: Kuala Lumpur & Putrajaya

Early this month, our family visited Malaysia’s capital city Kuala Lumpur (KL) again. This time is slightly different, we stayed in a hotel in central KL so we could experience the hustle and bustle of city life. It’s been a while.

We stayed at a hotel near Jalan Raja Bot which is near the famous Jalan Tuanku Abd Rahman and the famous Chow Kit area. I had a lot of fun taking photos from my hotel room window. At night we visited Putrajaya the federal administrative center for Malaysia. Putrajaya actually has about 9 bridges but we visited 3 bridges only. It also boasts beautiful public buildings and monuments. Below are some pictures taken during the visit. Enjoy.

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Travel : Tasik Banding (Banding Lake)

This is my first travel post 🙂

Last November, we traveled to the Perak State in Malaysia towards Tasik Banding or Banding Lake. We stayed at Banding Lakeside Inn. Love the place. If you love nature….this is the place for you.

The Tasik Banding Bridge

People rafting on the lake – old style

The floating homestay

believe it or not, one of the branches is actually a bird.

One of the gorgeous insects here…this was taken just outside the hotel

It’s a seed pod I think…i really don’t know. But it is incredibly one of a kind

A lizard…

A really beautiful insect that could curl up like a ball

The insect protecting itself by curling up into a ball

And when it is feeling safe…..it reveals itself!!

Tasik Banding is quite secluded and you may end up taking meals from the hotel if it is during a long public holiday. I brought lots of food …. with 2 teenagers, I can’t deal with the constant nagging for food. There is however a slightly more expensive hotel on the other side of the bridge – Belum Rainforest Resort … we may try the hotel next time for a different view of the lake.

If you’d like to see more pictures of Tasik Banding, do visit my Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nura_azli/sets/72157628347276009/

You can get more information here:
https://www.facebook.com/bandinglakesideinn
http://www.bandinglakesideinn.com/
http://www.belumresort.com/index.html